This past weekend, PTA leaders from across Northshore joined alongside those from across the state at the 109th Washington State PTA Annual Convention - three full days of education, networking, inspiration, and fun.
Some of the highlights included the keynote presentations. The first featured Northshore students from The Root of Us/Root of Youth founded by longtime Northshore PE teacher, Fernell Miller. In the second keynote, Teacher of the Year, Jerad Koepp, shared his experiences developing a rich Native American education program and support system for North Thurston students.
PTA leaders from Northshore taught and attended classes in mental health, diversity, equity and inclusion, family and community engagement, and much more. The knowledge leaders gained over this weekend will help strengthen our goal of "Making Every Child’s Potential a Reality".
During the convention, WA State PTA also commended all the amazing work done by dedicated volunteers, many of who are parents and community members here in Northshore. Council, along with several of our local PTAs & PTSAs, received awards in both membership growth and standards of excellence! Visit our awards page to learn more about these.
To learn more about this year's convention, visit the WSPTA Convention information page.
Save the date for the 110th Annual WSPTA Convention which will be held April 14, 2023 - April 16, 2023 in Bellevue, WA.
Each year, Washington State PTA recognizes the work of individuals, PTAs and Councils across the state via a variety of awards, including Leadership Academy and the Awards of Excellence Program. Some of our amazing Northshore PTAs submitted applications and were recognized for their efforts at the 2022 WSPTA Annual Convention held May 20th-22nd.
Awards work to celebrate the efforts of local PTAs and Councils in a variety of different areas. The criteria reflect a strong knowledge and application of best practices and the submission process can be rigorous. These awards are truly reflective of the dedication and strength of these PTAs and the powerful contributions they make in their communities.
This year's recipients included:
Congratulations to our award-winning Northshore PTAs!
PTA is a membership-driven association. Sustaining and growing membership builds PTA's power as advocates and change makers not only in your own school community, but also at district, state, and national levels. WSPTA recognizes PTAs for their work growing membership as well as for achievements in membership.
Congratulations to our Northshore PTA/PTSAs that have earned
WSPTA Membership Awards in 2021-2022!!
Membership Achievement Awards:
100% Staff Membership Award
The 100% Staff Membership Award is presented to local PTAs that enroll at least as many school staff members as there are full-time certificated employees at the school. This award recognizes the value of teachers and school staff as stakeholders advocating for all children through PTA.
100% PTA Membership Award
The 100% PTA Membership Award is presented to local PTAs that enroll at least as many members as there are full-time enrolled students at the school associated with that PTA. This is the ultimate achievement in PTA membership and recognizes that every child in the school community has a paid PTA member to be their voice.
Membership Growth Awards:
To highlight the importance of membership growth, Washington State PTA recognizes local PTAs for enrolling more members than they did in the previous year. As PTAs achieve incremental increases in membership growth, they are recognized for each milestone they reach.
Many thanks to all of our amazing Northshore PTAs/PTSAs for continually striving for membership growth, helping us to have an even more powerful voice for our children!
Each year, Northshore Council PTSA recognizes a few special people who have gone above and beyond in service to our community and who promote the well-being and education of children in our district and beyond. During our Annual Spring Recognition Event on May 16th, Northshore Council was proud to recognize eleven amazing individuals. Learn more about them and why they were deserving of these achievements in the videos and stories below:
These two showed us the meaning of "PTA Flexible" by instead organizing an in-person candidate forum before the election took place, and got every school board candidate to attend. They even figured out a way to record the proceeding for community members to watch later. It was so important to them to ensure the community could hear from the candidates. We admire their determination and grit through all of the ups and downs during that chaotic time!
Jennifer and Diana didn't stop there.
It’s hard to imagine the time spent and the organization it takes to accomplish what she makes looks so easy. Queen of juggling everything, Rachel constantly thinks about how to best serve our local PTAs and in turn the students and families that they serve. She is a fountain of PTA knowledge and knows how to put that knowledge to good use in helping our local PTAs and Council navigate problems and issues that arise.
Besides serving council, Rachel is a dedicated volunteer at her kids schools. She volunteers in the library, supervises lunch, and helps with other various events & tasks for her local PTAs and schools. She is always thinking about how to best help kids whether that is through volunteering, advocating, or helping our local PTAs get the information they need to succeed. Simply put, Rachel is amazing!
With Mr. Hopkins leadership, Sunrise opened HiCap classrooms as planned for the year despite the pandemic. He made safety a priority. His communication style is impeccable - giving timely, detailed, and pertinent messaging which is a boon in these times of isolation for the last 2 years.
Mr. Hopkins is the biggest strength to the Sunrise community. He made the students’ learning environment fun and safe. He nurtured values in children, made Sunrise Elementary a community of diversity, and helped kids learn to know and respect all cultures. The families at Sunrise are so fortunate to have an untiring advocate at the helm, whose vision and values have taken their school to great heights!
He is constantly working to get the word out about this amazing new high school focused on mastery learning by hosting webinars, going directly to local middle schools, talking directly to students about the school during their lunch periods, and more. His optimism and excitement about learning is contagious. Mr. Schurke is always open to feedback - from parents and students, listening to others’ ideas, often responding with a "let's see how we can make this work". He is forward thinking and willing to push the envelope when it comes to his students’ experiences and opportunities.
Mr. Schurke has been described as passionate and a visionary, though he is also responsive to his school community. It’s known that if kids are having problems, see an issue, or need to talk through something - they can always find Mr. Schurke.
Peter Schurke is the heart and soul of Innovation Lab High School!
Mr. Combs also helped schools organize and prepare in case of emergencies. Mr. Combs has been instrumental in explaining and working to implement full scale reunification drills with the help of volunteer PTA parents so that the district could practice response and work out the kinks. Most notably, Mr. Combs has taught close to 1,000 students, staff, and community members in the ACT (Antidote/CPR/Tourniquet) since the start of the Covid-19 closures. His willingness to bring this presentation to schools, city halls, and anywhere he can lay down the CPR dummies is admirable. He is helping make this community safer. This past year, he was also tasked with coordinating the District PCR Covid testing at sites including Pop Keeney. His willingness to take on this task and the success he has shown in doing it is a testimony to his commitment to our community and well worth recognizing!
Additionally, Esther reached out to North Creek's PTSA as she was working on a project at school to provide sanitary products to the students at NCHS. Esther wanted to be able to also deliver these to students who are in need as well. To further that cause, she has teamed with the North Creek/Skyview PTSA Food Pantry since November 2021 and has been providing 20 packs of the sanitary products to ensure it gets included in the food pantry bags that go out to families in need. Esther pays for these products from her weekend job. No doubt she has been a positive influence in her community and an outstanding student advocate!
Some of the things Melissa and Pauline were able to accomplish through their work on the Mental Health Committee include:
Pauline and Melissa also spend their time meeting with district administration to discuss issues surrounding access to mental health counselors for students among other topics. They have continually advocated to district admin and at school board meetings for better access to resources, more information for parents, and training for teachers. Pauline and Melissa work tirelessly for all students in our district. We are in awe of their passion and dedication regarding the advocacy surrounding the topic of mental health!
At the local PTA level, Jane has been involved at Canyon Park Middle School and Innovation Lab High School, where she serves as the current Communications Chair. Her professional monthly newsletters are full of information, easy to read, thoroughly edited and all-around top-notch. Although Jane has an official PTSA title in each of these organizations, she does
not hesitate to dive into projects wherever there is a need, no matter if it's in her job description or not. Just some of the ways she has served her local PTAs include:
Jane also finds time to volunteer at her children's schools. She is a wealth of information; always willing to help solve problems, find answers, and suggest ideas. She does a great job of advocating for student needs as well as teacher needs. Jane can always be counted on to promote programs, and PTA as a whole, or to help educate those not involved in PTA to learn about what PTA does as a child advocacy organization. Jane cares for the NSD schools, students and community and it shows in her work!
Tracy has helped to run the monthly E-Prep meetings, providing an invaluable resource for our local leaders. She was also instrumental in working with the district to bring together a Stop the Bleed effort that spanned the entire districts PTAs and made all of our students and staff members safer in the process.
Tracy is kind, approachable, and always willing to lend a hand. When a new E-Prep Chair recently started at Canyon Park Middle School and discovered many of their supplies out of date, they reached out to Tracy for help. Tracy volunteered to meet at the school in order to walk through what CPMS would need and how much so that they could bring the school’s emergency supplies back up to par.
Tracy serves our Northshore community in so many ways. She frequently jumps in to help on Council committees, recently serving on the Grants Committee and the Budget Committee. We are so fortunate to have gotten to know Tracy and our district is so fortunate to have such a dedicated volunteer!
Check out the video below showcasing some of the AMAZING things our local PTAs & PTSAs have accomplished this year!
You are invited to join Council's next Emergency Preparedness (E-Prep) Chair meeting!
Anyone in PTA/PTSA is welcome to attend our meetings, and we encourage all local PTA/PTSA E-Prep chairs to attend as well as PTA/PTSA Presidents and/or Vice Presidents or delegates.
In this meeting we share and obtain updates from the NSD Safety team and discuss opportunities where the PTA can provide support to our schools in the areas of emergency preparedness, safety, and security.
Date: Tuesday, June 7th
Time: 11:00 AM to Noon, Pacific Time (US and Canada)
Zoom Link & Passcode: Available upon request
If you would like the zoom link and passcode in order to attend this meeting, or have questions concerning Emergency Preparedness, please email Council's E-Prep Co-Chairs, Tracy Jokisch & Robin McKenzie. We look forward to seeing you!
It's Time to Update Officers & Committee Chairs for the 2022-2023 School Year!
Please have each member of your 2022-2023 PTA/PTSA complete this form https://forms.gle/nqa7PGFYeT8iWsYx8 before July 1st to ensure no missed communications from Council.
This includes positions such as the executive committee (aka: elected positions), board members, committee chairs, etc.
Council gathers this information in order to support all Northshore Local PTA/PTSA Leaders. Contact information is used to connect with leaders including receiving our twice a month eNews, sending invites to Council events, relaying important and timely information about program specific areas (such as Advocacy or Reflections), and more!
Questions? Contact our VP of Communications at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Remember to update officers into memberplanet as well!
Northshore Council PTSA is offering a FREE Parent Education Webinar Series in partnership with PAVE (Partnerships for Action, Voices for Empowerment).
Special Education: Student & Family Support
Date: Tuesday, June 7th
Focus Topic: Caregiver Self-Care
This webinar series will be presented by Jerri Clark, Parent Resources Coordinator of Partnerships in Action/Voices of Empowerment (PAVE). Each webinar in the series will have a different focus topic and a separate registration link.
This fourth (and final for this school year) webinar in the series will take place on June 7th and be focusing on Caregiver Self-Care. This webinar will discuss mindfulness to support resilience, why a checklist can calm your brain, and access to a video library with more self-care content. Check out the flyer below for more information.
*Deadline to register is 6pm on Monday, June 6th.
Questions? Email Council's Special Education Representative, Laura Staneff.
For more information about PAVE, visit their website at https://wapave.org.
We look forward to seeing you at this and future Special Education: Student & Family Support events!
This year's Reflections theme was "I Will Change the World By...". National PTA received more than 900 entries from 47 state PTAs. A list of all National award recipients can be found here: https://www.pta.org/docs/default-source/files/programs/reflections/current_reflections-21-22/2021-22-reflections-winners-list.pdf
To learn more about Reflections and how to promote the PTA program at your school, visit our Reflections page.
Is your PTA looking for a parent education presentation to provide for your community? Consider hosting a Be SMART presentation!
Developed by Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action, The Be SMART educational program is designed to help parents and adults normalize conversations about gun safety and take responsible actions that can prevent child gun deaths and injuries. It asks parents and caretakers, gun owners and non-gun owners alike, to 'Be SMART' and take 5 simple steps to help keep our schools and communities safe.
Recognized by the National Parent Teacher Association, the Be SMART program has allowed volunteers to carry the lifesaving message within school districts across the country.
If you are interested in hosting a Be SMART presentation at your school, or to learn more about the program, please reach out to Jaclyn Condra by emailing email@example.com.