Comments about ‘Sparks fly over bill cutting PTA dues’

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Parent who testified for the change quits group after 'inappropriate' e-mails sent

Published: Monday, Feb. 23 2009 12:00 a.m. MST

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This is just another example of the Utah legislature seeking revenge because the PTA lobbies for children. The PTA is just about the only voice for the children of Utah. If the legislature can quiet the PTA, vouchers could make a comeback.


Banning pta parents is only a step towards forcing vouchers once again on the state.

Eagle Forum

This is a carefully orchestrated agenda that has Eagle Forum written all over it. First retaliate against PTA for supporting vouchers. Next, get an innocent sounding victim to tell how harsh the PTA has been. Finally, get the phone tree to spew their anti-public education agenda in these comments. Who is running this state, the people or Gayle?

Whether you like PTOs or PTAs, the question is, "Do you want a state and national voice for parents and children?" If you think a voice is needed, you need PTA, not unaffiliated PTOs.

Can you guess what Gayle's Eagle Forum and our pro-voucher legislators want?

Basic Question

Everyone needs to go to the two basic questions. Do parent groups have equal access? The answer is yes. School districts recognize PTOs and PTAs both and sometimes in the same school. Can an organization related to a public entity charge a membership fee? Again yes. Nearly all of our public organizations have associations or organizations that serve them including school board associations, superintentendent associations, public employee associations, etc and many of them charge fees for their services. Why would anyone want their fee waived to join a group if they don't agree with their agenda. Start your own group!

PTA is anti-liberty, pro-tyranny

Listen to them on Utah's capitol hill. PTA representatives are testifying in favor of almost every anti-liberty bill that the Righteouslature considers.

Work Together

There are many ways to participate in PTA. PTA rules do not keep anyone from being involved. One person mentioned she couldnt direct where her money was spent. However, she is not required pay dues to PTA, and she can donate any amount of money to the PTA, or through the Utah School Foundation, and can direct exactly where that money is spent. There are also other leadership opportunities in every school through the Community Council; PTA is not the only avenue available to anyone. Parents may also sponsor another parent organization at their own school. This is done in some Utah schools, and regularly done in many schools around the nation. PTAs and PTOs work together many schools, imagine that ladies, working together. What about not making it PTO vs. PTA, but PTO and PTA. Im sure PTA (or PTO) would prefer to have every parent as a member in PTA (or PTO). Im sure both recognize however, there are some parents whose mission and purpose might differ from that which PTA (or PTO) can provide. As a parent I'd rather we came up with the solution and not Sen. Bramble!

Parent Assoc or Leg. Assoc

Its not that Utah PTA wont do what Bramble is asking, its that they cant. Thats what a member organization is all aboutmembers directing the organization. Changes must be done through the membershipnot the legislature. This should all be resolved without Sen. Brambles help!

RE: eagle Fourm 6:48

"do you want a state and national voice for parents and children?".... No I don't.
Because I don't agree with atleast some of what that PTA "voice" is saying at the state and national level. We can always appeal directly to our state and federal officials, perhaps not as effective, but atleast I know what message is being sent.
I'm definitely going to look into this PTO thing... There must be a reason that most schools nationally have gone to this format. Why are we dragging are feet in Utah?

jumipin' jack

If the representatives of the Utah Evil Forum and the Sutherland Destitute support this it is definitely a bad idea.

Stupid Bill

Utah ledislatue get out of our lives. If Collins does not like the national PTA then she can create a PTO at the school. If she is willing others will follow. The if she wants to wave fees more power to her. It's my experiance that if she is willing to do the job as PTA/PTO president, the school is not going to care if it is PTA or some new PTO. All they want are people to help with parties, reflections, science fair, eye screenings, scoliosis testing, etc, etc, etc. We don't need more stupid laws on our books. Retaliation? You bet it is. There is no other reason for this stipid ledgislation.

state and national influence

I for one want the opportunity to influence state and national policy. When the AIDS epidemic came out, everything was about safe sex. Our council PTA sponsored a resolution that asked state and national PTA to focus on abstinence. And guess what - it passed overwhelmingly with help from many other states from many different religions and backgrounds. The national wording from our resolution was used on all their AIDS educational material. We can sit in our own little home and school or we can make a difference at the national level. I for one value that opportunity to have a voice.

Ask Dawn

The Deseret News ought to go back in their files and find out why Dawn Frandsen with the support of a great majority of the parents pulled Wasatch Elementary out of the PTA when she was the PTA president there several years ago. Or, have Dawn write a piece about the PTA's national agenda that this $1.75 per member goes to be pay for. She is a very bright, articulate person who will receive no financial gain if this law is passed -- as it should be.

There are some things in the national PTA's written agenda that would curl most Utah parents' hair (and I am not just talking about the narrow minority of parents' who affiliate with the Eagle Forum or the Sutherlund Institute).

Former PTA Officer

I was a Legislative VP in the local PTA - yest the have someone with that title in every school. I found that the PTA provided a lot of good in the school in brining parents together with classroom teachers to help student. But there is also another side of promoting legislation that is very much driven by national and state agendas including the promotion of materials and topics into schools such as "Heather Has Two Mommies". Local membership dues goes in part to support that agenda, regardless of what local members want. I support the legislation.

Sen. Bramble...

are you willing to write legislation that will make it illegal for the Utah State Legislature to be a member of the National Conference of State Legislatures(NCSL)? I notice that you are an At-Large Legislative Member of the governing committee.

Since they are a membership charging organization and have opportunities for non-legislators to join. I want to join, but I do not want to be charged any dues to join and I want full authority to vote on all matters, including who is running it and how the money is spent. You see I don't think that they should be spending time on immigration issues, that is a federal issue and they shouldn't be spending time on legislative ethics, we don't need anyone telling the legislators about ethics they are the experts!

Frankly, Sen. Bramble and supporters, this bill is a waste of your very limited session time. The Federal Government already requires equal access to all parents and parent groups in a public school. If your PTO feels unwelcome then they need to meet with the administration and fix that problem on a local level, not on a state level.

re: Former PTA Officer

You must have not been a PTA Officer in Utah. In Utah, the PTA does not promote the Gay and Lesbian agenda and on a National level none of the Utah PTA dues go to promote the Gay and Lesbian agenda. This is thanks to a federal law that makes it legal for dues paying organization members to ask that their money not go to a candidate or ideal that they do not agree with. Since Utah PTA does not agree with the Gay and Lesbian agendas or ideals, none of our money goes to pay for them. You cannot even find that book in a Utah PTA, unless one of your local leaders ordered it from National PTA and paid for it his or her self.

Former assistant

My wife was at one time the PTA secretary. I was her dutiful assistant. She (we) kept the books for the PTA. The PTA held fundraisers and spent only about 1/4 of the money raised. The rest of the money went into the PTA savings account and earned a pitiful interest. The PTA just kept building this nest egg and rolling it over one year to the next. After this experience we stopped paying PTA dues. We eventually stopped sending our kids to public schools. Hmm.

Concerned Mommy

In the article I read: "Bramble said rumors that his bill is revenge on the PTA because of its support for school vouchers is untrue."

Was this an intentional error in wording? The PTA actually OPPOSED school vouchers, while Bramble couldn't wait to prostitute himself to the national voucher support movement. Please adjust this article to reflect the truth, D-News.

In addition, Collins seems to be complaining that she can't "move up" within an organization that she refuses to pay her dues for due to their "liberal agenda" (i.e. she was for vouchers, they against). But this doesn't address the fact that Collins or ANY parent can currently form a group and have equal access to schools and administrators. If they aren't given that access, it's something they should take up with those administrators,

Bramble, Eagle Forum, Sutherland Institute, etc have obviously not given up their "pro-voucher" fight to undermine our public schools.

Bramble's bill is as ridiculous as they are.

Get Serious

Does someone just want to give that lady 5 bucks so she can be PTA president? Our conservative legislators would LOVE us to believe that the PTA is evil. One less obstacle in privatizing education in Utah. The PTA has only been an influence for good in our schools. Oh, and we've also done he books for our schools PTA. Shame on that secretary for allowing the PTA to not spend the money in their own school. She was part of the problem.


Goodness gracious, Mr. Bramble, how about you attend to some actual business (i.e., ethics reform; budgetary shortfalls) and we'll worry about the secret agendas of moms with cookies some other year? I'm sure the PTA could use some improvement, but now really is not the time for "public servants" to be charging at social-issue windmills with Mitzi "Sancho Panza" Collins following behind.

Then again, it's probably not really about the PTA. It's about pandering for votes of the ultra-conservative, same as usual.


I am amazed at the animosity shown towards PTA in many of these comments. There is nothing self-serving about what I do with PTA. Yes, I could just go home and spend all my time with my kids, but what about all those kids that don't have good influences in their lives? I volunteer my time for them, too, and my kids love to help me. PTA lobbies - yes - but for programs and laws that will HELP ALL CHILDREN; not just their own. I don't know any Principal who checks for PTA cards at the door - they will take help from anybody and talk to anybody about their children's education. If this bill is really about encouraging parental involvement, why in the world would you try to exclude the largest parent organization in the state?

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