One of Carrboro, North Carolina’s most beloved nonprofits, the 66-year old PTA Thrift Store, is under fire from a key stakeholder, the Chapel Hill Carrboro City Schools PTA Council (PTA Council), for not distributing enough of its income back to the 19 parent-teacher associations in the school district.
In 2010, the PTA Thrift Store donated $221,488 to the PTAs; in 2016, the distribution was down to $13,100. In response, the PTA Council, in a June 4, 2018 letter to the PTA Thrift Store board that began, “It is with heavy hearts that we write this letter,” demanded that the store stop using the name of “PTA” in all of its operations by July 15, 2018.
The letter explained that the PTA Thrift Shop’s mission and focus had changed and that funding the PTAs “in any substantial way” is no longer the organization’s primary goal. Furthermore, the letter continued, the continuing use of “PTA” confused many in the community who continued to donate valuable items to the thrift store believing that such donations would ultimately benefit the PTAs and their schools. Finally, the letter said, “PTA” is a trademark whose use requires following many rules and regulations set out by the National PTA. The Thrift Store board responded with their own letter, arguing that their use of “PTA” for over 45 years provided them with a common law trademark but that the board will continue to discuss the name change demand at their next meeting.Read Debby’s Full Article at Nonprofit Quarterly