Friday, December 9, 2011

Serving alcohol at PTA events off campus?

Our PTA is planning on holding a fund-raising auction in a non-school facility, where alcohol will be served.  We are using a caterer  who has the necessary liquor license.  It has been suggested that a school music group provide the background music during the ‘silent auction’ early in  the evening.  Is there a problem with school-aged children being present when liquor is being served?  Also what if parents want to bring their own children to the auction?

Before answering your question, let me suggest that you check with the Washington State Liquor Control Board To be sure that your event is  covered by the caterer’s liquor license, and with AIM to make sure your liability insurance will cover the event. 

As far as the student performing group, I’d check with the school and/or school district administration to make sure there are no policies limiting performances by such groups. 

Finally, while there certain kinds of establishments, such as bars and taverns, are prohibited from having children present, that prohibition does not apply to a private function such as this.  However the PTA may wish to consider whether it’s appropriate in all of the circumstances and adopt such a prohibition for this kind of event.