February 2024

The Newsletter for PTA leaders in

San Diego and Imperial Counties

Click Here to share this newsletter.

Para leer in español, Clic Aqui.

A Message from our President

A fun fact about me is that I have worked at a polling site (now known as a vote center) for almost every election since 1998. The voting process changed in 2020 and now every registered voter is automatically mailed a ballot. But this doesn’t mean you have to mail it in! You might still need or want to visit a vote center so I am still needed! I will be at a 4 day vote center in Carlsbad leading a team of 10 other poll workers to ensure every voter has a great experience. Since voting for local issues and people affects your day to day life much more than just the “national” issues, I encourage you to visit sdvote.com to find out how and when to vote! And then read on to find out how you and PTA can (and can NOT) be involved in the election process.

Shawna Straw




Nominating committee responsibilities

The nominating committee is the only PTA committee that is not appointed by the president. This committee is elected by the Association membership at least two months prior to the election of officers. If your election meeting is in April, that means that your unit should have elected your nominating committee in February. This process is outlined in your PTA bylaws in Article V. In particular, Article V, Section 4 lists the details, including how many committee members and alternates should be elected. Most units should be electing the nominating committee no later than January or February for the election of officers in March or early April.

The election of the nominating committee should not be a popularity contest based on willingness to serve nor should it consist of the PTA executive board. The PTA president never serves on the committee, and the parliamentarian serves only when elected to serve. The principal can be elected, but should at least be an advisor to the group. No person may serve on the committee for two consecutive years.

The nominating committee must submit their report at least 28 days prior to the election.

Annual election process responsibilities

The president conducts the election at the annual meeting. The parliamentarian has the small but important responsibility to read the bylaws sections pertaining to elections, and the nominating committee chair reads their report (the "slate") to be recommended.

The opportunity to nominate candidates from the floor must be provided to members, so the president should call for further nominations for all offices. If the PTA is incorporated, a nomination by petition is also required.

The election is conducted by voice vote. When there is only one candidate for the office, the chair may say, “These named candidates are elected by acclamation.” When there are two or more candidates, the election should be held by ballot vote. The president appoints a teller committee to assist with the ballot election.

A majority vote elects. Candidates must receive fifty percent, plus one vote, to be elected.

Full details on the election process, including a handy script and checklist, can be found on the California State PTA website here: https://toolkit.capta.org/running-your-pta/nominations-and-elections/the-election/

Best practice for number of meetings and election dates

If you are in the process of updating your unit bylaws, you should be aware that we are now providing guidance that all units have a minimum of four (4) Association meetings for each term:

  • [August/September] One to open the year, adopt the budget, release funds, etc;
  • [December/January] One to elect the nominating committee;
  • [March/April] One to elect officers for the coming year, and;
  • [May/June] One to close the year, where the board-elect may present their preliminary budget and release funds to cover routine summer expenditures to ensure transparency with the association. 

In addition, your Association's annual election meeting must occur before the end of the second week of April. Check your Standing Rules, at the end of your bylaws, to see when your Association meeting dates are, and when your annual election meeting is held.

Bruce Bergman, parliamentarian@ninthdistrictpta.org


The Historian Report will be due soon!

Units:  Please remember to record your volunteer hours for every month from July 1, 2023 to June 30, 2024. You will need to fill out this form, give a copy to your secretary, and council/district by the due date:  Annual Historian Report - Unit . You may need to contact your Council for their due date.

Councils: Please remember to record the volunteer hours for your executive board, and then gather all the volunteer hours from your units. You will need to fill out this form, give a copy to your secretary, and send a copy to your district:  Annual Historian Report - Council . An online form will also be emailed, so that your volunteer hours can be recorded.

Please send out the recorded volunteer hours for your council and all the units that fall underneath by the due date:  May 1, 2024. You will need to project your volunteer hours out to June 30, 2024 when you collect the volunteer hours. 

Please return the form to historian@ninthdistrictpta.org by or before the due date.

Sonya Vargas, Historian Ninth District PTA


Does your Unit or Council need training on a specific subject? Our goal is for each unit and council to be successful! Please contact Anne Emfinger if you would like more information about specific training at leadership@ninthdistrictpta.org.


Correcting Minutes

Corrections to minutes are made when presented for approval at a meeting. The corrections can also be made at any subsequent meeting when an error is discovered.

Only the group involved in the meeting – the board or the association – may correct minutes from one of the previous meetings.

To record a correction in the master copy of the minutes, use a red ink pen to:

• Circle the incorrect words

• Write, in the margin, the correction, the date and your initials

Sue King


Financial Secretary

PTA Grab and Go Videos make Tax Filing Easier

If you haven’t filed your 2022-2023 tax return, it’s not too late. PTA has developed Grab and Go PTA

videos showing you step-by-step how to file for units whose gross receipts are under $50,000.

Check these out! If you still need help, please contact your Council or Ninth District PTA.

How to File a 990N Postcard 

How to File a 199N Postcard

How to Fill out the RRF-1 

How to Fill out the CT-TR-1 for Postcard Filers

Financial Review Reminders

This month most units should be wrapping up their mid-year financial reviews for the first half of their fiscal year. Council and unit associations usually have their fiscal year set to begin on July 1, so this mid-year financial review should cover July 1, 2023, to December 31, 2023. Remember that financial reviews are required by our insurance carrier, AIM, at least once per year. If you have a financial loss and cannot show evidence of a financial review being done, your claim for the loss may not be paid. Once a year meets the requirements for the insurance carrier but Ninth District PTA strongly recommends a financial review twice a year.

You might be wondering why Ninth District PTA recommends a financial review twice a year. There are several good reasons to have two financial reviews. We are all volunteers and keeping books for a PTA may not be something we were trained to do. Having someone review the books to ensure best practices are followed earlier in the year gives the PTA plenty of time to resolve any procedural problems for the rest of the year. Officers who are elected for one year could spend the entire year not following procedures, and then the next elected board could inherit a financial mess. For financial reviewers, reviewing 6 months of documents is much easier than twelve months of documents. Year-end is not a good time to find out that mistakes or mismanagement was happening.  

If you haven’t started your financial review yet, now is a good time to begin so that findings may be presented at your upcoming executive board meeting and association meeting. Suppose your unit or council does not have a designated financial reviewer. In that case, your executive board may appoint a member to the position along with at least one other person, or you can find a CPA to complete the review. The financial review committee is not required when a CPA completes the review.  You can find a description of the financial reviewer’s duties in the California State PTA Toolkit (https://toolkit.capta.org/finance/) page F11. You can find a video training on the Ninth District PTA website at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QEMUup3EmYk and forms and other resources at https://www.ninthdistrictpta.org/pta-leaders/running-pta/auditor/

If you have questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact your council financial reviewer or Deborah Childers at financial.reviewer@ninthdistrictpta.org


Congratulations to the 24 students whose artwork has been recognized with an Award of Excellence from Ninth District PTA for the Reflections Arts Program 2023-2024. These student works will move on to the state level. Click here to see a list of the Award of Excellence recipients

We will be recognizing all of the artwork submitted at an upcoming art gala on March 12, 2024 6:00 pm-8:00 pm at the San Diego County Office of Education 6401 Linda Vista Road San Diego, CA 92111 in rooms 401 & 402

We are excited to announce the theme for next year is “Accepting Imperfection”. Keep an eye out for more information about how to encourage students to participate in next year's Reflections program.

Election-time Procedures

We are entering a very busy election year. We hope that as informed and active

citizens you take the responsibility of voting seriously. This also means that we need to remind everyone of the policies around PTA and Elections.


PTA, as a tax-exempt organization, cannot support or oppose political parties or

candidates. This includes nonpartisan offices such as school board or city council

elections. Participation in activities that might indicate political support places the

association’s nonprofit status with the IRS at risk. To retain our IRS tax-exempt status and continue to receive tax-deductible contributions, a PTA may not participate in any type of political campaign or other activity on behalf of or in opposition to a candidate for any public office. 


PTA leaders may not publicly support a candidate using their PTA title or name of

the PTA. Support for candidates, parties, or political positions may only be given as a private citizen without mention of one’s association with PTA. A current or former PTA board member may not use a PTA title, the name of the PTA, or the PTA trademark to endorse a candidate in any manner (verbal, electronic, written, letters, websites, etc.). 


Individual candidates may not be invited to address PTA meetings, even if they

are PTA members, unless all other candidates are invited. Holding a candidate

forum and inviting all candidates is appropriate and encouraged. This avoids the

appearance of bias or support for an individual candidate. PTA members are not

prohibited from running for public office themselves nor from listing PTA involvement as part of their biographical information and/or campaign literature. A PTA member who is running for office may perform his or her regular PTA duties. PTA and campaign activities must be kept separate. This includes the prohibition of any announcement around candidacy before, after, or during PTA meetings or events.

Social Media is an area that must also reflect these standards. This means PTAs

must monitor their social media accounts—including the comments—so it doesn't

appear you are endorsing or opposing a candidate, party, or issue. Endorsements can be implied, so be careful. A good rule of thumb is not to allow any comments about a candidate running for office on your PTA social media.


To summarize, for PTAs to retain tax-exempt status and continue to receive tax-

deductible contributions under Internal Revenue Code, they may not devote more than an insubstantial part of their activities to influence legislation; participate in any political campaign on behalf of or in opposition to a candidate for national, state, or local public office.

For any questions please contact Ninth District: office@ninthdistrictpta.org

For more information please visit the California State PTA website and these links for elections and reference on how to organize a local candidates forum:



Founders’ Day is a perfect time to renew the dedication to the Purposes of the PTA that were defined by PTA’s founders more than a century ago. Each year in February, PTA honors the three founders: Alice McLellan Birney, Phoebe Apperson Hearst, and Selena Sloan Butler as well as past and present PTA leaders.

We hope you will join us as we celebrate this year’s Founders’ Day on February 28, 2024


Please visit our Events Page on our website for more information

This year, our Annual Meeting and Founders’ Day Celebration will be at a new venue! The event will be a different experience too. Hope you can join us on February 28, 2024 at the Sharp Prebys Innovation & Education Center.

Ninth District PTA convenes twice a year to conduct the business of our association. Join us for an inspirational event celebrating outstanding teachers and community members! We will also announce the winners of our Membership Challenge and Grants! Spanish interpretation will be provided.

Thank you California Coast Credit Union for being Ninth District PTA's partner!

The Cal Coast Cares Foundation is happy to announce that their 2024 student scholarship application period is now open! This year the foundation is providing more than $185,000 in scholarships to graduating high school seniors, foster students, and current college students in San Diego and Riverside Counties to help them pursue their dreams of obtaining a college education. We appreciate your help in getting the news out to your students and their parents or guardians!


California Coast Credit Union was founded in 1929 by local educators, and the non-profit Cal Coast Cares Foundation was created in 2015 to continue their legacy by supporting the local education community through student scholarships and educator grants.


High School – This scholarship award program recognizes outstanding students for their dedication to academic excellence and community leadership. These scholarships are awarded to graduating high school seniors in San Diego or Riverside Counties to help further their education. Click Here to view and complete the high school scholarship application. 


Foster/Former Foster Youth – This scholarship award program is to support high school seniors and current college students who are in or have been in the foster care program in San Diego or Riverside Counties. Starting this year, after academic expenses are covered, the remaining funds may be used for housing and food. Click Here to view and complete the foster student application. If you know of a returning foster student recipient, please have them reach out to Brittany Rodriguez via email at brodriguez@calcoastcu.org or phone at 619.458.4605 for an application for their second-year scholarship. 

Supporting Our Youth

You are invited to attend this webinar series from the San Diego County Office of Education in partnership with Rady Children's Hospital. The next one is March 13th! https://sdcoe.k12oms.org/918-243923

Stay connected and follow us on social media!

6401 Linda Vista Rd., Annex A

San Diego, CA 92111  •  (858.268.8077)


Facebook  Instagram
Ninth District PTA Linktree