Does your PTA/PTO organization have a room parent coordinator role? If not, it's something to consider adding to your leadership positions. A room parent coordinator is a person who is responsible for managing and coordinating all the room parents for the different classrooms in the school. They act as a liaison between teachers, parents, and the Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) and ensure that all classroom events and activities run smoothly.
This person will attend all the PTA/PTO meetings and will make sure that any information discussed related to class parties, field trips, classroom auction baskets, and teacher appreciation plans are passed down to the room parents in each class.
The room parent coordinator can plan an important role in streamlining what extra activities and parties are done in the classrooms and making sure that the classroom experience is similar for all students. After all, we all know that some room parents are more seasoned than others, and we don’t want the students to suffer if their room parent doesn’t know the ropes.
When it comes to class parties, many schools are moving toward requiring the same party across grade levels of the entire school to ensure that the party experience is the same for all students and that no classroom gets a better party than the other. In these situations, the room parent coordinator plays an important role in setting the requirements for each party (the number of games to be played, if snacks can be included, and what they should be). They can do this by sending out a party outline to each class or by working with the PTA/PTO organization to plan or order the party for each grade level. Companies like, MyClassroomPARTY, are a great option in these situations because you can order the exact same party for each class, ensuring each child’s experience will be the same. If the class parties can be different, letting other room parents know that companies likeMyClassroomPARTY exist might be helpful in case they don’t have the time to plan the party.
While the specifics for the role will vary slightly from school to school, here are some additional responsibilities of a room parent coordinator:
Recruit Room Parents: The room parent coordinator is responsible for recruiting room parents for each classroom. They may send out emails or flyers to parents at the beginning of the school year, inviting them to volunteer as room parents. Here is a customizable file you can use to recruite new room parents.
Provide Training: The room parent coordinator provides training and support to room parents to ensure that they understand their roles and responsibilities. This training may include information about school policies, event planning, and communication with parents and teachers.
Coordinate Classroom Events: As mentioned above, the room parent coordinator works with room parents to plan and coordinate classroom events such as holiday parties, field trips, and guest speakers. They may help with event planning, coordinate volunteers, or arrange for donations of supplies or snacks.
Communicate with Teachers and Parents: The room parent coordinator serves as a liaison between teachers and parents, providing updates and information about classroom events and activities. They may communicate with teachers to identify needs and opportunities for parent involvement.
Attend PTA Meetings: The room parent coordinator attends PTA meetings to report on classroom activities and events. They may also provide updates on the needs of teachers and students, and communicate the priorities and goals of the PTA to the room parents.
Manage Volunteer Activities: The room parent coordinator manages volunteer activities for the school, including identifying needs, recruiting volunteers, and coordinating their activities.
Facilitate Fundraising: The room parent coordinator may also help facilitate fundraising activities for the school or classroom, working with room parents and the PTA to coordinate events, promote participation, and track donations.
If you have just got started in the role of room parent coordinator don’t stress. Here are a few tips you can follow to ensure your time as the room parent coordinator runs smoothly.
- If someone was in the role before you, schedule a meeting with them to gather all the information you can about what worked and didn’t work for them. Since this role varies slightly from school to school, the person who held the role before you at your school will be a wealth of information.
- Begin by putting together a spreadsheet with all the teachers at the school, who their room parents are for the year, and their contact information. You will also want to put together a group email with all the room parents' emails so that you can easily pull up that group email list every time you need to communicate with everyone.
- Hold a meeting with all of the room parents so you can introduce yourself, explain your role, and let them know what they can expect from you for the year.
- Relax and have fun! Your kids are only in elementary school once and this role is a perfect way to get involved at their school.