Friday, June 28, 2019

National PTA Urges Immediate Action to Address the Humanitarian Crisis at the Border

Our association is distressed by reports that children are being held in migrant detention centers under horrific conditions. 

National PTA is committed to promoting the safety and well-being of all children regardless of their immigration status and as well as protecting undocumented youth from harmful separation from their parents or family members. Our association has been taking action on this issue.

On June 11, 2019 National PTA signed onto a letter condemning the administration’s decision to suspend recreational and educational services for unaccompanied migrant children and youth in federally contracted migrant shelters.

We also recently endorsed the HELP Separated Children (H.R. 3451) and Help Separated Families (H.R. 3452) Acts of 2019 which would offer enhanced protections for children by ensuring that parents have access to and are held in close proximity to their separated children and ensuring that immigration status alone does not disqualify a relative from being a placement for a foster child. We believe both bills will better protect children if they are separated from their parents for the purposes of immigration enforcement. 

We are hearing reports that Congress will pass a bill which the president is expected to sign that will provide funding to address poor conditions at border detention facilities.

We will continue to advocate for family unity and to ensure that all children, regardless of their immigration status, have the right to access a quality public education, adequate food and shelter, and basic health care services.

If you have any questions regarding National PTA’s advocacy on these issues, please contact Jacki Ball, Director of Government Affairs at National PTA at or at 703.518.1243.

National PTA Urges Immediate Action to Address the Humanitarian Crisis at the Border

ALEXANDRIA, Va., (June 27, 2019)—The membership of National PTA expects immediate action to address the humanitarian crisis at our nation’s border. It is urgent that a bipartisan border aid package is enacted into law before the holiday break.

“Thousands of immigrant children are being held at the border, many in reportedly horrific conditions,” said Leslie Boggs, president of National PTA. “Before they recess this week, Congress must pass and the president must sign a funding package that includes protections for children being held in federal custody and guarantees that they are provided water and appropriate nutrition, and that their hygiene and sanitation needs are met.” 

National PTA has long believed that every child—regardless of their immigration status—has the right of access to adequate food and shelter, basic health care services and a high-quality public education. These services and basic standards of care should not be denied to any child. Denying these services to children, regardless of their citizenship status, creates serious health and social concerns.

“At National PTA, our motto is ‘Every Child, One Voice,’ and two of our association’s founding principles are to promote the safety and well-being of all children and to advocate for children and families who are most vulnerable,” added Nathan R. Monell, CAE, National PTA executive director. “It is unconscionable that any child is being detained at our border and we must raise our voice. We demand that they—and all children—are treated with dignity and respect, are adequately cared for and that their needs are met.”

In addition to speaking up for children being held in federal custody, National PTA has also raised its voice for children and their parents and family members who have been separated at the border.

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 family engagement 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. For more information,

Saturday, June 15, 2019

Laying a small amount of groundwork in early summer can make your back-to-school transition even easier.

Hello from your friends at Cheddar Up!
While summer may be getting under way for most students and teachers, many PTAs are still wrapping up loose ends. At Cheddar Up, we’re firm believers in preparation. Laying a small amount of groundwork in early summer can make your back-to-school transition even easier.
With that in mind, we have two resources to draw to your attention:
  1. Check out PTO Today’s Checklist for Leaders that explains how you can take your PTA life online in a few simple steps.
  2. Schedule a one-on-one with a Cheddar Up product specialist. We’ll work with you to move anything online – helping delight your community, save volunteers hours, and collect more. 
From events to fundraisers to spirit wear, Cheddar Up can help your PTA collect payments and information with ease.
I’m here if you have any questions. Cheers to a great summer!

Tracy Smith
Customer Success and Product Specialist

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Business Meeting Procedures at #PTACon19

2019 Convention

Business Meeting Procedures at #PTACon19

We're counting down to Convention—there is just one week left until the 2019 National PTA Convention & Expo!

Convention is always busy, busy, busy, so take some time before you go to review some key materials!

The 2019 National PTA Convention & Expo is Brought to You in Part By:

Student learning shouldn’t end when the bell rings. Learning should be supported everywhere.The Access from AT&T program helps families narrow the digital divide by bringing low-cost internet access to qualifying households. You can find more details at, or come visit us at Booth #301!
Google is a proud sponsor of the 2019 National PTA Convention & Expo, as well as the PTA Connected program, which helps families learn more about online safety and digital well-being. Come visit Google in the Expo Hall at Booth #401 to explore their latest resources for parents, teachers and kids.
Norton LifeLock is a long-time PTA partner and the founding member of PTA Connected, which helps families take charge of their digital life.

Parenting in the digital age is complex and families need tools to help children act safely online.

Start the conversation with your kids using The Smart Talk (it’s free!).

The Career Path Less Taken

Dear School Principals & PTA/PTO Leaders for Ohio,
Congratulations on another successful school year! As you prepare in advance for the coming year, ideastream has a great resource for your parent and school communities that I want to give you a first look at in July 2019.
On behalf of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, American Graduate Getting to Work and your public media stations, ideastream (Cleveland), CET (Cincinnati) and WOSU Public Media (Columbus), I'd like to announce an upcoming documentary, The Career Path Less Taken.
This new 30-minute documentary will present thought-provoking career information focused around economic change and emerging technologies in the workplace. To navigate 21st century jobs, Ohio parents and students need awareness of career-technical programs that students can pursue to earn a range of post-secondary credentials preparing them for employment. The documentary will premiere on select PBS stations on September 5, 2019 at 8pm. 
I hope you can join us at the Idea Center on July 31, 2019 at 6pm for a special advance screening of the documentary, The Career Path Less Taken.
Prior to the screening, families are invited to enjoy a pizza dinner. While adults are watching the screening and engaging in a post-screening discussion in the Westfield™ Studio Theater, children ages 5-12 can participate in hands-on learning activities with ideastream's Education team one floor below in the Brown and Nord Learning Labs.
WHAT: The Career Path Less Taken Advance Screening & Family Fun Night
WHEN: Wednesday, July 31 at 6pm
WHERE: Idea Center, 1375 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44115
WHO: School principals, PTA/PTO leaders and their families (children ages 5-12)
REGISTRATION: There is no cost to attendees, though registration is required at 
I would appreciate if you would forward this event information to other school principals and your PTA and/or PTO leadership in Northeast Ohio. Our ideastream communities include Ashland, Ashtabula, Carroll, Cuyahoga, Erie, Geauga, Holmes, Huron, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Portage, Richland, Stark, Summit, Trumbull, Tuscarawas and Wayne counties.
Also, later this summer, stay tuned for an associated digital toolkit of resources will be available online. Principals and PTA/PTO leaders are invited to use these assets this fall in various open houses and parent events to initiate a rich dialogue in your community around creating earning potential by adequately preparing for in-demand careers. 
So much thanks for your time and leadership. If you have any questions, my contact information is below. I look forward to seeing you at the event on July 31!

Best Regards,
Celena Roebuck, Ed.D.
Manager of Educational Content for ideastream
(216) 469-8614

Monday, June 10, 2019

New! Office Depot Discounts for PTA Members

National PTAOffice Depot Logo

National PTA’s partnership with Office Depot has extended further to include an amazing discount program, available to all PTA members!

Savings include:
  • 100+ Item School Supply List, Discounted 5-84% less than retail
  • 260+ Item Office Supply List, 20% to 55% less than retail
  • 200 Item Technology Solutions, Average 10% less than retail
  • Ink & Toner 10% off Branded / 20% off Private Brand
  • 427 Item Cleaning and Breakroom, 20% to 55% less than retail
  • Store Assortment – 10% off over 6,395 items discounted
  • Special Pricing on Copy and Print: 2.5¢ Black & White copies, 22¢ Color copies, and 40% off finishing services

We hope that you, your state office, your local units and all members will find great savings in this fantastic program. There are two ways to access these discounts:

Shop Online
Use this link to sign up for our Office Depot Business Savings Program (administered by Excelerate America) and place an order online. You will be prompted to set up a username and password in order to link your purchases to PTA’s special discounts.

Shop in Store
You can get a coupon delivered straight to your phone or device by texting the code NPTACard to 844-446-6358. The attached flyer also has a purchasing card that can be used by any PTA member.

We are excited to let PTA members know about this great new member benefit!  Please help us spread the word to the local units and families in your state, with plenty of time to take advantage of the savings before we head into the new school year.

Coming to the National PTA Convention in Columbus? Office Depot will be in booth 601. We invite you to talk with them more if you have questions about the program or how to access the benefits, or if your state is interested in setting up a state-specific program.  

Keeping Kids Safe in an Online World (June 17th event)

Image result for keeping kids safe

Learn how predators are working together to prey on children online and how to talk to your children about internet safety. 

Monday, June 17 at 6:30p
Lakewood Public Library, 15425 Detroit Avenue, Lakewood, OH 44107

Our panel of experts:

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Make Connections at a STEM + Families littleBits Invention Night

Sourced: National PTA: One Voice Blog
Posted: 05 Jun 2019 10:29 AM PDT

SPOTLIGHT: Hollin Meadows PTA (Alexandria, Va.)

This post is part of a series authored by local PTA leaders sharing their stories as STEM + Families littleBits Invention Night winners. These real-world experiences shed light on how an individual PTA planned and hosted their event, including lessons learned and practical advice.
If you are looking for a way to get your school community involved in a meaningful, engaging and fun activity, consider hosting a National PTA Invention Night sponsored by littleBits! This event allows students and families to make so many connections—both the science kind and the personal kind!
We recently hosted an Invention Night at our Title 1 elementary school in Alexandria, Va., and it was an overwhelming success, with over 250 attendees! Because we are an extremely diverse school community, we promoted the event in multiple languages and multiple formats including flierssocial media, ads on our in-house news program and personal invitations. We also prepared several videos, some in both English and Spanish and some featuring our PTA event lead volunteer and our favorite teachers, to give a teaser about the cool inventions the kids would make.

These various outreach efforts allowed us to spread the word to more of our families and to make them feel welcomed, included and excited about the event from the outset. Our principal and teachers supported our Invention Night with announcements in the classrooms, school-wide email updates and tweets, in addition to being active participants during the event. We also invited our student alumni, neighbors and larger school community to volunteer. Due to these efforts, our attendees were reflective of our community, representing families from all grade levels, backgrounds and languages.
Having hosted weeknight events before, we know that feeding our families a full, free dinner is extremely important. Parents took the night off from cooking, knowing that their families would enjoy a wholesome Noodles & Co. meal—veggies included! We set up the event in the cafeteria, using the cafeteria line to serve dinner. Families ate in a designated section and once they’d finished, moved to the part of the cafeteria where the kits were positioned.

Because we had so many attendees, families paired up to work on the kits. This allowed families to meet other families and have a natural, shared experience as they worked together. Some families had challenges downloading the app or the specific invention instructions, so the cafeteria was abuzz with families sharing information and advice. It was beautiful to see new relationships forged and for families to collaborate and contribute their unique strengths to the group’s efforts.
Kids and parents alike were clamoring for more time with the kits, so we would definitely love to host another Invention Night! With events like these we are empowering not only future STEM professionals, we are empowering families and communities! Wow! Imagine the possibilities…

Take Action: Learn more about how your PTA can host a STEM + Families Invention Night

About the Guest Contributor, Eileen Gorman: Eileen Gorman is the PTA President at Hollin Meadows Science and Math Focus PTA in Alexandria, Va.

Disclosure: littleBits is a Supporting Sponsor of National PTA’s STEM + Families initiative. The local PTA spotlighted in this blog was a winner of the 2018-2019 STEM + Families littleBits Invention Night. The author was not compensated for this blog post and the author’s opinions are their own.