It’s Why Wednesday! Q: What is the difference between a ratification and a vote?
We received this question from a unit leader. State Parliamentarian Tim Davidson is providing us an answer.
A: We all know what voting is. Ratification is the tricky part. Ratification is about fixing, or making valid, a vote or decision that was not valid. In PTA, ratification is a vote by association members to approve a previous action that has already taken place and that was not valid.
In PTA, association members have the final say (authority) regarding nearly all PTA business. However, association members commonly delegate PTA business to their executive board and to committees, even though the board and committees have limited authority. This is where ratification becomes important. The executive board and its officers often make decisions for which they do not have the final say (authority). Those actions must come before the association for approval in the form of ratification.
Here are a few examples for when ratification is needed: (1) the president appoints an auditor or committee members; (2) the executive board acts to pay PTA bills; (3) action was taken at a meeting not mentioned in the call of that meeting; (4) action was taken without a quorum; (5) action was taken by an officer in excess of authority. These types of actions must come before the association for approval (ratification) before they are considered valid.
Every Wednesday on the blog and on social media, we will be answering the most commonly asked questions about PTA. Do you have any questions we can answer for Why Wednesday? There are four ways to send us your questions: