A council provides services to local units and addresses needs that are larger than can be met by a local unit. Councils generally do not engage in all the tasks listed; local unit interests and problems determine the work the council undertakes.

The council:

  • Helps build stronger, more effective units

  • Provides leadership training and leadership opportunities for local unit members, and encourages local unit members to attend Region PTA conferences and workshops and state and national conventions.

  • Acts as a coordinating body to promote communication and cooperation among its member units.

  • Engages in community wide projects.

  • Is a link through which local PTAs can work on projects beyond the scope of a single unit.

  • Is a channel of communication between parents, teachers, school administrators, school boards, children and the public.

  • May not interfere with its local units on internal PTA matters.

The Council Can Provide:

  • An opportunity for local units to exchange ideas and plans and to solve shared problems through meetings and workshops.

  • An opportunity for study groups to work on areas of interest.

  • The strength to unify planning efforts to solve community-wide problems affecting children and youth.

  • The incentive and assistance for local unit participation in such activities as health/welfare programs, the Reflections Program, legislation and advocacy, cultural diversity, cultural arts, newsletters, and publicity.

The Council helps Each Local Unit to:

  • Learn and apply good PTA practices and national and state policies and resolutions.

  • Increase its capacity for service to home, school and community.

  • Keep informed on education and health-related developments, research, and legislation affecting children. 

  • Budget expenditures on behalf of the PTA are eligible to be Sales Tax Exempt; please supply vendors with our current "NYS Sales Tax Exemption (ST-119.1)" form. Current Council Chairpersons can request this form from the Treasurer.
  • New York State Law does not allow the use of personal funds when using a "NYS Sales Tax Exemption" form. Misuse of this form can lead to a substantial fine per occurrence.
  • If you wish to make a purchase with your personal check/credit card, keep in mind that you MAY NOT use the Sales Tax Exempt form and consequently will be paying the sales tax portion of the purchase from your own pocket.
  • Personal purchases may not be made with a “NYS Sales Tax Exempt” form.

Did you ever wonder what happens to the dues you pay to be a PTA member? Some of the money stays directly with the unit you joined, $1.75 goes to New York State PTA and $2.25 goes to National PTA. If you would like to see what New York State and National PTA do with your dues, click here for a document that shows you where the money goes.

It is ultimately the responsibility of every unit and council to carefully select those exhibitors/vendors they choose to do business with. Review the helpful hints below and refer to the New York State PTA Resource Guide, Finance and Insurance Section and New York State PTA's "Position Paper on Donations of Equipment to School Districts" for more information.

Helpful Hints:
  • Does the activity fit with New York State PTA's Basic Policy and Purposes and Beliefs?
  • Have two people read all contracts?
  • Only the President has the authority to sign a contract as specified in PTA unit/council bylaws.
  • Have any agreement in writing signed by both the vendor and the president.
  • Ask for and check references.
  • Check the vendor with the Better Business Bureau.
  • Investigate the tax implications -- both NYS Sales Tax and IRS Regulations prior to committing to any activity.
  • Secure a copy of the vendor's Certificate of Insurance.
  • Review the NYS PTA Insurance and Loss Prevention Summary contained in the NYS PTA Resource Guide.