Updates, Helpful Tips & Resources

During this time of the COVID-19 pandemic, the National PTA and State PTA are both providing a variety of helpful information for students, parents, guardians, educators, and staff. These educational support resources are here for YOU and are easily accessible at PTA.org and TXPTA.org. At the sites, where you can also subscribe to e-newsletters and find resources in Español, you’ll also find information about grants. Listed below are some specifics about available resources, upcoming events, and reminders. 

Through October 1st, the Phoebe Apperson Hearst Grant Awards ($2000 award & $500 awards) for innovation in family engagement and school partnerships, are open to PTAs which have earned the National PTA School of Excellence designation. And, PTAs can also apply for the 2020-2021 National PTA School of Excellence program, through October 1st. PTAs are encouraged to renew their designation each year, or every other year, to continue to build on their momentum.

The National PTA School of Excellence program supports and celebrates partnerships between PTAs and schools to enrich the educational experience and overall well-being of all students. By enrolling, PTAs and school administrators are making a year-long commitment to identify and implement an action plan for school improvement. The National PTA School of Excellence distinction spans two years and honorees receive celebration tools as well as the opportunity to apply for the Phoebe Apperson Hearst Award

National PTA is helping PTA leaders get ready for the new school year. Join the free Virtual Boot Camp made just for PTA Leaders! A New Membership Campaign: “PTA For Your Child” and a Local Leader Kit are also available. There’s a Diversity & Inclusion Toolkit and a variety of PTA Resources in Spanish. And, enjoy National PTA Back-to-School Week, September 14th-18th, sponsored by Office Depot OfficeMax: https://www.pta.org/home/events/back-to-school.

National & State PTA Branding & Web Guidelines are easily accessible as are National Advocacy & Legislative Resources including PTA Resolutions. An overview of the summer 2020 National PTA online virtual Annual Meeting and Leadership Convention, is available. And, check out the National PTA Event Calendar.

Helpful Parent, Student, and Educator Resources including: COVID-19 information, the Center for Family Engagement with a Toolkit to Facilitate Family/School Listening Sessions (available in multiple languages), Our Children Magazine, Health & Safety News, Special Education Toolkits, the Parents’ Guide to Student Success, and College & Career Readiness news are all accessible, here. The insightful Notes from the Backpack podcast is also available. And, don’t forget to easily look for upcoming National PTA Events on the website or at the National PTA Events app.

There’s still time to encourage everyone to respond to the 2020 Census so each person is counted. Easy Census instructions are available in multiple languages at the 2020 Census site. It’s important for all community members to participate to ensure every community receives the adequate funding necessary for essential programs and services. Responses are confidential and by law cannot be shared with any other government agency. 

With elections coming up on November 3rd, don’t forget to remind everyone to make sure they’re registered to vote and to get out and vote! Voter registrations must be filled out and mailed in at least 30 days prior to an election. And, voters must be at least 17 years and 10 months of age on the date they register to vote and 18 years old on Election Day. 

Visit VOTE411.org for a one-stop-shop to register to vote, get ballot information, and to find polling locations. Additionally, the League of Women Voters Austin Area offers First Vote!, a FREE community service program for area high schoolers, where they learn about voting and registering to vote, in a fun and interactive format. Interested schools can request a webinar presentation for their students by emailing gthomas@lwvaustin.org or clicking on bit.ly/FirstVoteSignUp

The Texas PTA LAUNCH Leadership Training is Friday, October 16th - 18th. Look for details here including a roster of the 2020-2022 Board of Directors. Visit TXPTA.org for information about Rally Day and Legislative Priorities for the upcoming 87th Legislative Session in 2021. And, don’t forget that per the Texas PTA bylaws, all PTSA executive board members must complete online Leadership Training by October 15th 2020 with more information accessible, here.