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  • Parent Town Hall with the US Department of Education

    July 26, 2021

    There is a unique opportunity for parents this Thursday, July 29th at 5:00 p.m. — The National Association for Family, School and Community Engagement and the United Parent Leaders Action Network are hosting a parent town hall featuring the US Departm …

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  • Interview with Danni Kim, National PTA Family Engagement Whole Child Fellow

    July 23, 2021

    Earlier this month National PTA announced the names of four Family Engagement Fellows from across the United States. California State PTA is proud to announce that Danni Kim from Franklin Magnet PTA in First District was selected for this prestigious p …

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  • Family Engagement in the News

    July 16, 2021

    As we gear up to head back to school, our commission has been noticing a trend in the news — there has been a great deal of talk about Family Engagement! This is exciting for all of our PTA units, as this continues to show that the work you do every d …

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  • Summer learning ideas and resources

    July 13, 2021

    Learning loss during the summer months is a real concern, especially after the challenging school year we’ve had. If you’re looking for ways to keep your child’s mind active over the term break, or just want to take part in some interesting summer acti …

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  • Introduction to the National Standards for Family-School Partnerships

    July 9, 2021

    National PTA is focused on transformative family engagement which is defined as “a shared effort of families, schools, and community leaders to advance programs, practices, and policies that empower every parent to make their child’s potential a realit …

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  • First Tasks for New PTA Officers

    July 9, 2021

    Getting started as a brand-new PTA officer can seem daunting at first. There’s a lot that needs to be done to get things up and running, but who does what, and in what order? This list help you figure out when and how to schedule meetings, create calen …

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  • What is Family Engagement?

    July 2, 2021

    By Heather Ippolito, Vice President for Family Engagement In PTA we often talk about family engagement, but what does it really mean and why is it so very important?   Family engagement with schools has many definitions:   The US Department of Health a …

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  • Thank you from PTA president Celia Jaffe

    June 29, 2021

    Hello PTA friends and friends of California State PTA: The resilience, dedication, and creativity shown by PTA leaders during this challenging term has been exceptional. Through the pandemic, PTAs continued to play meaningful roles in their local commu …

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  • Raffle Permit Information

    June 29, 2021

    An opportunity drawing is a prize where everyone who comes to the event has an equal chance of winning and no one pays for a ticket. A raffle is defined as a lottery in which each participant buys a chance to win a prize. PTAs are not exempt from havin …

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  • Focus on Eye Health

    June 28, 2021

    The biggest challenge of the last year to maintaining healthy vision has been digital eye strain. With kids being forced to switch from in-person to digitally based distance learning because of the pandemic, the number of hours per week they spend star …

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  • College and Career Readiness Summer Activity

    June 25, 2021

    Helping our students think about college and career readiness is a great thing to do during the summer months. The Family Engagement Commission has found a really fun resource for students in grades 5-12 to use this summer AND they could win a $1,000 s …

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  • Book Club Discussion: “Strangers from a Different Shore” by Ronald Takaki

    June 21, 2021

    Members of the California State PTA Board of Managers have been reading books that give us a deeper understanding of the effects of racial prejudice on our minority populations. We have read eight books including The New Jim Crow, The Color of Law, How …

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  • Advocacy Agenda for Equity 2021

    June 21, 2021

    California State PTA believes that all children deserve a quality education regardless of the community in which they live, the color of their skin, their language, their gender identity, or their immigration status. But too many California students fr …

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  • What’s Happening in PTA? June 2021 Edition

    May 28, 2021

    Please find below a listing of California State PTA’s June training and advocacy opportunities for our leaders and members. We hope you will join us for some of these offerings: June 1, 8, 15, 22, and 29 DEI Virtual Office Hours 7:00-8:00 p.m. Our Dive …

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  • Family Engagement in a Virtual World

    May 14, 2021

    This year was different – and Family Engagement was different, too. Families are struggling with physical and fiscal health. There were so many uncertainties about this school year – and even next year! Our usual routines have been changed dramatically …

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  • Addressing Microaggressions to Make PTAs More Welcoming

    May 13, 2021

    We all want all families to feel welcome at our schools. An active middle school PTSA was committed to including all voices in their PTSA planning. They worked with their school’s Spanish-bilingual and Chinese-bilingual family liaisons to engage the En …

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  • Family Engagement: It’s the Law

    May 11, 2021

    As PTA members, we know how important family engagement is for student and school success.  Did you know that family engagement is not just good practice? In California it’s the law!  The California Department of Education’s Local Control Funding Formu …

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  • ETS Update: Spring Assessments

    May 10, 2021

    This article was provided by our sponsor ETS. Read more about ETS here. State tests are underway and like this school year when learning is  different—whether your child is in a school, learning at home, or both—the tests are also different. We recogni …

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  • What’s Happening in PTA? May 2021 Edition

    May 10, 2021

    Please find below a listing of California State PTA’s May training and advocacy opportunities for our leaders and members. We hope you will join us for some of these offerings: May 3-16 Convention 2021 Join hundreds of fellow PTA members and leaders fo …

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  • Staying Connected with PTA Families in a Virtual World

    May 10, 2021

    How do we keep everyone connected when we can’t meet in person? The same way we did before: by communicating clearly and frequently, by hosting a variety of social and learning activities, and by building authentic relationships. Clear and frequent com …

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  • Are you feeling engaged with your school site?

    April 26, 2021

    Family Engagement is at the heart of what we do in PTA — but do you feel like you are running out of ideas for good programming? The Family Engagement Commission is hosting a workshop that will help you with just that at our 122nd Annual Convention. T …

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  • Screenagers NEXT CHAPTER: Uncovering Skills For Stress Resilience

    April 22, 2021

    The Family Engagement Commission is excited to share a little teaser about its upcoming Convention workshop. You won’t want to miss the showing of the documentary “Screenagers NEXT CHAPTER,” as well as the discussion that happens afterward! Title of Pr …

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  • It’s Time for a Renewed Focus on the Old LCAP

    April 20, 2021

    This article was written by Kathleen Fay, member of the California State PTA Legislation Team. A school district’s Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) is an important tool that requires a district to identify goals, address priorities, allocat …

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  • School Reopening Advocacy: What Can Your PTA Do?

    April 20, 2021

    This article was written by Shereen Walter, California State PTA’s Director of Legislation. Now that the Governor and Legislature have come to agreement on the details surrounding the $2 billion to incentivize schools to reopen for in person learning, …

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  • Book Club Discussion: “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo

    April 5, 2021

    Our Legislation Team decided that a book club would be a good way to begin discussions around race, equity, inclusion and justice. They created a list of books dealing with these topics and began to read down the list. To read more about this process, …

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  • March 31st is National Crayon Day

    March 31, 2021

    Take some time with the family today to celebrate both National Crayon Day and the end of Arts Education Month. Our Communications Commission created these coloring sheets that highlight PTA’s advocacy efforts over the years — enjoy coloring them with …

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  • The Importance of Civics Education

    March 30, 2021

    California State Board of Managers member and past Vice President of Education Mary Perry recently wrote an article for Ed100 entitled, “Are California Students Prepared for Citizenship?” She writes, “Some students are deeply involved in civic life. Th …

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  • What’s Happening in PTA? April 2021 Edition

    March 29, 2021

    Please find below a listing of California State PTA’s April training and advocacy opportunities for our leaders and members. We hope you will join us for some of these offerings:   Thursday, April 1 Social Media Kit Reveal  Join our Communications …

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  • What’s Happening in PTA? March 2021 Edition

    February 24, 2021

    Please find below a listing of California State PTA’s March training and advocacy opportunities for our leaders and members. We hope you will join us for some of these offerings: Tuesday, March 2 How to Hold a Virtual Election Are you wondering how to …

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  • Preventing School Absenteeism: What Parents Need to Know

    February 23, 2021

    Chronic absence is defined as missing 10 percent or greater of the total number of days enrolled during the school year for any reason. It includes both excused, unexcused, out-of-school suspensions, and in-school suspensions that last more than one-ha …

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  • National Eating Disorders Awareness Week

    February 22, 2021

    The goal of National Eating Disorders Awareness Week (#NEDAwareness) is to shine the spotlight on eating disorders by educating the public, spreading a message of hope, and putting lifesaving resources into the hands of those in need. Every Body Has a …

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  • Leg Con 2021 Wrap-Up: Bringing Equity to California Public Schools

    February 19, 2021

    This article was written by Kitty Cahalan, President of Blair School PTSA in Pasadena (First District) “A Path to Equity” was the focus of this year’s Legislation Conference, which I attended as a local PTA leader and advocate, but also as the parent o …

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  • What Does President Biden’s Coronavirus Relief Plan Mean for Children and Families?

    February 19, 2021

    The Biden administration recently released its $1.9 trillion Coronavirus relief plan. So what does this plan mean for our children and families through the lens of equity?   Stimulus The plan calls for sending another $1,400 per person to eligible reci …

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  • What’s Happening in PTA? February 2021 Edition

    February 9, 2021

    Please find below a listing of California State PTA’s February training and advocacy opportunities for our leaders and members. We hope you will join us for some of these offerings: Thursday, February 7: Social Media Kit Reveal  Join our Communications …

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  • Op-Ed: 10 Things California State PTA Recommends for the Safe Reopening of Schools

    February 8, 2021

    It’s been almost a year since California closed school campuses. And you know who is counting? Parents, teachers, and students are counting each day with growing frustration. The California State PTA shares that angst. Not only are children falling beh …

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  • How Is California’s Education Budget Created?

    January 25, 2021

    The California State budget is complex, to say the least. How do we, as parents, help to understand it especially as it relates to education funding?  Our own former State President, Carol Kocivar, wrote the following article for Ed100 last week to hel …

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  • Book Club Discussion: “The Color of Law” by Richard Rothstein

    January 15, 2021

    Our Legislation Team decided that a book club would be a good way to begin discussions around race, equity, inclusion and justice. They created a list of books dealing with these topics and began to read down the list. To read more about this process, …

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  • What’s Happening in PTA? January 2021 Edition

    January 1, 2021

    As the new calendar year begins, California State PTA continues to offer training and advocacy opportunities for our leaders and members.  We hope you will join us for some of our offerings: Date Event Details Wednesday, January 6: School Smarts Distan …

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  • What is the Role of the Federal Government in Education?

    December 18, 2020

    Education is primarily a state and local responsibility in the United States. It is states and communities, as well as public and private organizations of all kinds, that establish schools and colleges, develop curricula, and determine requirements for …

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  • Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Book Club Suggested Reading List

    December 18, 2020

    Book clubs can provide PTA leaders and families in your community a chance to have discussions on important issues. The California State PTA Legislation Team wanted to further their understanding around the issues of diversity, equity, inclusion and ju …

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  • Will There be More Money for Schools Next Year? Let’s See…

    December 16, 2020

    The headlines say California schools will get billions of dollars of new funding next year under Prop 98 which guarantees schools about 40% of the state budget. This is great news. But it is only part of the financial picture, because last year schools …

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  • Virtual Icebreakers for PTA Meetings

    December 10, 2020

    This article was originally published on MindTools.com. Virtual ice breakers are a great way of overcoming one of the biggest challenges of managing a remote team – that is, the lack of opportunities for team bonding. It’s no longer as simple as walkin …

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  • Inclusive Schools Week: December 7-11, 2020

    December 9, 2020

    This week is Inclusive Schools Week, celebrating the progress that schools have made in providing a supportive and quality education to an increasingly diverse student population, including students who are marginalized due to disability, gender, socio …

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  • Planning and Budgeting for 2021 activities

    December 8, 2020

    January is a time of renewal for all. As the new year begins on the calendar, it is mid-year for your PTA, which means there is lots to do on the PTA front!  Complete and present your mid-year audit. (You can see the entire step-by-step process here on …

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  • Why Should You Attend the 2021 California State PTA Legislation Conference?

    December 2, 2020

    Have you considered attending Leg Con 2021, but are still on the fence? Well, here are five reasons that will convince you that attending is DEFINITELY worthwhile: This is our first-ever virtual Legislation Conference — don’t you want to be able to sa …

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  • What’s Happening in PTA? December 2020 Edition

    December 1, 2020

    We never want you to miss a training opportunity, advocacy call or webinar hosted by California State PTA, so we’ve rounded up all the PTA events happening in December here, including dates, times and ways to join. Wednesday, December 2: Monthly Advoca …

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  • Online Security for PTAs: What You Need to Know

    November 30, 2020

    You may have received an email appearing to be from someone on your board — or that even has their actual email address — asking for some sort of financial transaction, but it wasn’t actually from them. As a non-profit association, PTA can be vulnera …

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  • Book Review: “The New Jim Crow,” by Michelle Alexander

    November 19, 2020

    The CAPTA Legislation team is in the process of reading and discussing one book a month on the topic of the African American experience in the U.S. We decided to do this to educate ourselves about this pertinent and important issue. Our first two books …

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  • Global Diversity Awareness Month: Parent Stories, Part 2

    November 5, 2020

    First, listen… Unit PTA leader: We decided to move to an area where my Black son would see peers and school adults who looked like him. As a PTA leader, I know the power of advocacy and partnership with school staff. I advocated with his teachers about …

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  • Advice on Maintaining a Healthy Lifestyle – During COVID-19, and Year-Round

    October 29, 2020

    Although we’ve all learned a lot over the last eight months about how to stay healthy in the face of the COVID-19 crisis, we wanted to take this opportunity to remind you of the importance of maintaining a healthy and active lifestyle year round. Exerc …

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  • Global Diversity Awareness Month: Teacher Stories, Part 1

    October 27, 2020

    First, listen… Educator: I use the word ‘grownups’, not parents, or mom and dads. I used to use those words but I learned that some of my students are being raised by their grandparents or other family members. Some had one parent because the other was …

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  • How Next Gen Science Standards Prepare Students for Next Gen Careers

    October 27, 2020

    “Mom, what’s the point of taking biology if I’m not going to use anything I learn? I’m not going to be a scientist. I’m going to be a reporter.” Many of your children may ask similar questions when they come home from school. Unable to make a direct co …

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  • What’s Happening in PTA? November 2020 Edition

    October 25, 2020

    We never want you to miss a training opportunity, advocacy call or webinar hosted by California State PTA, so each month we are going to post information right here on our blog about dates, times and ways to join our PTA events. November 4: Advocacy Ca …

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  • Global Diversity Awareness Month: Student Stories, Part 2

    October 22, 2020

    First, listen…. Student: It wasn’t until I took an AP class my sophomore year where the books we read were by authors of color. I became really interested in who gets to choose the books that I am taught in school. I found out it’s up to the teacher to …

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  • Global Diversity Awareness Month: Student Stories, Part 1

    October 13, 2020

    First, listen… Student: Whether I wear pants or a skirt, I sing the same. Does it matter if I wear pants instead of a skirt? Yes it matters to me. I don’t understand why my teacher and principal insist on me wearing a skirt to sing in the choir. It fee …

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  • Global Diversity Awareness Month: Parent Stories, Part 1

    October 8, 2020

    First, listen… Parent: There it was — in print. The new Superintendent wrote in his message to the whole district that special education was taking funds meant for general fund programs. My heart sank. My child and thousands like her were positioned …

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  • Tips and Tricks from the Great Membership Idea Exchange

    September 21, 2020

    Back in late July and early August we held a few Membership Idea Exchange Zoom calls. We were so excited to be joined by PTA leaders across the state — sharing their ideas and some of their struggles. We took notes from each of the calls and here are …

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  • Students Active in PTA Could Get State Recognition

    September 9, 2020

    California students may soon be able to get official state recognition for the work they do to support their local PTSAs and schools. An item before the State Board of Education on September 10 establishes the criteria by which local school districts c …

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  • Why Wednesday? Continuing Education Scholarships and PTA Grants

    September 9, 2020

    It’s Why Wednesday!  Q: Who qualifies for California State PTA grants and continuing education scholarships? When is the application due? Continuing Education Scholarships: To help you continue on your educational path, California State PTA is proud to …

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  • Finding a “New Normal” During Unprecedented Times

    September 1, 2020

    With California schools set to be closed through the end of the academic year, many students and their families have had to deal with sudden upheaval to their everyday lives. Most schools have transitioned to online and virtual learning with varying le …

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  • NASA IS GOING TO MARS!

    July 28, 2020

    Thursday, July 30 is the scheduled launch date for the NASA 2020 Mission to Mars. The Mars Rover Perseverance will be taking off for the Red Planet on that day — if everything goes as planned. You can watch the launch and the mission online by clickin …

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  • Virtual Summer Leadership Academy Class Recommendations by Position

    July 6, 2020

    Are you wondering if there is a class that benefits you at our Summer Virtual Leadership Academy? We have suggested tracks of classes for everyone on your board – from president to chairperson and everything in between. Training is beneficial to your e …

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  • NASA Brings Space Exploration to You

    June 29, 2020

    This summer, most of us won’t be going very far from home. So, to make up for that, you might want to fill your kids’ days with some “out of this world” adventures. Thanks to the folks from NASA, you will find more ideas and activities for kids than th …

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  • California’s New Science Standards are a Good Fit for Distance Learning

    May 22, 2020

    In a recent survey, California State PTA asked parents their opinions about science education.  Almost all those who responded agreed with the statement “learning science is equally important as reading, writing and math.” Most also agreed that “it’s i …

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  • May 2020 Advocacy Update: What Bills is California State PTA Currently Supporting?

    May 14, 2020

    These are certainly unusual times in Sacramento. With the Senate back in session as of Monday, May 11th and the Assembly the prior Monday, our legislators are back at work either in the Capitol wearing masks and practicing physical distancing, or parti …

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  • Why Wednesday? What is the New Resource Library?

    May 6, 2020

    The Resource Library is a new addition to our website where parent leaders, teachers, and families can find links to activities and resources.  Today for Why Wednesday we would like to share with you a quick video tour as well as a handout that can be …

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  • Why Wednesday? Teacher/Staff Appreciation Week Ideas While Social Distancing

    April 28, 2020

    May 5th is National Teacher Appreciation Day and many schools had week-long celebrations planned to honor these hard-working individuals. Even though we are not on our school campuses, we know that our teachers are working harder than ever and that the …

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  • Let’s Make Every Day Earth Day

    April 23, 2020

    Earth Day shouldn’t be just one day! And environmental education isn’t just the responsibility of educators. That said, our previous blog did explain that it’s a required part of the school curriculum. Today, we’re presenting the second part of a talk …

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  • How are Earth Day and the Environment Connected with Schools and with PTA?

    April 22, 2020

    April 22 marks the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day. In the midst of sheltering at home and worries about coronavirus, it seems like a particularly important time to think about how all of us are connected to each other and to the natural world. What does …

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  • FAQs for Staff Appreciation

    April 13, 2020

    We know that many of our units had lots of great plans for Teacher Appreciation Week on their campus. School closures are causing us to rethink what teacher appreciation looks like this year. Our leadership team has given us a few ideas for ways to cel …

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  • FAQs for Donations During Coronavirus

    March 30, 2020

    California State PTA’s Treasurer, Melinda Kirkland, has been getting lots of financial questions from local leaders as they begin to navigate online meetings and event cancellations. Today she is sharing with us information about what to do with items …

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  • Distance Learning Resources

    March 19, 2020

    As thousands of families are now learning from and working from home, things have changed in all of our daily lives. California State PTA always prioritizes the health and safety of our children, families and communities. Here are a few things to keep …

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  • An Arts Education Success Story: Moreno Valley Unified School District

    March 6, 2020

    The Moreno Valley Unified School District (MVUSD) understands the direct impact that parent engagement has on student academic achievement across all socioeconomic groups. In fact, the Board of Education approved a resolution earlier this academic year …

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  • Celebrating Black History Month

    February 6, 2020

    February is Black History Month, and we know that you want to celebrate with your children. Our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee have given us some great resources to help you in your school, home, and community.  This four-part series helps s …

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  • Why Wednesday? 2/5/20 – What is Founders’ Day and Why Should We Celebrate It?

    February 5, 2020

    In 1897 a group of parents, teachers and community members met in Washington D.C. to champion causes that impacted children and families. 123 years later in schools and towns across the globe, we are still meeting for the same purpose. Founders’ Day ce …

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  • The Benefits of Phenomenon-Based Science Learning

    February 4, 2020

    “Why are some days cloudy?” “Why can a cactus survive without water when a willow tree can’t?” “Why does the light on the ceiling go on when I flip the switch on the wall?” Our kids’ “why” questions provide near-constant reminders of their curiosity ab …

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  • Why Wednesday? 1/29/20: The Importance of Compliance

    January 29, 2020

    Compliance, Compliance, Compliance! I know, we sound like a broken record, but unfortunately it is the number one way your non-profit can have big problems. Time for us to explain what the compliance documents are and why they are so important! Complia …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Maria Steck

    January 23, 2020

    Get to Know the Vice President for Leadership, Maria Steck Maria Steck, Vice President for Leadership Services, has been involved in PTA for 19 years. Her favorite thing about PTA is working with our local leaders. She loves hearing about all the great …

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  • Why Wednesday? 1/22/2020: What Happens at the State Convention and Why Should I Attend?

    January 22, 2020

    This year leaders from across California will come together in Riverside for the 121st annual California State PTA Convention. For three days in May we convene to do the business of the association, attend workshops and network. If you have never been …

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  • Parent Involvement and Your Child’s Long-Term Success

    January 17, 2020

    Parent involvement in a child’s education is likely to have a positive impact on a child’s long-term success. Students with involved parents are more likely to have higher grades and test scores, have better social skills, show improved behavior, atten …

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  • Why Wednesday? 1/15/20

    January 15, 2020

    Why should you order Honorary Service Awards? Finding ways to honor and recognize our volunteers is a challenge. We can’t pay them or give them gifts and sometimes a volunteer appreciation breakfast just doesn’t feel like enough for all the work they d …

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  • Why Wednesday? 1/8/2020

    January 8, 2020

    Why Should You Have a Mid-Year Membership Drive? “Our school does a huge membership drive in the fall, so why should we have another drive now?” We hear this question a lot at California State PTA. Here are a few reasons why a mid-year membership drive …

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  • Why Wednesday? 12/18/2019

    December 18, 2019

    Planning and budgeting for 2020 activities January is a time of renewal for all. As the new year begins on the calendar, it is the mid-year for your PTA. At this time of year there is lots to do on the PTA front!  Complete and present your mid-year aud …

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  • Your Mid-Year Audit in 5 Easy Steps: Step 5 – Present to the Association and Vote

    December 13, 2019

    This week we are covering all the skills you’ll need to successfully complete your mid-year audit in January. These five steps include the new insurance requirement of having an audit committee. Today we’ll go over step five. Step 5: Present the audit …

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  • Your Mid-Year Audit in 5 Easy Steps: Step 4 – Present the Audit for Approval

    December 12, 2019

    This week we are covering all the skills you’ll need to successfully complete your mid-year audit in January. These five steps include the new insurance requirement of having an audit committee. Today we’ll go over step four. Step 4: Present the audit …

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  • Why Wednesday? 12/11/2019

    December 11, 2019

    How can our nominating committee find the best people for the job? The Nominating Committee is one of the most important committees your PTA has. It is their task to find the best people to fill the elected positions on your board. Remember that you el …

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  • Your Mid-Year Audit in 5 Easy Steps: Step 3 – Fill Out Audit Report

    December 11, 2019

    This week we are covering all the skills you’ll need to successfully complete your mid-year audit in January. These five steps include the new insurance requirement of having an audit committee. Today we’ll go over step three. Step 3: Fill out the audi …

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  • Your Mid-Year Audit in 5 Easy Steps: Step 2 – Review and Examine Bank Accounts

    December 10, 2019

    This week we are covering all the skills you’ll need to successfully complete your mid-year audit in January. These five steps include the new insurance requirement of having an audit committee. Today we’ll go over step two. Step 2: Review and Examine …

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  • Your Mid-Year Audit in 5 Easy Steps: Step 1 – Gather Materials

    December 9, 2019

    This week we are going to give you all the skills you’ll need to successfully complete your mid-year audit in January. These five steps include the new insurance requirement of having an audit committee. Today we’ll cover step one. Step 1: Gather all t …

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  • PTA: A Place for Everyone!

    December 6, 2019

    PTA is an inclusive organization. Although you want everyone on your campus to participate in PTA events, often times certain groups are unintentionally forgotten during event planning. For example, individuals with disabilities. Some disabilities are …

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  • The Importance of Inclusive Education

    December 3, 2019

    Below is an excerpt from Marilyn Cachola Lucey’s blog post “Schools Should Include Everyone,” on Ed100.org. Click here to read the full post. When students with disabilities are educated alongside their peers without disabilities, outcomes improve for …

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  • Audit Requirements: What’s New and What’s Not

    November 22, 2019

    PTA requires that audits be done twice a year — a mid-year audit that covers the first six months of your fiscal year, and an end-of-year audit that covers the last half of your fiscal year. As you begin to think about doing your mid-year audit, there …

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  • Why Wednesday? 11/6/2019

    November 6, 2019

    Why should you register to attend the California State PTA Legislative Conference?  You don’t have to be a policy expert or an advocacy rock star to get great benefit from the conference. The Legislative Conference is designed to meet the needs of ever …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Michael Morgan

    November 5, 2019

    California State PTA VP of Membership Services, Michael Morgan Michael Morgan has been involved in PTA for the past 15 years. His favorite thing about PTA is that we speak for all children. It takes a village and PTA helps to connect that village. Outs …

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  • November 2019 Updates

    November 4, 2019

    Welcome to November! There are lots of exciting things happening in the PTA world this month. Here are a few: The Legislative Conference early bird deadline is November 15th, so make sure you register in time to get the lowest price. Elections for Nomi …

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  • Why Wednesday? 10/30/2019

    October 30, 2019

    What kinds of benefits do you get from National PTA? Once you join your local PTA unit, you are entitled to benefits from both the state and national level. In addition to the membership perks from California State PTA and National PTA, there are great …

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  • Resources for Safe Usage of the Internet

    October 29, 2019

    Today is National Internet Day! California State PTA has some great resources on our website to ensure you and your family to have a positive and safe experience using the internet. This article lets you learn more about the benefits, risks and tips fo …

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  • Nine Things You Need to Know About Vaping

    October 28, 2019

    Vaping and e-cigarettes are something all parents need to be aware of. As we hear on the news, these devices are small, easy to hide, and can lead to severe health issues. Here are nine commonly asked questions about vaping and e-cigarettes with links …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Mariaelena Huizar

    October 25, 2019

    Mariaelena Huizar, Vice President for Health and Community Concerns on the Board of Directors, has been involved with California State PTA for 26 years. Her favorite thing about PTA is opening the eyes of parents and caregivers to the importance of the …

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  • Halloween Safety Tips

    October 24, 2019

    Halloween is just around the corner. To ensure a fun and safe holiday, California State PTA suggests the following tips from Safekids.org: Walk Safely – Use crosswalks, walk on sidewalks instead of the street, and always check before crossing Watch You …

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  • Why Wednesday? 10/23/2019

    October 23, 2019

    What does a California State PTA advocate do? The basic job of a California State PTA advocate is to research bills written by California legislators and present the bills to the Legislation Action Committee (LAC). That committee then votes to take a p …

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  • How Well is Your School Preparing Kids for Democracy?

    October 23, 2019

    Schools play a critical role in educating children for democracy. In fact, a core purpose of public education is to teach children how to be good citizens. There are lots of ways schools can prepare our children. In fact, there are actually six proven …

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  • Give Your Feedback on the LCAP Template

    October 23, 2019

    This year, school districts will once again be developing their three-year Local Control and Accountability Plans (LCAPs). You can get more information about what the LCAP is and why it matters at https://capta.org/focus-areas/lcfflcap/. The state is r …

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  • October is Principal Appreciation Month

    October 18, 2019

    October is Principal Appreciation Month. Site administrator support is a key component to PTA success– and the principal is a large part of that! Here are some tips for forming a stronger relationship with your site administrator: Set a positive, coll …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Heidi Goddi

    October 17, 2019

    We want you to get to know our Board of Directors better, since they are all here to serve you! Let’s meet our Vice President of Convention Heidi Goddi. Heidi Goddi, Vice President of Convention, has been involved in PTA for 21 years. Her favorite thin …

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  • Why Wednesday? 10/16/2019

    October 16, 2019

    It’s Why Wednesday! Why should your unit budget to attend Convention? Convention is THE place to come for: Training opportunities Amazing speakers Networking with other PTA leaders from around the state Participating in the business of the association …

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  • Breast Cancer Awareness Month

    October 15, 2019

    Other than skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common cancer among American women. Mammograms are the best way to find breast cancer early, when it is easier to treat and before it is big enough to feel or cause symptoms. Each year in the United Sta …

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  • Our Children Magazine

    October 14, 2019

    The Fall 2019 version of National PTA’s magazine “Our Children” was just released. There are lots of great articles including 10 Questions You Should Ask About Your Child’s Curriculum, How to Navigate Speech and Language Services in School, Get Your Mo …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Deborah Johnson

    October 11, 2019

    We want you to get to know our Board of Directors better, since they are all here to serve you! Let’s meet our Vice President of Family Engagement Deborah Johnson. Deborah Johnson, Vice President of Family Engagement, has been involved with PTA for 33 …

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  • Mental Health Day

    October 10, 2019

    World Mental Health Day is observed on 10 October every year, with the overall objective of raising awareness of mental health issues around the world and mobilizing efforts in support of mental health. The day provides an opportunity for all stakehold …

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  • Why Wednesday? 10/9/2019

    October 9, 2019

    It’s Why Wednesday! What are the frequent errors units make on PTA tax forms? Filing Your Tax Forms If you are like a lot of people, the thought of dealing with tax forms or the IRS in any capacity makes you shudder. Unfortunately, all nonprofits have …

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  • Get the Lead Out

    October 8, 2019

    “I know many parents who had a new water bottle on their ‘back to school’ shopping list,” said Mariaelena Huizar, California State PTA Vice President of Health and Community Concerns. “We’ve got to make sure what’s going in those bottles is safe. For t …

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  • World Teachers Day

    October 4, 2019

    Tomorrow is World Teachers Day– and in the PTA universe, we know how important our teachers are! Having the teachers at your school join your PTA and participate in your programs is a great way to encourage children and families to join in the fun! St …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Tim Davidson

    October 3, 2019

    We want you to get to know our Board of Directors better, since they are all here to serve you! Let’s meet our Parliamentarian Tim Davidson. Tim Davidson, Parliamentarian, has been involved with PTA for 14 years. His favorite thing about PTA is sociali …

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  • Why Wednesday? 10/2/2019

    October 2, 2019

    It’s Why Wednesday! Why should you listen to the new National PTA podcast? As members of the PTA, we naturally want what is best for all children. This 30 minute or less podcast is full of information designed to fit into our busy lives. The first few …

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  • It is Reflections season!

    October 1, 2019

    It is currently Reflections season in our PTAs. As you encourage your artists to work on their submissions for “Look Within” keep these things in mind: If you have not already done so, please register your unit with National PTA. It’s a simple form to …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Jeff Price

    September 27, 2019

    We want you to get to know our Board of Directors better, since they are all here to serve you! Let’s meet our Secretary Jeff Price. Jeff Price, Secretary, has been involved in PTA for 10 years. His favorite thing about PTA is knowing that he is making …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Melinda Kirkland

    September 26, 2019

    We want you to get to know our Board of Directors better, since they are all here to serve you! Let’s meet our Treasurer Melinda Kirkland. Melinda Kirkland, Treasurer, has been involved in PTA for 10 years. Her favorite thing about PTA is helping other …

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  • Why Wednesday? 9/25/2019

    September 25, 2019

    It’s Why Wednesday! What are resolutions? Q: Our PTA unit/council/district wants to change …. Q: How can our PTA address the issue of ….. Q: Our PTSA is concerned about ….. A: Write a PTA Resolution – it’s our way of calling attention to a problem an …

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  • Voter Registration

    September 24, 2019

    Are YOU registered to vote? Do you need to update your registration or not sure how to register for the November 3, 2020 election? The deadline to register online is Monday, October 19, 2020. The deadline to register by mail is (postmarked by) Monday, …

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  • Fall is Here!

    September 23, 2019

    Fall is an exciting time for your PTA! As you begin all of your PTA programming there are a few things to keep in mind: Check the insurance guide to make sure that your programs don’t require any extra waivers or that you don’t have any red light activ …

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  • Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month

    September 20, 2019

    CELEBRATE HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH Did you know that Hispanic Heritage month is celebrated in the United States from September 15 — October 15? We celebrate the contributions that Hispanic and Latino Americans have made to the vitality, history and cul …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Heather Ippolito

    September 19, 2019

    We want you to get to know our Board of Directors better, since they are all here to serve you! Let’s meet our Vice President for Communications Heather Ippolito.  Heather Ippolito has been involved for 20 years in PTA. Her favorite thing about PTA is …

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  • Why Wednesday? 9/18/19

    September 18, 2019

    It’s Why Wednesday! Q: Why hasn’t your PTA applied for one of our grants yet? We offer grants to units, councils and districts in four different areas. Here is a little more information about each of them: Parent Education Grant — Parenting is hard. T …

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  • Ask the Governor to Support Later School Start Times

    September 17, 2019

    California State PTA is co-sponsor of SB 328 which advocates for a later school start time for middle and high schools. Last week it was approved by the state legislature and now it is sitting on the governor’s desk waiting for his signature or his vet …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Sherry Skelly Griffith

    September 13, 2019

    We want you to get to know our Board of Directors better, since they are all here to serve you!  Let’s meet our Executive Director Sherry Skelly Griffith. Sherry Skelly Griffith has been involved in PTA for 19 years — 15 as PTA parent and 4 as the Exe …

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  • New Arts Education Data Released

    September 12, 2019

    Every student has the right to a dynamic, creative education, and California Education Code requires it. Yet 88 percent of California schools are failing to meet this standard. This. Must. Change. That’s why California State PTA joined forces with Crea …

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  • Why Wednesday? 9/11/19

    September 11, 2019

    It’s Why Wednesday! Q: Who qualifies for California State PTA grants and continuing education scholarships? When is the application due? Continuing Education Scholarships: To help you continue on your educational path, California State PTA is proud to …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Carol Green

    September 10, 2019

    We want you to get to know our Board of Directors better, since they are all here to serve you!  Let’s meet our President-Elect Carol Green. Carol Green has been involved in PTA for 22 years. Her favorite thing about PTA is the people and the good thin …

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  • Grandparents Day is September 9

    September 9, 2019

    Today is Grandparents Day! In 1969, Russell Capper wrote to President Nixon suggesting a holiday to honor grandparents. Grandparents Day didn’t become a national holiday until 1978, when President Carter signed the proclamation. If it weren’t for Russe …

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  • International Literacy Day is September 8

    September 6, 2019

    This weekend is International Literacy Day. On Sunday, September 8, countries around the world acknowledge that literacy is a fundamental human right. The theme this year is literacy and multilingualism. If you want to celebrate, here are a few ideas: …

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  • Meet the Board of Directors: Celia Jaffe

    September 5, 2019

    We want you to get to know our Board of Directors better, since they are all here to serve you!  First up, let’s meet our President Celia Jaffe. Celia Jaffe, President, has been involved with PTA for 27 years. Her favorite thing about PTA is making a d …

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  • Why Wednesday? 9/4/19

    September 4, 2019

    It’s Why Wednesday! Q: What are the back to school steps for jump starting the Reflections program? State Reflections Chair, Lisa Snowiss gives us some great tips! Reflections Quick Start: Learn about the program in the Reflections Leader’s Guide. The …

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  • Why Wednesday? 8/28/19

    August 28, 2019

    It’s Why Wednesday! Q: Why should my school participate in the Reflections program? Lisa Snowiss, state Reflections Chair, answers your question: Because it… Allows students to express themselves to a new theme every year. Builds PTA awareness becaus …

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  • Leadership TED Talk Inspiration

    August 26, 2019

    Sometimes we need a little inspiration to help us get through the day and sometimes we need to give inspiration to others. There are lots of wonderful TED Talks out there with poignant and brief leadership messages. Here are a few of our favorites: Dre …

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  • Family Engagement Friday 8/23/19

    August 23, 2019

    Where can I find resources to increase engagement on the California State PTA website? Ideas to encourage family-school partnerships: www.capta.org/focus-areas/family-engagement/family-school-partnerships In this section of the website, you will find t …

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  • Why Wednesday? 8/21/19

    August 21, 2019

    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. …

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  • Why Wednesday? 8/7/19

    August 7, 2019

    It’s Why Wednesday! Q: Why does California State PTA have a Board of Directors? A: The Board of Directors operates much like your executive board does at the unit level. We meet monthly to continue to do the business of the organization, we make recomm …

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  • Beware of Email Phishing Scams

    August 1, 2019

    As the new term begins, we would like to remind all of our leaders about the dangers of email phishing. A phishing scam may ask you to send money, gift cards or personal information to someone you trust from within your organization. A phishing email m …

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  • Why Wednesday? 7/24/19

    July 24, 2019

    It’s Why Wednesday! Q: Why is there so much paperwork in PTA? A: We have been working to streamline some of the paperwork to try to make your life easier. This includes creating fillable versions of some of the most commonly used forms, which are avail …

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  • Membership Campaign Ideas

    July 22, 2019

    As you begin to think about your fall membership campaign, your first orders of business are to select a theme and set a goal. These are often some of the most fun parts of your campaign, as you can be as creative as you would like to be! You can find …

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  • Why Wednesday? 7/17/19

    July 17, 2019

     It’s Why Wednesday! Q: Why PTA and not another parent group? A: When you are a PTA, you have multiple levels of support. We have comprehensive insurance that covers your activities and volunteers for the entire year for a very reasonable rate. We prov …

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  • Why Wednesday? 7/10/19

    July 10, 2019

    It’s Why Wednesday! Q: Why does the PTA year begin on July 1 for most units? A: California State PTA recommends a July 1 to June 30 fiscal year is because it is an “academic calendar” year.  Most educational related entities (school districts, colleges …

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  • Summer PTA To-Do List

    July 5, 2019

    The board should have a summer meeting to get to know each other and begin planning for the new term Make sure that the annual financial report is completed — then file your taxes! Complete the end-of-year audit and add the new check-signers to the ba …

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  • Why Wednesday? Information

    July 3, 2019

    Every Wednesday on the blog and on social media, we will be answering the most commonly asked questions about PTA. If you have any questions that you would like for us to answer you have four ways to get them to us:  Complete this form: forms.gle/iy6z2 …

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  • Get Ready for Summer with Electronic Membership

    May 30, 2019

    Get set up with e-membership before summer so members can join while you’re on vacation! If your PTA is not yet using the PTA electronic membership system, you can get set up now so you’ll be ready for the new school year. It’s just five easy steps and …

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  • Federal Legislative Highlights by Derby Pattengill

    May 22, 2019

    NATIONAL PTA National PTA has taken a positions on a number of bills currently being debated in the 116th Congress. Click here for the complete list. Some notable bills include: HR5 Equality Act (SUPPORT) This bill prohibits discrimination based on sex …

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  • Protecting Our Children from Sex Trafficking

    February 22, 2019

    Sex trafficking of youth has been escalating over the past decade and is prevalent in all major California cities. Sexual and labor exploitation are problems that touch our schools, as victims can be students or their family members. Recruiters can be …

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  • 2019 Legislation Conference Recap

    February 13, 2019

    2019 has just begun and the California State PTA Legislation Team is gearing up for a busy season. California State PTA hosted its annual Legislation Conference in Sacramento in January. PTA members came from across the state to learn and advocate. Aft …

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  • Mid-Year Membership Campaign Tips

    January 18, 2019

    WOW, we are hearing great things about how easy mid-year membership campaigns are using electronic membership links. Here are some tips from our experts (leaders like you): Send out a designated email about PTA membership to your whole school community …

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  • New Year’s Resolutions for Membership

    January 7, 2019

    The great thing about the new year is that you get a fresh start. No matter what you forgot to do, meant to do or thought you should do – now you can. Here are five resolutions that will increase PTA membership, and leave you less stressed in 2019. Get …

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  • Youth Mental Health Awareness

    December 13, 2018

    Mental health affects the way our children think, feel, relate to others and behave. Like physical health, mental health can and does evolve throughout life. Symptoms of mental health conditions are often invisible and can be easy to miss.  It may be d …

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  • Promoting Good Nutrition

    December 13, 2018

    Take a look around your school building or campus. How does your school promote good nutrition? Take Action  Nutrition promotion should happen in multiple settings throughout the school building. Reinforce nutrition messages to students by using these …

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  • Best Practices for Handling Phishing and Ransomware

    November 29, 2018

    Both email-phishing scams and crypto ransomware/malware are increasingly common and can have devastating impacts on businesses and non-profit associations of all sizes. As a non-profit association, PTA can be vulnerable to these types of cyber crimes a …

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  • PTA Store Holiday Gift Guide

    November 20, 2018

    Check out the PTA Store’s special holiday gift shop with new items and old favorites, plus new holiday cards! Beat the crowds and get your holiday shopping done from the comfort of your own home. Shop online for:  Holiday greeting cards Plush textured …

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  • Homework: How Much is Enough?

    November 13, 2018

    Is it fine for your kindergartener to spend an hour after school on homework? Does your high school student never crack a book or do an assignment at home? As parents, we would likely find both of these scenarios concerning. But do you feel confident a …

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  • Reducing Smoke Exposure

    November 13, 2018

    Wildfire smoke includes particles from not only burning trees and grasses but also chemicals from buildings mixed with gases. So if your eyes feel like they’re stinging, smoke exposure could also be inflicting other damage as particles could be getting …

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  • Being an Involved Parent

    November 9, 2018

    We’ve been hearing a bunch lately that parental involvement matters more for educational performance of our kids than even the lessons in school.  Study after study tells us that parents matter.  But what does this really mean and how can I do that and …

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  • Talking to Children About School and Community Shootings

    October 22, 2018

    Just like adults, children and teenagers are better able to cope with upsetting news when they understand more about an event and how it might impact them. Often what children and teens need the most is to have someone they trust listen to their questi …

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  • Impact of Heat on Student Health and Performance

    October 22, 2018

    It may technically be autumn, but many communities in California are still experiencing a heatwave, and the number and severity of extreme heat events is increasing. Poorly maintained and older HVAC systems in schools may not be able to respond to high …

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  • Is Your Child’s School Drinking Water Safe?

    October 22, 2018

    A new law that went into effect in California in January requires that schools have their drinking water tested for lead contamination by July of 2019. Schools built after 2010, private schools and those already required to test their drinking water ar …

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  • Bullying Prevention in Schools

    October 19, 2018

    Bullying can threaten students’ physical and emotional safety at school and can negatively impact their ability to learn. The best way to address bullying is to stop it before it starts. There are a number of things school staff can do to make schools …

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  • Member Perks: Fall 2018

    October 16, 2018

    It’s time for another season of Member Perks! As a PTA member, you advocate for children, promote parent and family involvement in schools and improve the lives of all children and families. Here are a few extra perks of membership available exclusivel …

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  • E-Membership Next Steps

    September 4, 2018

    Congratulations, you are all set up in the new Electronic Membership System, powered by Totem. Now what? We have some marketing ideas you can use that will help you get members signing up right away. Now that you have a membership link — share it — far …

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