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WRITING A RESOLUTION

by Grace Preston, Michigan PTSA Past President

A Resolution is a formal motion that is presented to the convention body as a proposed action
position for Michigan PTA. There are two types: Legislative and Non Legislative.

A Position Statement is a white paper that is compiled of all the adopted resolutions on any
one particular subject.

A resolution must be:


• Statewide in scope, not a local issue only.
• A new issue, one we do not have a position on currently.
• Presented to the Convention body where it is debated, may be amended, then
approved or denied. If approved it becomes part of the positions of Michigan PTA and
its units. Then the units/councils and the board take the action required in the resolves.

All resolutions must require action:


Legislative resolutions must require action by the Legislature, requiring us as members to
interact with our legislators.

Non legislative resolutions must require action on the part of some board or elected body other
than the legislature, i.e. State Board of Ed, Departments within the Government.

Basic information:
There are two parts of a resolution: the Whereases and the Resolves.

The Whereases are the reasons for the resolution and the Resolves are what you want PTA
to do to create a solution to the issue.

Each whereas must lead to the action you are requesting PTA take. Information in the whereas
must be supported by written and factual information that you supply to the committee. There
are no limits to the number of whereas but each must lead to the action you are requesting.

Logically, the resolves must be a solution to the problem defined in the whereases.

Background information is presented in the rationale.

The biggest part of writing the resolution is defining an issue and then researching that issue.
Resolutions must come from a unit or council, Board of Directors Committee or the entire
Board of Directors. They must have been debated and voted on by the presenting entity. They
are not one person’s idea of what we should do but a united effort of a PTA/PTSA entity.
How to write a resolution:

Step 1 ─ Define an issue, present the issue to your PTA unit to see if there is interest in
pursuing the issue.
What is it that made you decide we needed to take action on this subject?

Step 2 ─ Discuss and decide within your unit what should be done about the issue.

Step 3 ─ Assign a committee to draft the proposed resolution.


The more people involved, the better. This must be an issue that affects more than one
person.

Step 4 ─ Research the issue.


The more information you gather the stronger your position.

Step 5 ─ Decide if it requires legislative action or action by another body.


Who can fix the problem? Does it require legislation or adoption of rules by a Government
agency?

Step 6 ─ Write a draft of the resolution and present it to the submitting entity for discussion
and debate. Resolutions can be submitted by local units, councils, State Board committees
or commissions or the entire State Board. A vote must be taken to present resolution to the
Resolutions Committee.

Step 7 ─ Submit your resolution to the Michigan PTA Resolutions Committee according to
the submission guidelines.

Pattern to set up for the formal motion


This is just an example of how to write a motion, not an actual resolution. Each whereas is
supported by fact.

WHEREAS, we believe that Children are our future, and


[Can be supported by written proof from PTA literature]

WHEREAS, PTA wants only the best for the children and youth, and
[Can be supported by positions taken and PTA literature]

WHEREAS, in order to maintain the best we believe a quality education is essential to that future, and
[Proof in positions of PTA]

WHEREAS, the failure of the legislature to fund schools has created a problem for local districts trying to attain
the highest level of education; therefore, be it
[Proof in record of local districts failing to maintain budgets]

RESOLVED, that Michigan PTA urge the Legislature to provide the leadership necessary to insure that all our
schools are funded to the full extent of the current formula, and also be it

RESOLVED, that [you may have as many resolves as it takes to get action on your issue]