Convention Hearing: Legislation Policies

Hearings are conducted to give you an opportunity to learn specific details on items that will be considered for during general meetings at convention. This year, delegates will vote on changes to Legislation Policies. View the business of the association.


A web-hearing has been scheduled for Thursday, April 20, at 7 p.m. It will be recorded for viewing at a later time if you are unable to attend. This will provide you with ample opportunity to ask questions long before the business is presented for your vote.



March 13 and 14: PTA Volunteers at the State Capitol Speak Up for All Kids

March 6, 2017

Media Contacts:

WHO: More than 100 PTA leaders from throughout the state will  advocate on children’s concerns at the State Capitol and hear the latest from state leaders including:

  • California State PTA President Justine Fischer
  • California State PTA Director of Legislation Shayne Silva
  • Ilene Straus, Vice Chair, State Board of Education
  • Tom Herman, Coordinated Student Support Division, California Department of Education
  • California State PTA Executive Director Sherry Skelly Griffith
  • Kevin Gordon, President and a Founding Partner of Capitol Advisors
  • Ron Bennett, CEO, School Services of California
  • Mac Taylor, California Legislative Analyst
  • Jeff Bell, Program Budget Manager, Department of Finance
  • Senator Kevin De León, Senate President Pro Tempore
  • Senator Ben Allen, Chair, Senate Education Committee
  • Assembly Member Patrick O’Donnell, Chair, Assembly Education Committee
  • Assembly Member Rocky Chavez, Vice Chair, Assembly Education Committee.

WHEN: Monday, March 13, 10:30 a.m. – 8:30 p.m.; Tuesday, March 14, 8:45 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

WHERE: Monday at Embassy Suites, 100 Capitol Mall in Sacramento; Tuesday at the State Capitol beginning in the Legislative Office Building, 1020 N St., Room 100.

WHY: As the largest children’s-advocacy organization in the state, California State PTA’s mission is to positively impact the lives of all children and families. At this annual event, PTA volunteer-advocates work to improve the lives of California’s children and families by visiting legislators to share concerns and to work toward change for schools and communities.

FOR THE MEDIA: California State PTA parent representatives from across California will be available for expert interviews on a wide variety of children’s advocacy topics including education, health and community concerns. Please contact Michelle Eklund at (951) 314-3707 or for information and assistance.

Understanding the School Accountability Dashboard

California Collaborative for Education Excellence Spring 2017 Workshops on the Dashboard and the LCAP

Have you seen your colors? Confused about the multiple metrics? Not sure what this is all about? Learn about California’s new education accountability system by registering for free workshops on the Dashboard and the LCAP offered by the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence (CCEE), a new state agency created to support LEAs.

The Spring 2017 workshops are focused on the relationship between the California School Dashboard (formerly known as the LCFF Evaluation Rubrics) and the Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) Template.

The workshops are open to ALL audiences – parents/guardians, students, community members, and other local stakeholders as well as superintendents, board members, principals, teachers, and classified staff.


San Diego: Friday, March 10
Register  |  Registrase

Modesto: Saturday, March 11
Register  |  Registrase

Fresno: Monday, March 13
Register  |  Registrase

Los Angeles: Wednesday, March 15
Register  |  Registrase

Oakland: Saturday, March 18
Register  |  Registrase

Redding: Monday, March 20
Register  |  Registrase

Santa Maria: Saturday, March 25
Register  |  Registrase

Sacramento: Tuesday, March 28
Register  |  Registrase

San Jose: Thursday, March 30
Register  |  Registrase

Riverside: Saturday, April 1
Register  |  Registrase

Ukiah: Saturday, April 1
Register  |  Registrase


If you have any questions or trouble with registration, please email or call 951-472-CCEE (2233).

California State PTA Wins CalSPRA Award of Excellence for PTA in California

February 28, 2017

Media Contacts:

SACRAMENTO – California State PTA will be honored March 2 with an Award of Excellence from the California School Public Relations Association (CalSPRA) for the Education Edition of the PTA in California newsletter.

“We work very hard to create a newsletter that puts vital, engaging student-success tips and information in the hands of all California families,” said California State PTA President Justine Fischer. “California State PTA is thrilled by this special honor from California’s dedicated school and district public-relations professionals.”

Distributed free to schools and families throughout the state, PTA in California’s Education Edition gives parents tools they needed to help their children succeed during the back-to-school season and throughout the school year:

  • Information on student assessments and scores
  • Ways for all families to get engaged in in school communities
  • The latest on science and arts education
  • Tips for parents of students with special needs
  • Homework help
  • And more.

Articles about California’s many complex education changes were written with parents and families in mind. The publication was offered in our state’s six most frequently used languages to help all families understand these issues and to help schools, districts and the California Department of Education bridge communication needs.

PTA in California and many other multilingual family and school resources are available free at; for more information on the CalSPRA awards or the March 2 event, please visit



School Smarts: ‘Everyone Belongs’ in Alameda USD

“I learned so much from the School Smarts program: I learned how the Alameda Unified School District school system works, how to get information when needed, how to invest in my child and school and how to prepare my child for college — I have all the answers I needed to know.”

Thang Do’s wonderful words are wonderfully typical of the family-engagement efforts in Alameda USD. As a recent graduate of an all-Vietnamese School Smarts Family Engagement Program, Do and other participants represent the diverse face of family engagement in the school district, and the entire state: While all may have different backgrounds, cultures and languages, all share the same passionate commitment to the success of their child, school and community.

That passion is shared by Alameda USD itself. Instead of a one-and-done, check-off-the-box effort at engaging diverse family members, the district has made diversity and inclusion hallmarks of its overall mission. The district was one of the very first to participate in – and understand the value of — the School Smarts Parent Engagement Program, and now the program, like the district’s commitment to diversity, is woven into the educational community’s overall culture of “Everyone Belongs Here.”

Alameda County has long been a diverse region, and today is no different: 44 percent of resident speak a language other than English at home, and 34 percent of residents are foreign-born. Instead of viewing such demographics as challenges, Alameda USD works to build bridges for all families to become involved in their children’s success.

“Our work is purposely built around stages of immigrant involvement,” said Claudia Medina, Alameda USD School Smarts coordinator. “We have made an intentional effort to reach out and include our immigrant and English-learner communities in ways that can empower their educational journey.”

Medina and Superintendent Sean McPhetridge helped spearhead School Smarts’ establishment in the district five years ago.

“I said, ‘I won’t be happy until I see School Smarts in all our elementary schools!’” said McPhetridge, who first saw the program when he was Alameda USD assistant superintendent. He noted that, five years in and now in 10 elementary schools, School Smarts has developed a new generation of diverse parents who, among other accomplishments, have helped the district realize its goal of greater parent input in Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) committees.

“School Smarts and other efforts have all helped support our work to protect and uplift all the students and families we serve in a safe, supportive and inclusive learning environments that are committed to the Alameda belief that ‘Everyone Belongs Here,’” he said.

“Our work has helped families to feel safe and included in our schools; knowledgeable and confident to show up in school; strong and informed to join leadership committees; and now, more recently, School Smarts graduates have joined our newly formed ALCANCE Latino Achievement Roundtable to improve the academic outcomes of our Latino students,” added Medina. “We are positioning ourselves to not only enrich, but also to impact the academic and social/emotional outcomes of our community.”

Noor Hezam is one of the Alameda USD School Smarts facilitators who helps make all parents and families feel welcome, not just in the School Smarts classes, but in the larger community. As a longtime educator originally from Yemen as well as a Ruby Bridges Elementary School English Language Development instructor and a community/faith volunteer, she helps Arabic-speaking families engage fully in their new country. From making School Smarts classes available in easy-to-access community centers for parents who can’t drive to creating a chatting app to connect her School Smarts parent-graduates, Hezam reflects the district’s above-and-beyond commitment to inclusion.

“Most of my School Smarts parents from two to three years ago were from Yemen, but now they are from Egypt, Tunisia and more!” she said. “Our parents thank me for telling them about our school system, especially about how we should already start preparing children for college. Our classes are joyful and exciting and we all cheer at the graduations. We are seeing more parents coming into the school and getting engaged – they now feel comfortable getting involved in field trips, greeting others on campus and more.

“All our work is about building relationships!” she summed up.

Another recent graduate – this time, of an all-Chinese class — summed up Alameda USD’s School Smarts inclusion efforts.

“Most of us are newcomers and non-English speakers,” said a participant named Wentao. “We understand that education is very important for every family and how it will help our dreams come true. As newcomers we need help to understand the educational plan from kindergarten to college in the United States. We have a duty to support our school and our communities to become better, safer and healthier. School Smarts gave us confidence in joining the residents of Alameda.”

Indeed, everyone belongs in Alameda USD – and School Smarts!