Every year, Virginia’s local PTA units approve a legislation program that represents its official position on a wide variety of issues affecting children and youth. The program consists of legislative action items and policy statements. Previously approved position statements and convention resolutions automatically become a part of the program. The program is the basis for official testimony by the PTA at legislative hearings and before other agencies. Statements can be cited by a PTA member when contacting a legislator about a bill that falls within the scope of the program. As long as they do not conflict with the program, local units and councils may support legislative items not in Virginia PTA’s Legislation Program. Be sure to use your PTA’s name and not Virginia PTA.
Development of the state PTA legislation program is as follows:
After each session of the General Assembly, the state PTA Legislation Committee drafts a preliminary program based on suggestions received from PTA members and other organizations, action taken by the General Assembly, and convention resolutions from the past four years.
The preliminary proposed program is delivered to each local unit, council and district. PTA members have an opportunity to comment on the draft program at District workshops in the spring or by mail to the state legislation chairman before the Board of Managers consider it.
The BOM discusses the draft at a public session during its spring board meeting, and approves a proposed program, which is sent to all local unit presidents.
In the fall, each PTA district in the state holds a meeting to discuss the proposed program. To better understand the program local units should send several persons to this meeting. Since 1993, every local PTA in the state has been given the opportunity to vote on the proposed program.
PTA presidents receive a copy of the program and a tally sheet in a summer mailing. After voting, the tally sheet is sent to the appropriate district director in October.