Sunday, January 31, 2016

Statewide Membership Call

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Don't miss the Statewide Membership Call with Director of Membership Angela Revay
Thursday, February 11th, at 7:30 PM
Call-In# 712-775-7031
Access code: 124-091-395

Engaging Your Membership Through Social Media

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If you missed the terrific November statewide communications committee conference call with National PTA media expert--Heidi Wilson--don't miss out on this opportunity to interact and learn from her boss. SAVE THE DATE--Sunday, February 7th, 7 pm--statewide communications committee conference call featuring LaWanda Toney, Director, Strategic Communications for National PTA. Dial-in # (712) 775-7031 / Access Code: 276-129
This is the committee's last statewide conference call for the 2015-2016 school year. Be sure to call in.

Friday, January 29, 2016

You could WIN a Grand Prize Trip for 4 to Disney World!

Your kid is awesome. Smartphones are awesome. But awkward conversations about online safety and privacy? Not so awesome. Until now.
The Smart Talk gets parents and kids together to have a clear conversation about all the devices you use and how to be responsible. 
Let’s get started

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Dads Make Great PTA Members

Why We Need Dads


The following blog post was originally posted on the website for Westchester Magazine. To view the original article, click here.
Elijah-and-David-(1024x681)-(1024x681)Thirteen-year-old Donovan had always been a good student. But when he hit the seventh grade, his grades started slipping, and he began getting detentions. One day, his mother, who was raising her son alone after leaving an abusive marriage, received a call from his principal: Donovan had punched a classmate in the eye and was going to be suspended. Like many children without an actively engaged father or father figure, Donovan had begun tuning out—and acting up.
“Children who are well-bonded and loved and whose fathers are involved tend to have fewer behavioral problems, are more likely to have higher self-esteem, and develop better relationships both with their peers and romantically,” says psychotherapist Alison Varianides, executive director of Westchester Psychotherapy in Sleepy Hollow.
Study after study bears this out, and “when you look at the [academic] achievement measurements, you find in every study that when a male [parent or father figure] is actively engaged, those measuring sticks come out a little higher,” says Lex Kessler, male engagement chair for the Westchester-East Putnam Region (W-EPR) PTA.
According to research from the US Department of Education, children with actively involved fathers are 43 percent more likely to earn A’s in school and 33 percent less likely to repeat a grade than those without engaged dads. Other studies have shown that children with involved fathers graduate at higher rates, score higher on standardized tests, and have a more positive attitude towards school.
They’re also less likely to have problems with drugs or alcohol, and, according to a study published in the UK journal The Lancet in 2003, children of single-parent homes are more than twice as likely to commit suicide. According to the US Census Bureau, 90 percent of homeless children and runaways are from fatherless homes, and, according to the Center for Disease Control, 85 percent of kids who exhibit behavior disorders come from fatherless homes. Studies have also shown that kids with a positive father figure are 80 percent less likely to land in jail and 75 percent less likely to conceive a child outside of marriage. Even when a child is grown, having had an actively involved male figure during childhood continues to pay dividends, leading to higher levels of success in their careers; a better chance of having a strong, lasting marriage; and the ability to handle stress.
A Model Dad
Fathers influence their kids’ lives in many ways—first and foremost by being a role model. “The role of a father, especially when it comes to boys, is teaching what it means to be a man and providing a good, healthy model for the child,” says Bob Milich, PhD, a clinical psychologist in Croton-on-Hudson. “Somebody who can be effective at discipline, but not necessarily punishment—setting limits and being consistent in a warm, supportive manner.”
It is well known that a child, especially a son, will emulate and explore his father’s interests in things like sports teams and personal style. But Varianides believes a father’s greatest impact on his son’s life may be in the child’s emotional development. “Boys look to their fathers for how they share their emotions and what they should do in terms of masculinity,” she says.
Dr. Milich agrees. “A father’s role in teaching, especially boys, appropriate emotional expression is very important,” he says.
Likewise, “If you have a father who is not a good role model, then that is what a child will integrate,” says Dr. Milich. “They will follow in those steps.”  Alex Gonzales-Harsha, a Port Chester resident, former Somers High School student, and Cornell graduate who is now in graduate school at Rutgers, says that a father who’s a great role model “leaves no doubt in your mind that you can also become a good man, and also leaves no doubt that he will support you along the way.”
A father can be very involved in his child’s life, even if he doesn’t live under the same roof, as in the case of divorced parents. “As a divorced parent that has a successful co-parenting relationship with my ex-husband, I see how having my son’s father as an active and involved dad truly benefits my son,” says Antoinette Darden-Cintron, W-ERP PTA region director, whose 13-year-old son, Elijah, is a student at Woodlands Middle School in Greenburgh.  “My son is well-rounded, smart, fun, and a great student. Having his father involved in his school life is integral to his development.”
But what about fathers who are abusive or neglectful, or divorced mothers who don’t have such cordial relationships with their ex-husbands? “I would say it is better for a child to not have a father figure at all rather than a negative one,” says Varianides. “While the absence of something leaves you questioning and trying to figure out how you’re supposed to create these relationships and roles, that’s better than growing up in an abusive household or having a father with substance abuse [problems]. Growing up with that can lead to a host of issues.”
Daddys’ Girls
A father’s job as role model for his children is not limited to his son, says Kessler. “A father is just as important in a daughter’s life.”
Girls look to their fathers for protection, and also to see how a man should treat a woman, according to Varianides. “The first relationship they see is Mom and Dad. If a young girl sees her father always being respectful of her mother, always being there and loving her, then she will want that in a relationship as well,” she says. “But if she grows up without a father figure, she’s left to figure it out on her own and may end up in an abusive relationship because she doesn’t know what a good one looks like.”
Kessler concurs: “Even prior to kindergarten, the father is providing that role model of a healthy, loving, respectful relationship that a woman will be searching for later in life.”
What Makes Men Different?
“There is an emotional difference in the way fathers parent,” says Stacey Slater, a child psychologist in Chappaqua. “They often have a more matter-of-fact approach” than mothers. This is why fathers tend to hold children to limits and often play the role of disciplinarian.
“The father’s ability to build character and model character traits [can be] different than the mother’s. In most relationships, the father and mother have complementary character traits,” says Kessler. “Males are generally a little more black-and-white and women are a lot more in the gray.”
Ultimately, it’s the partnership of the mother and father that can have the strongest effect. “When a father is involved in a child’s education, even just to the extent of saying, ‘How’d you do on the test?’ at the dinner table, those children will do better in school,” says Kessler. “This is a scientific fact that’s been proven and re-proven.”
Today’s Dads
According to a 2011 Census Bureau report, only 20 percent of American households were married couples with children, down from approximately 25 percent in 2000 and 43 percent in 1950. These days, kids may have a stay-at-home dad, a single dad, two full-time working parents, or a stepdad. Or a child may have two dads. “American families are changing so much that kids are looking to both of their parents [equally] now for how they should develop and what roles they should have,” says Varianides. “Fathers are becoming as involved and as important a part of everyday family life as mothers.”
It’s a whole different dynamic, according to Kessler. “Now I’ve got two parents both involved. That’s a huge statement, rather than,  ‘one of my parents cares and one doesn’t.’”

David Neilsen is a PTA dad.

Monday, January 25, 2016

The Ohio PTA Voice eNewsletter Celebrating 100+ years of PTA Members

This issue has lots of information you definitely want to share with others.
A must attend webinar: “Making Sense of Poverty: The real costs to education and PTA’s investment in children” will take place on Founders' Day, at 8 pm. Founders’ Day (February 17) is when we celebrate the legacy and work of our founders—Alice McLellan Birney, Phoebe Apperson Hearst and Selena Sloan Butler—to better the lives of every child in education, health and safety. Our founders represented women of imagination and courage.

Be sure to read and share The Ohio PTA Voice (February Issue) with all PTA board members, school staff, school board members, and the entire PTA membership.

Have a PTA Membership Drive During #StartWithHello Week

Start With Hello
  • Ohio PTA is supporting Sandy Hook Promise’s #StartWithHello Week to encourage students to be more inclusive & kind to help create a safer & happier school community for us all. Bring Start With Hello Week to your school or youth organization by signing up today at:

Membership Mondays

#MembershipMondays It's important to stay engaged w/your membership chairs, councils, District Advisors, and the Ohio PTA Office. Remember to send in your dues monthly to the Ohio PTA office.

Check out Angela's Advice posts for membership ideas. The push for membership is ongoing throughout the school year. The next statewide membership conference call is Thursday, February 11, 2016, at 7:30 pm.

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Friday, January 22, 2016

Members: Family Engagement in Education

National PTA Board of Directors Adopts Position Statement on Student Assessment and Opt-Out Policies |

National PTA Board of Directors Adopts Position Statement on Student Assessment and Opt-Out Policies |

Members--Ohio Education News for Jan 21st and Jan. 22nd

Ohio Banner

Ohio Education News, Jan. 21, 2016

Ohio Education News, Jan. 22, 2016

February 16th Deadline / PTA Members Encouraged to Apply!

National PTA and LifeLock Announce The Smart Talk Giveaway for Families

Sweepstakes encourages families to set technology ground rules
for a chance to win a trip to Disney World  

ALEXANDRIA, Va., (Jan. 19, 2016) — National PTA and LifeLock, Inc. (NYSE: LOCK) today announced The Smart Talk Giveaway, in which one lucky family will win a trip to Disney World for a dream summer vacation. The Smart Talk Giveaway is part of a national effort to help families have conversations about online safety and agree on ground rules together for using the Internet and mobile devices. The sweepstakes is now open and all families are encouraged to participate.

“Today, kids are getting devices as early as nine or 10 years old. As we tell our kids to look both ways before crossing the street and teach them to practice good behavior, it is just as important to talk to them about being responsible and safe in the increasingly digital world,” said Laura Bay, president of National PTA. “National PTA is excited to collaborate with LifeLock to not only help families have these open conversations, but reward them with a trip to Disney World.”

Last fall, LifeLock and National PTA launched The Smart Talk—a free digital tool designed to empower families to make smarter, safer choices online and build the next generation of digital citizens. The tool provides an interactive experience that guides parents and kids through a series of questions and conversations about topics such as safety and privacy, screen time, social media, apps and downloads, texting and calling, reputation and respect, and online videos and cameras. After agreeing on healthy limits together, they can create a personalized family agreement to post in their home as a reminder.

Any family that goes to by Feb. 16 is eligible to enter The Smart Talk Giveaway. One lucky family will be selected to win a trip for four to Disney World July 1-5, 2016. The winning family also will be highlighted during the 2016 National PTA Convention & Expo, which will take place June 30 to July 3 at the Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin Resort.

“The best time to teach our kids good online habits is right now,” said Hilary Schneider, president of LifeLock. “The Smart Talk gives parents new language to help develop an ongoing dialogue with their kids, so that the conversation can evolve over time as kids grow and take on more responsibility.”

The sweepstakes winner will be announced in early March. For more information about The Smart Talk Giveaway, visit or

About National PTA
National PTA® comprises millions of families, students, teachers, administrators, and business and community leaders devoted to the educational success of children and the promotion of parent involvement in schools. PTA is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit association that prides itself on being a powerful voice for all children, a relevant resource for families and communities, and a strong advocate for public education. Membership in PTA is open to anyone who wants to be involved and make a difference for the education, health, and welfare of children and youth.

About LifeLockLifeLock, Inc. (NYSE:LOCK) is a leading provider of proactive identity theft protection services for consumers and consumer risk management services for enterprises. LifeLock’s threat detection, proactive identity alerts, and comprehensive remediation services help provide peace of mind for consumers amid the growing threat of identity theft. Leveraging unique data, science and patented technology from ID Analytics, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary, LifeLock offers identity theft protection that goes significantly beyond credit monitoring. As part of its commitment to help fight identity theft, LifeLock works to train law enforcement and partners with a variety of non-profit organizations to help consumers establish positive habits to combat this threat.

Media Contacts
Heidi May Wilson, National PTA, (703) 518-1242

Becca Youngs, LifeLock, (480) 427-2170

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Membership (Volunteers) in Action

Middle School Fundraising: Lessons Learned

Northhampton Area Middle School 2 (002)Northampton Middle School, in Lehigh Valley, Pa., is fortunate to have a dedicated group of PTA volunteers and a modern, new facility. With only one middle school serving the entire borough, it’s a tight-knit community. However, with tightening visitor regulations for the security of students and faculty, the PTA experienced an unintended consequence—a significant barrier to getting volunteers into the building.
Joan Begliomini with Northampton’s PTA said it is a huge hurdle. While everyone wants the school community to be protected, their security process complicates fundraising and program efforts.
“All volunteers now face the same level of scrutiny as school employees,” Joan says. “They must go through a state police check, they must have had a documented negative Tuberculosis test and they either must have lived here for longer than 10 years or they must be cleared by the FBI.”
Northampton PTA has a legacy of providing countless programs and services that support student success, help the teachers and enrich their community. Fundraising helps to make these programs possible.
“We pay for agenda books for the entire student body,” says Joan. “We support teacher requests on a rolling basis. We provide the rewards tied to the school-wide anti-bullying program. Then there’s the whole Teacher Appreciation Week! It’s a lot, and it’s important, and we need to generate the money to do it all.”
Given the stringent security measures, it may not be surprising that the PTA turned to an online fundraising platform from Schwan’s Cares that requires very little volunteer support.
Joan says it’s an easy, straight-forward fundraiser.
“We absolutely love it,” says Joan. “Everything is delivered directly to people’s homes. We don’t have to take possession of inventory, sort out the orders, hope that people will pick it all up on time.”
Even with an easy fundraiser like Schwan’s Cares, Joan cautions that PTAs should not to forget the other big hurdle that comes with a middle school population—the kids themselves.
Through trial and error, Northampton PTA landed on two essential tactics that have proven effective for promoting the fundraising campaign directly to parents and caregivers:
  1. Take advantage of parent-teacher conferences. At Northampton, schoolwide parent teacher conferences occur in October. The PTA makes sure they have welcoming volunteers to greet parents as they arrive and give each visitor information about the Schwan’s Cares fundraising campaign.
  2. Use social media. Facebook has been critical to the Northampton PTA’s fundraising success. It allows them to update the school community and answer questions in real time. While they have approximately 150 paid members—which includes 100% teacher participation, Joan proudly notes—there are 374 followers on their Facebook page. So they know they can reach more of their school families through social media than they would through their member list.
Northampton PTA still asks the school to remind students about their fundraiser in the morning announcements during the active campaign, as well as the annuity period [with Schwan’s].
“We know it probably goes in one ear and out the other with the kids,” says Joan. “But the teachers do listen closely, and we have had wonderful teacher participation in the fundraiser as a result! The announcement is a little trigger to remind the teachers, so we still do it.”
Joan offers one final piece of advice for all the fellow middle school PTAs out there. “Find a teacher representative who truly embraces your PTA. At our school, it’s Mrs. Transue, the 8th grade science teacher. She advocates for all the other teachers to join the PTA, always attends our PTA meetings and dutifully participates in our fundraisers like the Schwan’s Cares campaign.”
For more info about the fundraising opportunities and discounts available to schools and PTA members through Schwan’s Home Service, visit

Kris Carey Prevatte is the Associate Director of Corporate Alliances for National PTA and a former local PTA president in Maryland.
Schwan’s Cares is a financial sponsor of National PTA. National PTA does not endorse any commercial entity, product, or service, and no endorsement is implied by this content.
Sch Cares-PRI_Boxed-RedSince 1952, Schwan’s Home Delivery has helped families share delicious, home-style meals. Schwan’s Home Delivery offers home delivery of over 350 foods—all made with premium ingredients and requiring simple prep. With Schwan’s Cares, your PTA supporters enjoy all of Schwan’s delicious foods, and your organization earns up to 40% back on every purchase during your 45-day fundraising campaign, and 5% back for the next 90 days. Schwan’s Cares is hands-free: you manage your fundraiser entirely online, your supporters order online or by phone, and Schwan’s Home Delivery will deliver directly to each supporter’s door. You’ll never need to deliver food or collect money. Start your campaign today by visiting

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Bronze Membership Award, Member Perks Redemption and other Awards

Awards due to Ohio PTA by February 1st:
  • Deadline for Bronze Membership Award (most creative campaign for units with at least 100 members)
  • Member Perks Redemption Form from the 2014-2015 school year
  • School Nurse Award

Awards due to Ohio PTA by March 1st:
  • Advocacy
  • Outstanding Educator and Helping Hands Awards
  • M.A.C.K (Male Action Changing Kids)

*All forms can be found on the Ohio PTA Website under Programs and Awards*

Monday, January 18, 2016

Membership Mondays

As kids transition to new schools, your PTA can be a resource to parents looking for a new PTA

Transitioning PTAs: When Your
Child Changes Schools

Changing schools can be a time of excitement and anxiety. As children transition to new schools, your PTA can be a resource to parents looking to join a new PTA. Practice the following steps to help your PTA unit transition and keep an accurate count of your PTA membership.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

What is YOUR "Why"?

  • How did you get involved in the PTA?
  • Was your mom a PTA President?
  • Did you want insider information about the school?
  • Did you want to help in your child's classroom?
  • Do you like planning events/activities for kids?
  • Are you a leader and saw PTA as a way to lead?
  • PTA is all about advocacy, so how do you advocate for your child and all children?
  • How can YOU encourage others to join PTA?

Feel free to comment below...

Ohio PTA Why Join?

The PTA Advantage

PTA is the oldest and largest child advocacy association in America. PTA is comprised of more than four million parents, teachers, grandparents, caregivers, foster parents and other caring adults who share a commitment to improving the education, health, and safety of all children. We speak with one voice for every child.

Today, the issues that affect our children extend beyond their individual schools. PTA’s nationwide network provides parents with the forum and tools to collectively influence the decisions that affect children not only at their schools, but also throughout their districts, within their states, and across the nation. This mission is unique to PTA.

Many of the benefits our children receive today, such as universal kindergarten, the National School Lunch Program, and a juvenile justice system, were accomplished as a result of PTA’s mission.

In Ohio, PTA has achieved several notable advances for children since 1901, including:
·         Instrumental in obtaining legislation which mandated that school districts develop policies for parent involvement in the schools
·         Ohio PTA Memorial Scholarships
·         Advocated for the implementation of and education of parents and community members about Common Core Standards
·         Ohio PTA hosted its first Diversity & Inclusion Conference to help highlight the importance of including everyone in the education of children and the future of PTA in Ohio. 

·         Ohio PTA embraced social media as an important communication tool for its members and advocates by utilizing Facebook, Twitter, and The Ohio PTA Voice e-newsletter to highlight activities and advocacy opportunities

Friday, January 15, 2016

Angela's Advice...Members are a Gift!

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  •  Are you recognizing your members as more than just a number toward your yearly membership goal?  Try to send out your Thank You letter with each membership card as well as a list of all your meeting dates for the year.
  •  Have a “New Member Social” so that people can get acquainted and become familiar with what your unit does for your children/students.
  •  Recognize your members and take the time to thank them for supporting your organization in your Newsletter.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Angela's Advice...Male Members

Male Involvement

Many great resources found on the National PTA website underPrograms:
  • ·         PTA MORE (Men Organized to Raise Engagement), is a coalition of organizations that serves as a conduit for greater father and male involvement.
  • ·         10 Ways to Get Men More Involved in PTAs
  • ·         ABCs of Male Involvement by Deborah Walsh and Marilyn Ferdinand
  • ·         NEW Male Engagement Tool Kit available as well!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Membership Objections!

Most objections to joining PTA fall into the areas of time, impact and perceived value.


When parents say they do not have time to join PTA, what they are probably saying is that they do not want to volunteer dozens of hours each week. Explain that PTA appreciates everyone’s membership, whether or not the member volunteers, because each member increases PTA’s ability to advocate for children.


Parents want to know if their membership in PTA is going to have a positive impact, if it will benefit their children. You can tell them, “Yes!” Decades of research show when parents are involved, students perform better in school. They receive higher grades and test scores, have better school attendance and lower rates of suspension, are more likely to graduate high school, and are more likely to pursue post-secondary education. Children of involved parents also exhibit increased motivation, better self-esteem, less drug and alcohol use, and fewer instances of violent behavior. Those great benefits come from parent engagement, a major focus of PTA
- See more at:

Membership = Automatic Advocacy

Friday, January 8, 2016

Angela's Advice...Marketing 101

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National PTA eLearning
Learn About Newsletters

Keep selling your added benefits such as weekly updates, newsletters, e-learning courses for parents from National PTA, access to Ohio PTA resources, training by state level board members, etc. Know your value as an organization and research what your members need so you can offer those programs or that information.

What are your ideas on the topic?

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Membership Trifecta!

Ohio PTA is the oldest child advocacy association in this state. Join us and become a relevant resource for all children, communities, and families.

National PTA is a membership association. People join to support the work you do locally and the work PTAs do collectively to help children, families and schools. We rely on millions of members to contribute their time and skills to schools and communities around the country and overseas. 

The number one reason to join PTA is to benefit your child. Single parents may seek a support network, working parents may want a source of information or a voice, non-English-speaking individuals may look for opportunities to share their culture, and business owners may look for a way to improve their public image. While subscribing to the mission of PTA, members may join to fulfill personal needs. Since PTAs are for everyone, a local unit should support the needs of a wide variety of members—from future parents to senior citizens. When units do this, they provide value to the community and become a relevant group for community members to join. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Disney World Anyone? SmartTalk for Parents and Kids!

Your kid is awesome. Smartphones are awesome. But awkward conversations about online safety and privacy? Not so awesome. Until now. The Smart Talk gets parents and kids together to have a clear conversation about all the devices you use and how to be responsible. You could WIN a Grand Prize Trip for 4 to Disney World! 
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PTA Members Encourage Reading

PTA members encourage reading with child anytime and anywhere!

Monday, January 4, 2016

Get Connected

What is PTA? Why join PTA? The number one reason to join the Parent Teacher Association is to benefit your child. In doing so, you also help your school. But there are many more PTA advantages:
  • Get Connected. There’s no better way to know what’s happening in your school.
  • Discover Great Resources. The PTA offers a variety of programs designed for parents as well as students.
  • Tap into a Network. PTA functions are opportunities to meet other parents and teachers, building rapport and discussing issues that are on your mind. You can share ideas, concerns, and experiences.
  • Watch Yourself Grow. By volunteering with your PTA, you put your skills and hobbies to use for a noble cause—your child and all children in the community.
  • Speak Up. PTA can be a way for you to more effectively suggest change at your child’s school.