One Voice Illinois

News from National Convention—Partnering with Educators and School Administrators

One critical component of running a successful PTA is working well with the teachers and administrators in your school building. A workshop at the 2016 National PTA Convention in Orlando focused on what those teachers and administrators want when working with their PTA. The panel discussion was moderated by Deb Strauss, National PTA Vice President of Membership (and an Illinois PTA Past President) and featured:

The panel began with Mr. Dixon sharing what he thought the three components of effective family engagement were for schools:

  1. Shared Responsibility (both schools and families committed to the process)
  2. Continuous Across a Child’s Life (cradle to career)
  3. Across All Contexts (e.g., home, pre-K, school, after-school programs, faith-based organizations, community organizations, etc. all engage with the family and school)

The rest of the workshop was devoted to discussion of questions from the moderator and audience. Here are the highlights.

What do administrators find to be the greatest strengths of working with PTA?

What are the greatest challenges for administrators in working with PTA?

What are your tips for PTA leaders to work with school administrators?

In terms of fundraising, how can PTAs work with school administrators?

What advice do you have for working with principals who are under-involved or overinvolved?

Our school district requires all Title I schools to have a PTA, but they seem to exist mainly on paper. What can we do?

What are the first positive signs of good PTA family engagement?

PTAs at the middle school and high school level are struggling to reach families. How can these PTAs better engage these families, since many of the PTA programs are geared primarily towards the elementary level?