• Nominate a PTA or PTA Advocate Today for the 2018 Advocacy Awards!
    Shirley Igo was a model of public service and volunteerism throughout her life. She was an impassioned and compassionate leader, dedicated to moving PTA forward and committed to ensuring that others would follow. In honor of her legacy, the National PTA Shirley Igo Advocate of the Year Award is presented to an individual PTA member, who through their leadership and advocacy efforts, affected federal, state or local policy priorities within National PTA’s annual public policy agenda. As the 2017 Shirley Igo Advocate of the Year Award winner, it was my honor to attend the 2017 National PTA Legislative Conference ... read more
    Published on 2017-12-07By Rose Acerra
  • New Resources Help You Celebrate Healthy Lifestyles
    November offered a lot to celebrate: Thanksgiving and Giving Tuesday to name a few. But it also celebrated Healthy Lifestyles Month, which brought families, schools, and communities together to improve the health of our children. Even if you’re already practicing healthy habits at home, school is where children spend over 1,200 hours per year! That’s why it’s imperative to make sure they are getting nutritious foods and the recommended amount of daily physical activity at school. Evidence shows that children who attend schools that promote physical activity and healthy eating perform better academically. What’s more, healthy school environments set ... read more
    Published on 2017-11-30By Amy Moyer
  • 5 Ways to Shop Safely on Black Friday & Cyber Monday
    The holiday shopping season now begins online on Thanksgiving (Brown Thursday), continuing through Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Some retailers have even taken it a step further: Mall of America and several other retailers have announced that they will be closed on Thanksgiving—making it a “cyber-only” day for many shoppers. This new emphasis on “cyber shopping” means that both parents and kids need to be on the lookout for shopping dangers and keep protecting their identity top of mind. Here are five suggestions that can go a long way towards reducing your vulnerability to identity theft and fraud this ... read more
    Published on 2017-11-15By Paige Hanson
  • How will your PTA change the lives of children in 2018?
    The school-year kick-off is past and holiday craziness is on the horizon. Right now it’s time to grab a pumpkin spice latte, sit back and take stock. Did the membership year start off with a bang? Maybe a mid-year drive is in order. Plan to start right after the holidays when potential members refocus on school. What value has your PTA already delivered? What value do you plan to deliver in 2018? Call attention to your success and ask for support for the future. Position membership in your PTA as a way to support students and PTA.  Ask people ... read more
    Published on 2017-10-31By Deborah Walsh
  • Start Planning for Take Your Family to School Week
    National PTA’s Take Your Family to School Week (TYFTSW) is Feb. 11-17, 2017. The week is timed to honor our Founder’s Day (Feb. 13) and celebrate PTA’s long legacy of family engagement. Although February seems far away, with the holidays coming up it will be here before you know it! Now is a great time to start planning your Take Your Family to School Week celebrations. Take Your Family to School Week is a great time to: Engage the whole family in reading activities to support children’s literacy skills and help foster a love of reading. Empower families with tools to ... read more
    Published on 2017-10-30By Alyssa Montchal
  • Help Your Youth Leaders Prevent Bullying at Recess
    The PTA’s Connect for Respect initiative recommends pulling together a team of youth leaders to address bullying. For National Bullying Prevention Month, Playworks is happy to share easy strategies that even the youngest leaders can use. Bullying and conflicts often start on the playground. Playworks, a national nonprofit, helps schools improve recess to impact school climate. Here are 5 strategies we’ve found effective for youth leaders in upper elementary school. 1.   Become a team. In Playworks’ youth leadership programs, small groups of older students serve as recess monitors for younger students and peers. To set the tone at recess, ... read more
    Published on 2017-10-26By Meg Duff
  • Update from Florida PTA: All Children are Our Children
    The following was shared by Cindy Gerhardt, President of Florida PTA. Resilience.  That is our word for this year.  We are showing the capacity to not only recover quickly from the damage and chaos that Hurricane Irma brought to our communities, but we are being propelled back into the role of caregiver and advocate.  Only 10 days after Irma made landfall, Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.  While we know that many students from the Florida Keys, where schools have been extremely damaged, have been relocated to schools in Miami-Dade, we are now seeing hundreds of ... read more
    Published on 2017-10-11By Cindy Gerhardt
  • Cultivating Online Safety with Proactive Parents and Schools
    The internet can be a wonderful tool to learn and explore new concepts, as well as a way to connect with people and cultures far away. However, we also know that the internet can be a serious source of distraction and danger, especially for its youngest users. These risks are why setting boundaries and encouraging balance for online use is so important. Parents often feel overwhelmed by the drama that seems to accompany the technology in kids’ back pockets. And they’re certainly not blowing the issue out of proportion. A 2016 Common Sense Media study found that a whopping ... read more
    Published on 2017-10-04By Sarah Siegand
  • Support Families and School Communities in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands
    Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands are facing an unprecedented crisis. The islands were heavily damaged by Hurricane Irma, and before they had a chance to recover, Hurricane Maria hit and devastated any remaining structures and supports. Families and school communities in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands need our support now more than ever. Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria were the strongest storms to hit the islands in decades—families remain without power and access to basic necessities and schools remain closed. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of the families, educators, schools and communities affected, particularly all ... read more
    Published on 2017-09-29By Jim Accomando
  • PTA Reflections: Within Reach
    PTA Reflections is a national program that sparks students’ imagination, curiosity and participation in the arts! Each PTA partners with their school and community to offer activities, events and awards for families to enjoy. Check out these fun ideas on how to bring Reflections to your community—in school and at home. Reflections at School Reflections will empower students to take charge of their own learning and make personal connections across their community. Share these ideas with teachers and school leaders to help increase student engagement and deepen learning. TIP 1: Introduce Reflections at a faculty meeting early in the school ... read more
    Published on 2017-09-22By Ethan Clark
  • Parents Unite to Support America’s Healthiest Schools
    When we drop our children off at school, we put great trust in the teachers and staff. Aside from home, kids spend the majority of their time at school, making it one of the most influential places in their most formative years. As parents, we look to schools to support our children in reaching their full academic potential. At Shore Acres Elementary—my sons’ school where I serve as PTA president—that pursuit starts with being a healthy school. We’re not your average healthy school. We’re one of America’s Healthiest Schools, a distinction earned through our work with the Alliance for ... read more
    Published on 2017-09-21By Stephanie Cox
  • Park West Gallery: Art Education Matters
    Students create self portraits through the Turnaround Arts program. (Sponsored Post) Knowledge is power, and there are few things more powerful than art. Despite art’s connection to human emotion, we at the Park West Gallery understand the art world can be intimidating for those who feel they aren’t “in-the-know,” so we strive to make art accessible for people of all ages by demystifying it. We emphasize the importance of art education by hosting regular free educational seminars and sponsoring enrichment programs through our nonprofit organization, the Park West Foundation. Exposure to the arts is a critical part of a child’s ... read more
    Published on 2017-09-13By Chris Gray
  • Clever and Fun Ways to Get Your Child Math-Ready
    Students often lose academic ground in the summer, especially in math. Researchers have found that students on average lose more than two months of math learning over the summer. To help children feel confident in math at the start of the new school year, try some math activities at home. That may seem like a challenge, but kids can practice math in lots of fun, unexpected ways. For example, inexpensive board games that offer children experience with numbers on a die, counting, money collection and distribution are all wonderful, non-traditional ways to sharpen your child’s math skills. Card games ... read more
    Published on 2017-09-11By Danielle Goedel
  • Q Your School: Free Epinephrine Auto-Injectors for Public Elementary Schools
    (Sponsored Post) As parents and teachers, you know how important it is to create a healthy environment for children to learn, grow and thrive. At kaléo, where we put patients first, we feel the same way. However, approximately six million children in the U.S. live with life-threatening allergies, meaning that an encounter with a peanut in the lunchroom or a bee sting during recess could trigger anaphylaxis to those at risk. Anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction that can happen quickly and may cause death. Anaphylaxis can occur as a result of exposure to allergens including tree nuts, peanuts, ... read more
    Published on 2017-09-08By Spencer Williamson
  • Celebrate the Holidays Safely
    The kids are back to school and the holidays are around the corner. It’s an exciting time to gather with family and friends. Unfortunately, holiday festivities can present unique fire hazards. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, more residential fires happen during the colder months than any other time of year, primarily caused by cooking, heating and electrical malfunctions. Don’t let a fire ruin your holiday! Stay safe with these simple tips: Cook with Care Remain in the kitchen when you’re cooking and keep pan lids close by so that if a fire starts in the pan you can ... read more
    Published on 2017-09-07By Kristen Gomez