(Updated January 8, 2015) Welcome to a new year!!! Happy 2015 (although a cold one so far)!!
PTA Reflections is on the top of the list for this update. National PTA Reflections welcomes all grades and abilities to explore and be involved in the arts. Annually, thousands of students will reflect on a common theme and create original works of art in the categories of dance choreography, film production, literature, music composition, photography and visual arts. Iowa PTA participates in National PTA Reflections and all local unit PTA's are eligible to participate, with any of the students at a school where there is a PTA eligible to submit entries. The world would be a better place if... is the theme for the 2014-2015 school year. The deadline for entries to Iowa PTA is Friday, January 16. Click on our menu above - Programs>Reflections for more information.
Hopefully all of you have received your Back to School kits. If you haven't already received your Back to School kit, please contact the Iowa PTA office to make sure we have correct contact information for your PTA unit, or complete the Unit Registration Officer Form online. This kit has lots of GREAT and HELPFUL information for leaders and Membership and Fundraising committees in your local PTA's.
Membership is up for Iowa PTA over last year's numbers at this time, but we need to keep this trend going! Iowa PTA relies on the membership dues to keep us going providing resources and training to you and your members. National PTA has some excellent programs that you are invited to participate in: Schools of Excellence, New Playground Sweepstakes, Family Reading Experience, Reflections (Arts program), #ShareAwesome, and more - Check them out and utilize these programs to grow your PTA membership. www.pta.org/programs
I would like to personally thank you all for joining your local unit PTA and becoming part of the nation's largest child advocacy association, to speak on behalf of your child, all the children across Iowa, and all the children in the US. Iowa PTA is here to help and serve you and it helps us "bend the ears" of our state and federal political contacts with higher numbers behind us. There are lots of changes happening in the state legislature as well as the federal with new delegates being sworn in this week.
As Iowa PTA President I want to update you on some important information.
- Leadership training was held across the state at various locations during September and October. If you missed the session near you, please contact our office to either request local training, or get a copy of the training presentation. These leadership trainings go over PTA Leader basics, Finance, Membership, Diversity, along with touching on the facts about Common Core. You can also take training at your pace by checking out the elearning available on National PTA's website - www.pta.org/elearning
- Common Core - National PTA has fabulous resources for PTA units to use that explain Common Core from flyers to webinars to presentations. Visit this page on their website for an index of the information available http://www.pta.org/advocacy/content.cfm?ItemNumber=3552. There also is a talk sheet for common questions and myths/facts about Common Core available.
- Diversity, or even better, inclusivity. Make sure your PTA meetings are very welcoming of ALL people. This includes your meeting place, meeting time, and welcome committee. Inclusivity is a GREAT way to increase your unit's membership and also a GREAT way to get new ideas on how to do things, and what new things you can try!
Hopefully you are all receiving our e-newsletter. If you are not receiving e-mail information (especially our newly developed e-newsletter), please make sure you have completed the Unit Registration Officer Form.
Thanks for all you do for all children, PTA, your school, and your local community!
Liz Mink, Iowa PTA President