Berkeley PTA - Recommit to the PTA Mission!

"The mission of the California State PTA is to positively impact the lives of all children and families by representing our members, and empowering and supporting them with skills in advocacy, leadership and communications."

Dear PTA Community,

We are entering a frightening and difficult time; the new political climate has enabled those with hateful views to feel more comfortable expressing them openly. We are already hearing that hate crimes and hate speech are on the rise throughout our nation, even in our own extended community. For our children and their families who are of color, immigrants, LGBTQ, Muslim, female, Latina/o, disabled, and from any other number of communities, the danger and fear are very real.

In this time when hatefulness is on the rise, we call on all our members to join with the Berkeley PTA Council in affirming our key mission: to build strong communities for ALL of our children and their families.

September PTA Council Meeting Cancelled

September 26, the original scheduled date for the first meeting, coincides with the first US Presidential Debate. The general feedback from the PTA leadership is that many feel it important that to watch the debat, both for themselves and as teachable moments for their students. The PTA Council Exec committee announced that the meeting would be postponed/cancelled and the business for this meeting will be addressed at future meetings. We hope everyone enjoys and learns from the debate.

Enrollment and Capacity Options for Growing BUSD Presented to School Board

On the agenda for the Berkeley School Board meeting of November 5, 2014, is the introduction of a variety of options to address the overcrowding that is expected to worsen over the coming years. The documentation for 11 possible options envisioned by the BUSD staff is included in the meetings packet; the section dedicated to this agenda item is linked below.

Thank You Everyone for a Great Event!

The Berkeley PTA Council Exec Board would like to thank everyone for participating in last night's School Board Candidate Night. While the crowd was intimate, the questions raised, both prepared and live, were those represtantive of the issues of most concern to our learning communities and their families. The candidates gave well reasoned responses for all the questions; a reminder that the full written responses to the prepared questions are on here the site. A special thanks to Laura Babbit from Parents of Children of African Descent (PCAD) for their participation; we hope to have more PTA-PCAD collaboration in the future.

2014 Election - Candidates Answers

Join us at the first Berkeley PTA Candidates Night as those running to lead the Berkeley Unified School District address questions and concerns from those most directly impacted by their actions - the students and their families in the school community. Read their answers to the questions prepared from within the PTA community here!

PTA Council Joins the League of Women Voters to Sponsor 2014 Election Events

Your Vote Counts!

November 4th is Election Day and this year has a number of important races which affect our community, particularly Berkeley schools. The Berkeley PTA Council is proud to be a sponsor for a number of upcoming events put together by the League of Women Voters Berkeley Albany and Emeryville (LWVBAE). These should be lively and informative affairs which we hope will help voters as they consider their selections.

Berkeley PTAs Significant Financial Contributions

BUSD Expense Graph by School - 2013-2014

For those of us who have been in the PTA for a while, one of the first messages we got was "the PTA is NOT a fundraising organization". While this was never strictly true - I don't think there was ever a PTA that didn't raise some funds for their schools - the past decade of continued budget crisis and cutting of resources at school sites prompted our PTAs to significantly step up our contributions to our schools.

Berkeley Dine Out for Gardening and Cooking in our Schools

Berkeley Dine OutFor all in Berkeley, remember that today is the Berkeley Dine Out for our schools' Gardening and Cooking programs. BUSD has been a pioneer in teaching our students the importance of nutrition and where our food comes from. Join the Berkeley stores, restaurants and food providers who are helping to raise funding for the continuation of these programs. What defines Berkeley more than food? Check out the Berkeley Dine Out site for a list of places supporting Gardening and Cooking in our schools.