PTSO Volunteer Needs

PTSO Leadership
What We Need:

The PTSO is normally led by two co-presidents who serve for two years in staggered terms so that there is one co-president serving a second year while the other serves a first year.   Currently, we are in need of volunteers to fill both co-president slots so would need to determine the best timeframe and transition strategy. The co-presidents oversee the variety of activities which the PTSO manages including budgeting, staff and student hospitality events, and informational tasks which include the directory, newsletter, email and website. All the necessary training can be provided by the current president and incoming freshman parents are welcome and encouraged to step forward for these positions.

We are looking for a volunteer to take over this position some time in the next six months.  Our current treasurer is willing to stay on into the beginning of the next school year to assist with the transition. The treasurer’s duties include maintaining the PTSO’s checking and PayPal accounts, reporting to the PTSO president(s), and filing annual reports to maintain the PTSO’s nonprofit status. The treasurer would ideally have rudimentary experience with Quickbooks accounting software but need not be a CPA. The treasurer writes under 100 checks a year and the average time commitment is 1-2 hours per week and all work can be done from home.

We have not had a PTSO secretary in a few years, but it would be useful to fill this position again in order to facilitate a more robust PTSO board role.  The secretary is responsible to communicating with the PTSO Board and for recording Board meetings and votes.

What We Need:

SouthFest is a parent organized party held at the school after the prom from 11:30 to 3:00AM. SouthFest is for all seniors whether or not they attend the prom.  It provides a fun and safe event for the seniors to get together at the school one last time before graduation. The SouthFest committee decorates the front area of the school, solicits and sets up food from local restaurants, and coordinates with a variety of entertainment vendors which include a casino, inflatables, tattoo artists, psychics, and a race track. Most of the planning takes place between March and the event in June. It would be ideal to have parents commit to two years in these volunteer roles to ensure continuity and a smooth transition to new parent volunteers.

An organizer or two to oversee all aspects of the event. The organizer(s) should be available on the afternoon/evening of SouthFest to make sure the event runs smoothly. Ideally a job for a freshman or sophomore parent since senior parents traditionally do not attend SouthFest.

A decorating committee to decorate the front area of the school and a minimal amount of the cafeteria. This committee needs a chair or chairs in order to organize and implement a theme and to coordinate other volunteers. In the last few years, we have tried to simplify the theme and the scale of the decorations. The kids appreciate the effort, but are very focused on the entertainment, food, and opportunity to spend time with their friends. So no need to create otherworldly decorations and no particular crafting skills are required.  A little imagination and a lot of tape and safety pins go a long way. Committee chairs should be available in the afternoon and early evening of SouthFest to oversee the decorating.The committee also needs several volunteers who are willing to assist with planning/putting together the decorations and on the day of SouthFest to help at school.

One volunteer to manage logistics (recruit parent volunteers for the event, coordinate the building permit, contact police and fire department for coverage at the event). This volunteer should be available on the night of the event from 9PM to 1AM to ensure that  the police and fire coverage are set and that the volunteer process runs smoothly.

One volunteer to coordinate the entertainment vendors. This includes booking the vendors, being responsible for deposits, final payments, and tips.  This volunteer(s) should be available from 9PM to 12AM on the evening of SouthFest to greet the vendors and make sure set up goes smoothly.

A committee chair and volunteers to oversee the food for SouthFest.  The food committee solicits donation from local restaurants, coordinates with the cafeteria manager for use on the evening of SouthFest, and manages the pick up, set up and clean up of food on the day of SouthFest.

What We Need:

The PTSO organizes several events each year for the faculty/staff and for students. In the past few years, we have been operating without any official hospitality committee and would like to reestablish a formal committee to manage this important area.

One or two committee chairs to oversee the various hospitality pieces and to coordinate the work of sub-committees who manage specific staff and student events during the school year.  The following events are in need of a subcommittee chair or two:

New Teacher Lunch takes place in August, the week before the start of school. Organizer brings dessert and small gifts for newly hired staff.

Back to School Lunch takes place in August, the week before the start of school for all faculty and staff.

Light Dinner for Teachers which takes place in each House area during the late afternoon of the December evening parent-teacher conferences.

End of Year Faculty and Staff Breakfast takes place the last day of the school year for faculty and staff (the day after the last day for students).

 Teacher Appreciation Breakfasts (FILLED) take place three times each school year. The organizer coordinates parent donations of food and a few parent volunteers to set up and clean up.

Random Acts of Kindness  plans 3 or 4 small stress busting hospitality events for the students during the school year including distributing Halloween candy, hot chocolate and cookie day, and an end of the year ice cream activity.  These are the events we have done recently, but a new organizer could certainly come up with their own ideas. Most of these events take place during J block. This does require availability during the school day for a few hours 3 or 4 days during the year.

Senior Sendoff is a celebratory lunch for all seniors that takes place on the day of graduation rehearsal. After the rehearsal, all seniors are invited to come to lunch in the cafeteria. The PTSO provides sandwiches, chips and drinks and parents contribute desserts.

Parent Coffees take place several times during the year and are usually organized by grade level. Traditionally, we have organized two morning coffees for each grade, one in the fall at a home and one in the winter at school, as well as an informal evening social at a home in the spring. In addition, there is one coffee scheduled each year with the Superintendent. It would be ideal to have one parent volunteer from each grade to coordinate the events for that class, and perhaps one volunteer  to manage the Superintendent Coffee.

Technology/Information Roles
What We Need:

Website/MailChimp Tech Manager   ( FILLED)
We need one person to provide technical support for the PTSO website and mail system. This includes administering the WordPress and the MailChimp systems and using Excel to import data to MailChimp from the directory software. This job actually takes very little time. There are a few actions that need to be taken at certain points of the year, and some infrequent troubleshooting if problems arise with the mail system or website. Prior volunteers can provide all the necessary training.

Newsletter Editors are responsible for organizing and publishing the weekly PTSO newsletter.  We plan for four editors each school year so that each person averages only once per month as the editor. We have one opening for next fall. Some familiarity with WordPress is helpful but not essential as the current editors can provide training.

Class Facebook Administrators manage a Facebook page for each grade level.  This is a very small time commitment and mostly involves approving requests to join the page (making sure members are South parents/guardians) and monitoring the activity to make sure things are relevant to the high school. The current freshman class does not have a Facebook page as we do not have an administrator.  We need one volunteer from the current Freshman class so we can set up a Facebook page, and one volunteer from the incoming class. Current Facebook Administrators can answer questions about how to set up and manage the page.


Other Volunteer Needs

Used Book Sale Organizer
For many years, the PTSO has organized a sale of used books.  The sale takes place at school for a few days in May. Parents have an opportunity to clean out some of the gently used books they no longer need, and the kids really enjoy the opportunity to browse and buy the very low cost books. The proceeds of the sale support various literacy initiatives of the English Department. We are not holding the sale this school year because our long time organizer finally moved on as her last child graduated from South and we have been unable to find a new organizer to take her place.  But we would like to bring this very popular and worthwhile event back next spring if possible.  To do so, we need one or two organizers to oversee the logistics of the event.  That includes securing a donated shipping container for book storage, coordinating publicity, overseeing volunteers to accept and sort the books, as well as setting up and managing the sale.  The planning generally begins in March for this event, and the bulk of the work is the couple of weeks before the sale when books are collected, and the week of the sale. We also need several volunteers join this committee to assist the organizers with the tasks listed above.

Grants Committee needs three or four new members to review applications and award PTSO grants. There are three grant cycles each year with deadlines in October, January and March. Committee members review applications and meet once each grant cycle to determine grant awards.

Grounds Committee helps to maintain and beautify the area around the school.  We are fortunate to have a few very committed parents leading this committee.  They need some additional volunteers to join them a few times a year (in the fall and spring especially) to do some planting, mulching, and basic clean up outside the school.

Speaker/Event Coordinator is a volunteer position that has not been filled for several years. Parents frequently suggest that they would like to see the PTSO bring in a speaker or organize some kind of educational event for parents once or twice per year. In order to do this, we need a volunteer or two who are willing to propose an idea, research availability, and manage logistics (coordinating with the school administration on topics, publicity, room availability, etc.)