More than 2,000 PTA representatives from across the nation have gathered in Salt Lake City for their 92nd annual convention, with preliminary activities leading up to the opening of general sessions and workshops Saturday.
The slate includes a roster of nationally known speakers and Utah government and education dignitaries. Delegates also will consider a number of resolutions to guide legislative advocacy.Topics for resolutions include:
-Encouraging state affiliates to promote legislation that would make dangerous hazing during initiations into school organizations a punishable crime.
-Seeking federal legislation mandating health hazard warnings on smokeless tobacco products. Local school districts would be encouraged to include information about smokeless tobacco dangers in health education programs.
-Supporting adequate, equitable and consistent child support orders based on a child's needs, along with improved compliance and enforcement.
-Encouraging state legislation to require identification of gifted and talented students and mandating programs to meet their needs.
-Suggesting that all state and local PTAs continue to designate "safe homes" in neighborhoods where frightened, lost or threatened children could go. The resolution suggests all such programs eventually use the "McGruff House" symbol as a universally recognized emblem.
A number of awards also will be presented during the convention, including the Phoebe Apperson Hearst Outstanding Educator of the Year Award, which will be presented to Dianna Lindsay, principal, North Olmsted (hio) High School. Eight local PTAs, one from each of the PTA regions, will be recognized with the Advocates for Children Awards.
Among four winners of national Reflections Awards will be Andrus Madsen, Provo, who won in the music category. Membership awards and a new AIDS Education Award also will be presented.
The PTA, oldest child advocacy group in existence, is experiencing a new era of growth. International membership increased this school year by 4.8 percent - from 6,168,429 in 1987 to 6,466,283 in 1988. Utah's membership increased 1.5 percent in the same period, from 140,258 to 142,405.