Constitution of Parents Association

Click to download – Constitution of the Parent Association

The Aim of the Parent Association

 

The aim of the Parent Association is to provide a forum for the

parents/guardians of children attending Holy Family National School to

work together, in partnership with the Principal, Board of Management and the

whole school community, to help provide the best possible education for

children attending the school, in accordance with the provisions of the

Education Act, 1998.

 

The Role of the Parent Association

 

  1. To support the school through fundraising and to utilise the funds as deemed appropriate by the Principal and the Board of Management. Fundraising for the school by the Parents Association may only be carried out with the prior approval of the

Board of Management.

 

  1. To support the school with various school events and activities as requested by the Principal.

 

  1. To support the parent body through dissemination of information pertaining to parenting and supporting your child in primary school.

 

  1. The Parents Association may, upon request by the Principal and/or Board of Management, advise the Principal and the Board of

Management on any matters relating to the school in accordance with

the Education Act 1998, (2)(a).

 

The Membership of the Parent Association

 

Membership is only open to parents or legal guardians of children attending Holy Family National School Rathcoole. All parents and legal guardians will be deemed to be members of the Parent Association.

The Parent Association Committee will make every effort to encourage active membership by parents/legal guardians, especially for new families or families whereby language or cultural backgrounds may present an obstacle to participation.

 

Though not a member of the Parent Association, the Principal, at his/her own discretion, may attend and address any meeting of the Parent Association Committee, Executive Committee and all sub-committees.

 

 

 

The Committee of the Parent Association

 

The members of the Parent Association will elect a committee with a maximum

of 15 and a minimum of 7 parents/legal guardians. This committee will have responsibility for representing the parents/legal guardians of Holy Family National School Rathcoole and managing the activities of the Parent Association. Not all parents/legal guardians will be in a position to become involved on the Parent Association Committee but instead, may wish to be involved on a specific fundraising or school event. The Committee will endeavour to provide opportunities for parents/legal guardians to volunteer their support when required for fundraising and school events. The Committee must positively support the work of the PA and positively support the work and policies of the school.

 

The Committee must have the following elected officers;

 

 

 

  1. Chairperson – Executive Committee Member
  • The Chairperson will assume full responsibility for ensuring the business of the Parent Association is conducted in accordance with the Constitution of the Parent Association.
  • The Chairperson will positively support the work of the PA and the work and policies of the school.
  • The Chairperson has sole responsibility for calling PA meetings. In exceptional circumstances, the Board of Management may instruct the PA Committee that a PA meeting will be held.
  • The Chairperson will hold the deciding vote on matters of split-decision.
  • The Chairperson will agree the Committee Agenda with the Deputy-Chairperson, Secretary and Treasurer before each meeting.
  • The Chairperson will conduct meetings in accordance with the Constitution of the Parent Association.
  • The Chairperson will meet with the Principal upon request by the Principal.

 

 

  1. Deputy-Chairperson – Executive Committee Member
  • The Deputy-Chairperson will assume the role of the Chairperson upon the non-availability of the Chairperson, upon request by the Chairperson or the Principal.

 

 

  1. Secretary – Executive Committee Member
  • The Secretary will assume sole responsibilities for communicating PA business to the Principal and parent body. The Chairperson may assume this duty in the absence of the secretary.
  • The Secretary will ensure an agreed PA report is made available to the Parent Nominees of the Board of Management before each Board Meeting.
  • The Secretary will meet with the Principal upon request by the Principal.
  • The Secretary will communicate meetings to all members following instruction from the PA Chairperson.
  • The Secretary will pass all proposals received for inclusion on the Agenda to the PA Chairperson.
  • The secretary will distribute the Agenda for each meeting to each member at least one day before the meeting.
  • The Secretary will act as PRO for the Parent Association and will arrange all communiques in this regard following sanction and approval by the PA Chairperson.

 

 

 

 

  1. Treasurer – Executive Committee Member
  • The Treasurer will keep detailed and accurate financial records of all funds raised, held and expended by the Parent Association.
  • The Treasurer will ensure the duties of the Treasurer as outlined in the Parent Constitution are met in full.
  • The Treasurer will make available all financial records to the Principal and/or the Board of Management upon request.
  • The Treasurer will make funds available to the Principal and or Board of Management upon request and without delay.
  • The Treasurer will arrange for certification of accounts at the end of each school year.

 

  1. Safeguarding Children Officer
  • The SCO will assume responsibility for ensuring the Parent Association maintains and adheres to their Child Protection Statement.
  • The SCO will ensure all members working with pupils are vetted by the school through the Principal.
  • The SCO will maintain a register of members who have been vetted. The SCO will not be shown or hold a copy of the relevant vetting certificates but will maintain this register of names through communication with the Principal who will inform the SCO of those who may be placed on the vetting list following a successful vetting outcome.

 

  1. Safety Officer
  • The Safety Officer will assume responsibility for ensuring the Parent Association maintains and adheres to a Safety Statement.
  • The Safety Officer will assume responsibility for ensuring all activities of the Parent Association are risk assessed and necessary intervention take place for any risks/hazards identified.

 

 

Subcommittees

 

Subcommittees can be set up for particular tasks. The subcommittees may also

co-opt people to assist in their work. All membership of the subcommittee must be sanctioned by the main committee. The subcommittees may not make decisions; they remain at all times accountable to the main committee.

 

 

 

The Election of the Parent Association Committee

 

The members of the committee will be elected every 2 years at the Biennial General Meeting (BGM) of the Parent Association.

 

A general meeting of members shall be held every 2 years (BGM). At least 10

days written notification of this meeting will be sent to all parents/legal guardians of

children in the school. At the BGM the Chairperson will invite any interested

members to form the committee. Each member will be elected for 2 years but

they can be re-elected as long as they continue to be eligible to serve, that is as

long as they continue to be a parent or legal guardian of a child in the school.

 

A Committee member will cease to remain on the Committee if they have no child attending Holy Family NS, i.e, their child has been removed permanently from the school register.

 

At the first committee meeting following the AGM an executive committee will

be elected to the following positions: Chairperson, Deputy- Chairperson, Secretary,

Treasurer. These will then be referred to as the Executive Committee.

In the event of a vacancy arising during the year the committee will have the

power to co-opt additional members to the committee.

 

The committee shall meet at a minimum of 6 times in any one year.

 

 

Parent Nominees on the Board of Management

 

Every four years the PA, at its BGM, nominate and elect a mother and father to sit on the Board of Management.

These individuals are not Parent Representatives but Parent Nominees. It is not their duty to represent parents as a collective body nor the individual opinion or views of a parent/legal guardian. These members represent the Board of Management as a statutory body.

 

Parent Nominees elected to the Board of Management are automatically made

members of the PA committee.

 

A Parent Nominee’s primary responsibility is to represent the Board of Management and act as a conduit for presenting the Parent Association report to the Board of Management at Board meetings.

 

 

Requirements of Committee Members

 

  1. Members are required to attend all Committee meetings unless prior notice is given to the secretary via text/e-mail or phone call. Where a member misses two consecutive meetings without due notice to the Secretary, that person will be deemed to have resigned.

 

  1. Members are required to also actively attend and participate in any Fundraising and

Supervision of any event hosted by the Parents Association unless prior notice of non-      attendance has been made to the secretary by text/e-mail or phone call.

 

  1. Members are required to positively support the activities of the Parent Association Committee and school policy.

 

 

Meetings of Committee

  • All meetings are to be held following due notice provided to all members of the committee via text or email, with not less than 7 days’ notice to be given in advance of this meeting.

 

  • All Committee Meetings will be held in the school and with prior notice given to the Principal of the meeting. The Meeting room may be booked through the Principal/Deputy-Principal.

 

  • Committee members may suggest items for inclusion on the Agenda. All suggestions for inclusion should be made through the Secretary. The Executive Committee, comprising the Chairperson, Deputy-Chairperson, Secretary and Treasurer will agree the Agenda. Majority decision will apply to this process. Where there is a split vote, the vote of the Chairperson will decide.

 

  • The Chairperson and Secretary must provide a copy of the Agenda to the Principal in advance of the meeting and meet with the Principal to discuss the Agenda, upon request.

 

  • All meetings will be held in a formal manner and all matters will be raised and discussed through the Chairperson. Members may not speak unless invited to do so by the Chairperson. The Chairperson will ensure fair procedures in relation to speaking time.

 

  • No item outside the Agenda will be raised at any time during the meeting. Only those items on the Agenda may be discussed.

 

  • The Agenda will be distributed at least one day before the meeting.

 

  • The Minutes of each meeting must be kept by the Secretary and read and agreed at the subsequent meeting.

 

  • The Agenda will follow the following format;

 

  1. Minutes of Previous Meeting (to be agreed and signed by Chairperson following proposal and seconding)
  2. Correspondences
  3. Chairperson’s Report
  4. Treasurer’s Report
  5. Safeguarding Children Report
  6. Safety Officer’s Report (where applicable)
  7. Subcommittee Report (where applicable)
  8. Fundraising Items
  9. School Support Items
  10. Agree items for Communication to Parents through Newsletter/Notes

 

 

  • Confidentiality must be maintained at all times. Breach of confidentiality may lead to a Vote of no-confidence in a member and dismissal from the Committee. Only items agreed for communication to parents, as per agenda, are acceptable items of information to discuss.

 

 

 

 

National Parents Council

The Parent Association of Holy Family NS will maintain annual registration with the National Parents Council.

 

 

 

Insurance & Liability

The Parent Association of Holy Family NS will ensure an adequate level of insurance is maintained at all times to cover liabilities which may arise through the execution of all Parent Association Activities.

 

 

 

Safeguarding Children/Child Protection

The Parent Association will maintain and adhere to a Child Protection Statement.

The Parent Association will appoint a Safeguarding Children Officer (SCO) who will liaise with the School Designated Liaison Person (DLP), Principal of the School or the Deputy DLP, Deputy-Principal of the school.

 

The Parent Association through the Parent Association SCO will ensure that all PA members who have contact with children through the activities of the Parent Association, will be vetted through the Central Vetting Unit. This process will be arranged by the school Principal.

 

Hire of School Premises

The Parent Association will adhere to all conditions of use as outlined by the Board of Management in relation to the use of the school for Parent Association activities.

 

 

Communications from the Parent Association

No member of the Parent Association Committee will represent the committee in communications with the Principal, Board of Management, parent body or outside agencies other than the members outlined below;

 

With the Principal

The Secretary of the Parent Association will normally communicate all relevant information to the Principal.

The Principal will meet with the Chairperson and Secretary on Parent Association matters.

The Treasurer will communicate all matters relating to finances to the Principal.

No other Committee member may communicate Parent Association business to the Principal.

 

With the Board of Management

The Secretary will arrange for a Report by the Parent Association to be provided to one or both Parent Nominees on the Board of Management.

On occasion, the Chairperson and other members of the Executive Committee of the Parent Association may be called to appear before the Board.

 

With the Parent Body

The Parent Association will communicate regularly with the parent body through the School Newsletter, Facebook Page and School Email system.

The Secretary of the Parent Association is responsible for arranging these communications to occur.

 

With Outside Agencies & Businesses

The Chairperson will arrange for the appropriate committee members to communicate with outside agencies & Businesses.

 

 

Critical Incidents & High Profile Events

The Parent Association will adhere to the school’s Critical Incident Management Plan in relation to communications in this regard. No member of the Committee will make a statement or utterance, on or off the record, in this context. All such statements must be sanctioned by the Chairperson of the Board of Management.

 

 

Finance

  • At the beginning of the school year, the Parent Association Chairperson, Secretary and Treasurer should meet with the Principal, who is a member of the Board of Management and together they will decide what PA expenditure will be of most benefit to the school.

 

  • The Parent Association committee will finance the activities of the Parent Association through fundraising. No finances may be expended for the purposes of fundraising unless sanctioned by the Board of Management through the Principal. A member of the committee must not make any commitment regarding expenditure without the sanction of the Parent Association Committee. Where a request for expenditure is required before the next Parent Association Committee meeting takes place, the request may be sanctioned by the combined approval of the Chairperson and Treasurer of the Parent Association, once the expenditure is deemed reasonable and justifiable. The Principal should be consulted if the expenditure is not reasonably connected to items of expenditure agreed with the Principal.

 

  • All fundraising must only take place following prior sanction by the Board of Management.

 

  • Only the Principal, on behalf of the Board of Management, may make all expenditures and an invoice/bill will be provided to the Parent Association as a receipt.

 

  • The Treasurer will be appointed from among the committee members and will be

responsible for keeping account of the income and expenditure of the Parent

Association finances. The Treasurer will give a statement of income and

expenditure at each committee meeting. Accurate and detailed accounts and receipts must be kept.

 

  • A written statement of income and expenditure must be provided to the Board of Management at each Board Meeting as part of the Parent Association Report.

 

  • The Parent Association will keep a bank account in its name. Each cheque issued

will require two signatories. The Treasurer and the Principal of Holy Family

National School Rathcoole must sign all cheques drawn on the account. Another member of the Executive Committee may be designated as a signatory by the PA Committee. However, the signature of the school Principal must appear on all cheques unless the Principal instructs the signature of the second Executive Committee member in lieu.

 

  • In the interest of all committee members, all cash raised must be counted by at least two members of the committee on the day of collection and lodged into the Parent Association Account without delay. Uncounted cash must never be taken from the school without the prior approval of the Chairperson of the Parent Association or the Principal/Deputy-Principal of the school.

 

  • The Parent Association must transfer all funds from the Parent Association Account to the Board of Management before 30th June of each year unless otherwise directed by the Board of Management. The Parent Association may maintain a nominal balance in the account on this date to meet basic administrative expenses.

 

  • The Parent Association will have their accounts certified each year by an independent registered accountant.

 

 

 

Complaints & Grievance Procedure

 

  1. Informal Stage

It is expected that all complaints and grievances in relation to the work or conduct of the Parent Association will be made to the Parent Association Chairperson and dealt with on an informal basis and that an informal response to a complaint or grievance at this stage will be sufficient to resolve same. It would be usual that the Chairperson of the Parent Association would respond to all such matters on behalf of the PA Committee.

 

  1. Formal Stage

Where a complaint or grievance was not resolved at the informal stage, the complaints or grievances in relation to the work or conduct of the Parent Association must be made in writing to the Parent Association Committee through the Chairperson of the Parent Association. The complaint should be signed and dated by the complainant before it is processed through the procedure.

 

The Secretary will read the correspondence at the next Parent Association Committee meeting and a written response will be agreed by the Committee and sent to the complainant within 5 school days of the meeting. The secretary should keep a copy of the correspondence and the response with the minutes of the meeting.

 

Vote of No-Confidence in a Committee Member

Any Committee member who brings the committee or the school into disrepute or whose conduct is negative towards the work of the committee or the school will be asked to resign from the committee if the Chairperson ascertains that the majority of the Committee wish this to occur. If a member chooses not to resign, a member of the Parent Association Committee will be removed following a Vote of No Confidence by the majority of the Parent Association Committee.

 

A Vote of No Confidence may only be made following a motion of No Confidence by a member of the Committee which is supported by two other members of the committee. The Chairperson must ascertain that there is the required support from the minimum of three members for a motion of no-confidence to proceed.

 

A Motion of No-Confidence may not be tabled at a meeting without prior notice. All motions of No-Confidence must only occur as the sole item on a Committee Agenda. The Chairperson will ask the Secretary to call the meeting of the members. The members must be informed of the sole item on the Agenda and the member against whom the motion is being tabled.

 

The Chairperson should inform the member against whom the motion is being made of the reasons for the motion and the names of those proposing and supporting the motion. All committee members must be given 7 days’ notice of the meeting.

 

At the meeting, the member making a motion of No Confidence must outline the reasons for the motion.

The member of the Committee against whom the motion of No Confidence has been tabled will be entitled to respond to a motion of No Confidence.

Any committee member present at the meeting will also be entitled to speak on the motion.

All speakers will be given no more than ten minutes to speak on the motion.

The committee will then vote on the motion by a show of hands in favour and then against the motion.

 

The Chairperson will count the show of support for or against the motion and this will be recorded in the minutes by the secretary.

 

Where the motion is passed, the Chairperson will thank all members for their input and inform the Committee member that their membership of the committee is terminated and the meeting will be closed immediately.

Where the motion is not supported, the Chairperson will thank all members for their input and ask all members to move forward in a positive manner for the benefit of the school and the pupils. The meeting will be closed immediately.

 

Any member who loses their committee membership will not be allowed hold a position on the committee for 3 Consecutive Terms.

 

 

Petitions

The Parent Association does not accept petitions. Petitions are not viewed as a written complaint and will not be processed through the Complaint & Grievance Procedures, above mentioned.

 

Amendments to the Constitution

 

The Constitution of the Parent Association and all amendments therein requires the approval of the Board of Management.

 

Amendments to the Constitution may only be made at a BGM or EGM. Amendments then requires sanction and ratification of the Board of Management.

 

The constitution should be read in its entirety and reviewed at the first meeting of the Parent Association in each school year to ensure all members are cognisant of the Constitution and the responsibilities of the Committee and the officers of the Executive Committee.

 

 

Signed this day 3rd October 2017 –

 

 

 

Signature of Chairperson of the Parent Association              _____________________

 

 

 

Signature of Chairperson of the Board of Management         _____________________