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Elections and the Nominating Committee

A successful election is important for a smooth transition from year to year, and transparency and fairness are essential tenets of the PTA election process. Clear guidelines and communication ensure that all eligible individuals have an equal opportunity to participate and the democratic principles of the election are upheld. As a result, PTA becomes a vibrant and effective platform for fostering communication, understanding, and collaboration between parents and educators, ultimately benefiting the entire school community. The general overview of the steps are:

  1. Review the Bylaws* and the LAPTA Toolkit Section 9: Elections and Nominating Committee.

  2. Create the Nominating Committee

  3. Publicize twice.

  4. Hold elections.

  5. Publish the results.

* The Local PTA Unit Bylaws Template was updated in May 2024 and became effective immediately for all PTAs. 

Step 1: Review Documents

1. Review the Local PTA Bylaws in two sections. Article VI: Officers and Their Elections details who is eligible to run for office, which positions the PTA elects, the month(s) when elections are held, the day the term begins, how long the term lasts, and how many additional terms may be served. Article IX: Section 3 contains the details on the Nominating Committee such as how many people are required and their eligibility, the type of meeting and its required notice, and other details. 

2. Review the LAPTA Toolkit Section 9: Elections and Nominating Committee, which contains the complete details, scripts, and forms. 

Step 2: Create the Nominating Committee

The Nominating Committee is created at least one month before elections at a General Membership meeting with 20 days' notice. Any member who paid the current year’s dues is eligible to be on the Nominating Committee, although the current PTA President and the principal are not eligible. All members should have an opportunity to nominate themselves or be nominated for the committee. Committee members should be fair, ethical, impartial, tactful, and discrete, and they must keep all deliberations confidential even after elections are held.

The committee is responsible for presenting the best qualified nominees for office and interviewing all potential nominees. After it selects one nominee per open position, it completes the Nominating Committee Report. The report is published to the General Membership at least 20 days before elections. Further nominees "from the floor" are solicited and must be received 15 days before elections. If the Nominating Committee could not fill an open position, new nominations from the floor may occur at the election meeting. The committee disbands after presenting its report at the elections meeting.

Step 3: Publicize Twice

1) 20 days before elections: Publicize the Nominating Committee's Report and announce that other nominations may be made. Such nominees must submit written notice of their intent to run to the President and Secretary at least 15 days before elections. 

2) 4 days before elections: Publicize the final and complete list of nominees which includes the Nominating Committe's Report and any further nominations.

Step 4: Hold Elections 

At the General Membership Meeting with proper notice, elections are held. Only current members may vote, so have a current membership roster available.

The Secretary reads Bylaws Article VI: Section 5, which says, "For an uncontested election where there is only a single nominee for an elected position, a verbal vote is acceptable. For a contested election where nominees are proposed both from the floor and from the slate presented by the Nominating Committee, a ballot vote must be used. Proof of membership is required for participation in either election. A majority vote constitutes an election." Article X states, "Further nominations may be made 'from the floor.' Such nominees must submit written notice of their intent to run to the President and Secretary at least 15 days before elections." New nominations may be accepted during the meeting without the 15 days' notice only if the position remained open by the Nominating Committee at that time. The Nominating Committee Chair reads the report stating the nominee(s) for each position. 

 

If an election has both contested and uncontested positions, the appropriate script is used for each position.

For an Uncontested Election:

  1. The President states, "For President, [name] has been nominated by the Nominating Committee. There were no further nominations for President from the floor and nominations are closed.” The Chair repeats for each position.

  2. The President says, "The Bylaws state a voice vote is acceptable when there is but one nominee for an office. All those in favor of the slate of officers as presented, say aye. (pause) All those opposed, say nay. (pause) The ayes have it and the slate as presented is elected. Congratulations."​ If the nays have it, the position remains open.

For a Contested Election:

  1. The President states, "For [contested position], [name] has been nominated by the Nominating Committee and [name] was nominated from the floor. Nominations are closed. 

  2. Allow each nominee to speak about themselves for two or three minutes.

  3. The President states, "As Chair, I appoint [names of four people] as tellers for the Teller Committee (which is responsible for conducting the election). Will [teller #1] serve as Committee Chair? The voting members will now rise to count off to identify the total votes. Beginning with the member in the front row to my far left, please rise, say your number, and then be seated once a teller hands you a ballot." After the count is finished, the chair announces the total voting members.

  4. The President states, "The candidates for [contested position] are [name 1] and [name 2]. Using the ballot provided, write your choice for election, and then fold your ballot ONLY ONCE. Do not combine or fold any votes together.” (Allow two or three minutes for voting.) "Have all voted who wish to vote? Will the tellers please collect the ballots?” The tellers collect the ballots. The President proceeds with other business until the tellers are ready to report. 

  5. Tellers leave to count ballots. Illegal and excluded ballots include two ballots folded together, a ballot that names more than one candidate for a contested position, and an unintelligible ballot. If the meaning of an unintelligible ballot is doubtful but the ballot would not affect the results, the ballot may be ignored. If the unintelligible ballot affects the outcome, it is shown to the chair, who should ask the membership for clarification. If no candidate receives a majority of the votes cast for the office, then it is necessary to re-vote. The voting members must first be recounted. If a member eligible to vote was not present when the original ballot was cast but arrives in time for another vote, the member is entitled to vote. Members are given a new ballot.

  6. Teller Committee Chair reads the report. “The Teller Committee reports that the number of members eligible to vote is [#]. The number of votes cast is [#]. The number of illegal votes cast is [#]. The number of votes needed for election is [#]. [Name 1] received [#] votes. [Name 2] received [#] votes. 

  7. The President rereads the report and announces the results for each office. The Teller Committee Report including counts and totals are recorded in the minutes.  Following the announcement of the vote, the Teller Committee Chair makes a motion that the ballots be destroyed.

Step 5: Publish the Results 

Within five days after elections, publish the results to the General Membership and email to Affiliation@LouisianaPTA.org. Give appreciation for the outgoing officers and excitement for incoming officers. The newly elected officers are ANNUALLY required to register with Louisiana PTA at LouisianaPTA.org/register.

The outgoing and incoming officers meet to discuss the transition and to share all information. Everything is turned over before the first day of the new term on July 1. Work together to make the transition as smooth as possible because the success of the PTA is the shared goal of everyone. Reference the LAPTA Toolkits for complete details. If there is a contentious transition, consult LAPTA. 

Timeline Summary

The following summary outlines steps for a proper election with the required deadlines. 

  1. Pick the election date which needs to be during a General Membership Meeting in the month specified in the Bylaws.

  2. At an earlier General Membership Meeting as least 30 days before elections, form the Nominating Committee.

  3. At least 20 days before elections:

    • Publish the General Membership Meeting and election date.

    • Publish the slate of officers chosen by the Nominating Committee.

    • Ask for further nominations "from the floor."

  4. Fifteen days before elections, other nominations "from the floor" close.

  5. Four days before elections, publish the final slate of officers including nominations from the floor and announce the election date.

  6. Election day, hold elections at the General Membership Meeting.

  7. Within 5 days after elections, publish the results. Email the results with names and contact information to Affiliation@LouisianaPTA.org.

Fill in your dates here:

  1.                    Date at least 30 days before elections for the General Membership Meeting to create Nominating Committee. Interviews begin.

  2.                    Date 20 days before elections to publicize the meeting, election, slate of officers, & solicitation of other nominations.

  3.                    Date 15 days before elections when other nominations from the floor close.

  4.                    Date 4 days before elections to publish the slate of officers, other nominees, and a meeting reminder.

  5.                    Date of elections.

  6.                    Date within 5 days after elections to publish results. Email results and contact info to LAPTA.

Toolkit Sec 9. Elections & Nominating Committee

Index:

Nominating Committee......................................................................... 138   

Elections........................................................................................................ 139   

Election Timeline Summary................................................................. 140   

Script for Non-Contested Elections................................................. 141

Script for Contested Elections........................................................... 142

Nominating Committee Report......................................................... 143

Teller Committee Report....................................................................... 144

PTA Members as Candidates for Public Office.......................... 145

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