keep calm and join the PTA: a true story of hazing and heart.

In the weeks before my oldest daughter started kinder, a mere 6 years ago, I got a call from my friend who told me that she was considering joining the PTA board and thought I should too. I shall call this friend “Sally,” to protect her innocence. She put me in touch with a lady named…”Cadence,” who told me I should join the hospitality committee because it sounded like a good fit for me. And I thought, “oh fun!!! Hospitality. Like southern hospitality. I’ll bet there’s gonna be cupcakes and thank you cards.”

Whelp…that was a load of bull. It turned out that the hospitality committee was the one that had to go to all the meetings and make food for everyone, because, at that time, we had no budget. So it meant numerous trips to Costco—with a toddler, I might add—and cutting vegetables to make salads for my closest 200 friends. I felt like I was being hazed. (Please note, things have since changed for this committee, Thank you funrun)

And since I had to go to every meeting I started to listen. At first it just sounded like the teacher from Charlie Brown talking, “wha wha wha waaa, cookie dough….waa, the minutes will be approved as read , waaa wha.”

And then one day, through all that Charlie Brown talk, I heard Amber say something like, “our computers for the kids are 10 years old and have floppy disks, and would we like the auction funds to buy new computers?”

And I was like, “wait… what? Floppy disks?”

Guess what? We worked hard, threw a cowboy-themed auction and bought those computers.

Then I started to pay attention to what was going on. I noticed how much people were giving of their time and their talent, all for the school, for the kids and I had an epiphany:

HISD has provided us with a beautiful campus. And they pay our wonderful teachers. But if you look around, all the things that are amazing and wonderful about our school, the PTA has had a hand in—in some way, shape or form.

We are not your mama’s pta.

This realization was well before The Great HISD Budget Crunch of 2018. Henceforth referred to as #tghisdbc2018 for brevity’s sake.

So who is the PTA? Well, it’s us. It’s you and me, and our friends and neighbors, that make up what we all know to be the best and largest small town you’ll ever live in. And while the goals of the Texas PTA are something laudable like “promoting the welfare of every child,” to me, it’s simpler.

It’s about building community.

Join. Now. Our goal is 75 percent of families enrolled. Eighty-five would be better…but we’ll take 75.

Join and be part of this thriving community— your family for six years of your child’s life. No matter what your time is, no matter what your talent is, you have the heart.

Remember: it’s us.

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