NYS PTA Advocacy Newsbriefs... June 2014

NYS PTA Advocacy Newsbriefs

In This Issue

In the Spotlight
In the Spotlight...
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School of Excellence Recognition

School of Excellence
It’s time to recognize the contributions of your PTA within your school community! Is something meaningful happening between your PTA and school that deserves recognition? Are you looking to step-up your PTA’s involvement in school improvements? Now is the time to record and publicize the positive impact your PTA has had on your students and school community!

School of Excellence is a recognition program that supports and celebrates partnerships between PTA and schools to enrich the educational experience and overall well-being for all students.

By participating in this program, you will gain a better understanding of what you can do to support improvements at your school, and your PTA will gain a seat at the table when important decisions are made.

For more information on the School of Excellence and to enroll your school in the program, click here.

NYS Senate Passes Bill to Improve Access to Substance Abuse Treatment

Substance Abuse Treatment
The NYS Senate has passed bill 7662A. This bill limits insurance abuses and increases access to substance abuse treatment. The bill now heads to the Assembly.

Governor Cuomo Announces Statewide Initiative to Combat Heroin Use

Governor Cuomo Announces Statewide Initiative to Combat Heroin Use
Governor Andrew Cuomo is adding 100 experienced state troopers to investigate narcotics across New York.

Announced at Rockland County Community College, a three-pronged initiative focuses on combating a heroin problem that Cuomo said is "of epidemic proportions." The initiative covers enforcement, education and response.

“The first step is admitting the problem and not denying it,” Cuomo said in reference to someone seeking drug treatment. “That's the first step for the collective, for the state. We have to admit the problem. This state has a serious problem with heroin.”

Click here for more info.

NYS Senate Passes Bill That Prohibits the Sale or Offering for Sale of Concentrated Alcoholic Beverages

Powdered Alcohol
The NYS Senate approved S7217, which, if signed into law, would make the Empire State the fourth state to ban the sale of powdered alcohol. It prohibits the sale or offering for sale of any powdered or crystalline alcohol product. It has now moved to the Assembly.

Click here to read the Senate bill.

Combatting the Stigma of Addiction

The Anonymous People Documentary
All around the country, the documentary The Anonymous People is being shown to confront the stigma of addiction and give a voice to those in recovery.

The documentary is usually shown with a panel discussion of persons in long-term recovery and addiction treatment providers. PTAs can promote these events or host one of their own.

To learn more about the documentary, click here.

“Fizz Boom Read” at Your Local Library This Summer

Fizz Boom Read
Check out the programs and resources at your local library. There are activities, programs and contests related to summer reading. Click here for more.

Mark Your Calendar: Dads Take Your Child To School Day – Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Dads Take Your Child To School Day
Dads Take Your Child To School Day promotes father involvement by encouraging fathers and other significant male caregivers to take their child to school and remain involved throughout the year.

Community-based organizations, stakeholders, Head Start and school administrators and staff are encouraged to plan local events across the state. In 2013, over 450 registered sites allowed thousands of dads across New York state to participate.

For more information and to register your site or get involved, please click here.

Safety Tips for Families Visiting Amusement Parks

Amusement Park Safety
Governor Cuomo has outlined safety tips for visiting amusement parks. To view the recommendations, click here

New York State Influenza No Longer Prevalent

New York State Influenza No Longer Prevalent
The Acting NYS Commissioner of Health has declared that “influenza is no longer prevalent in New York State. This means NYS healthcare workers who are not vaccinated against influenza are no longer required by State regulation to wear masks in areas where patients are typically present.”

Click here to read more.

June 2014
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In the Spotlight

Stopping the Summer Slide

No More Summer SlideSummer is a time for relaxation and recharging; however, it is also a time when the dreaded summer slide occurs. Children often experience a learning loss over the summer months.

This site has gathered several resources and activities that you and your children, can use throughout the summer. There are activities for students of all ages, from elementary through high school. Click here to learn more.
Sign up for Capwiz
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“Advocacy is at the heart of PTA's mission and vision. Taking action provides both parents and PTA leaders with the resources to become more involved with their community at home and their community across the nation.”

National Day of Civic Hacking

National Day of Civic HackingShow kids how they can help their community by using computer technology, with resources from the White House and more in the Federal Registry for Educational Excellence (FREE).

Read more here.

Summer Learning Day is Friday, June 20, 2014

Summer Learning Day Summer Learning Day is a national advocacy day recognized to spread awareness about the importance of summer learning for our nation’s youth in helping close the achievement gap and support healthy development in communities all across the country.

Summer learning programs:
  • Maintain and advance participants' academic and developmental growth
  • Support working families
  • Keep children safe and healthy
  • Send young people back to school ready to learn
For more information, click here.

Flag Week

Flag WeekHelp kids learn more about our nation’s history, government and related topics with resources from the US Senate, Smithsonian, National Park Service, and more in the Federal Registry for Educational Excellence (FREE).

Learn more by clicking here.

June is Pride Month

“President Barack Obama declared June Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month in a proclamation released by the White House on May 30 and called on Americans to recommit themselves to finishing the work that remains for achieving full equality.”

Read the Presidential Proclamation here.

To learn more about resources SAMHSA has regarding anti-bullying and other behavioral health issues to support youth and families, click here.

Disaster Distress Helpline

Disaster Distress Helpline
According to the U.S. Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), “The Disaster Distress Helpline (DDH) is the nation’s first hotline dedicated to providing disaster crisis counseling. The toll-free Helpline operates 24 hours-a-day, seven days a week.

This free, confidential and multilingual, crisis support service is available via telephone (1-800-985-5990) and SMS (Text ‘TalkWithUs’ to 66746) to U.S. residents who are experiencing psychological distress as a result of a natural or man-made disaster, incidents of mass violence or any other disasters.

Callers are connected to trained and caring professionals from the closest crisis counseling center in the network. The helpline staff provides confidential counseling, referrals and other needed support services.”

Click here for more info.

Pediatric Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

Pediatric Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Keeping in line with our position paper on “Partners For Healthy Lifestyles”, we advocate for the well-being of children and recognize obesity as a major issue.

While most people know that obesity leads to heart disease and diabetes, few are aware of the association with a potentially fatal liver disease.

Two types of these liver-related diseases were identified in the 1980s. They are NAFLD (Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease) and NASH (Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis). Reports show NAFLD can be successfully reversed with proper diet and exercise. NASH cannot be completely reversed. Liver specialists recognize NAFLD and NASH as the most common chronic liver diseases, but it remains largely unknown to the public. Awareness is the first step towards prevention.

Click here to read more.

Teens in Foster Care Less Likely to Talk to Parents or Guardians About the Dangers of Substance Use

Teens in Foster Care Less Likely to Talk to Parents or Guardians About the Dangers of Substance Use
Adolescents aged 12 to 17 in foster care were significantly less likely to talk to a parent or guardian about the dangers of substance use compared to other adolescents
, according to a report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

The report shows while 58.9 percent of adolescents living with biological parents have these discussions and 57.6 percent of adolescents living with adoptive parents have the talks, that percentage drops to 51.1 percent for adolescents in foster care.

Click here to read more.
Did You Know...
The NYS Board of Regents meets monthly, except for August. To access the 2014 meeting schedule, agendas, materials and webcast opportunities, go to: www.regents.nysed.gov/meetings.

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