Saturday, August 31, 2013

Applegate Grant Applications Are Now Available From the WSPTA

The purpose of the Applegate Grant program is to provide opportunities for supplemental funding to units and councils for community-wide projects focusing on the health, welfare, safety, education, care, and protection of children. Each year, the Washington State PTA sets aside funds to be awarded to local units and councils for these programs, projects, and activities. The application is available here; due November 1, 2013.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Nominate an Outstanding Advocate by September 15, 2013

Washington State PTA presents the Outstanding Advocate Award at Legislative Assembly in October.  The Outstanding Advocate Award is offered to recognize and honor an individual for continued and dedicated service to ALL children, and a demonstrated commitment to helping create strong policies relating to the health, welfare, safety, and education of children and youth.  This is your opportunity to nominate an individual for statewide recognition. Just follow this link to the nomination form:; deadline September 15, 2013.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Reflections Toolkit and Resources

Reflections Leader Toolkit: Download resources, tools, and ideas for your PTA Reflections program. For a copy of the Washington State PTA Reflections Guide, which contains entry forms and rules, click here. (User name and password are in your Leadership Packet.)

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Business Sponsors for PTA

Can you clarify the parameters for getting business sponsors for our elementary school?

We are definitely seeing more and more PTAs seek out corporate sponsors/partners for activities they like to hold within their schools.  There are a few guiding principles you should consider when deciding whether or not to partner with a business.   
  1. Is the mission/product of the business consistent with your stated purpose as listed on your 1023 application with the IRS?  For example, a cigarette company would probably not be consistent with a PTAs stated purpose.
  2. Is there anything within your standing rules that would prohibit or limit your ability to partner with businesses?
  3. Who within your PTA will be responsible for reviewing and signing the partnership agreement?  This is typically a role filled by the president, but you, of course, would want to check your standing rules.
  4. It is very important to read all partnership agreements very carefully to make sure the PTA knows what is being required of them in exchange for the donation and are able to do what is required of them within the parameters of their standing rules, stated purpose, and school district requirements.  Remember all financial matters and binding agreements should be signed by two elected officers.

As part of this sponsorship, you can offer to put their logo in your newsletter, Facebook page or website. There are a couple of prohibitions:

  • You can’t recommend that your members purchase goods/services from this partner.
  • You can’t make a qualitative judgment on their goods/services such as saying, “Bob’s Ice Cream Parlor has the best ice cream in all of Washington State.”

Reflections Webinars Available

Reflections 101 Presentation: Watch a recording or join us live on the second Tuesday of each month from 8:30 P.M. to 9:30 P.M. ET. This webinar will introduce general program information and provide recommendations on how to implement Reflections in your school and beyond. Click the following dates to register: September 10, 2013, October 8, 2013

Guide To Reflections Online Registration Presentation: Watch a recording or join us live on the third Tuesday of each month from 8:30 P.M. to 9:30 P.M. ET. This webinar will guide local, council, district, and state PTAs on how to: Create an account, submit your PTA participation form, submit your student entry forms, and review and advance winning entries. Click the following dates to register: September 17, 2013, October 15, 2013, November 19, 2013, December 17, 2013

Questions? Contact National PTA at or call 1-800-307-4782.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Celebrate National Arts in Education Week September 9-15, 2013

We invite YOU to join the thousands of PTA Reflections leaders who believe all children should receive a quality arts education. PTA Reflections is America’s oldest and largest education program in the arts. Each year, nearly half a million students create original artwork on a common theme, and receive recognition for their participation and achievement. Become your school’s leader in the arts! Visit to learn how to bring Reflections to your child’s school.
National PTA offers its leaders and members many resources for supporting arts education.
2.       Learn more about how Reflections can be a valuable tool for building stronger partnerships in your school community.
3.       Read all ‘bout it! National PTA and 49 national organizations sign a unified statement in support of student success! Arts Education; Creating Student Success In School, Work, and Life.
4.       Join the PTA Takes Action Network. Sign up to be part of our PTA Takes Action network and receive periodic updates on federal advocacy and action alerts related to the arts. When Congress considers legislation related to arts in education, you will receive an action alert with simple instructions on contacting your Members of Congress to have your voice heard! Sign up here.


Monday, August 26, 2013

Heat Related Safety

A second child has died in our state in a heat-related car incident this summer. Please take a few minutes and get this important message out to your friends, neighbors, and families in your school community:
                    Kids should never be allowed to play in and around cars.
                    Kids should never be left inside of a car – not even for a minute.
                    Protect curious children by always keeping car doors and trunks closed AND locked.
You can find links to more important information to share at

Membership Enrollment Process Improvements

The membership enrollment website, which will be ready soon, is located by clicking on “membership enrollment” in the top right corner of the WSPTA website. Membership entry and renewals will happen the same as last year. Some new processes are being put in place to help with the membership service fee payment process and welcoming members and providing membership card information.
Your PTA president, treasurer and membership chair will receive a login and password for the membership enrollment website soon, along with detailed instructions on how to navigate the website and enter your new members and renewals for next year.
Once those names have been entered into the membership database, individual members will receive a welcome email to indicate that they are now PTA members. The welcome letter will include their unit name and number, information about affinity programs and the link to activate their membership to take advantage of those programs, and a blank membership card they can print at home (and cut out and fill in) if they would like to carry a card with them in their wallets. Of course, in order for members to get the welcome letter, their email address must be accurately entered in the database. This welcome letter for any member whose email address is not in our membership database will be sent to the unit president.
Local unit membership chairs will no longer be responsible for printing and distributing membership cards. We hope these improvements to membership enrollments will help streamline your processes as membership chair. The WSPTA values you as a volunteer and respects the time and dedication it takes to be a local unit membership chair.  As always, the WSPTA is open to your suggestions and will use your feedback to continue to make improvements to this process next year. Please send any suggestions you have to

Survey For Parents of Students with a Disability

Do you have a child with a disability who learns online? If so, please complete this short survey so schools can learn what's working and not working.  Here is the link to a survey being conducted by the Center for Online Learning and Students with Disabilities Please share this survey with the members of your local unit.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Membership Service Fee Remittance Improvements

Each week every unit who registered members that week will be emailed a remittance form with the following information:
                    List of members registered that week, showing ID# and name
                    Total number of members registered that week
                    Fees due for state and national dues
                    Remittance information – where to send payment (state office)
                    Instruction to print and mail a copy with the payment
                    Note: council fees are discussed below
New this year – All PTA units (both council units and non-council local units) will send payment for state and national service fees directly to the state office. (This is a change for council units, who will no longer will be sending WSPTA and National PTA service fees to their council.) The purpose of this change is to free-up council resources so they can focus their attention on programs and services to member-units, rather than spending so much time doing administrative tasks for the WSPTA.
The deadlines for submitting state and National PTA service fees to the state PTA office remain the same (by October 25, January 25 and May 25, depending on the date members were entered into the database.)
For those units who belong to a council, they will be emailed a separate remittance form for council fees for members registered that week to be sent to their council. This will be done only if council fees are a straight dollar amount per membership, though all councils will receive a member registration summary as described below. This remittance form will include the following:
                    List of members registered that week, showing ID# and name
                    Total number of members registered that week
                    Council fees due for members registered that week
                    Remittance information – where to send payment (council address)
                    Instruction to print and mail a copy with the payment
All councils will receive a weekly email showing the name of each local unit in their council who entered members that week and the number of memberships entered.
If you have any questions about any of the new processes (membership enrollment or membership service fee remittance), please call the Washington State PTA office at (253) 565-2153 or 1-800-562-3804.


Three $15,000 Grants Available to Help Underserved Students

Excellent Schools Now (ESN) is a coalition of education, business and community-based organizations in Washington State working statewide to achieve meaningful education reform that increases student achievement, closes the achievement gap and prepares students to be college and career-ready.
In response the need to better represent underserved and underrepresented students and communities, the current ESN Steering Committee – comprised of the League of Education Voters, Partnership for Learning, Schools Out Washington, Stand for Children Washington, and Tabor 100 – is announcing this Request for Proposal (RFP) process to award three, 13-month grants (October 2013 to October 2014) of $15,000 each.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

International Walk to School Day October 9, 2013

Your school is invited to celebrate the 17th Walk to School Day. Registration is free and available for individuals and organizations holding an October event in the United States. Although Walk to School Day is focused more on walking and Bike to School Day (in May) is focused more on bicycling, both days welcome and encourage all forms of active transportation to school. Organizers who register a Walk to School event will receive free downloadable materials such as stickers, fliers and certificates for the event. Register your school at

Friday, August 23, 2013

Outgoing Treasurer Present at Financial Review

We do not want to accept the report of the previous financial review committee because the treasurer was present at the financial review. Can we request another financial review with another committee?
Yes. You can request another financial review with a different financial review committee. The president, according to the WSPTA Uniform Bylaws, appoints the financial review committee. The treasurer should not sit at the table during a financial review, but should be available by phone to answer questions. A financial review can be requested any time there is a question about the financial well-being or performance of the PTA.


Call For Letters of Intent for National PTA Leadership Positions

The Call for Letters of Intent package to officially apply for national leadership positions to be elected and appointed in June 2014 is available at All required materials must be received at the National PTA office by Monday, September 30, 2013. 
Submissions may be made via mail (to National PTA, Attn: Jeff Evans NLDC Staff Liaison, 1250 North Pitt St, Alexandria, VA 22313) or email ( Faxes will not be accepted.
Applicants will receive an email confirming receipt of the materials.  Please direct any questions to, or Jeff Evans, at 703-518-1221.

Enroll Your PTA to be a National PTA School of Excellence

Are you looking to step-up your PTA’s involvement and make a substantial, positive impact on school and student success next year? The National PTA School of Excellence program is designed to help PTAs strengthen the family-school partnership and make measurable progress together in one of three areas:
  • Education
  • Health and safety
  • Arts and cultural exploration
As a National PTA School of Excellence, families feel welcomed and empowered to support student success, and PTA is a key partner for continuous school improvement. Enroll your school by September 1st at or via phone at 800-307-4PTA (4782). You will receive the Getting Started Guide, which describes program components, including your first steps to gather feedback from families and set goals with your school partner.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

National PTA Back to School Kits

By now you should have received the National PTA Back to School kits, which were made available this year on a USB drive. If you haven’t seen the kit yet, they are also available at


PTA Membership in High School

Your children’s high school years are critical in determining the direction they take in their lives and careers. At this important time in children’s lives, parents need to remain engaged in their education and maintain their involvement in PTA. Although the activities of a high school PTA are different from those of elementary and middle school PTAs, your involvement is still important and sends the clear message to your students that their education is important. When students know their parents are paying attention and know their teachers, they are more likely to be more responsible with their schoolwork and try harder at school. An added benefit of staying involved in PTA in your children’s high school years is that you learn valuable information on how to navigate the education system, how to advocate for your older kids, and have an opportunity to participate in social and educational programs to support the teenagers at your children’s school.
Thank you for continuing your commitment to PTA membership through your children’s high school years. You won’t regret your dedication to their education when they walk across the stage to graduate. For ideas on recruiting student members, click here. Other great membership tools and resources are found here.
Caroline Brown, WSPTA membership director

Sunday, August 18, 2013

PTA and the Law and Region Conference Schedule Announced

Following is a regional list of upcoming PTA and the Law workshops and region conferences. Please check your region web pages or contact your region director for the latest information on fall conferences and PTA and the Law workshops, as this information is continually being updated as new workshops become available.

Region 1

·         Fall Conference - Saturday, September 14, 2013 (morning/afternoon), Klahowya Secondary School, Silverdale

·         PTA and the Law - Thursday, October 24, 2013 (evening), Olympic High School, Bremerton 
Region 2

·         PTA and the Law - Monday, September 9, 2013 (morning), Lake Wash. School District Resource Center, Redmond Town Center   

·         PTA and the Law - Tuesday, September 17, 2013 (evening), Riverview Learning Center, Carnation 

·         PTA and the Law - Saturday, September 28, 2013 (morning), Lake Wash. School District Resource Center, Redmond Town Center   

Region 3

·         Fall Conference - Saturday, September 21, 2013 (morning)

·         PTA and the Law - Tuesday, October 8, 2013 (evening)

Region 4

·         PTA and the Law - Tuesday, October 8, 2013 (evening), Tenino Elementary School, Tenino               

Region 7

·         Fall Conference & PTA and the Law - Saturday, September 21, 2013 (morning), Arlington 

·         PTA and the Law - Thursday, October 3, 2013 (evening)

·         PTA and the Law - Tuesday, October 29, 2013 (evening)

Region 12

·         Fall Conference - Monday, September 9, 2013 (evening)

·         PTA and the Law - Saturday, October 5, 2013 (morning), Richland area

·         PTA and the Law - Monday, October 7, 2013 (evening), Moses Lake area

·         PTA and the Law - Wednesday, October 16, 2013 (evening), Walla Walla area

Region 15

·         PTA and the Law and Fall Conference - Saturday, September 28, 2013 (morning), Spokane
Please remember that the training portion of region conferences, and PTA and the Law workshops, are now free for local unit leaders to attend, but PTA leaders will still need to register for region conferences and PTA and the Law workshops to ensure space availability. To register, go to and click on your region, then click on calendar. This will bring you to the links to register for events in your region.