Congratulations again to our 67 Northshore students who qualified for state-level judging in this year's Reflections competition! The results from Washington State PTA are in and we have nine students who placed at the state level:
Washington State PTA finalists who receive an “Outstanding Interpretation” award will advance to the National PTA round. We want to offer special congratulations to Anthony Schmidt, whose photography entry, titled "Stuck in the Mud," will be continuing on to the National level! The 2019-2020 national winners will be announced May 1, 2020. Best of luck to our National qualifier!
The Reflections Program is a National PTA and WSPTA cultural arts competition. The purpose is to provide an opportunity for students to use their creative talents by expressing themselves through their own original works for the theme of "Look Within." Learn more about the program on our Reflections page.
Core to Washington State PTA's Mission is advocacy for children and youth. During Advocacy Week, February 24-28, 2020, WSPTA will be asking members to send prewritten emails each day on bills and issues related to our state legislative platform. You don't have to go to Olympia to be an advocate for kids!
We KNOW you care about kids – that’s why you are a PTA member! Imagine if legislators heard from all 128,000+ members about how much we care about kids!
Learn more about the WSPTA legislative priorities:
Every Child, One Voice!
Questions about advocacy? Contact our Council co-VPs of Advocacy, Charla Griffy Brown and Nancy Chamberlain.
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.
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!
Registration is now open for this year's WSPTA Legislative Assembly on October 26-27, 2019 at Bellevue College, Bellevue, WA!
PTA delegates from across the state will come together to update our WSPTA legislative platform in support of our vision of "Making every child's potential a reality." Delegates will have the opportunity to debate, amend, and vote on long-term resolutions and principles as well as new and amended short-term platform issues that will guide WSPTA's advocacy efforts in the upcoming legislative session.
The WSPTA Legislative Assembly 2019 Voter's Guide, contains information needed to familiarize yourself with these proposals. This year's delegates will be voting on one new legislative principle and one amended legislative principle, one new legislative issue and one amended legislative issue, four new resolutions and 15 amendments to existing resolutions.
As a complement to the Voter's Guide, there is also a downloadable survey available that PTAs can use to gather input from the members of your local PTA or council that can help inform your delegates voting on the proposed issues, resolutions and principles.
Be a part of the process and help direct the course for WSPTA advocacy by serving as a delegate for your PTA! If you are interested in attending Legislative Assembly as a delegate for your local PTA, contact your local PTA president.
Get all the details for this year's Legislative Assembly on the WSPTA website:
The Washington State PTA Standards of Affiliation Agreement Checklist 2019-2020 is now available!
If you are looking for it from the home page, navigation is as follows:
This checklist is a tool to help your PTA keep up with its legal requirements, both as a non-profit and as a PTA. The requirements come from the IRS, the State of Washington, your insurance company, and WSPTA.
What your PTA needs to do:
New this year on the Standards of Affiliation Checklist is to update IRS Form 8822-B. The IRS added this requirement in 2018 for security reasons. Form 8822-B should be filed when the PTA’s mailing address changes or the identity of the “responsible party” as listed on the IRS Form 990 changes. The "responsible party" for a PTA should be a principal officer (usually the president or treasurer). There is no penalty for late filing, but it is important that records with the IRS are up to date. Do it as soon as you can!
Because this form requires that the responsible party include his/her Social Security Number, the suggested best practice is that the outgoing responsible party should make sure that this form is filled out by an incoming responsible party during transition, to ensure their personal information is not left on this account.
This video from WSPTA offers a great overview of SOA and what it means for your PTA:
In addition, WSPTA offers a number of tools to help support your PTA in completing the SOA checklist, including:
Remember that sharing the progress of your SOA with your members also lets others know about how your PTA operates and shows the work that goes on, often behind the scenes, to keep your PTA legal, safe and operating within the very best practices of our state.
Training is vital for your entire board. Please join us for the Region 6 Fall Conference-- it is a FREE training and leadership development opportunity for all PTA leaders.
Come learn, network with your fellow PTA leaders, and meet part of your PTA support team!
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. As of May 31, 2019, the following Northshore PTAs/PTSAs have earned 2018-19 WSPTA Membership Growth Awards:
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 membership. The following Northshore PTAs/PTSAs earned a WSPTA 100% Staff Membership Award in 2018-2019:
🏆 100% Staff Membership
Congratulations to our award-winning Northshore PTAs!
Northshore Council PTAs/PTSAs welcomed 8,079 members in 2018-2019. We look forward to 2019-2020 to be even stronger!
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 month this year, Washington State PTA posted a checklist on their blog to help local PTA leaders run their PTA. The posts offered at-a-glance lists of important to-dos, key dates, as well as regular reminders about ongoing tasks.
With their June post, they suggested compiling the checklists and sharing them as a "gift" for incoming board members. We thought that was such a great idea, we've done the work for you so this resource can be shared easily!
It is available as a .pdf or as a Word document (in case you want to customize it for your PTA!).
Below, download your copy of: Checklist for Running Your PTA: A Month-By-Month Board To-Do List!
In addition, WSPTA's Legislative Consultant, Marie Sullivan, has written some articles that also provide great insight into some of the new legislation. Check out her analyses: