The recording secretary is elected by the association and is one of the three required officers for a PTA. The secretarial responsibilities may be assigned to one person or divided between a recording secretary and a corresponding secretary, as specified in the bylaws. If there is no corresponding secretary, the duties of the corresponding secretary may be combined with the duties of the recording secretary, in accordance with the bylaws. In addition to the bylaws, the duties of a secretary are discussed in the California State PTA Toolkit and Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised.
The Secretary shall:
- Attend PTA-sponsored workshops or trainings.
- Obtain the secretary’s record book, which contains the minutes from previous executive board and general association meetings. Also obtain the procedure book which contains the master set of the bylaws, list of members and other official documents and records of the PTA.
- Keep an accurate, concise, permanent record of the proceedings of all meetings of the association and of the executive board. These minutes are the legal record of the PTA/PTSA and the original copy of the minutes is known as the master copy.
- Minutes are entered into a bound book. Minutes may be handwritten in permanent ink, typed, or computer generated. The original copy must be bound.
- Minutes contain a record of action taken by the group, with action recorded in the order it took place. Personal opinion and discussion are not included.
- Prepare a list of unfinished business items for the president and assist with preparation of the agenda, if requested.
- Have on hand for reference at each meeting a copy of the bylaws and standing rules, copies of agendas, motion forms, minutes of previous meetings, list of all committees, and an up-to-date list of all members.
- Read the minutes of any previous meeting, when called upon to do so.
- Copies of the association minutes may be prepared for each member to expedite the meeting, or association minutes may be published in the association newsletter. When the newsletter is distributed to the school community, only a summary of action is printed.
- With approval of the association, reading of the minutes may be postponed to a succeeding meeting, or a committee may be appointed by the president to read the minutes and report.
- Minutes are not to be posted on any website; however, a summary of association minutes is appropriate.
- Prepare the minutes and give a copy to the president soon after each meeting.
- Make all corrections to the official minutes. Corrections to the minutes are made immediately following the reading of the minutes, during the time specified on the agenda for minutes, or at any subsequent meeting when errors are discovered. The current minutes shall reflect that a correction was made. In the master copy of the minutes, the secretary circles the incorrect words with a red ink pen and notes the correction in the margin. Corrections must be dated and initialed. Only the group that held the meeting for which minutes were taken (executive committee, executive board, association) may correct them.
- Prepare and read a report (not the full minutes) of each executive board meeting at each association meeting, and move the adoption of board recommendations.
- Sign, with the president, authorizations for payment after the association votes to pay a bill. Record all expenditures in the minutes.
- Enter all amendments to the bylaws in the minutes, at the meeting at which the vote is taken.
- In the absence of the president and vice presidents, call the meeting to order and preside until the election of a chairman pro tem, unless the bylaws specify otherwise.
- Be prepared to help count a rising vote when requested, and have blank paper available for voting by ballot.
- Be responsible for all records, documents and papers (except those assigned to others).