One of the purposes of PTA is to “secure adequate laws for the care and protection of children and youth”. Whether it is city or county government, school board, or the Florida Legislature, PTAs need to be engaged in the process and remain a strong, united voice for every child.
Along with the Legislative Chair, we encourage any or all of our general PTA members to serve on the committee! Our local unit Legislative Committee should keep our members informed and updated on current local, state, and national issues that directly affect the health, safety, and education of our youth. For assistance in forming a Legislative Committee, contact our County Council Legislative Chair or the Florida PTA Legislative Chair for guidance.
THE CHAIR OF THE LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE SHOULD provide the following information to each committee member:
Names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses of the legislators in our district, including their Tallahassee addresses. www.myflorida.com
Disseminate legislative information to your PTA Board and general membership by:
making reports at Plumb Elementary PTA General Meetings on the third Tuesday of each month.
submitting articles to the PTA & School Newsletter (The Pelican Post). Articles are to be submitted to the Communications Chair by the 25th day of the month previous to the month in which you wish the article to appear. (EXAMPLE: If you want your article to appear in the October issue, it must be submitted to the Communications Chair at email@example.com by the 25th of September.) Be sure to include the Who, What, Where, When, Why and How!
5. Initiate and direct action (when needed) such as letter writing, telephone calls, faxing, electronic communication, and visits to your elected policymakers. 6. Create an email/telephone tree to inform members of bills that are moving quickly. 7. Invite your local legislator (Senator(s) and Representative(s)) to visit your school. Getting to know your legislator in their home district is crucial to your advocacy efforts. You will have your legislator’s complete attention and he/she will be more receptive to the PTA agenda. Florida Legislative Committee Meetings in Tallahassee start in December and it would be helpful for your legislator to be aware of the Florida PTA agenda and the needs of your school community and its children before the committee meetings start. You have an opportunity to help shape public policy! 8. Stay informed! Florida PTA will send alerts via our Capwiz system. It is extremely important that your committee members AND general PTA members are E-Advocates. To sign up to become an E-Advocate, please visit CAPWIZ 9. Attend County PTA Meetings (PCCPTA) on the third Thursday of each month to: represent our PTA unit, and bring information back to our members.
SUGGESTED LEGISLATIVE PROJECTS DURING ELECTION YEARS
During election years, PTA members can directly make a difference on the issues that affect our children and public schools. When PTA votes, we become a powerful voice for all children!
Spearhead a drive to register voters through your county Supervisor of Elections office (VERY IMPORTANT). Introduce students to the election process.
Focus community attention on an issue by providing an interesting and educational panel/program for our members. Panel members should always include those with opposite points of view in order to provide all sides of an issue.
Hold a Meet-the Candidates night. Remember to invite all candidates running for the same position.
Schedule a General Meeting that will be devoted to the Florida PTA legislative agenda.
Publish a PTA’s Voter’s Guide.
Send out a PTA Candidate Questionnaire and publish responses.
Run a mock election at your school for students.
Host a Presidential debate “watch party”.
City, county, state and national concerns are all within the scope of our work on PTA. Our members know what their concerns are for their children. As a PTA advocate, it is our job to tackle these concerns. You will be amazed at what can be accomplished when someone takes the time to study the problem, hear all sides, and formulate constructive solutions.
The strength in PTA is our passion, our numbers and the process we use to help the children of Florida. We have a responsibility to our children to use the strengths we are given!
(Taken from the Committee Chair Duties, Florida PTA)