Viewing posts from: October 2016

Just ASK! School Health Grants Available for North Carolina PTAs

logo-just-askWith the continued support of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation, we’re excited to announce our Just ASK! School Health Grants are back again this year.

These grants, ranging from $250 to $1000, are available to PTAs in good standing for a health-related project. We hope every unit will share their best idea!

For help or questions, contact Marianne! Keep in touch and tell us what you’re working on so we can connect you with the resources you care the most about!

Deadline to apply is December 2, 2016. Application period is closed.

Meaningful Engagement Starts with PTA Membership

By Kelly Langston, NCPTA President


Fall is here and we are well on our way to another great school year, or at least that is what I tell myself!

I sent two girls off to college in August, child number 3 back to high school and the baby back to middle school. It is hard to believe that I am a mother of four adolescents.   I knew how to be engaged when they were little. I volunteered; I read at night; I made sure they brushed teeth and got enough play outside; I joined the PTA. But as my children get older, I struggle a bit as engagement is redefined.

After much thought, I landed on this… Kids will always want to know we are there for them, regardless of their age. Living with four adolescents has been challenging and I am often reminded of my many flaws, my ridiculous ways of thinking and my very outdated beliefs. Teenagers have a way of making us question our parenting and they bring a new set of challenges, mainly bigger worries! But, I have learned… I am still needed now more than ever.
Read more.

Centennial Middle School PTA Wins Family-School Partnership Award

hearstlogoCentennial Middle School PTA, Raleigh, NC is one of three PTA schools selected to receive the 2016 Phoebe Apperson Hearst Family-School Partnership Award.

The awards are presented to PTAs that have earned the National PTA School of Excellence designation and demonstrated outstanding success engaging families in student success and school improvements. The awards are the highest honor National PTA presents to effective family engagement.

Learn more.

Smith Magnet Elementary Wins Grant to Support School Meal Improvements

NCPTA is excited to share that we have a winner! National PTA awarded over $60,000 in grants to schools and PTAs across the country to help improve the quality of, access to and participation in school meals. Twenty-five local PTAs have been selected to receive grants of $2,000 each to partner with their school leaders, food service team and families to help schools build on the progress they have made in serving students healthier meals. Smith Magnet Elementary in Wake County is one of those recipients!

Learn more.

October is Dyslexia Awareness Month

dyslexiaDecoding Dyslexia North Carolina is happy to announce that Governor McCrory has proclaimed October as Dyslexia Awareness Month in North Carolina. We would like you to join us in helping spread awareness about the learning disability, dyslexia in your school and community. “15-20% of the population, or about 1 in every 5 students, struggles to acquire basic reading skills. Dyslexia is the most common cause of reading, writing, and spelling difficulties,” according to the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

Decoding Dyslexia North Carolina is a grassroots movement driven by individuals and parents in North Carolina who have children or know someone who struggles with dyslexia. We are advocating for a universal definition and understanding of dyslexia in the state education code, mandatory teacher training on dyslexia, its warning signs and appropriate intervention strategies, mandatory early screening tests for dyslexia, mandatory dyslexia remediation programs and access to appropriate assistive technologies in the public school setting for students with dyslexia.

Signs of dyslexia:

  • Difficulty learning (and remembering) the names of letters in the alphabet
  • Mispronounces familiar words; persistent “baby talk”
  • Doesn’t recognize rhyming patterns like cat, bat, rat
  • Complains about how hard reading is, or “disappearing” when it is time to read
  • A history of reading problems in parents or siblings.
  • Does not associate letters with sounds, such as the letter b with the “b” sound.
  • Avoids reading aloud
  • Can’t Spell; have messy handwriting
  • Curiosity, great imagination
  • Ability to figure things out
  • Ability to get big picture ideas
  • Eager embrace of new ideas
  • A larger vocabulary for the age group
  • Excellent comprehension of stories read or told to him
  • Excellent thinking skills: conceptualization, reasoning, imagination, abstraction

For a complete list of signs please visit The Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity.

Definition of dyslexia:a specific learning disability that is neurobiological in origin. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological component of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective classroom instruction. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede growth of vocabulary and background knowledge.”
-International Dyslexia Association

To learn more about dyslexia and what you can do to spread awareness please visit Decoding Dyslexia North Carolina.

More Resources:
Dyslexia Awareness Month Flyer
Dyslexia Awareness Brochure
International Dyslexia Association
International Dyslexia Association-North Carolina Branch
Dyslexic Advantage
Dyslexia Guidance Letter from U.S. Department of Education