For local PTA & PTSA leaders
January 5, 2018 | SCPTSA.org
President's Message
As we embrace 2018, let's give gratitude to the many gifts and lessons of 2017. Facing challenges, you found answers and resources. Together we raised our collective voice to restore funding at the State level, and to secure two-tier buses at the City level. Your collaboration and partnerships with school leaders, students, teachers, family, and community support lives. We are the safety net. You are Every Child, One Voice in action. Seattle Council PTSA is grateful to each and every one of you! You put in selfless, incredible work every day for students, families, and staff.  You've proven to me that effective and systemic family engagement is alive and well in Seattle! It is done across more than 89 buildings throughout this district through the hands and hearts of all of you. Take a deep breath. Feel how powerful that is!

We see it, we feel the impact and transformations. Your work and stories are powerful. Your work does not go unnoticed. We are so proud of you! Invite us to your meetings. Let us know how we can support you. Help us to share the stories of your great work. We are an advocacy and engagement organization who is strongest in our unity, inclusion collective wisdom.

In the DNA of who we are as an organization, we have stood up for what is right and just for the health, safety, wellness and education of every child. We have advocated across racial barriers since our founding. We have done this through engaging families in the education of their children, while advocating for the decisions and policies the impact their educational experience and outcomes. Every day in buildings throughout our district you, your team and membership hold up a tradition over 120 years strong. Through the tools of Schools of Excellence ,  Diversity and Inclusion Toolkit , guidance of  Every Child in Focus and Parents Guides to Student Success we have the tools to be more connected and effective. With SCPTSA and WSPTA/Region 6 leaders you have the support you need. Let us lift together to lighten lift. Let us work together and strengthen our impact.

Within our schools we have the power to support and create the educational experience that every child deserves and should receive. Simply through connected and intentional advocacy and engagement. Though we might face uncertain terrain, together, across buildings, across regions we are most effective in our intentional solidarity. Now is the time to take a powerful step towards realizing our collective strength. Family engagement and advocacy are our vehicles.

Please join us February 5 th , for our General Meeting.  We will engage in a  Visioning and Knowledge Exchange . We will use Family Engagement standards to help us identify the characteristics and skills we need in our next Superintendent. Let us also look at and strategize around our collective strength as advocates for our children. We are the bridges and connectors this district needs to close gaps and to provide sustainable safety nets. We will also be voting on adjustments to the SCPTSA budget. Help to make sure our budget reflects your needs and values.
Now's your last chance to enroll in this membership challenge from  Washington State PTA ! Sign up by midnight and recruit new members by the end of January to be entered in a cash drawing! Download and submit your form now!
Welcome All Seattle Kids Home to the SCPTSA family!
We are excited to welcome All Seattle Kids Home (ASKH) and the amazing staff that supports the important work of preventing homelessness and supporting families facing its effects. ASKH is officially a part of Seattle Council PTSA! This three-year grant was awarded last year to Lowell PALS PTA through King County Best Starts for Kids Youth and Family Homelessness Prevention Initiative. It was secured through the relentless work of outstanding parent leaders. Thank you Lowell community for recognizing the need to support our families in the schools and laying the groundwork for a successful start to the program! This grant is administered through ASKH and is now contracted and supported through SCPTSA. Please join us in welcoming this passionate and dedicated team that supports this life-changing work.  

Vera Page , ASKH Case Manager
Suzanna Mak, ASKH Executive Director
Vivian van Gelder, SCPTSA Family Service Coordinator (ASKH & Food for Schools)

General Meeting
Monday, February 5, 7pm
2445 3rd Ave S

Please send a representative, for our general meeting .

• JoLynn Berge,  Asst. Superintendent for Business and Finance, 2018-19 SPS Budget
• Family Engagement
• Networking
• What you should know about Every Student Succeeds Act
• Visioning & Knowledge Exchange
• Superintendent Search
• SCPTSA Budget Vote

Let's get 100% representation at this important meeting!

Through Jan 7 Reflections Exhibit at Seattle Center Armory
Jan 15 Martin Luther King Jr. Day (no school)
Jan 18 SPS School Board Superintendent search Town Hall
Jan 29-Feb 2 Focus Week
Jan 31 Day between Semesters (no school)

Feb 5 Seattle Council PTSA General Meeting (see above)
Feb 6 Safer Internet Day 
Feb 11-18 Take Your Family to School week (see below)
Feb 17 Founder’s Day 
Feb 19-23 Mid-winter break & Presidents’ Day (no school)
Families and Early Education Levy community forums
Saturday January 20

The Seattle Department of Education and Early Learning (DEEL) invites you to discuss the principles and priorities of the upcoming Families and Education Levy. This 2018 Levy will focus on funding the educational needs of youth and families. It combines two existing levies – the Families and Education Levy and the Seattle Preschool Program Levy.
Saturday, January 20, 10-11am
Asian Counseling and Referral Service
3639 Martin Luther King Jr. Way S
Seattle WA 98144
Saturday, January 20, 3-4pm
Meadowbrook Community Center
10517 35 th  Ave NE,
Seattle, WA 98125 - Room 10
School of

Congratulations to the six SPS schools have signed on to participate in this year's School of Excellence program : Bryant, Cascadia, Leschi, Orca K-8, Sacajawea and Sanislo. Each of these PTAs will be using the National Standards for Family-School Partnerships, collaborating with their schools to design experiences enriching the education and overall well-being of their students. Their successes will be evaluated by National PTA for designations as National Schools of Excellence.

Enrollment for the 2018-19 school year opens in May. For those of you contemplating this program for the future , now is a great time to communicate and collaborate with your community to prepare for participation next year. Enrolling early allows you more time to authentically collaborate with and bring together your community. Enrollment closes shortly after the start of the school year. 
SPS is hiring a Coordinator of School Family Partnerships (.5 FTE)

Seattle Public Schools shares SCPTA's focus on engagement, and has opened a job posting for a coordinator of School Family Partnerships. Pass around this opportunity to someone you know who is committed to strengthening partnerships between students, families, and schools. The position closes January 24.

Are our schools fully funded, now?
Well....not exactly. Ask the Washington State Legislature, the Supreme Court, school districts, and public education advocates — you won't get the same answer twice. Seattle Council PTSA has been partnering with local PTAs and SPS Budget and Finance to offer presentations about where we stand now and what's coming next, so be on the lookout for events in your area. SPS is predicting shortfalls in special education, ELL, and salaries in the current plan for funding. Legislative chairs from around the district are working together to provide basic information and an advocacy action plan in preparation for the upcoming state legislative session.

Last chance to visit the Reflections exhibit!
Through Sunday, January 7

Our annual Reflections exhibit of student artwork and creative writing is finishing up its residency at the Armory in the Seattle Center. Twenty schools from around the city participated, exploring the theme Within Reach . Top scorers from this exhibit will move on to the Washington State PTA Reflections program. And from there, finalists will move on to the National PTA program. Now's your last chance to see wonderfully inventive and talented artwork in person, but you can view and share with your community all the entries online as well!
Community/Families/Parent Summit
Saturday, January 20, 2018 Aki Kurose Middle School

Registration 7:30am
Breakfast 8:00am-9:00am
Workshops: 9:00am-3:00pm

This FREE workshop is part of the My Brother’s Keeper Project and will offer tools and resources for families, students, teachers (clock hours available!), administrators, communities, and partners. Understand the school system, learn about academic requirements, and build stronger relationships with schools. Download your registration and information sheet now!

Topics covered include:
  • Seattle Public Schools Initiatives
  • Community partnerships
  • Parent and family engagement
  • African American males and males of Color initiative
  • My Brother’s Keeper initiative
  • Overview of Every Student Succeed Act (ESSA)
  • Ethnic Studies in schools
  • Literacy and what can be done at home to impact reading and writing
  • Early learning and getting your child off to a good start
  • Restorative justice practices
  • Overview of tour of black colleges and universities
  • Discipline/bullying in schools
For additional questions, contact 206-725-7138, 206-772-4916 or email your RSVP.
Sponsored by: Seattle Alliance of Black School Educators, SPS
Sharing funds between PTAs
Sharing funds is one way to assist your fellow Seattle PTSAs in their support of all students. Fundraising capacity and needs vary widely from one PTA to the next. If your PTA would like to donate funds to another, you need to be aware of a few compliance issues with federal, state, and WSPTSA guidelines.

Any use of funds must advance the donor non-profit’s charitable mission.
If your PTA organization's mission is limited to serving the students at your school, a donation made to another PTA may be out of compliance with nonprofit law .
Any changes to your budget must be approved by your membership.
Your members fund and drive your organization, and your budget is approved by an annual majority vote by membership. You can amend the budget or reallocate funds with a vote by either the membership or by the board of directors. Check your standing rules to see what your PTA requires. More information can be found in the WSPTSA Money Matters handbook .
There are many other options for sharing funds with another PTA that don't include spending money from your own budget, which eliminates the compliance risk.
  • Collect individual donations for a specific cause (collect cash for camp fees)
  • Promote another PTA's fundraiser (sharing a DonorsChoose or GoFundMe link, for example)
  • Donate goods or services from your membership, etc. Most PTAs have contact info available online if you want to reach another school community directly to ask what support they would appreciate.

Contact Liza Rankin or Cassandra Johnston with questions. 

In February:
Take your family to school week
February 11-18
Strong family engagement are the hallmark of strong schools, and are a leading indicator of student success. It's not too late for your PTA to apply for a $400 grant from Seattle Council PTSA to start planning an event to engage your families. Here are some ideas to get you started!
  • Serve up breakfast refreshments for families dropping off their students
  • Host an exhibition of student artwork
  • Create a school-wide reading event or movie night
  • Invite everyone for a game or arts and crafts night
  • Put together a parent education program with timely topics
  • Provide translation services at meetings and events