First District PTA Newsletter for Local Leaders | January 30, 2021
Happy New Year!
We are joyful to see 2020 in our rearview mirror. My heartfelt thanks to each of you for having the courage and leadership to try new and creative approaches to help reach our membership, representing all children and families. We have many associations that pulled together to help in the distribution of home-use technology for all students, organized virtual family engagement events, held online book fairs, and created guides for parents for distance learning. We must continue our vocal, yet respectful, collaboration with our school boards, superintendents, public health, and community leaders as we incorporate plans for the eventual safe and equitable return to in-person student learning.
I wish to thank Wendi Harvel, our Burbank Council PTA president, for her inspirational address on hopefulness to the district board this past week. Change, for all children and families, is truly all around us, and we as PTA have an opportunity to be an integral part of this change.  
As our nominating committees work to prepare our future leadership slates, let us commit to continuing our important mission for all children by serving on future unit, council, and district PTA boards.
I hope to see you at our state Legislation Conference on February 8-9, 2021, as we speak up in one voice for every California child to our state legislators.

Take care,

Diane Hyland, President
First District PTA
Our Honorary Service Awards (HSA) Chairperson, Ellen Torres, is asking for nominations for First District PTA Honorary Services Award recipients. We need your input!  

As a reminder, the HSAs are designed as a unique way for all levels of PTA to publicly acknowledge both individuals and organizations for outstanding contributions and service to children and youth. The HSA program includes the Honorary Service Award, the Continuing Service Award, the Golden Oak Service Award, the Very Special Person Award, the Outstanding Teacher Award, and the Outstanding Administrator Award.

Click HERE to view the California State PTA HSA brochure. Please download the HSA nomination form HERE.

The deadline for submissions is March 15, 2021, to our HSA Chairperson at
First District PTA 2021 - 2023 Slate
Thank you to the First District Nominating Committee for their work on presenting the 2021-2023 slate of officers for the First District PTA Board of Directors. Please join us at our annual meeting on Monday, February 22, 2021, to cast your delegate vote at our election. Please click HERE to review the slate.
A reminder that your Nominating Committee should have been elected at a recent association meeting. For details, please refer to your bylaws, Article 4, Section 3. Please direct any questions to our District Parliamentarian, Christy Brown at

CAPTA e-Bylaws System
The e-Bylaws system continues to be experiencing technical difficulties. Downloadable bylaws templates are available on the First District PTA website HERE.

Questions? Contact First District PTA Parliamentarian, Christy Brown, at
First District PTA Membership Winter Challenge
We are looking to celebrate membership increases of all sizes in January and February 2021. Win PTA merchandise prizes when you increase membership through channels and via TOTEM in January – February 2021.
CAPTA and First District Teachers Matter 100% teacher participation deadline is January 31.

CAPTA Membership Drive: February Founders Day Resolution Challenge
All PTA units that add at least TWO (2) more members this February than you did last February will be entered into a drawing for a PTA tablecloth for your school. Details can be found HERE.

We are happy to announce 22 units have met the First District One More Membership Goal. Congratulations to the following units:

  • Alhambra Council – Fremont Elementary, Garfield Elementary, and Park Elementary
  • Arcadia Council – Longley Way
  • Garvey – Frances E Willard Elementary
  • Glendale Council – Monte Vista Elementary and Verdugo Woodlands
  • Monrovia Council – Santa Fe
  • Pasadena – Andrew Jackson Elementary PTA, John Muir High PTSA, and Madison Elementary
  • Pomona Council – Madison PTSA
  • South Pasadena Council – South Pasadena High School and South Pasadena Middle School
  • Temple City Council – Cloverly Ave, Emperor, and Londen Avenue
  • West Covina Council – Edgewood High School and West Covina High
  • Barry J. Nidorf Juvenile Hall School PTA – OOC
  • Newton Middle School – OOC unit
  • Washington PTA in San Gabriel

The membership trophy winner this month is a tie! San Marino Council and South Pasadena Council both have almost 90% of last year's membership. The TOTEM Trophy this month goes again to Burbank Council with over 85% of their memberships via TOTEM.

Questions? Contact First District PTA VP Membership, Michelle Hurst, at
Coming Soon: "Office Hours" with Your Favorite First District Officer!
Please let us know if we can help you in any way. All officers and your mentors are here for you and are happy to help. Invite us to attend your next meeting, if you are having training or would like a specific training we are here to help. Reach out to Sandy Russell at with questions or assistance in your training needs.

Youth Mental Health First Aid Workshops
We are planning on having two classes per month, so be looking for the information to sign up. If you think you have enough people at your site and would like a class tailored for you, let Sandy know at and we can discuss the possibilities.

Questions? Email First District PTA VP Leadership, Sandy Russell, at
Hello treasurers!

The following items are due:

  • Per capita membership dues - $5.00 per new membership
  • Council and Unit mid-year Audits - May 31 year-ends
  • Worker's Compensation Annual Payroll Report and Estimated Surcharge 5% - due to AIM January 31, 2021

Don't forget to use your First District PTA Financial Calendar. CLICK HERE to view and download the First District PTA 2020 – 2021 Financial Calendar.

Workers Compensation
Worker's Compensation Annual Payroll Report and Estimated Surcharge 5% are due to AIM on or before January 31, 2021. Forms and instructions can be found online at the CAPTA website HERE.

All 2019-20 tax forms should have been filed and uploaded to MyPTEZ in the "2019-20" year. Any 2019-20 tax forms that haven't been filed (unless an extension has been filed) are delinquent and subject to fines/penalties and interest. If tax forms haven't been filed, please do so ASAP.

Councils, please ensure tax forms have been filed for all of your units, uploaded to MyPTEZ, and confirmed with First District through your Financial Data Transmittal Forms.

As always, if you have any questions, please contact First District PTA Treasurer, Jessica Sheen, at
It's audit time again!

All associations are required to have a year-end and mid-year audit, according to your bylaws and the CAPTA toolkit.

  • For units with a May 31 year-end, the mid-year audit should cover the period June 1, 2020 - November 30, 2020. 
  • For units with a June 30 year-end, the mid-year audit should cover the period July 1, 2020 - December 31, 2020.  

Guidance for completing a PTA audit can be found HERE.

As you begin to think about doing your mid-year audit, there are a few things you need to keep in mind:

  • The auditor needs to be appointed by or elected to the Executive Board per your bylaws.
  • The auditor cannot be related to any of the check signers by blood, marriage, or live in the same household. 
  • The audit must be presented to the Executive Board as well as the General Association for adoption. 
  • The audit must be reviewed by an audit review committee unless the audit is conducted by a qualified accountant. A qualified accountant is defined as someone who has been trained/licensed to conduct audits and/or review accounting records, such as a Public Accountant or Certified Public Accountant (CPA). They do not need to be currently employed in the field.

Once your audit is complete and adopted by the Executive Board and Association, please upload ALL audit documents (Audit Report, Audit Checklist, Audit Recommendations, etc) in a single PDF to MyPTEZ.

If you have any questions, please contact First District PTA Treasurer, Jessica Sheen, at
A reminder that your PTA is required to keep track of the number of hours that volunteers work on behalf of your PTA. Volunteer hours are a record of how much your PTA contributes to the school and the community. As a non-profit organization, it is also necessary to keep track of PTA volunteer hours for tax purposes.

The Annual Historian Report is due in the spring through channels. You can find blank Historian Reports on our website HERE as well as tools and information to help with the tracking of your PTA's hours.

Questions? Please contact our Recording Secretary and Historian, Lourdes Wang, at
California State PTA 2021 Legislation Conference

CAPTA's annual legislation conference has moved from mid-January to the second week of February (8th and 9th) this year and, like most events during COVID, will be held virtually. Although we will miss the opportunity to visit our state capitol and meet and learn from each other, this move online opens up the experience to many more who could not previously attend. The cost to attend this year's event has been reduced to $50, not to mention the savings in airfare and hotel costs. Even though it will be online, there is so much to be gained from attending.

In line with the theme, "A Path to Equity," we will hear from legislators on how legislation and the state budget link to equity, access, and opportunity for all of California's children. We will be able to meet and network with other PTA advocates across the state in breakout rooms and tips and tools on how to meet with our legislators.

Among the various speakers that will be presenting to us, we will hear from:

  • Michael Essien - Principal of Martin Luther King Jr Academic Alternative Middle School, who, along with his staff, have done amazing things moving with a challenging middle school.
  • Leaders of the African American, Latino, API, Jewish, Women's and LGBTQ Caucuses who will talk about how they set their priorities as it relates to children and families.
  • An EdSource moderated panel to help us understand how the state budget impacts equity featuring: Kevin Gordon, Capitol Advisors Group (a returning favorite); Jeff Bell, California Department of Finance; and Chris Hoene, California Budget and Policy Center.

Additionally, I am scheduling meetings for our First District attendees to meet with your state Senators and Assemblymembers during the latter half of the week (February 10-12).

I hope you can join us and experience first hand our collective advocacy power for the education, safety, and well-being of all children. Click HERE to sign up now!

Governor's Budget Proposal
"In the view of California State PTA, the Governor's proposed budget holds promise. The $6.7 billion to mitigate the COVID pandemic impact on schools will support students and staff. We must keep the health and safety of our students, staff, and families first in any early action plan. Addressing learning loss and ensuring equity is crucial.

PTA is also pleased to see investments in student mental health, early childhood education, extended education, and the cradle-to-career data system, as well as the ongoing commitment to professional development for educators. The use of one-time funds to spend down funding deferrals owed to K-12 education and to defray costs of employee pensions makes sense.

We appreciate the focus on investments in special education, but a greater financial commitment will continue to be necessary to fully fund the costs for our most vulnerable students.

PTA believes prioritizing the needs of vulnerable families is critical now more than ever, and we look forward to working with the Legislature and Governor as the proposed 2021-2022 budget moves through the process during this unique and challenging time."

- From CAPTA's President Celia Jaffe

For more information on the Governor's proposed budget, please refer to:

Questions? Contact Geoff Albert, our VP of Legislation & Advocacy, at, or visit the California State PTA website HERE.
General PTA resources for Health, Safety, Diversity, and Inclusion

National PTA 

California PTA

Health and Safety

A new variant first seen in the UK, called the B.1.1.7 variant, seems to be both more infectious, and also to be tied to greater virulence, causing more severe cases of the disease. This variant is gaining prevalence in the U.S. and is expected to be the most common strain by March, which could lead to new surges in cases and hospitalizations. Because of the increased chance of infection as this variant becomes more common, health officials are recommending that people double mask or wear 3-layer masks, where at least one of the layers is tightly woven and preferably one of the layers is a filter material. N95 masks are particularly effective. Make sure masks make a tight seal around the face, and that the nose and mouth are covered at all times.

So far, the approved vaccines seem to be effective against the b.1.1.7 strain.

  • LA County information
  • County of Los Angeles Public Health Coronavirus Page
  • LA County Vaccination information
  • Currently vaccinating Phase 1A and 1B, Tier 1 (Healthcare Workers, Staff & Residents at Skilled Nursing Facilities and Long-Term Care Facilities, LA County Residents 65 and Older)
  • Expecting Phase 1B, rest of tier 1 and 2 starting February (Tier 1: Education and Childcare, Emergency Services, Food and Agriculture; Tier 2: Transportation and logistics, Industrial, Commercial, Residential, and Sheltering Facilities and Services, Critical Manufacturing, Incarcerated Settings, Homeless Settings)
  • Status of vaccination for people under age 18: The Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is available to people age 16 and older. Several companies have begun enrolling children as young as age 12 in COVID-19 vaccine clinical trials. Studies including younger children will begin soon.

  • State of California information
  • State of California COVID-19 Information
  • California Coronavirus Response and School Reopening Guidance
  • Safe Schools for All Hub
  • This website has many placeholders for now but will fill up as more plans become available. 
  • Governor Newsom is targeting schools for reopening as early as February for counties that meet appropriate criteria and is proposing to invest additional funds to help districts get personnel, equipment, facilities changes, etc that will make in-person instruction possible
  • At a recent Five Star coalition meeting (school boards from Glendale, Burbank, Pasadena, South Pasadena, and La Canada Unified), Senator Portantino and Senator and budget chair Laird are proposing that the funds do not come from the Prop 98 guarantee

February is:

Diversity and Inclusion
National PTA has introduced an updated version of its Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion toolkit, which can be found HERE.

These tools are designed to help PTAs make their organizations more diverse, equitable and inclusive, with lenses on membership, programming, governance and advocacy. First District PTA will be presenting some of these materials and a framework to help councils and units approach this work at our February association meeting.

February is:

Holidays, Observances, and Notable Days in February 2021
  • February 2: Candlemas/Día de la Candelaria (Christian)
  • February 12: Lunar New Year (China, Vietnam, Korea)
  • February 15: Presidents' Day (U.S.)
  • February 16: Mardi Gras (Christian)
  • February 20: World Day of Social Justice (International)
  • February 25: Purim (Jewish)
  • February 26: Mukha Bucha Day/Māgha Pūjā (Buddhist-Thailand)

Questions? Email First District PTA VP of Community Concerns, Kitty Cahalan, at
Commemorative Scholarships
The Commemorative Scholarship application forms are now posted on the First District PTA website. Please promote this scholarship opportunity to your 2021 graduating seniors.

  • No applications may be submitted directly to First District PTA. Senior applicants must go through their councils/OOC units to qualify. Councils/OOC Units should set their deadlines and review process now.
  • Councils/OOC units may submit ONE (1) application from each high school PTA/PTSA in good standing. Forwarded application must be RECEIVED in the First District PTA office no later than noon on Monday, March 22nd They may be mailed directly to the First District office or submitted electronically to our Office Manager at
  • There are TWO new requirements this year – Application documents must be submitted in the order described on the application AND the Reference Form (new) must be completed and included.

Please ask questions BEFORE the deadline ( to ensure that your student applications are considered and thank you for promoting this opportunity for our graduating seniors.

Ed100 is working in conjunction with the California State PTA Legislation Team to offer great supporting information for this year's Legislation Conference. Please take some time to read the info before participating in the conference – you will be even better advocates for our students and families if you do.

Questions? Email First District PTA VP of Education, Patty Scripter, at
Congratulations to our First District PTA Reflections winners! Click HERE to view the list of students whose work was selected for recognition.

The Outstanding Interpretation recipients were forward to California State PTA for consideration for additional recognition. Feel free to share the information with your units and your students and families. The entries submitted this year were creative and inspiring and we are planning the First District PTA Virtual Reflections recognition event – stay tuned for more information.

We have had many questions about the need for a release form for your local unit/council Reflections events. You do need a release form if you are planning to have an online event and/or to post the entries online. Unless the student used AND the parent signed the Virtual Student Entry Form, you do not have permission to post their entries. There is a Photography Release form that you can use to cover your PTA. Make sure your parents understand when, how, and for how long their child's entries will be posted online. Feel free to reach out to if you have questions.

Thank you for all of your work and support to make this year's Reflections program available to your students.

Questions? Email
Use of Social Media in Our Roles as PTA Leaders
Recent news has highlighted the different ways our personal and professional lives can intersect on social media. Social media includes all means of communicating or posting information or content of any sort on the Internet – whether or not these channels are associated or affiliated with a PTA.

Many of us are Facebook friends with or have Twitter or Instagram accounts that are followed by our superintendents, principals, teachers, school board members, elected officials, and other well-known community members. It can take years for your PTA to develop relationships with these individuals. They are our partners and allies in our service to children. Keep these relationships in mind when you are communicating, be it online, via email, or otherwise. It's important to consider your audience when you post on social media.

California State PTA and National PTA have guidelines and social media policies to assist PTA leaders in making responsible decisions about using social media. Here are a few key things from those guidelines to remember:

  • As PTA leaders, you may associate yourselves with PTA in different ways: 
  • Explicitly – by stating your PTA title or PTA involvement in a profile, bio, or on a site and/or
  • Implicitly—by posting photos, graphics, or other information that identifies you as a PTA leader or member
  • If your profile picture identifies you as PTA, be aware when posting comments on other sites, both public and private.
  • If you have been authorized to speak on behalf of PTA, that should also be made clear.
  • If PTA officers or chairs write anything related to their work with PTA on a blog or some other public online space, they should make it clear that what is being said is representative of their own views and opinions and not as a spokesperson for PTA.
  • Do not mix personal and PTA opinions while representing PTA.
  • Be respectful, truthful, discreet, and responsible no matter what your privacy settings are on your social media account.
  • Privacy settings are no guarantee of privacy. Screenshots and forwards can spread messages quickly beyond your intended circle of friends or followers and can make it impossible to take something back once it's been posted.
  • Remember that tone and intent are difficult to convey in writing. Choose your words wisely and think about how they will sound to someone unfamiliar with the topic.
  • Have other board members proofread communications that go out to your PTA community. Focus on grammar, spelling, and the tone that is being conveyed.
  • Do not post or share confidential information, accusatory statements, or any defamatory information. 
  • Remember PTA's Noncommercial, Nonsectarian, Nonpartisan policies when posting on public sites (i.e., newspaper comments, public blogs, trade publications, etc.).
  • And finally, mistakes happen. If they do, apologize.

Ultimately, you are solely responsible for what you post online. You speak for yourself, but your words and actions can reflect on PTA as an organization.

California State PTA Resources for Communications

National PTA Resources for Communications

California State PTA Social Media Kits
California State PTA continues to share its social media kits to help PTAs create impactful online communication with ease. The kits are updated monthly. The images in the kit may be used on your personal and PTA social media accounts. They are customizable and fun!

Click here to see social media kits from prior months.

Questions? Email First District PTA VP of Communications, Amy Kamm, at
Be sure to follow us on social media! We want to see what amazing things your PTAs are doing for kids!

This email was sent to all unit and council PTA officers and chairpersons,
principals, superintendents, and the First District PTA Board of Directors.