Health & Well-Being
At its heart, PTA is about connection. WSPTA is committed to providing information and resources to help parents, educators, and PTA leaders be successful as we confront the realities of this pandemic. It is our sincere desire that families remain safe and healthy.
National PTA has compiled a number of resources for our community to use to help navigate the pandemic.
- Resources – for families, PTA leaders, and educators
- Advocacy – legislative updates and statements
- FAQ – frequently asked questions from PTAs
The European PTA has shared a comprehensive document of Online Resources for Parents and Students During COVID-19 Closures. There is a wealth of information and links categorized in sections such as “Family Activities to do at Home” and “STEM Resources” and “Free Subscriptions and Services”. You will find links to the Cincinnati Zoo for a home safari or the Seattle Symphony Orchestra for free live stream performances.
National PTA’s partner, Common Sense Media, has launched a free online resource to help educators and families transition to learning at home. Wide Open School features the very best resources from publishers, nonprofits, and education companies.
OSPI released a document on April 6, detailing Continuous Learning resources and tools for districts and students. The document covers, in detail, support for educators, students, and families in pursuing continuous learning during prolonged school closures due to COVID-19.
April 6 – Governor Inslee and Superintendent Reykdal announced today that school closures will continue through the end of the school year although distance learning will continue. Washington State PTA has issued a statement regarding this announcement.
March 29 – Family and Community Engagement During This Time of COVID-19 – Guest post from Judy East, WSPTA Family and Community Engagement Committee member. Judy shares ideas on areas that we can focus on such as being positive, communicating, collaborating with school efforts, and planning virtual PTA activities.
March 27 – Taking Care of Business Through Virtual Meetings – For PTAs seeking guidance in how to complete the business of their organization prior to the end of the fiscal year.
March 26 – Washington State PTAs and COVID-19 – This post covers topics such as advocating for all, childcare, supporting schools, events and activities, venue rental agreements, virtual meetings, donating to families, and media inquiries.
March 18 – National PTA’s FAQs Regarding COVID-19 – This list of questions includes answers and links to resources that you may choose to share with your members.
March 12 – PTAs and Coronavirus: How We Deal – Guest post from Grace Jurado, President, Northshore Council PTSA. Grace discusses food, childcare, fundraisers and programs.
March 2 – Ten Tips for Speaking with Media – If a PTA leader is contacted by the media these tips will help you prepare and frame your responses.
Other sources of information educators and families should monitor are:
- Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Guidance and Resources
- Washington State Department of Health
- Washington State’s official COVID-19 website
- U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
In addition, we recommend visiting your school district’s website for the latest news specific to your school(s).
The Washington State PTA (WSPTA) believes that to achieve our vision to help every child’s potential become a reality, we must be strong advocates for the whole child; including his or her health and well-being. Healthy students are absent less often, experience fewer behavior problems, and have an easier time learning.
A student’s health and well-being may be achieved with a healthy diet, physical activity, safe drinking water, and mental health and emotional support.
More information can be found on the National PTA website Family Resources / Health pages.
Washington State PTA is a proud member of the Learning First Alliance. Mental health awareness is at the forefront of the group’s focus. On this page, you can find resources provided by the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), as well as WSPTA’s member-created resolution 11.26 “Mental Health Needs for Children”.
Like WSPTA, OSPI strives to foster an education system that encompasses the whole child. Suicide is the second leading cause of death for teens 15 to 19 years old in the state of Washington. The pages on OSPI’s website contain information and resources about suicide prevention, social-emotional learning, substance use prevention and intervention, and more.
Washington State Governor’s Office of the Education Ombuds (OEO) is a resource for parents needing help in facilitating resolutions regarding issues or complaints that impact students as well as many other types of assistance. For more information, visit the OEO website.
Washington State Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) Child Nutrition assists school districts and other institutions in providing quality nutrition programs that promote life-long healthful living while providing nutritious meals each day that prepare children for learning. For more information, visit the OSPI Child Nutrition website.
Starting in the school year 2014-15, all foods sold at school during the school day were required to meet nutrition standards. This regulation applies to foods sold a la carte, in the school store, and vending machines. The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has a number of resources to help PTAs work with schools to identify food that meets the Smart Snacks criteria, and to encourage children to make healthier choices. For more information, visit the USDA Smart Snacks website.
The Healthy Lifestyles program provides family-centered education and tools that connect them with schools and advocate for healthy changes in nutrition and physical activity. For more information and resources, visit the National PTA Healthy Lifestyles page.
Healthy School Meals
National PTA’s Healthy School Meals Initiative aims to encourage families to partner with their school leaders to help support the school meals program and advocate for an environment that promotes healthy behaviors. For more information and resources, visit the National PTA Healthy School Meals page.