Programs + Events

Business of the Association & Convention Chronicle

During Convention 2021 delegates voted on resolutions, bylaws updates, legislation policies, and the slate of nominees.

You can read about the Business of the Association in the sections below, or in the Convention Chronicle, California State PTA’s official call to convention. In the Chronicle you’ll also find information about convention activities, workshops, and the virtual exhibit hall.

Click here to read the Chronicle in English, or click here to read it in Spanish.



Click here to read the Rules & Regulations document for Convention 2021.


Hearings General Meetings
Monday, May 3
Bylaws hearing: 9:00 – 10:00 a.m.
Legislation policy hearing: 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
First General Meeting:
Thursday, May 13, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Tuesday, May 4
Resolution hearing: 9:00 – 10:00 a.m.
Second General Meeting:
Friday, May 14, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Wednesday, May 5
Legislation policy hearing: 9:00 – 10:00 a.m.
Bylaws hearing: 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Third General Meeting:
Saturday, May 15, 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Thursday, May 6
Resolution hearing: 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Resolution: Teaching Hard History – American Slavery in K-12 Education


Background: In 2020, National PTA called on its members to move “beyond rhetoric” and “demand meaningful change to end institutional racism.” Crucial to such change is an understanding of the American institution of slavery and its legacy of racism – a legacy tied to the well-being of our children. As an organization that believes all students should receive a world-class education and works to secure the well-being of all youth, PTA must take action to improve the teaching of slavery in our schools.

A 2018 report by the Southern Poverty Law Center found that 97% of surveyed U.S. teachers agree with experts that teaching and learning about slavery is essential. Experts see knowledge of slavery as central “to any understanding of American society… [and] a necessary step in coming to terms with the legacy of race that the American past has bequeathed our students.” Yet students and adults struggle with even the most basic questions about slavery. The report called for deeper coverage in the classroom, better textbooks, and stronger curriculum to provide the detail and historical context students need to make sense of slavery’s origin, evolution, abolition and legacy. Even in recent years, some textbooks have fallen egregiously shy of the mark; 58% of teachers did not believe their textbook’s coverage of slavery was adequate, and one textbook notoriously referred to enslaved people as ‘workers.’

Armed with a solid and historically sound understanding of slavery, our students will be better positioned to understand their world and how it came to be. They will see that racial disparities in wealth, housing, health, the criminal justice system, and school discipline arose from “systems and structures that restrict choice and limit opportunity” – barriers that “were built on a foundation constructed during slavery.”

Our students will learn where the language and slurs they hear came from and why they persist.

Our students will understand why courageous movements of resistance and hope have arisen throughout American history and how students like themselves can help change the culture around them.

And they will understand not only the cruelties of slavery, but also the triumphs – the courage, resilience, resistance and creativity of enslaved peoples and their descendants, whose contributions profoundly shaped America.

With the authority of this resolution, PTA members could, for example:

  • Publish resources on PTA blogs and websites to raise awareness of the importance of teaching slavery;
  • Insist school districts provide curriculum materials and professional development that improve instruction about American slavery;
  • Encourage teachers to apply for PTA or other scholarships for continuing education in teaching slavery;
  • Write to textbook publishers urging comprehensive coverage of slavery and its legacy; and
  • Encourage parents, educators and community members to use the periodic revisions of California’s history curriculum framework to institute higher expectations for learning about slavery.

American slavery is key to understanding the complexity of our past and who we are today. It is hard history, but history we can face boldly with the courage that comes from a nationwide call to do so.

Please click here to read the full text of this resolution.

Bylaws Updates


Delegates at the 2021 Convention considered the following amendments to the California State PTA Bylaws. The proposed revisions presented
below include the rationale for each change. The only amendments to the Bylaws that are in order are those pre-noticed to members here and in the Convention Chronicle.

Please Note: To see the detail of each proposed amendment, click the name of the amendment in the list below. Deletions are identified by a line through the word; additions, insertions or substitutions are identified by underlining.

Legislation Policies


Policies are presented to convention delegates for adoption in odd-numbered years. Procedures are adopted by the California State PTA Board of Managers. Policies are italicized; procedures are not italicized. The current policies were adopted by convention delegates in May 2019. Please note: Deletions are identified by a line through a word; additions, insertions or substitutions are identified in blue text.

A legislative measure is considered to include bills (state and federal), legislative ballot measures (statutory, constitutional amendments placed on the ballot by the legislature), proposed statewide initiative petitions, and initiatives that have qualified for the statewide ballot.

A legislative measure includes:

  • Bills (state and federal),
  • Legislative ballot measures (constitutional amendments, bond measures and proposed changes in law placed on the ballot by the legislature),
  • Statewide initiatives – proposed or qualified (citizens directly propose state laws, bond measures, and amendments to the California Constitution),
  • Statewide referenda – proposed or qualified (citizens approve or reject state laws enacted by the Legislature).

Policy 1

California State PTA is responsible for taking action on state and federal legislative measures, and proposed or qualified statewide ballot measures.

Policy 2

Legislative measures selected for action by California State PTA must be of statewide significance, fit within both the Purposes of the PTA and the legislation platform adopted by the convention delegates, as well as other relevant PTA authorities.

Policy 3

Any position on legislative measures adopted by California State PTA remains in effect, unless, after subsequent review, new action is deemed warranted, and is adopted according to California State PTA procedures.

Policy 4

All positions on legislative measures taken by California State PTA shall be posted on the association’s website in a timely manner.

Policy 5

A unit, council, or district PTA with an interest in a proposed or qualified statewide ballot measure, which pertains to the welfare of children and youth, must determine whether California State PTA is studying or has taken action, before considering any action locally. Action may be taken locally by following PTA’s standard procedure for making a study.

Policy 6

Any California State PTA action on legislative measures represents the official position of the organization and shall not be interpreted as representing the personal opinion or conviction of every individual PTA member.

Policy 7

Unit, council and district PTAs are encouraged to promote adopted California State PTA positions on legislative measures and may be requested to actively support them which does not require a local vote affirming the state position. While unit, council and district PTAs are not required to work actively for any position, they should not officially oppose a stand taken by California State PTA. Disagreement with a position on legislative measures should be communicated to California State PTA through regular channels, with a report of the extent of – and reasons for – the disagreement, including supporting PTA authorities.

Policy 8

Any unit, council or district PTA may request that California State PTA consider taking action on a legislative measure.

Policy 9

A local (district, council or unit) PTA may wish to take action on a state legislative measure that affects only its local or regional area. The local district PTA affected must inform California State PTA before making a study and taking a position.

Policy 10

Unit, council and district PTAs may take action on local issues originating in school districts, cities, regions, or counties, if such action fits within both the Purposes of PTA the and legislation platform, adopted by convention delegates, is supported by PTA authorities, adheres to PTA policies, and affects the well-being of children and youth.

Policy 11

Informational (non-advocacy) material on PTA positions related to legislative issues, including local or statewide ballot measures, may be sent home with students, in compliance with local school district policies and procedures*

*State law requires school districts to adopt policies regarding sending material home with students.

Nominees for Office


The California State PTA nominating committee has nominated the following individuals to serve for the Board of Directors elected positions. The nominating committee report will be presented at the first General Meeting, at which time, if notice has been filed in accordance with the California State PTA bylaws (Article XII, Section 3), nominations may be made from the floor. If a ballot vote is necessary, the location and times for voting will be announced. When there is but one candidate for an office, the ballot for that office may be dispended with and the election held by voice vote at the close of nominations.


Shereen Walter (nominated): Shereen Walter has been involved with PTA for over 20 years, becoming involved for the same reason many parents do, to make a difference at her own child’s school. She has found a passion for helping all children and families in California with her work as the Director of Legislation, Community Concerns Advocate and as the VP of Health & Community Concerns for California State PTA. She earned her BS in Geophysical Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines and her MBA from the University of California, Irvine. She and her husband, Steve, have been married 34 years and have three grown children, Stephanie, Lindsey and Dylan.

Lea Darrah (running from floor): Lea Darrah has been a PTA member and volunteer since her oldest child, who is now a college graduate, started kindergarten. With her youngest child in high school, she is personally connected to what happens in our public schools, experiencing distance learning, the return to campus and the ever-changing circumstances of parenting a student during the pandemic. In 2020 she was elected as a trustee in her local school district, which increases her insight into how education policy and its implementation impacts our children every day. Over the years she has been active as a leader at PTA units in her community, as well as serving on Site Councils and a wide range of district committees. In addition, Lea has served CA State PTA, as 3rd District President, as a Family Engagement Legislative Advocate, as Director of Legislation, and currently serves as the Vice President for Education. She is a passionate advocate for family engagement and equity and has worked on a statewide task force to teach community members how to advocate for their children and serves on the CA State PTA Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee. She is also an active community volunteer. Lea and her husband Matt have four children, a dog, three cats and six chickens.

Vice President for Leadership Services

Michael Morgan (nominated): Michael Morgan went to his first PTA meeting over 15 years ago and was amazed at how much things had changed since his time in school. Since that meeting Morgan has served in various positions at the unit, council and district level and has been a part of the Membership Services Commission for the last 4 years. Morgan continues his involvement with PTA because he believes it offers a great opportunity for families to be engaged in their student’s education and that every school deserves a PTA.

Vice President for Membership Services

Jeff Price (nominated): Jeff Price began his PTA work 10 years ago when his son entered Kindergarten at Longfellow Elementary in Long Beach. In those 10 years, Jeff has held several PTA leadership positions from the unit to National PTA levels. While president of Longfellow Elementary PTA, National PTA chose Longfellow as the “roll out unit” for the new “Family Reading Experience” program. Longfellow Elementary PTA was one of the inaugural units to receive the National PTA “School of Excellence” award and at Lakewood High School PTSA, Jeff unveiled the “Letter in PTSA” program whereby students can earn their high school letter for excellence in membership, leadership and advocacy. Jeff is dedicated to the mission of the organization and to further the great work it does for all children and families.

Vice President for Communications

Robin Klau (nominated): Robin has been a parent leader in her local community and has served in a variety of officer and leadership roles in unit, council, and district PTAs as well as volunteer roles in her children’s schools and school district since 2007. Currently, she is an active parent member of California HS PTSA and San Ramon Valley Council of PTAs. She is also serving her second two-year term as a member of the California State PTA Board of Managers where she is currently the Resolutions Committee Chair and the Vice-Chair of the Communications Commission. She has run her own communications consulting business for over twenty years and handles communications for, a non-profit focused on California education policy. She and her husband are parents to three children; two sons in college and a daughter in high school and live in the San Francisco Bay area. Robin believes that effective communication can be transformative for nonprofits and is excited to blend her professional experience with her long-term volunteer commitments in the nominated role of Vice President of Communications with the California State PTA to improve the education, health, and well-being of all California’s children and families.

Vice President for Convention

Ellen Torres (nominated): Ellen Torres started her PTA journey when her oldest son was entering kindergarten. She has served in many PTA positions during her 30+ years of volunteering including president at the Elementary, Middle School, High School, Council and District levels. She has also served on the California State Board of Managers on the Membership Service Commission, Convention Commission, Student Involvement Committee and chaired the California State PTA Scholarship and Grants Committee. Ellen has developed a strong sense of devotion for the nonprofit sector and has held leadership positions with a number of not- for- profit organizations. She is an active community volunteer in her hometown of South Pasadena and is a passionate advocate for all children. Ellen holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and business administration. She has been married to Edward for 43 years and is the proud mother to four adult children, Edward, Matthew, Jonathan and Lauren.

Vice President for Health & Community Concerns

Derby Pattengill (nominated): Derby joined PTA when his oldest started Kindergarten and is still here, 15 years later. He has served at the unit, council and district level in PTA leadership. Legislation and advocacy are where his passion lies in PTA work: “As a national organization, we have a powerful voice and we need to continue to use it effectively on behalf of all or our children and families.” His wife is an Ob/Gyn at Kaiser Permanente, his son is a dance major at the Peabody Institute at Johns Hopkins, and his daughter is a physical therapy major at the University of Pittsburgh. Outside of PTA work, he enjoys cycling, painting, and building hot rods: health, sports, arts and STEM are all a big part of his life. “Thank you PTA for fighting for a full and robust curriculum for all students.”

Vice President for Education

Laura Mudge (nominated): Laura Mudge has volunteered for PTA for over 20 years at her local PTA, Santa Maria Council PTA, 15th District PTA and California State PTA. She graduated from UCLA with a B.S. in Neuroscience and holds three teaching credentials: Multiple Subject, Single Subject-Biological Sciences, and Single Subject-Chemistry. Laura has worked as a science teacher in California public schools (both charter and traditional) and has also worked as an administrator in a public California charter school over the past 20 years. Her passion is inquiry-based learning, parent choice and engagement, and equitable educational opportunities with academic achievement for all students. Laura has three daughters who continue to motivate and inspire her with their multiple talents (while also being the reason Laura began volunteering for PTA). Anna is a science teacher in a California public school; Isabella works for the WithMyOwn2Hands non-profit organization that creates water independence, sustainable agriculture and educational opportunities to foster self-reliance in East Africa; and Juliette loves animals and hopes to work with an animal rescue and conservation organization.

Vice President for Family Engagement

Heather Ippolito (nominated): Heather Ippolito is wife to her high-school sweetheart, Ron, and mother to Liliana. She has a teaching credential, an administrative credential, and two masters degrees- one in curriculum development and another in educational administration. She first began her PTA career while teaching at Valley View Community School in Santa Clarita, California. Heather has proudly served at the unit, council, district and state levels in a variety of positions including president, parliamentarian, secretary, historian, treasurer, vice president, and more chair positions than she can recall! During the 2019-2021 term she served as the Vice President for Communications for the California State PTA and helped our organization navigate the challenges of staying connected to our members and leaders during a pandemic. She is so proud to serve on the PTA to benefit the lives of children and families across the state!


Abby Fellman (nominated): Abby Fellman has been volunteering in various levels of PTA for 9 years. She started as a Carnival Committee Chair at the elementary school her children attended, and has gone on to be a Vice President of Membership and a President at local unit, a District President for 14th District PTA serving Sonoma, Mendocino, and Lake Counties. Abby has served on the California State PTA Board of Directors as Chairman of the District Presidents, and has been a member of the Board of Managers since 2017. Abby has volunteered in a number of roles in her community, including various roles with Boy Scouts of America. Abby enjoys working to serve the children and youth of her community. She has a bachelor’s degree in Ancient and Classical History and Languages from Northwestern University- St.Paul, MN. Abby and her husband have 5 school aged children and 2 energetic dogs.


Laura Hawk-Loya (nominated): Laura Hawk-Loya has been involved in PTA since 2001. She has been a president, a treasurer, and an auditor at multiple levels of PTA and currently serves as the Treasurer for 12th District PTA and as a Leadership and Finance Mentor for CAPTA. Other volunteer activities have been as a scout leader, a soccer coach, and a board member/coach for the local Junior Olympic Archery Development program. In her professional life, she works with special education students as part of her local high school math department. She and her husband met in marching band at CSUN and have two adult sons and multiple crazy animals.


Charlene Goodman (running from the floor): Charlene Goodman is a dedicated PTA volunteer with more than 20 years of experience successfully advancing the work and mission of the organization at local, regional, and state PTAs while always staying focused on the needs of students and volunteers. During her service for the California State PTA, Charlene has served in a broad range of volunteer areas such as the Chair of the Student Involvement and Reflections Committees. She has also served as a State Board of Managers Commissioner in a variety of roles for the past 8 years. Charlene’s passion is helping local leaders. Charlene has served as Eighth District PTA President, Treasurer, and Auditor while continuing to serve at her local PTA. During this time, she has taught thousands of PTA leaders how to successfully serve in their local and regional roles. In addition, Charlene has been responsible for ensuring thousands of summer mailings go out annually to California State PTA leaders, providing them with a wealth of information necessary to properly run their PTAs. Charlene continues to help any unit, council, or district leader by assisting them with audits, budgets, charitable trusts, mid-year budget revisions, myptez, tax filings and proper fund allocation of all PTA dollars. Charlene grew up and still resides in the California Central Valley. She has been married to her college sweetheart, Marcus, for 25 years, and they have raised three amazing daughters: Jennifer, Lillian and Tressie.