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 celebrates the legacy of the Parent Teacher Association and all the good that it has done over the last century. On February 17th we pause to celebrate the efforts of our founders Phoebe Apperson Hearst, Alice McLellan Birney and Selena Sloan Butler.
PTA has a rich history of advocating on behalf of children and families. Did you know that child labor laws, hot school lunches, kindergarten, and getting more arts in education were all issues PTA advocated for? Even before women had the right to vote, mothers in the PTA were leading the charge on these important issues. To learn more about the history of the PTA, National PTA has a comprehensive timeline that outlines our accomplishments decade by decade.
Why is it important to set aside some time in the month of February to celebrate Founders’ Day? So many of the parents at our school sites don’t truly understand what the PTA does. Through movies and media we have become a stereotyped group of bake sale moms–but we are so much more than that! Sharing our legacy of advocacy, the good that has been done, and the things we have yet to do, will help your families become more invested in your programs. Perhaps it will even inspire members in your community to join your PTA.
There are so many ways to celebrate Founders’ Day. You could post to your social media some of the great advocacy work PTA has done, you could give Honorary Service Awards, or you could pass the hat for a freewill offering to help continue the mission of the PTA. Our website has graphics you can use as well as fliers, videos, and ideas on fun ways to celebrate.
How will you celebrate Founders’ Day? Share your story and photos with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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