It probably seems like you should be able to "manually" select folks in the People tab as "paid" PTA members. However, by entering them in the PTA tab - Add Members, you are actually placing/confirming a transaction as well documenting how they paid.
This transaction sets off a series of tasks such as membership card creation, emailed receipt, yellow star, syncing with NCPTA, etc. None of these things can happen until the payment is confirmed. So we need the actual transaction information versus just indicating a person is a member in their profile. To avoid manually entering members you can utilize your Dues Payment Page.
This also helps to avoid another issue. There could be four "Ann Smith's" in a school. So you want to make sure you enter the right name, email address and payment with each transaction. Clicking on a profile will not ensure that is the correct individual if there are duplicate names. We are planning an update to have info self-populate if an email address is entered first.