Viewing posts from: May 2014

PTAs in NC Positioned to Play Important Role in Innovative Solutions to Food Deserts

The North Carolina Parent Teacher Association (NCPTA) applauds and supports the inclusion of Parent Teacher Associations (PTAs) in both the findings and recommendations that were adopted by the North Carolina General Assembly’s House Legislative Research Commission (LRC) Committee on Food Desert Zones and approved by the main LRC on May 13. PTAs were referenced in both the school gardens findings and recommendations for school breakfasts.

Findings included that school gardens are important tools for helping students be involved and connected with healthy foods. Additionally, there is a need for Local Education Agencies (LEAs), school boards, and PTA units across the State to receive a guidance document from the Department of Public Instruction on the use of produce grown in school gardens relative to the school nutrition program and use of the school garden produce in the classroom for instruction and tasting purposes.

The Committee recommended that LEAs utilize the resources of the PTA to help implement innovative school breakfast programs. The recommendations included seeking multiple, innovative ways of increasing breakfast participation in schools as an additional means of caring for and nurturing public school children. The Committee encourages LEAs to support universal breakfast programs and to consider providing breakfast in the classroom during appropriate instructional and educational activities as one of the multiple options for removing barriers to participation.

PTA volunteers in North Carolina are already actively involved in healthy learning initiatives. NCPTA has awarded grants for several years to support healthy schools projects, and healthy initiatives are featured as part of NCPTA’s annual leadership trainings and workshops for PTA parents, teachers, students and community leaders.

NCPTA Executive Director Debra Horton and President-Elect Kelly Langston presented to the NCGA House LRC Committee on Food Desert Zones in March 2014. NCPTA is proactively working with the Department of Public Instruction to provide insight on what information school communities and local PTA units across the State need in a guidance document for school gardens.

“We are thrilled that the North Carolina General Assembly recognizes the importance of PTAs as a key resource for implementing innovative healthy school breakfast programs and improving understanding of how school gardens can be incorporated into a child’s healthy learning experience,” said Debra Horton, executive director of the North Carolina PTA.

View the full report.

Governor McCrory Announces New Teacher Compensation Proposal

Governor McCrory today announced a new teacher compensation plan that includes raises for new teachers, as announced in February,  but also provides at least a 2% raise for veteran teachers.  The plan also calls for the creation of a Career Pathways for Teachers program that will enable teachers to earn more money through leadership roles, teaching certain core subjects, and teaching at high-need schools.  This proposal will be included in the Governor’s budget that will be considered by the General Assembly when it convenes for its short session beginning in May.

 The full announcement can be viewed via WRAL’s website:

General Assembly Short Session Convenes this Month

On May 14, the North Carolina General Assembly will convene its 2014 short session. One of the top priorities for North Carolina PTA this short session is to advocate for a meaningful increase in teacher compensation. NCPTA believes ensuring that North Carolina students are receiving a high quality education is impossible without simultaneously attracting some of the State’s best and brightest individuals to enter the teaching profession, stay in the classroom, and influence the learning experience in a positive way. Teacher salaries have been frozen in North Carolina since 2008 except for a 1.2 percent across-the-board increase in 2012.

NCPTA encourages PTAs throughout North Carolina to engage legislators and voice support for North Carolina teachers and excellence in public education. During session, Ashley Perkinson, NCPTA lobbyist, will post regular updates on the NCPTA website advocacy page.

We love to hear stories about PTA advocacy work. If you have an advocacy experience that you would like to share with PTAs across North Carolina, please contact the NCPTA office.

PTAs Win Bronze Acorn Membership Award from NCPTA

The North Carolina PTA recognizes PTAs across the state throughout the year for building strong teams of parent, teacher and community volunteers. The Bronze Acorn Award acknowledges teams whose membership as of March 15 has increased by at least 10 percent compared to the previous year.

Learn more about the Membership Record Awards.

Read the full list of recipients for the 2013-2014 Bronze Acorn Award.

Ten NC Students Win National PTA Reflections Awards

Congratulations to National PTA Reflections winners from North Carolina!

Three of the NCPTA winners received National Awards of Excellence, and seven NCPTA winners received National Awards of Merit. These national award recipients were chosen from hundreds of thousands of submissions. Students across the nation participated in the 2013-2014 program, themed “Believe, Dream, Inspire.”

View the 2013-2014 NCPTA Reflections Gallery of State Winners.

Awards of Excellence

These National PTA awards are given to the top three scores for each arts category in each division.

Music Composition Award of Excellence
Cameron Woody
Fly Away (Believe, Dream, Inspire)
The Academy at Lincoln
Greensboro, NC
Listen to Cameron’s Music Entry

Visual Arts Award of Excellence
Akshra Paimagam
Malala the Fearless
Barringer Academic Center Elementary
Charlotte, NC
View Akshra’s Visual Arts Entry

Film Production Award of Excellence
Caleb Rossie
Reach for the Stars
Middle Creek High School
Apex, NC
Watch Caleb’s Film Entry

Awards of Merit

These National PTA Awards are given to the next five highest scores for each arts category in each division.

Dance Choreography Award of Merit
Annabel Bloom
Wings of Hope
Ligon GT Magnet School
Raleigh, NC
Watch Annabel’s Dance Entry


Literature Award of Merit
Kayleigh Conroy
Breathe, Run, See
William A. Hough High School
Cornelius, NC
View Kayleigh’s Literature Entry

Dance Choreography Award of Merit
Alyssa Gagnon
A Dream is a Wish
Ogden Elementary School
Wilmington, NC
Watch Alyssa’s Dance Entry

Literature Award of Merit
Andrew Gillett
Hanes Magnet School
Winston-Salem, NC
View Andrew’s Literature Entry

Dance Choreography Award of Merit
Jenny Liu
Learning to Swim
East Chapel Hill High School
Chapel Hill, NC
Watch Jenny’s Dance Entry



Music Composition Award of Merit
Catherine McMillan
Winds of the Rising Night
Jay M. Robinson Middle School
Charlotte, NC
Listen to Catherine’s Music Entry

Photography Award of Merit
Cleo Shannon
Inspirational Visions
Sharon Elementary School
Charlotte, NC
View Cleo’s Photography Entry