Is it usual for teachers to attend PTA events?

Q:

When I became Chairperson of our Parent Council/PTA, I assumed, perhaps naively, that it was reasonable to hope that teachers would attend some Parent Council/PTA events to show willing and interest in our fundraising efforts and for the sake of goodwill. It would be fair to say that we have had no involvement from the teachers at our school, not even from the teacher members of our Parent Council/PTA! When I queried this at our last meeting it seems I opened a hornets' nest! I now have a letter from the school, signed by ALL the teachers, accusing me of questioning their commitment! I do feel that this has been blown out of all proportion, but I would welcome your feedback in terms of whether it seems usual in most schools for teachers to attend Parent Council/PTA events when possible.

A:

Sorry to hear you have so little co-operation from teachers on your Parent Council/PTA. It is normal for some teachers/the headteacher to attend events and not leave everything to parents. Obviously, if there are several events in a term, then perhaps the teachers would not be able to attend them all. Otherwise, it would be reasonable to expect at least one to attend. It's unfortunate you have now had such an unpleasant letter. It feels like partnership is not working too well at your school. Maybe the school doesn't want/need fundraising activities. You could suggest this to the headteacher and see what s/he says - in other words, call their bluff! Many headteachers and teacher representatives are very interested in the activities of Parent Councils/PTAs, not least because they like to know what is being planned and how they can use their experience to make events and fundraising successful!