PTA in a Re-imagined School Environment

Excellent. Thanks Good evening everyone and I froze Good evening. So let me let me get myself back We can hear you. Okay good. I just want to make sure that i have enough agenda is on. Okay so good evening everyone. Thanks for joining us tonight for our web chat. Our web chat title for the night is PTA in a Re imagined School Environment As you heard just a moment ago we are recording this web chat and it will be posted later on on our website for people to either revisit or share. So thank you again for all for joining us. Everybody will be on mute throughout the presentation except for the presenters but if we do have you contribute we will unmute you if we’re working on a question that you may have submitted and want to give us further information We’ve already put it in the chat box a couple of times but we want to remind everybody that they can submit questions to us by sending an email to chat. Chat @nyspta.org and you can find a link in the chat boxes for that, and while you’re listening to the chat we would appreciate it if we if you kept your video closed and so that will you’ll just be seeing the presenters Great so it’s my pleasure tonight to welcome everybody to our web chat my name is Patty Frazier i’m currently serving as the New York State PTA Treasurer and I’m part of the webchat team as the designated officer for leadership development I’ll be your host tonight handling the questions and it’s my pleasure to be doing that and before I go any further I would like to now introduce our New York State PTA President Lorey Zaman who would like to say a few words Okay i think we’ll come we’ll come back to Lorey. I’ll continue with some introductions and Lorey I know you’ll chime in once you can Handling the behind the scenes and I’m really the driving force in our web chat series Here doing a lot of the technical work and the organization is Bonnie Russell our volunteer consultant for New York’s PTA Also on the web chat team is first Vice President and designated officer for the field Jane Harsha Mary Sotomayor our membership coordinator is here with us She’ll be one of our panelists. Our second panelist is Melissa Cancro, Family Engagement Coordinator for New York State PTA And then of course joining us from as the Executive Director is Kyle Belokopitsky, who will be also part of our panel tonight Kyle did we lose you? Nope I’m still here. Can you hear me okay? Yeah Okay, so no video from Kyle until no video at this time from Kyle I’m keeping my video off to give other people the chance to be on before it’s my time. Great so just a little other one other little note ,so when we put together this web chat series our you know we set up the theme for this one PTA in a Reimagined School Environment we were really focusing what we thought our efforts would be on what PTA would be doing at this time for our units and for our members And so that really was the direction that we were taking this particular web chat. As questions started to come in we realized and of course the timing with what’s happening in Albany right now in all of our districts submitting their plans, and having the plans reviewed and working with their families we know that there’s a lot of questions about the reopening of schools as well Not necessarily related to how your PTA is going to operate but again affecting all of our families so we’re going to start out our presentation with some PTA topics talking about membership, talking about family engagement, and then at the end we will change over and Kyle is going to share some information for us about things that have been happening with reopening. So we’ve kind of combined two things together just based on the questions that we were receiving But without further ado we’re going to go ahead and start with our questions that we have received related to membership and family engagement So our first one I’m going to ask of

Melissa. Our first question is is it possible for a pta member who might be using a remote option or homeschool option for their child this year to still be an active and elected PTA leader? Well as long as they are a PTA paid PTA member anyone can be on an officer . This actually isn’t something new I’m from a SEPTA background that’s a special education PTA and on our board we had a couple officers that had children out of district because that’s where their children, they lived in our district but that was where the best placement for their children was so you don’t have to you know if you’re doing the remote learning you’re still part of the school and you’re homeschool school and you’re still part of the community.So while this is new for us this year it’s not new to PTA. Thank you Mary is there anything you would like to add to that? I think Melissa pretty much covered it . Okay great Okay, our next question is regarding our membership campaigns Mary would you like to offer some suggestions about what PTA units could be doing right now to start membership? Absolutely Firs tI wanted to stress PTA’s role is more significant now than it’s ever been in uniting parents teachers and administrations and supporting critical school needs. We want every family in our schools to join PTA because we can do more together than apart. Our membership team is here to offer you as much support as we can but the trick to starting membership is starting early Before I go into some of the goodies that we have with the campaign I just wanted to start off with some really really good news. So in preparation for this call I wanted to take a look and see what um our numbers were like. Last year versus this year and last year our numbers to date were 2803 2803 members In the middle of a pandemic uncertainty about school and all the things that we have going on right now we are at 3124 members. I give that message first to tell you that the year is not lost and these membership campaigns that we have that i’m getting ready to show you is just going to make our membership year even more productive Okay to your question Patty asking about where did we start with the membership campaign this year let’s face it most people the question that they’re asking is what is membership going to do for me with everything that’s going on? First of all being a member is where your power is okay. The first thing you want to do how you start your membership campaign This year is you start with virtual parent checking You want to start making sure that you’re having communications with your parents PTA as we said many times is more than bake sales. You know you my friends are advocates for all of our kids and in being advocates you need to communicate what’s going on during these virtual check-ins You want to find out what these parents are looking to find out they’re probably looking to find out the same thing that you are, you know what information is missing and what what the group wants to know okay What the membership campaign that New York State put together for us their bottom line was what they were able to find out for us was one most people did not explicitly asked to join PTA. So you want to keep that in the back of your mind. Don’t say support us you want to specifically ask them to join to become a member okay. What they also found was lack of understanding with with the value of PTA so you want to know the cheerleader about the things that you’ve done in the past What they’ve also found is confusion about what membership means so you want to make sure that you elaborate with the people that you’re talking to about what it means to be a PTA member in your unit in your region in your district Some of them also found that it wasn’t welcoming to families–which is a misnomer obviously we all know that

But we want to make sure that we’re welcome to everybody But the bottom line what what New York State PTA found and National found is everyone is interested once they understand the role of PTA So communication is key one of the biggest things that we’re stressing, Which is the marketing piece from National PTA is that PTA is a verb We’re here to support our children’s potential in more than one way The first way is to invest in our child’s potential the second is to volunteer for a child’s potential, and the third is to advocate for a child’s potential these are all action words okay Patty can I show my screen right now? I did do you have the share button on the bottom? I’m going to share it for you Mary so if if it’s okay with everybody we’re going to take so mary’s going to come back with her screens we’re going to switch over to Melissa while I load up your screen your your share Mary. We’re going to switch over over to Melissa From a family engagement point of view and Melissa,I know you were gonna your you had your remarks so you can incorporate them into this question, What is the role of PTA to support parents and students at this particular time? Okay so i’m gonna speak a little bit because I this, is I was like when Patty first asked me I’m like what do I have to offer but I’ve actually been doing this for the last five months. I work for a church and I work in children’s ministries and to get to my kids I have to go through their parents so I have to engage their parents so iIve been trying to engage my parents for about five months And I’m going to share a few things that I’ve learned so parents are tired. This pandemic, is I don’t know about you but it’s kicking my butt. I don’t know if it’s kicking yours but it’s not an easy situation for anyone. And the other thing is like we we all went on zoom. Zoom is great it’s great to have these chats here but the kids at a certain amount especially at the end of school in June were zoomed out. They had their sports on zoom they had their classes on them they had dance, scouts everything went to online and they were it was a little bit hard. So I just want to remind you that while it’s a tough time you can reinvent your PTA you have a unique opportunity to do something new and you don’t have to worry about failure because guess what no one’s ever done this before. No one’s lived through a pandemic and PTA precedent perfectly because they’ve never done it before. So while sometimes when you plan something and it doesn’t quite go the way you want it is frustrating sometimes it can give you clues to what’s going on with your families Because I’ve sent out like surveys to see what my families want emails ,nothing, so we are supposed to actually have camp this week we have a in-person camp and so I planned it that it would be outside we had its social distance squared blah blah blah and I had five families sign up so we had to cancel it. And while that’s disappointing it pointed out one thing to me that while i can do all the programming I want at this time what families really need at this time is the connection. The connection with you because they are missing their community. They’re missing socialization. So I had to actually backtrack and I’m dropping off packages of things to make s’mores to find out what’s going on with my families So I saw in chat there’s somebody had said well we can’t do our cultural assemblies and things like that. How do we justify our PTA membership? Well you have an opportunity to do amazing new things so I have a few ideas for you and i’m sorry I’m talking fast but you know i don’t want to take all the time. So offer Zoom A Zoom meeting with a mental health care professional because we’re all going through it. They call it collective trauma from this pandemic and we need, everyone needs, a little help They say we’re the National PTA just had a meeting about it and they said we’re all going through the stages of grief. and apparently we’re all hitting anger at the same time which that’s you know everyone’s angry ,everyone’s upset. So what do we do about this? So if you perhaps have your meetings and then have a one of your social workers or your school psychologist come on If they’re too busy because they’re doing their plans ask them for a recommendation Find somebody in the mental health community to have a speaker that gives value to your meaning because they’re going to want like how do i do remote learning, h how do I keep my kid on a healthy schedule how do I

do work from home in schooling? And if you have that meeting please invite me on because i don’t know how to do that. I would appreciate that So you can also one of the PTA National PTA they have this Facebook page called local leaders. One PTA was going to offer Zoom so that parents in different grades could talk to each other and just kind of discuss problems and issues So i would suggest if you do that because in SEPTA we had a support group. Always have like somebody from your PTA to monitor each of the grade rooms because people start sharing information that’s not correct and you have to kind of correct that for them. Our school district–I got called by the special ed director the the day after our support group and said hey melissa somebody came in and said that you said this and I was like that was a side chat and that’s you know we’re not talking about you. Because sometimes school districts can get paranoid about that Use your school parking lot. You could have a drive-in movie you could have a concert you could have a game night and have them in their parking lot spaces. You can space like in our church we park the cars every other row so there’s space to do things. You could do minute to win it. There’s on Netflix there’s this game show called minute to win it that you can use just stuff you have around the house and compete with each other with little games . You don’t have to to work together so do things like that The other thing is if you’re a school in a neighborhood if you’re all in the same neighborhood, my church we have people from all over Westchester so it’s a little hard but if your neighborhood school you could pick a local park and have an event there and keep them spaced out. You could ask one of your board members if they you could borrow their front yard you know and just have like we’re going to be in this neighborhood tonight just make sure you hit all the neighborhoods so you’ve got everybody in your PTA. We want to make sure everyone’s included. Let’s you could drop off this is a little bit more lengthy but you could drop off if you are a small school drop off kits at their house like you could do stem kits. I’m doing um jolly ranchers and uh lollipop sticks and we’re doing a lollipop challenge because apparently if you might if you melt jolly ranchers in the oven you can make really colorful lollipops So like it doesn’t cost you. You can get a big bag and just divvy them out and use gloves use a mask and then let it sit for a week because that’ll kill off the germs. Or if you want to put them in plastic bags and spray them with Lysol that’s always a good thing too . You can do a drive by experience. I saw one organization I don’t know if it was a church or a school they’re taking it on the road they’re going to decorate their cars for halloween and they’re going to parade through their community and hand out candy or if you’re like me i’m from Pennsylvania we always throw candy out of fire trucks and stuff like that. That’s always been the Pennsylvania way so go Pennsylvania start throwing candy out the window but be careful because you could hurt somebody, so throw it low I know that from uh experience in the girl scout parade so don’t tell anyone um the other thing too is I’ve seen libraries take books like children’s books blow them up and weatherproof them and put them outside so you have a storybox .So team up with your local library because everybody is looking to show what their value is everybody’s looking to help their community. And also team up with the local arts the library the, the drama theaters because that’s one thing that they’re not going to have time for in some of this remote learning for schools . So team up with them because the music schools, the arts community they need your kids they want to get out in front of your kids so team up with them Find ways so it’s just amazing and just remember here’s a couple pieces of advice, I know I throw a lot of us a lot of ideas at one time but pick one thing or two things and just work on that because if you try to do it all you’re going to drive yourself crazy And I can tell you that from experience and it can be as simple as sending a postcard with like I hope you’re you know I hope you’re okay, Ii hope you’re everyone’s healthy and your family. It doesn’t have to be a big dramatic thing whatever you can do to connect with your families is the best thing to do.Make sure to use your team. It’s not the president doing all of this Use your team, and there’s people out there who need

something to do. So if they have an idea put them to work Get your high schoolers, they need community service,, and how are they going to get that done. You can give them and say you fill out 20 bags for our hallway Halloween parade so if you get 15 of them, you got 300 bags filled without anybody feeling overwhelmed The other thing is to make sure to reach all your families. If you have a large population of ELLs make sure that you’re putting things out in the language that your school district is for your school. So you can check this out there’s, I’ll put in the chat where you can see the report card of your school and see what different languages are spoken. So i can put that in the chat when I’m done but just make sure you cover everybody because you know nobody wants to be left out. Family engagement is basically there’s five there’s four eye principles but it really boils down to Do you see everybody in your school? Because people just want to be seen they want to be felt notice they want to be a part of a community And remember if you’re doing a lot of internet things computer things while the computer is great and i think it’s echoing on me right now not everybody has the greatest internet connection so make sure you do some in-person things to kind of balance out because some you know one family might have five people trying to use one computer and they can’t do everything so they won’t participate So I know that I just threw a bunch of stuff at you but just remember that this is an opportunity for PTA to really highlight what they’re about. People are going to remember that you reached out, that PTA was there for them during this really troubling time , and you’re going to give them the one thing they absolutely need which is a sense of community; that they’re not alone; and that they matter. Thank you Melissa that was really great and we’re going to follow up on some of the topics. But one of the things that we’re going to go to Mary now is she really wants to talk about the ways that we are going to be able to build that community through membership so I’m going to share her slides Are you seeing them? I do. If you click on presentation at the bottom, sure give me one second, I will be there Well while you’re um setting that up I just wanted to follow up on something I saw briefly in the chat if that’s okay. Sure We had mentioned talking about and praising the things that you’ve done in your school before because it’s important historically it is nice to say all of the things that you’ve done before but your biggest and i hate to use this word but your biggest weapon right now is the advocacy piece what we’ve done to advocate for our children As an advocate if you are a President or on your board you should speak to your president about perhaps scheduling a meeting with your principal As a board you need to make sure that there’s a coordinated effort to understand what’s going on It is well within your purview to talk to the principal and be able to give information to the community based on what you’ve been hearing And since you’re talking to the to the principal you’re doing them a favor they want to know what the pulse is as well. Not everybody is connected all the time and in addition to that you want to be talking to the principal about how they’re going to promote your membership, how are they going to talk about how important PTA is. You want to make sure that you incorporate that. You want to make sure that when you’re doing all these things you make joining easy And this is what I’m going to show you on some of these materials that we have available here. Patty were you able to make it blown up? You know it’s okay we can just go through them Okay it should be working. I don’t see it you can do something or not Are you not seeing the slides slides? They’re just not moving. Okay here we go. Okay you can go to the next slide Oh fine i just got to this one So these are some of the creatives that they’ve implemented and placed for us All of these items will be customizable We’re going to make them shareable and available to you all but I just wanted to give you a preview of what you can expect to see, You’ll be able to put your PTA logo at the bottom right now it’s National PTA You can use these for Facebook. These sizes are pretty standard for Instagram Facebook and Twitter which we want to be using right now Where before people had the kind of

they could get on the internet if they wanted to or not now they have to that’s the only way that they can stay connected. In some instances so you want to make sure that you’re always putting out your message Can you go to the next slide Patty? Yes I can Here are some of the other visuals that you’re going to be seeing now they’ve placed some images in here so that you can see what it’s going to look like but what we’re going to make available to you is so that you can make this completely customizable. Will be in word you can change the image again you can change the logo at the bottom um and you have these nice uh bright colors that that that will attract the eye Can you change the slide please? Okay and here are some website banners if you have your own website for your PTA. You can put this at the top if you’d like. I’ve seen some people using these as their footer in their email because as we said before we want to make sure that we’re constantly asking to join and not to support. We want to make sure that we’re asking people to become members and not to think about looking into the things that we’ve possibly done for them. We’d like them to join and this is why Go ahead. Next here are some additional posters and flyers that you’ll be able to hang in the the school you might not be able to go into the building but you can drop these off and then they can hang these on the wall for you. You can ask for permission ahead of time Okay so now the implementation The implementation checklist-the first thing is you want to read the toolkit that we’re going to make available to you. It’s going to give you step-by-step instructions of the best way to show these highlight these and showcase these images. Next you want to inform your board you want to let them know what’s going on, and explain to them what the plan is What your plan is for membership early, go ahead next, you want to update your website if you have one as i showed you the earlier slides there’s some banners that you can use and you can place those at the top so the message is always clear that Patty one more. As I said before you want to make joining easy. If someone needs to look more than one place to find out how to join your PTA they’re not joining. You want to make sure there’s a link. If you have a Facebook page you want to make it a pin to the top. You want to make sure that there are multiple places that your unit can find the link to go ahead and join your PTA You want to create a schedule. So I know some people want to post it and forget it, but you want to make sure that when you’re sending these things out on social that they’re not just all there in one day you want to spread it out maybe once a week twice a week. You’ll notice from New York State PTA you’re usually seeing things on Facebook at least once or twice mostly once a day and with regards to membership at least five times a week Okay, you want to make sure that you vary the visuals you don’t want them all to look alike. You don’t want them to all be the same the toolkit that you’re going to be given is going to be completely. I have a lot of choices so you can choose the big one the smaller one different messages but all of them need to link back or at least give and a way for the user to go back and become a member Okay, and you want to always directly solicit your family members- grandma, grandpa, everybody can join and everybody can Make sure your PTA is healthy with a good membership And you want to make sure that you use consistent branding As you know New York State has our logo you have your own logo We don’t put rainbows in the back of the PTA every child with one voice We want to make sure that it’s the same logo that we all have across the board, and with the small change of your school’s name at the top And the last thing is you want to ask so I haven’t asked for you right now everybody who’s in the web universe have you joined your PTA? If you haven’t I ask that you do today. Make sure that you ask your unit to join today. It is more important now that when we need something from the state we have that seat at the table so that

we’re in the where the decisions are happening and you’re able to voice your opinion because numbers matter If one person goes and complains or suggests something they’ll tell you okay that’s nice if 300, 000 people voice the same opinion it’s a whole different ballgame so make sure to join today if you have not already So Mary thank you for that presentation, that part of it. So a question that has come up about these materials that you talked about Do you have an estimated time when they’ll be available to our units to start using? I do where we are formulating a newsletter that’s going to be membership driven now We normally get emails about all the things that are going on in New York State PTA this is going to be specific to membership so it’s going to include a link. It’s going to include a place where you can get all these things and in addition to that you’re going to be hearing highlights about different units the things that they’re doing in their schools that are that are successful. You’re going to be hearing from your RMCs which are regional membership chairs. You’re going to be hearing from your RDs, your region directors Once you receive this newsletter you’re going to have all of this information handy But if you like it today, right now, please feel free to email me and I can forward you to where you need to go Great I see in the chat that we’re working very quickly to get them on the website tomorrow So Mary just one other quick question about the membership campaigns getting started,we do have a question from from the chat about a possibility of an early bird membership rate which i know we usually have our badge for membership early bird membership where we want our units to submit their dues early to New York State PTA but this person is asking about offering it to their members an early bird rate and i wondered if you could I – know that that’s a bylaws thing and so we really can’t always do that – but I wondered if you could touch on some of the other options that a unit might do to value added benefit to membership. You had that nice long list So what I have here is some people had asked some questions about giving things away in the beginning of school, meaning a raffle for you know the first maybe 50 members that that join your unit They could be entered into a raffle They asked what kind of things do To answer your question directly i just wanted to mention that is definitely a bylaws thing you need to make sure, check your bylaws see what it is that it says. You know your membership might be eight dollars for example but maybe it’s membership which is a regular price but then you can offer perhaps a sweater or some of the giveaways that we have here You know blue light filter glasses. I don’t know about you my kids don’t wear glasses but they do now because they’re on computers all the time and it doesn’t have a formula it just has the blue light lens on it that protects their eyes The glasses are five dollars. If they were to go into a meeting I would spray paint the rim blue and put PTA inside and make sure that they were you know marketing for us you know We have our, you know, there’s fidget toys that you can get You can get flare colored pens, foot massagerer, ball headphone, you know always homework passes so you can add these things to the membership. Or you can create a basket of something that they could possibly win Thenumber one giveaway, I will tell you that I’ve been seeing on the chats and the boards lately has been the masked lanyards. Our kids are going to be wearing a mask all day potentially and taking it on taking it off it’s a scary thing you know you just want to make sure that they’re not feeling like they could lose it or they’re dropping it anywhere

So the lanyards are created to kind of keep it right here if they do when they do take it off and these are things that we could give away with membership, being the price point that your bylaws is saying it needs to be. And if you’d like to change that then it has to be something that’s voted on obviously Thank you for that Mary. Melissa would you like to add anything to that? Okay, Melissa we’re not gonna let you add that Patty, can i say one thing? Yes you may Someone had asked how do we propose giving those away we’re not allowed in the building That is understood but there’s still a way to communicate with your principals There’s still a way to send things home You can mail it you can put together the gift. I don’t know about most of you but iI was a fairy this summer I was going around giving all kinds of joy whether it was a wine bottle or something fun and it was fine. We kept our distance you know the the packages that we delivered were were were sealed and tight and in some kind of cellophane so there are ways of getting the prizes to the person I can’t hear you Patty if you’re talking to me Patty you’re on mute I believe Something’s happening with start meeting Okay can you hear me now? Yes I hear you So Melissa I want to jump back to you and see if you can chime in for us, just I just want to check your sound And Patty, Kyle can you hear me still? I can hear you yes Okay good. Okay I just got kicked out of the video for some reason. Don’t you just love technology it’s so lovely Yes, so we have a funny screen on for you Kyle Okay Kyle can you hear me. I can, can you speak a little bit about PTAs the opportunities they have to not meet in the school building but you know we know that right now you know volunteers are generally not going to be allowed in school buildings at least for the first semester. As we get more guidance from the department of health you know I will say that Zoom and other meeting platforms are a good opportunity for for PTAs to meet virtually and then you know our PTA and other PTAs have been meeting socially distanced in public spaces. In parks, if your libraries are open, our town hall as example does has have a public gathering space So you know many PTAs are planning on to meet in in spaces of those types outside the school building So I would suggest reaching out to your local town municipalities, your local religious institutions, your local halls, even some of your large restaurants that may have a banquet room, that that’s big enough to meet , socially distance and we we may or may not have to wear a mask on. Sometimes it is better to meet outside because then it does provide people a little bit more comfortability with meeting but but think about any type of public place whether it’s a park or your town hall or a church or even as I said a banquet hall from a restaurant or just some options that you may have to me So and Kyle then just one further question on that if a unit wanted to do their picture day off site they can still have that opportunity um can you just talk a little bit about how they would contact AIM to just you know confirm that and get the right paperwork? Yeah so for AIM realistically your unit is covered in any of your events generally wherever you have it so it’s the unit itself that’s covered. So you would be fine having example a picture day in a park or some type of meeting in a church building you are still covered. All of you should now have by now have done your AIM paperwork which is really important if you haven’t gotten that yet

or if it’s not done yet you can contact our Dania Wlech in our office at dwelch@nyspta.org or contact AIM directly I cannot type in the chat box but if Dana is on Dana could you share the number to AIM just to make sure? And we are also posting a new insurance guide and that should be up this coming week so make sure you check on our webpage If you go to nyspta.org and then leaders and then resource guide and you will see there is one of the sections our insurance guide and you can get a little bit more information about your insurance policy But your policy does cover you in outside places outside of a school building Okay, thank you for that and thank you. I think my computer was just not very happy because I was not one of the fairies uh that got the wine bottles my computer got mad at me, so hopefully everything’s back on and everyone can hear Okay well thank you so much I appreciate that okay. So our next question is whoops okay my computer is not happy with me it is not happy at all Okay, our next question is we have money budgeted for events and activities that we can no longer do. What do we do with the extra funds. I’m going to answer that actually as treasurer, I hope you ladies don’t mind. I know I wasn’t technically one of the panelists but you know. We don’t know what the future holds for us so we do encourage our units to be as fiscally responsible as they can be And if you do have some extra funds if they aren’t if there aren’t opportunities to do anything with those funds this year they certainly can be carried over to next year and then next year. You don’t have to worry about fundraising next year because you have some funds carried over for this year What I think is important always with our funds and our budget is to make sure that we’re keeping all of our members apprised of what’s happening, so that if there are extra funds maybe you can reach out to your members for suggestions on how you can use those funds in an alternate way. But again it’s all about transparency and making sure everyone knows exactly how much money there is and if it can’t be again can’t be used this year it can always be carried over to next year. So that was that question Oops Mary answered the question about giveaways i did put this up quickly this is another giveaway that Dana put in the chat that’s available for purchase They’re magnets that you can put on the back of your car Lovely, yes okay and those are available we see in the chat box we’re saying that those are available you can buy them at the MemberHub store in New York State and once you buy them we’re asking that you take pictures with you on the go. Okay Okay and we can share those pictures on Facebook and other social media with New York State so you can be a a media star with New York State with your picture So Mary one more question about membership that’s come up and it’s about I’m a member in my community i join local PTAs even though I don’t have students in those buildings. What what are some of the things our PTA units could do to reach out further than our school community, school families right now during this time? So I just want to make sure I understand the question the members trying to understand how they can further reach out to different family members in different communities. Well so sort of like you know I still joined my children’s PTA that they when they graduated from an elementary school even though obviously they’re still not there anymore. But I would do that usually either i know like at the start of the year maybe log on and do it uh through electronic means or there might be an event happening that I would go to So how you know, should we be focusing on just membership with our families or should we be reaching out?And are there any creative ways that we could be reaching out to other people that aren’t necessarily families but would still be willing to support our mission because that’s really who our members are I know this is going to be a silly answer but we should focus on both Right now we need to make sure

that we’re telling everybody what our mission is what we’re trying to accomplish and why they should become members with our uh, (audio issues) I would make sure that you did some of the things that you did last year it shouldn’t change too much You should be sending out emails soliciting people I know I have family web chats every Friday night with my cousins and you know you can mention hey you know mike our school is you know starting up their membership Please make sure here’s the link join you know we need your support We’ve also included an elevator pitch because listen I’m gonna be honest with you guys. When I first started my membership or just PTA journey I didn’t know how to do any of this i’m still kind of fumbling through a lot of this stuff but happily you know because I see the effect – that you can make the the huge impact So I say all that to say it doesn’t need to be polished But we know we need some help along the way right so these elevator pitches, kind of show you things that you could say to people to explain to them why you need membership right now and that is something that will be available in that kit tomorrow You know these are your family members just you talk to them the way you’d normally talk to them and explain to them why you’re so passionate about what you do. Once you talk about your mission and why you want to do what you’re doing they’re going to be joining before you get a chance to finish your sentence It all depends on your communication with that family member. Great thank you for that Melissa? Is the feedback coming from me? I just wanted to jump in and quickly to remember that in this time there’s a lot of families that are bringing in family members to help them. Melissa yeah i’m gonna have to come back to you because we’re still getting a little bit of feedback We just start again and let’s see if we can work through it Okay. Alright Melissa you are you on? We did offer some wonderful information tonight regarding membership and family engagement and we will continue to be offering that information through our Facebook page Twitter and Instagram as well as our website so and our email communication so we hope everyone is staying on board with us throughout this. I think one of the most important things we should all remember is even though our children were going back into the school building the school continued and PTA continued We’ve never stopped doing our work throughout all of this and so now I’d like to turn on the meeting over to Kyle who’s going to share a little bit about when we say we have a seat at the table she’s going to talk about all the tables she’s been sitting at for the last couple of months. So Kyle if you’re ready. Thanks Patty, and Bonnie or Patty can you share my presentation? Starting at slide three um so as Patty had mentioned PTA has been heavily involved in the reopening process. We had five different governance team members who sat on the SED reopening committee I was appointed for the association and we are very proud of that because we were actually the only uh statewide association that was appointed to the governor’s reopening council So we have been doing this work on a daily, a daily daily, every day multiple hours a day really since schools closed. I wanted to talk to you tonight about a few reopening questions that I’m sure you’re seeing and I don’t know if that screen can get shared uh Bonnie or Patty I don’t see it but I’m having some AV issues so if you can let me know when that’s that’s shared I will jump right in Hold on. Bonnie are you do you have that up? Okay, so why we I did resend that to Patty so it should be the top of your email . While we um why we do start starting this presentation quick just as a reminder plans for reopening were due by all school districts on July 31st

there was press articles about some school districts not having them submitted. What had happened was that the school district submitted to the State Education Department At the end of the SED portal there was also a link to submit to the Department of Health itself. So some districts didn’t submit to DOH but they did submit to SED So now the reopening plans for all school districts have been submitted to both agencies. You should have been included in the in that process of reopening so that’s really important And the most important takeaway, so as you many of you know, I always give homework the most important takeaway is that between now and August 21st your school district is required by Governor Cuomo to have three parent and family meetings So please, we had sent out an alert on this to all of our members You as PTA leaders should be having that conversation with your school building to see when those are scheduled. Your district must also post the following information on their websites: They must post what their remote plan looks like; if they do have to go remote and and do distance learning; they have to post onto the front page of their website what is the contact tracing and closure plans they also have to post what is the testing plan for the school district. And I want to talk about that slightly. School districts themselves are not testing children. It is not recommended that school districts are testing children for COVID What school districts have to have is a testing plan on if a child has symptoms where are they going to send that family to to be tested, and how they’re going to communicate those results back with this school district.Do parent surveys count as a parent meeting No, to whoever (Lisa) had just asked that question. So your district has to have between now and August 21st three parent meetings over virtual so please make sure that that gets scheduled. Patty can you go back one slide to slide three? And there you can see on slide three those bullets – the district has to have I mean we will have this presentation on our website tomorrow so just as an fyi, the district again has to have the remote plan posted they have to have the contract contact tracing and closure plan posted and they have to have their testing plan posted. Again school districts are not testing children their selves. This is where this presentation will be posted We have a special Facebook, or a sorry a special web page on our website and the link is right there if you go to our website in the top left corner there is a link that says COVID 19 Please go there and there’s much information there for parents and units. Patty you can go forward? There are two different types of guidance that are out right now for school districts, One is the department of health guidance This guidance is very important to know trump’s the SED guidance So if the Department of Health guidance conflicts with the SED guidance, the Department of Health guidance wins I highlighted here about face coverings in the Department of Health guidance. Again the Department of Health says that it is strongly recommended that face coverings be worn by all individuals at all times. However they have to be worn when they cannot maintain social distancing And I want to stress the next sentence – However if face coverings are to be worn by individuals they can remove those face coverings during meals instruction and for short breaks so long as they maintain appropriate distancing This is really important and this is a question that school districts and parents and families and educators are grappling with right now So I want to be clear on this point the guidance of both SED and the Department of Health says that if your child cannot distance six foot from another child then both of those children and educators should be in their masks If they can distance at least six foot in an instructional setting or in a meal setting, okay so i’m going back to the language if it’s instruction or meal setting then those masks can come off. If the district decides to that is a district decision so district a can have their children six foot apart and make them still have mass on in instructional settings they do have to give them mask breaks District B next door can have their children six foot apart and have those children take off their mass during instruction. So I want to make sure that’s clear because it is district by district but again if a child cannot be socially distanced at least six foot then the child should have that mask on. Patty next slide Again, here’s a slide about social distancing it just says what I said that school districts have to try to the best of their capabilities using all available space and facility which means they use their libraries

it means they use their cafeteria it means they use their gymnasiums and any other space that they have to try to space children out in a school building to get to six foot Patty next slide Again, in-person instruction school districts are supposed to be right now prioritizing in-person instruction at this time What we’re seeing is that many school districts especially for elementary school are either having children go back most of the days or part of the days and then in high school we’re often seeing a/b rotation. But right now your school district’s plan should be posted on its website and they should be prioritizing a return to in-person instruction And transportation buses – this is a really great question and really important for you to know children on buses have to be in masks at all times on a school bus and so does the bus driver and any aides that you may have Next question – vulnerable populations this is also a very and i will get to the facial questions in one second vulnerable populations this is very important if you are a parent of a child with medical issues or impairment or a medically fragile then you should have a conversation with your school building principal in the near future about the accommodation that they will make for your child if you don’t want your child to return into a school building. If you are an educator with similar issues you again should have that conversation with both your teachers union and your school building principal through the appropriate channels. I do want to go back to full face shields. So right now the Department of Health guidelines says full face shields alone are not acceptable for children or educators . If people want to be in full face shields and you do not have a medical issue then you should be wearing a mask if you do have a medical issue that for some reason you cannot wear a mask that is an individual determination with the school district and yourself but again the Department of Health does not want children in just full face shields they do want them in masks Next, let me see here so yeah SED guidance so yeah you can keep oh no go back Patty I’m sorry Other quick topics in the Department of Health guidance is that cohorts uh cohorts it means that your student likely will stay in the same room for throughout their day and teachers and specials will be pushed into that room As example if you have a fifth grade student and they typically leave the classroom to go to art class or science class or music class those teachers will now likely come into your child’s classroom instead of the child going to a separate classroom. For food service it’s very important that most school districts have a cafeteria pushing model which looks something like your children will be served their meals in their classroom and they will not go to a cafeteria. Some school districts are large enough to have socially distanced cafeterias but the more the more plans I read the more that i see that most are going into classrooms for lunches Great question about the language teacher where a face shield. So yes so we have talked about that with SED and this is a great topic we’ve also talked about that with our hearing impaired and deaf children they do have face masks that are clear so people’s mouths can be seen. I think that’s really important if you have a child that has a hearing impairment or a deaf child or has a in their IEP or 504 has some type of language barrier or language issue then you should be talking to your district about a special face mask for that child that that is plastic. I just before i get some more questions in the chat i want to go back to ventilation so this again continues to be an issue I know many school districts are looking at their ventilation systems right now to bring in more fresh air and to take out more different air so that’s just a conversation you should have As a PTA leader with your school district I’m going to take the questions as they come in Patty. How do children receiving OTPT speech services do safely and socially distance? It’s a really great question what we are seeing is that in those settings if your child does need especially speech services or OTPT for PT typically the you know both the pt and the therapist and the child will remain in a mask the whole time for speech services where masks should not be worn for for obvious reasons if the child needs mouth-to-mouth instruction then the adult and the child will be at least six foot apart Let’s go forward Patty with the slides This slide again talks about six foot and I want to go over this very quickly Now this is in the SED guidance again the DOH guidance trumps the SED

guidance but they complement each other, This says as a baseline face coverings are required to be worn anytime the individual cannot maintain distancing. They are strongly recommended by the New York State Department of Health at all times um except, this is important, except for meals and instruction with appropriate social distancing Again many school districts are trying to distance their children more than six foot so when the child is seated at their desk facing forward they can take those masks off for mask breaks and for instruction Some school districts are saying that even if the child is seated six foot away from peers they still do want that child in a mask for instruction but all districts should be having a mass break scheduled into the child’s day. Next slide Again, return to school after illness as a part of the new requirements that governor cuomo announced last week your district has to have on its website a new plan that talks about things like contact tracing and closure What happens for instance if my son in fifth grade is has symptoms what does that mean for you as a family? So that plan has to be now posted on your website by tomorrow. We do expect that plans districts are still working on these plans and and that was a reasonably new requirement so i would say give them a little bit more time than tomorrow because we know they’re working very hard, but this is something that should be on your on your website so you do understand that A question is there any information about bathroom use? Yes So children going to the bathroom and passing in the hallways all children in the hallways and adults should have their masks on at all times. Further, teachers and school districts will be ensuring that when children go to the bathroom, one there’s not more children in there that should be and two during bathroom times that children do have their masks on Who has to supply the masks? The school district does so the school district has to supply masks for all children and teachers. So your school district is in that process of purchasing PPE right now for all of his students and teachers. I think the school district’s hope is that many parents do have their own masks for children but if you do not have a msk for your child your school district will supply that for your child Yes the presentation will be available on the covered website oh look at that somebody posted us Patty go to the next slide for me I done okay I’m forgetting Again social distancing and masks requirements on a bus As I had said on a bus all children from the time they get onto the bus and walk up those stairs from the time they walk into their school building and go into their classroom they will be in a mask. Health screening is very important so according to both the Department of Health and the SED guidance children’s temperature should be at these checked by their parents. Many school districts however are doing temperature checks of children and symptom checks of children each day before school enters. o for instance my school district has released its plan and uh they have purchased 15 thermal thermometers. Now understand my school district is a very small school district upstate New York with only 400 children in the entire school district, K-8 But, our teachers and administrators will be standing outside of our school building actually temperature checking each child before it comes into the building and our bus aides will be temperature checking each child before they come onto the bus I will tell you that is rare many school districts are asking parents to do temperature checks each and every day for their children I do think it’s an yes our district doesn’t want to attempt screenings to avoid lines. I do agree with you susan that really is many uh many districts are you know postponing those chem checks or putting putting that on the parent for the morning to do um some school districts that are able to do that are doing that at school district themselves It’s also very important i think that we have to have to be partners in this . That means, and listen ladies uh and gentlemen,I have done this Jackson has had a sniffle and I’ve sent him to school saying oh it’s just a cold Well we’re not sending sniffles to school anymore Something I think that we have to understand as parents and families and i get it i’m a working mom my husband is a working dad we have to when our children exhibit any symptoms that could be a sign of COVID that we do keep them home for monitoring so that’s really important I am confirming that there is a requirement for three parent meetings prior to 8 21. They do not have to be virtual they can be in person but they do have to have to have some type of meeting according to the governor. There is new guidance on that that I did receive today. I will post that um online but I am I will say 99.9 percent sure a Google form with questions is not enough

The governor did said there has to be a parent meeting. To me that that implies some type of actual two-way communication Lisa I would say no likely parent surveys do not count towards the parent meeting requirement because the governor itself he did say a meeting specifically. Next slide Patty I’m going to leave you on this and i’m going to take some more of your opening questions i know we’re already over time But I do want to make sure I hear all of your questions we know that mental health and social emotional learning as both Melissa Patty, and Mary had previously spoke about It is so unbelievably critical we know that our children are in trauma and so are our parents and families so it’s very important that you as PTA leaders and parents have a conversation with your school district and this very important thing So this is a homework assignment I want you to ask your school district what they are doing to their current mental health and social emotional curriculum that is required by law that’s different than they did last school year? How are they addressing the current trauma that children are in from school closures and the covid crisis? Okay so homework, homework. Please have that conversation if you’re a unit leader please email your principal tomorrow and say hey PTA suggests we have a conversation about how we’re addressing trauma and mental health on our students it’s a very very important topic I’m going to take your questions now if I didn’t cover any reopening Things that you wanted to talk about and i think Patty’s going to jump in as well I’m going to jump in now first Kyle so here’s what we’re going to do we’re going to switch back to the family engagement and the membership portion We’re still accepting questions in the chat@nyspta.org so if you want to send questions that have come up you can send them because we’re going to make sure Kyle and the rest of us answer them over the next couple of days So I would like to just check with Melissa if you could step back on be ready to be on and I’m gonna reach out to Lorey Zaman our president i think she wants to say a few words before we all say good night Can you guys? Yes! So I was trying to welcome you all at the start but it wasn’t working I was muted not muted I’m not sure what was going on but I will just close by saying thank you to Patty, Jane, and Bonnie for organizing this web chat . You know re imagining education and PTA coming back to school is such an important topic it’s so timely. I know there’s a lot of concerns across the state about it. I just encourage everybody to remain as positive and as involved as you possibly can See this as an opportunity maybe perhaps you’ve been on the sidelines before now’s the time to get out and advocate really use this as an opportunity instead of an obstacle. We want to see our kids back in school We want to see them socializing we want everybody to stay safe in the process. I’d also like to thank Melissa – great ideas I heard lots of lovely ideas regarding family engagement and Mary for being so excited about membership And Kyle, of course to filling you all in on what we’ve been doing behind the scenes for the last several months. So thank you all for being here tonight I appreciate it I wish you all the best of luck as you return to school in the fall Thank you um i’m going to just ask Melissa if you want to say a few closing remark. I just want to encourage everybody I know it’s I know it’s hard you’re trying to do your stuff at home I’m a parent. I’ve got a girl going into 10th grade, I got a college student. Just do what you can do Just, you know, don’t overrule yourself anything you do can help PTA. Andd it’s a hard time so give yourself some space and protect your mental health. But I’m really excited because you guys are like I have ideas but I know that there are tons of creative people in PTA so if you have any great ideas please email family. engagement nyspta.org because I would love to hear your ideas and I would love to give you a huge shout out because you guys are amazing. Thank you Melissa if you have a chance can you type your email into the chat box? And then Mary would you like to offer some closing I got my I got my um magnet thank you. I appreciate it would you like to offer some closing remarks? I would all of you this was the seat the seat that we were talking about at the table All this information that Kyle just shared with you this isn’t the

information that someone who’s not a part of PTA knows they’re hoping that their neighbor or their friend will share some trickle-down information to them. Tthis is it Being a member is what gives you that seat at the table and I implore all of you if you’re not a member already become one today Thank you so again. I want to just say that PTA is continuing as New York State pta we’re continuing on with the work we just had our successful training weekend on August 1st. Al of those training videos will be up on our website but hopefully by tomorrow as well if not by early next week so we have lots of opportunities to share information with all of you We are continuing our chats throughout the rest of the year so we are always looking for information or ideas for our future chat so feel free to again send us an email of things that you might want to see. I will say that our next chat is scheduled already for August 26th it will start at 7:30 and the topic for that will be Are You Ready for Your First PTA Meeting? And we will be covering anything that you need to know about your first pta meeting . Questions about agendas and audits and budgets, how to be virtual obviously how most of us are going to be or some opportunities for a creative way to have PTA meetings So we look forward to all of you joining us for that and so as I said this will be the end of our formal program our formal chat, but I believe Kyle is willing to stay on to answer a few more questions. So I will welcome everybody who wants to stay on that might have questions for Kyle related to her presentation And again her presentation will be posted but those of you that feel you know need to move on to other things thank you again for joining us and we look forward to seeing you again, We’ll just give it a minute or two for people to sign out and then we’ll bring Kyle back on to answer questions for a little while longer and if you don’t have questions that’s totally fine You already gave us so much homework we’re all off to do our homework So I’m going to answer Cynthia’s question Cynthia is PTA advocating for better distancing options? So I will say that yes so one thing that you should be doing as a unit leader is you should be having that conversation with your school districts to make sure that physical distance and distancing is happening That means taking pretty much everything out of classrooms besides desk and chairs right now. That means using every possible available space that you have in your school building even spaces that are not classrooms that are used maybe for storage that are used like i said for art rooms if art is getting pushed into into classrooms you should be using the art room as a classroom so that’s so that’s really important So have that conversation. Many school districts are not able to distance even with that especially in some of our high populated areas so in those cases we’re often often seeing those hybrid solutions where it’s an a and b day So please have that conversation Patty there’s a question there if you can answer it about PTA boards that didn’t hold elections because of a quarantine Can you talk a little bit about that? Just briefly, even though it just stayed in your bylaws and by typically your procedures you would have that done we have obviously with the current situation all of those things we are asking people to use just their best judgment on how to get these things done so as the new school year approaches and people are more comfortable in these using these virtual settings such as zoom meetings or google gatherings or microsoft teams or whatever things that you’re using we do encourage our units to start thinking about getting the process going of having a meeting with an election so that you can get new officers ready to start for the year. We are thankful to all officers that have overstayed their sec term and has kept their PTAs going and we but we do encourage everybody to start planning for that and on our COVID19 page on the website we do have some options for you on how to run an election virtually and they’re very simple and easy to use We’ve had some success with many of our units doing the using these tools but again you’re welcome to send us an email in the chat box if you have further questions and we can give you more specific instructions. Thanks patty i’m going to take the next question about specials in our district The special teachers will be teaching gen ed so there may not be longer specials This is a conversation that’s really important and you should have with your school district. If there’s a way to retain those specials that’s very important because some of those specials are

mandated -art, music are critical to our children’s education so as a PTA leader you should be having those conversations with your individual school district on what the plan is to retain specials please know that districts really are doing their best but it is going to be different how teachers push into classrooms as opposed to children leaving classrooms. Things are going to be different, but again have that conversation with your school building leader On AIS services or academic intervention services these are services for children that may need a little bit of extra remediation We are suggesting again you as PTA leader to have a conversation with your school district because all children are probably going to need some type of early performance-based uh non-standardized assessment at the beginning of the school year to see where they are Let’s be honest our children have been out of a school building by the time the time they get back to a school building for six and a half months that is a very long time. Sso many of our children may need AIS services. In addition to our children that typically need AIS services so again that is a conversation to have with your building principal. As PTA to see how those services are going to be administered to children Patty, can you address the next question from Susan? We have a volunteer for an officer but no one else has been nominated do we have to have an election or can that person just be placed? So we’ll be we’ll be covering that a lot at that next chat but just in general so we really do feel that your PTA should at least have some form of a nominating committee even if it is only to select this one person. So I guess my number one step to say would be for transparency sake is to get a nominating committee in place it could be as few as three people that really assess the needs of of the association who you know what officer positions need to be filled if you’re a yearly it’s all of them. And if people are willing to continue then it’s a simple nomination if somebody who’s willing to continue. But i do think it’s important that you have some form of a nominating committee if you can Select the people and obviously vet out this person who volunteered to make sure that they’re going to be a good fit for your PTA and then at your first opportunity of the meeting have that election with prior notice of who that election will be happening and who is on the slate Great thanks Patty. The next question I saw was that our district had said they weren’t going to have AIS services Your district can’t say that they’re not going to have AIS services That is a regulation so your district has to have some sort of AIS services for students. What i would like to do to help that person is please email me and maybe I can help you with that question and some advocacy on that I’m happy to talk about the the necessary services for students but I you know, the school district is to has to have some sort of AIS services may be different but but they do have to have some sort of AIS services Do virtual meetings have to be transcribed Patty, no a virtual meeting is very similar to your regular meeting um as long as you give out notice to people that you are holding a meeting it would just be minutes just like a regular meeting. You would just take the brief minutes of what business was transpired at the meeting. Patty can you take the next question? Is it okay to go over the summer budget spending due to purchasing masks for all students? So that’s kind of an interesting question in the sense that as Kyle just mentioned it is the school district’s responsibility to supply the masks And correct me if I’m wrong Kyle, that is right if so if the school district should be supplying the mask then it is the school district’s responsibility to fund those Now if you’re looking at a special mask or a different kind of mask a logo mask or one that you feel is better with anything transparency is everything So, if you’ve already approved a budget but this is a particular issue item that has come up as long as the executive committee is who I would recommend reviews the budget the current standing of what your funds are now and what they will be what you know what the impact of spending over your budget right now would be as long as everybody feels comfortable with that and is comfortable with the purchase of the mask Then I think it’s okay to go ahead as well again with the full agreement of the executive committee and if you feel that you want to draw in your board or send it out on a quick survey to your members you’re welcome to do that as well And I do think we’re going to wrap up Patty because i know we’re already 20 minutes over, So your question of the virtual fundraising concepts yeah so we’re going to be posting some of those options and you’re

actually going to be getting a membership email with some of those options. We do right now have one of our highest level partnerships HOS solutions on our website right now so if you go to events and then down to alliance partners you can see HOS solutions. It’s a fantastic virtual platform for an online fundraiser. We also work with for example Boosterthon to do online fundraising. So we’re going to continue to have those posted online but definitely check right now in our lines partner folder because we do have some available a well as online. And Patty I’m going to toss things over to you and Lorey to end Okay well just want to thank Kyle for spending a little extra time with us tonight. Again Kyle has been in many different places working both with all of our units across the state and partnering with NYSED on various initiatives that we’ve been talking about to get our families ready for the upcoming year She’s also sitting on the re imagine council for the governor so we have been in a lot of places PTA and I think again to go back to what we talked about with Mary that PTA has never stopped and we will continue to be doing the work and i think that the the collective group of us doing all of this and advocating for our children is well worth people continuing to be members of our great association. So um lots of people stayed on with us and I appreciate you all and we look forward to seeing you all on our next chat And then also we will still be taking your questions at the email address chat@nyspta.org thank you all and have a great night and enjoy your parent meetings with your district hopefully they’re all going well