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    Pennsylvania PTA

    2013-2017 Legislative Program

     

    EDUCATION

    Alternative Education Programs  Encourage the development and implementation of alternative education programs for disruptive, truant or children displaying negative behavior that includes counseling.

    Career Education  Encourage career education awareness in public schools and teacher preparation programs and the inclusion of parents in these programs.

    Community Use of School Facilities  To urge local school boards to develop policies for the use of school facilities at no cost to groups that would benefit the entire community.

    Computer Pornography Encourage parents and schools to protect children and youth from the dangers of computer pornography by the installation of blocking software on all computers.

    Cooperation with Education Related Organizations   Preserve and improve quality education in all public schools.

    The Importance of Early Care and Education on School Readiness  Assure that children have a strong educational experience in the critical foundation years from pre-kindergarten through 3rd grade.

    Elementary World  Language Instruction  Encourage all schools to initiate before or after school world languages instruction programs and to implement such a program into the regular curriculum.

    Full Funding for Education   Urge parents and educational agencies to contact legislators and the governor to act on developing a more equitable distribution of state funds and a quality education for every child through full funding of the basic subsidy.

    Homework   Encourage local school districts to adopt homework policies in regard to prescribed amount of homework consistent with research evidence and in accordance to students’ developmental levels.

    Parental Choice   Support legislation that opposes any form of voucher for non-public or private schools.

    Parenting Education  To include parent education workshops as part of Parent Involvement Training as well as a part of the school district’s curriculum.

    Parental Involvement in Education Provide for a comprehensive parent involvement policy in all school districts which utilizes parents in advisory, governance, and advocacy roles.

    Pay-to-Play School Programs  Encourage full funding of sports and other activities for all children regardless of financial capability.

    Pennsylvania Value-Added Assessment System (PVASS) Urge superintendents and school districts to implement PVAAS with the analysis of PSSA data from grades 3 through 8 as another tool to measure students’ rate of growth over time.

    Privacy of Student Records – Military Recruiters Work with Administrators and schools to ensure the privacy of student records respecting the rights of parents and students and is mindful that parents should be involved in the important decision to enlist in military service

    Public School Library Programs To educate parents on the value of public school library programs and the importance of professional librarians to student achievement and to encourage policy and regulatory reform that sets standards for said programs. 

    Reduced Class Size for Primary Grades   Mandate amaximum class size for primary/elementary grades and the appropriate fundingfor implementing the lower class size requirements.

    School Funding and the Negative Effect of Referendum  Advocate strongly against the use of referendum as a public school funding policy.

    School to Work Programs  Promote the school to work programs in all public schools.

    Technology Education  Encourage the inclusion of parents and the community in the development and implementation of technology education in their school districts and urge administrators and school boards to increase use of technology in the classroom.

    ENVIRONMENT

    Air Quality in School Buildings   Urge school districts to conduct an annual air quality assessment with an enforcement program and funding to ensure compliance when an indoor air quality problem occurs.

    Extraction of Natural Gas (Fracking)   Encourage communities to be educated on the potential hazards of extracting natural gas and the disposal of waste.

    Electromagnetic Field Exposure  Support procedures to measure the EMF levels in schools, on school grounds and in day care centers located near high voltage power lines.

    Radon Testing in Schools Urge local school districts to conduct radon testing in all schools to educate the community about the dangers of radon.

    HEALTH, SAFETY, AND NUTRITION

    Certified Athletic Trainers   Encourage school districts to hire certified athletic trainers for interscholastic sports programs.

    Cyberbulling/Cyber-harassment/Cyberstalking  Supports legislation that would provide adequate resources and support for victims of cyberbullying/cyber-harassment/cyberstalking and their families and set mandated penalties for offenders.

    Drinking and Driving   Encourage parents and teenagers to be committed to the avoidance of alcohol use at local graduation and holiday parties , driving teens home who may have been exposed to alcohol elsewhere, and to know or find out what will be served at parties their teenagers attend.

    Firearm Injury Prevention   Provide education to the public on the critical importance of gun safety.

    Helmet Use and Bicycle Safety  Encourage the use of bicycle helmets for all ages and to conduct bicycle safety programs.

    HIV/AIDS*

    Nutrition Standards for Foods Sold Outside of School Meals  Advocate for the USDA to update nutrition standards for school foods sold outside of meals to ensure that they conform with current nutrition science and school vending  machines, a la carte items, and school stores be replaced with healthier options, such as, water, 100% fruit  juices, low-fat milk, soy milk, fresh fruit, and yogurt.

    PA School Breakfast Programs  Support the adoption of breakfast programs in local school districts and educate and inform their communities regarding the benefits of school breakfast programs.

    Physical Activity  Encourage school districts to providequality, age- and developmentally-appropriate physical activities for a minimum30 minutes per day through either physical education classes or mandatoryrecess.

    Playground Injury Prevention  Encourage school districts and municipalities to enact stringent guidelines for school playground safety.

    Pre-School Vision Screening for Amblyopia & Strabismus  Encourage implementation of preschool vision screening by local school districts or PTA and community volunteers.+++

    School Health Councils   Encourage schools and communities to develop a School Health Council and support the efforts of school health education throughout the entire school.

    School Nurse Services  Support legislation that would maintain the status of certified school nurses as primary health care providers and reduce the current school nurse/student ratio.

    Seat Belt use for All Vehicle Occupants  Encourage all persons who ride in motor vehicles as occupants or drivers to wear safety belts. 

    Sports & Sportsmanship  Encourage the hiring of coaches who exemplify the principles of fair play, honesty, and good sportsmanship and to help parents become positively involved.

    Strengthen Child Abuse Law  Provide adequate resources and support services for victims of child abuse and their families and set mandated penalties for offenders.

    Sun Safety: Skin Cancer Prevention Measures at School   Encourage local school districts and child care settings to develop a comprehensive set of sun-safety guidelines within the structured school environment and to promote the practice of sun-safety measures and actions to protect the health and safety of all children.

    Tuberculosis Testing of Children  Alert and educate parents about the renewed risk of TB and the need to have testing done as part of a child’s routine physical examination.  

    Youth Gang Awareness   Protect children and youth from the influence of gangs and to work together to establish supervised after-school programs for children and youth as an alternative to gang involvement.


     *See National PTA at www.pta.org under Position Statement - Elements of Comprehensive Health Programs

    +++If Resolution is amended