Northshore PTA members represented in Olympia on Monday, January 20, 2020 for WSPTA Focus Day! The day began at First Christian Church, where Region 6 Advocacy Chair Heidi Bennett welcomed WSPTA members. Members then trekked to the Capitol building for a rally on the steps in conjunction with Public School Employees Union members, who were there advocating for education support professionals.
The rest of the day was spent meeting with legislators from the 1st, 45th and 46th Districts, including Representative Shelley Kloba (1), Senator Manka Dhingra (45), Senator David Frockt (46), Representatives Larry Springer (45) and Roger Goodman (45), Representatives Gerry Pollet (46) and Javier Valdez (46), Representative Davina Duerr (1) and Senator Derek Stanford (1). In each meeting, WSPTA legislative priorities were shared and discussed. There was also an opportunity for each member to share areas of personal interest or concern related to the WSPTA platform, including the challenges around growth in our area and the need for smaller class sizes and expanded facilities, the need for mental health supports for students, continuing concerns around youth vaping, and more.
Many thanks to the Northshore PTA members who made the trip to Olympia and joined in the meetings with legislators, including Nancy Chamberlain, Jennifer Drury, Sandy Hayes, Carrie McKenzie (as well as her daughter), and Robin Zaback.
Special thanks as well to Northshore Council PTSA Advocacy VPs Nancy Chamberlain and Charla Griffy Brown for organizing transportation and setting appointments with legislators!
WSPTA members can send a strong message by showing up in Olympia on Focus Day, January 20, 2020, for a day of talking to legislators. Members should consult with their local PTA, council or region legislative/advocacy chair for assistance in making legislator appointments for Focus Day.
The Focus Day program will begin at First Christian Church (701 Franklin St SE, Olympia, WA 98501) starting at 9:30 am with an introduction to the day and information focused on the 2020 legislative session. WSPTA has reserved the church until 3 pm so that members can eat lunch or use it as a base between meetings.
Let WSPTA know you are planning to attend by registering for the event. You will also have the option to pre-purchase a convenient boxed lunch.
The most important tip for those leaders is to make appointments with the legislators as far in advance as possible! Input addresses here to get the names of the Representatives and Senator(s) for your school district and their contact information.
Want to ride in style and comfort for free? Let us know that you want to join Northshore Council’s Focus Day Transportation.
Focus Day Resources:
Once again this year, WSPTA will also be will be asking members to take action from home or your phone throughout an entire week. Each day will have a new prewritten message for members to send to their legislators regarding WSPTA legislative priorities. To participate, subscribe to the WSPTA Action Network to stay informed. Further details of this 2020 event, including the exact week, will be available soon!
As more information about Focus Day and Advocacy Week become available, we will update this page.
We are grateful to all who were able to attend our General Membership Meeting on Monday, November 18, 2019.
News of interest from the November 18th PTSA General Meeting included Dr. Reid’s report that the innovation lab high school located in Canyon Park will open next fall. Peter Schurke is the planning principal and registration will likely coincide with that for Northshore’s other high schools. Also, EAP Placement sites should be announced the week of November 25th. Northshore Schools Foundation is partnering with NSD for Hour of Code again this year, December 9 – 16, with activities for families and awards for participation. NSD Partnerships Coordinator Natalie Campbell reported that the district is partnering with local PTAs to bring the Northwest Art Project, a tour which includes eight original works of Northwest artists and supporting curriculum, to twice as many schools as last year.
Reflections Entries are due by November 26. Cindy Jensen will be collecting pieces at the Starbucks by Kenmore Lanes November 25 and 26th from 7 – 8:30pm.
Council's co-VP of Advocacy, Nancy Chamberlain, gave a brief summary on Washington State PTA's Legislative Assembly (October 26-27, 2019), noting that delegates adopted Family and Community Engagement as a new principal as well as four new Resolutions including: the Vital Impact of Membership on PTAs Sustainability, Mission-Focused Fundraising, Equitable Education Opportunities to Close Gaps Across the Achievement Spectrum, and Gun Violence Prevention and Safety. She urges all members to sign up for Advocacy Action Alerts and to mark calendars for Focus Day in Olympia on January 20, 2020. Kids are welcome! Sign up for free Focus Day transportation to Olympia with Council.
During the Emergency Preparedness Presentation, Council's E-Prep co-Chair, Robin McKenzie, urged families to make sure their contact information is correct in ParentVue, develop an emergency plan at home, and sign-up for King County/Snohomish County Alerts. He suggested PTAs engage with their school on the Reunification Process plan. He noted that the District will be doing a Reunification Exercise in March.
The Council also approved new goals, elected a Nominating Committee (many thanks to Jane Chiodo, Carmin Dalziel, and Tricia Woods for serving on the committee!), celebrated our 6840 members and discussed ways to boost membership. We are also thrilled to report that Tricia Woods has decided to continue on as our Treasurer. (Note: we are still seeking interested candidates to serve in other key roles, including VP of Events and Membership Chair. Contact Grace Jurado if you would like to learn more!)
After the meeting adjourned, members could choose between four training class options including:
✔️ Lining Up Your Leaders: How to Have a Successful Nominating Committee and Election
✔️ How to Use WSPTA Positions for Local Advocacy
✔️ Keep Your A$$ets Out of Trouble: Managing a Non-Profit
✔️ Emergency Preparedness: What Your PTA Needs to Know
Many thanks to Stacey Meyer, Nancy Chamberlain, Grace Jurado and Robin McKenzie for leading the classes and sharing their knowledge and experience with attendees.
The next General Membership meeting will be January 23, 2020 at the NSD Administration Building. Meet and Greet at 6:30 pm. Call to order at 7pm. We hope you will join us!
Legislative Assembly is over, but advocacy is ongoing!
Here are three things you can do to stay engaged in PTA advocacy:
1. Make sure you are signed up for advocacy information and action alerts through the WSPTA Action Network Group.
2. Familiarize yourself with Washington State PTA's updated legislative platform:
3. Mark your calendar now for Focus Day: January 20, 2020, a day of advocacy in Olympia. Join fellow PTA/PTSA advocates in Olympia to meet with legislators, tour the capitol, and demonstrate advocacy in action. Want to ride in style and comfort for free? Let us know that you want to join Northshore Council’s Focus Day Transportation.
RSVP for your ride to Olympia on January 20, 2020!
Questions? Do you want some help on figuring out how to approach an advocacy issue in your PTA's community or beyond? Contact our co-Advocacy VPs, Nancy Chamberlain and Charla Griffy Brown.
Washington State PTA held its 41st Annual Legislative Assembly October 26-27th at Bellevue College. The theme was “Superheroes of Advocacy”, and Northshore advocacy heroes made up more than 10% of the total attendees statewide!
A Focus on Mental Health
Additional workshops, panels and classes to help legislative assembly attendees become better superhero advocates included:
New this year was a student track of classes and workshops:
Updates to the WSPTA Legislative Platform
The “work” of legislative assembly is to adopt new public policy positions for WSPTA and its local PTAs, councils and members to advocate on. These include both short-term legislative issues, which are actionable in Olympia, and long-term positions which can be used at any level of decision-making: school, school district, city, county, state and nationally.
Since the WSPTA Legislative Platform runs on a two-year cycle, this year delegates only had one new issue to adopt for the 2020 platform: Equitable Identification of Highly Capable Students. Delegates also amended the top 5 issue Prevent Gun Violence. The new and revised issues can be found on the 2020 WSPTA Legislative Platform (be on the lookout for new and updated one-pagers for each of the issues coming soon).
Delegates also adopted a new permanent legislative principle on Family and Community Engagement, and four new permanent resolutions. Three of the new resolutions are fundamental to how PTAs should address their mission, outlook on membership, and fundraising. The titles of the new resolutions are:
In addition, delegates also amended fifteen existing resolutions with updates to ensure their continued relevance for ongoing advocacy work.
The list of all WSPTA resolutions can be found on the WSPTA Resolutions webpage (updated text for all of the new and updated resolutions will be available soon!).
Stay engaged in PTA advocacy!
UPDATE!!! EVENT CANCELLED!!!
via Washington State PTA's Facebook page:
Everyone's health and safety is important to us. We have been watching the weather, and we believe that conditions necessitate cancelling Monday's event in Olympia. Advocacy Week will continue, however, and we encourage you to participate in the action alerts that are sent each day.
Join Washington State PTA for Focus Day on Monday, February 11th and meet with our legislators in Olympia! Let's join together to show lawmakers that parents and students support excellence in education!
This year we will begin at The United Churches of Olympia located at 110 Eleventh Ave SE (the corner of Capitol Way and 11th, across the street from the Capitol grounds).
Wear BLUE to show PTA unity!
The Focus Day program will begin at 9:00 am with a presentation designed to help you better understand WSPTA priorities, the legislative process, and tips for talking to legislators. The program should end around 10:30 am.
Register for Focus Day here: www.eventbrite.com/e/wspta-focus-day-2019-tickets-55040539736
Bus with Us to Focus Day!
Don't want to drive??? Once again, Northshore Council PTSA will be offering a "bus" for members who wish to attend Focus Day in Olympia on Monday, February 11th. We'll be leaving from the NSD Admin building at 7:30am with a planned return time of 3:30pm.
Email FocusDay@northshorecouncilptsa.org to save your seat on the bus!
There is a wealth of information about Focus Day available via Washington State PTA. Resources include: