Wednesday, September 24, 2014

FY2015 Appropriations

FY2015 officially begins October 1, 2014, with the FY2014 budget set to expire on September 30. Last week, to prevent another government shutdown, Congress passed a Continuing Resolution (CR) that extends funding levels through December 11.  The Senate roll call vote can be found here and the House vote here.

The CR extends the current funding levels from the FY2014 Omnibus Appropriations Act, under all terms and conditions, through December 11, 2014. However, due to the annualized rate of spending in FY2015, the CR included an across-the-board cut of 0.0554% in order to conform with the FY2014 spending cap. For Department of Education programs, that would be a cut of $37.3 million. However, since almost all ED programs are forward funded, that cut will only affect a small number of programs during the period of the CR. Because the CR was an extension, very few changes were made to the bill itself and National PTA did not take an official position (an earlier letter sent by our coalition partners expressing our support for the FY2014 Omnibus Approps Act is available at

Congress is now adjourned until after the November elections and right now both the Senate and House are scheduled to return on Tuesday, November 12 for a lame duck session.  When they return, these cuts in the current CR could be replaced by FY2015 spending bill. We will keep you posted on FY2015 developments, as there are several different paths Congress could take including another CR through the end of the year/spring or passing a full or partial FY2015 spending bill.

Seahawks Fall Football Fundraiser 2014

Your school can share in the excitement of the new NFL season and another Seahawks Super Bowl run by participating in a fall football fundraiser with GameTime Fundraisers!

How it Works:

  • We provide an email that schools can send out to parents explaining the fundraiser
  • Parents/friends/alumni shop for Seahawks gear online at and identify their school at checkout
  • All product ships directly to customer’s home or billing address (No distribution required by the school). Schools receive proceeds from sales every 30 – 45 days

As an added incentive, if your school raises $5,000 during the Seahawks Fall Football Fundraiser, GameTime Fundraisers will donate 2 tickets to your school to the Seattle Seahawks vs. St. Louis Rams game at CenturyLink Field on December 28. These tickets can be auctioned off to raise more money for the school or they can be given to the top selling student or teacher in the fundraiser.
Send an email to signup@gametimefundraisers to register your school and if you have any questions please send an email to or give us a call at 1-888-973-7464.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Growing Your Membership

      Membership growth starts with a desire to want to gain more members. We then want to keep them in our association by delivering a product that satisfies their wants and needs. It does not happen overnight but instead takes a dedicated group who believe that PTA is the voice for children and want to increase membership.

      Where to start?

      • Do you know your closing numbers last year of your PTA? Look at the roster that was printed off at the close of last year and that will be your base line.
      • Do you want a percentage increase?
      • Do you want to ensure that a percentage of your students are covered by a PTA member?
      • Look to make a goal for at least the first half of the year publish, share and shout it from the roof tops that you want more members so we have a louder voice for all kids.
      “We want XXX members to be a voice for our students by December 31st 

      How to start?
      • Gather your resources ~ Find a team who will be the face of your growth plan. They are your cheerleaders and will be able to speak from the heart and explain why PTA is important in your school, council, state and nation! Think about all the reasons that people don’t join and have an answer J
      • Have a fun theme for your membership drive. Sports, nature, music any good hook that you can build a goal, a visual and excite people about PTA.
      • Know the benefits both monetarily, socially and emotionally of being a PTA supporter.
      • Be visible at all events either at school put on by your PTA or in the community.
      • Split Up ~ Do not have your membership form and volunteer form on the same sheet of paper it makes admin difficult and reinforces the link that volunteering is part of membership.
      • Show Up ~ Be there for every event ~ forms in hand, a smile on your face and a reason to join PTA.
      • Get Up ~ Don't sit behind a table ~ be mobile and approachable.
      • Keep Up ~ Keep up the conversation with why they should join PTA don't give up after one "no" they don't know all the great things you are doing for the school, all kids and the community.

      Review and evaluate
      • Look at and review your goal how are you doing celebrate your successes and discuss where you are having difficulties.
      • Keep reporting to your membership on the progress towards your goal.
      • Have they brought a friend to join PTA?
      • Do they realize the great work PTA is doing in their school for all kids?
      • A successful PTA will have 3-5 membership campaigns in a year to increase membership and so make it a year round committee.
      • Complete the membership circle ~ Enter your members co-ordinate with treasurer to make timely payments as the card will be sent the day you enter the person as a member

      Resources available

      Local PTAs who have had successes and could work as a group to raise membership in the community!

      Get on the membership listserv
      For more information on membership and weekly “Membership Monday” posts, please send an email to and request to be added to the membership listserv. Also, be sure your local unit and council membership chairs have been identified in the PTA membership database, so they will receive all the information they need to be successful in their leadership positions.

      Important Member Registration Tips

      • Do NOT enter your officers. If you sent a list of officers to as requested the state office has or will enter them. If you have not done so please email the officer list now.
      • Searching before entering to see who is already enrolled saves you time and avoids duplication. (See “Search/Email Active Members” on the top menu bar on the membership site.)
      • Rapid renew saves data entry time especially for members whose contact information has not changed. All you have to do is click the check box and submit.
      • Email address is very important. Please take extra care to enter an email address in proper form.  A member can opt out of future emails and we don’t share emails, but having the member’s email helps to get them their membership card.
      • After you’ve searched to see who is already enrolled and then rapid renewed everyone you can, enter new members. You can save time if you wish by not entering address data. The Washington State PTA is saving money and paper by communicating electronically, so you only need to enter address for elected officers and those members for whom you want the address in the state database.  But remember: email address is very important so please do all you can to get a current email address for each member.