PTA Logo

the observer

a bimonthly e-newsletter for PTA leaders from Ninth District PTA   




August 8 

Membership Training

for Units 

7 pm - 8:30 pm  

San Diego County Office of Education

Room 401  



 August 15

Council Officer Training

10:00 am - 2:00 pm  

San Diego County Office of Education

Annex C  



August 23

Membership Training

for Units 

10 am - 11:30 am

San Diego County Office of Education

Annex C 




Find us on Facebook  Like us on facebook.

From President   

Karen Fleck

August 1, 2012



   I'm energized from a short summer break and excited to begin the 2012-13 school year with you -- our local unit and council off Karen Fleck icers.  


   Ninth District PTA encompasses all of San Diego and Imperial County which includes more than 370 PTAs just like yours.  Well in truth, none of them are just like yours. Each PTA is unique and special and some quite different from the next.


  Our Ninth District officers take the great ideas they learn from you and the rest of the California State PTA and share it with other PTAs as they train and counsel new officers. For our 350 units in councils, make the most of getting to know the officers in your local PTAs and councils so you too can share and learn and grow.  


   We want you to start the year confident in your new PTA positions and hope we provide the tools you need to not only do the business of the organization (budgets, minutes, tax filings...) but that you thrive in the mission of our organization:  make every child's potential a reality by engaging and empowering families and communities to advocate for all children.


   Let us know how we can serve you better and feel free to share the contents of our Observer e-newsletter with your officers and your families.  


     Welcome back to the new school year!




Ninth District PTA has a new email address effective immediately. It is Please update your records and inform your board so everyone can stay in touch this summer. 


Darlene Harris, VP Leadership 
Darlene Harris new

The key to a strong PTA is members. Come learn how to conduct a strong PTA campaign to increase membership at your school. Beth Bacting, our VP of Member Services, will lead the training. You have two session to choose from:

  • Wednesday, August 8 -7:00 pm to 8:30 pm 
  • Thursday, August 23 -10 am to 11:30 am 

Both trainings will be held at the San Diego County Office of Education. Pick the date that works best for you. All trainings are free!  RSVP. 


Unit wins free state convention registration 
Kudos to Standley Middle School PTA in San Diego Council. They won a free registration to the 114th California State PTA Convention in San Jose next May. Standley PTA nominated one of their teachers - Todd Resley - for the California State PTA Teacher - Making a Difference recognition award. All nominations were entered in a drawing and Standley Middle PTA was one of the lucky winners. Mr. Todd Resley also received educational software for his class.


2012 Service Mailing for presidents
As soon as California State PTA receives the name and mailingservcie mailing
address of the incoming president, they will send out the state service mailing. It's filled with tips and new resources to boost membership, leadership, programs and family engagement. Explore what's new for PTA finance, bylaws, scholarships, grants and awards, children's issues, communications and more. It's also available to download.

  Presidents, if you also want to receive the National PTA Back to School kit full of lots of great information, register online by September 7.

Beth Bacting, VP Member Services 
Membership card

Every person who joins the PTA receives a membership card, signifying they are a member of not only your unit, but State and National PTA. Membership cards are free to your unit. You'll receive a starting supply of membership cards based on how many members you had this year. The cards will be higher quality, more colorful and include more information. Each card will have a unique ID number and members may activate their cards and receive valuable coupons.   


New and Improved! 

California State PTA has a new membership envelope. It's more colorful, easier to fill out, and has strong marketing messages. Envelopes cost $3 per 100 and are available at the Ninth District PTA office.


Shawna Straw, Treasurer
    As the PTA finishes one school year and prepares for the next, make a plan to file the government reports with the IRS, the Franchise Tax Board (State of California) and the Attorney General's office (State of California). 
   These reports are due no later than the 15th day of the fifth month after the fiscal year-end. For example, if your PTAs fiscal year ends on June 30, these forms are due by November 15. But there's no reason to wait! Now is the perfect time to prepare these reports and get them off the "to do" list.
  • Every PTA must either have or apply for a Charitable Trust number by the end of September. Click here for information on how to apply, or contact your Council or Ninth District for help.  
  • Every PTA must file either a 990-N, 990-EZ or 990 with the IRS. Failure to do so on time may result in the PTA losing its tax exempt status. This has already happened to many PTAs in the state. It's a long process requiring lots of paperwork and reinstatement fees. Make sure PTA member dollars don't have to pay for this unnecessary expense and headache for the volunteers.  
  • Every PTA must file a 199 or 199N for 2010-11 AND 2011-12 Missing this requirement could result in a penalty assessment ($800!) and loss of non-profit status from the State of California.


You can use PTA funds to pay a tax preparer. However, the IRS 990-N and California 199-N e-postcards are easy and only take a few minutes to file online. 


PTA-backed Proposition 38 on November ballot    The Secretary of State has assigned the PTA-backed Our Children, Our Future education initiative as Proposition 38 on the November 2012 statewide ballot! Click below to watch the latest video featuring PTA leaders.  
Prop 38: Money Straight to Our Local Schools
Prop 38: Money Straight to Our Local Schools
Now that we're on the ballot, will you help us to win by sharing our website?


Special Artist category created 
Reflections logo

Reflections art program students whose physical, cognitive or mental health challenges meet the guidelines in the American with Disabilities Act can enter Reflections in a new division called "Special Artist." This is a non-graded division.  Learn More. 


Angela Ferguson joins Ninth District PTA board 
Angela Ferguson

As Ninth District parliamentarian, Angela will review your bylaws and send them up to State PTA for signature. Angela began her PTA career as a kindergarten room rep, then served as Carlton Oaks Elementary PTA president. She moved up to Tierra Del Sol Council and served as president for two years. Angela has a Business Administration degree from the University of Colorado, Boulder and enjoyed a career in sports and event marketing before becoming a full-time mom. She lives in Santee with her two kids, ages 11 and 9. Contact Angela at


Heather Bush, VP Parent Involvement
Heather Bush As students move into high school, schedules are more hectic and demanding. Maintaining family involvement in high school then becomes more difficult. Students and parents often ask, "What's in it for me?" "Why should I attend this event?" They want to be assured their time is not wasted. There are proven ideas for unit leaders to use to increase involvement in the high school setting.  Get 8 tips for engaging high school students and parents. 


Performed at National PTA Convention 
Jon Christopher

We have a great theme - Every Child, One Voice. Now we have a great song. The National PTA mission theme song "Every Child, One Voice" - performed by Jon Christopher Davis and Annagrey at the 2012 PTA Convention in San Jose - is available at. Take a Listen!  


Crack the code for Healthier Kids 
5210 logo

5210 Every Day! is a campaign to reduce childhood obesity in San Diego County. Here's what it stands for:

  • 5 or more servings of fruits & vegetables
  • 2 hours or less recreational screen time (Keep TV/computer out of bedroom. No screen time under age 2) 
  • 1 hour or more of physical activity
  • 0 sugary drinks, more water and low fat milk

Every parent should know the code. Get the word out to your school community. The campaign includes a video, posters, brochures for schools throughout San Diego County. Learn more. 


Grand Prize is Apple iPad 3 and your PTA
can win too! 
cybersecruity poster contest
Students in Grades 6-12 are invited to showcase their creative talents and submit a poster to promote cybersecurity awareness. This contest is open to all Southern California schools. The grand prize winner's PTA will receive a $500 cash donation. Plus, each mentoring teacher will receive a cash award. Learn more.


"There is no greater insight into the future than recognizing ... when we save our children, we save ourselves."

-- Margaret Mead, American cultural anthropologist
If you would like to be added to our e-mail list, please email   


Laura Schumacher
The Observer Editor