Kansas PTA Resolutions

Whereas    adequate and permanent shelter is a basic need, and its absence has a negative and long lasting impact on the education of children and teens, including increased truancy, lower standardized test scores, increased likelihood of being held back, and increased mental and physical health problems, and

Whereas    the number of children and teens who are without permanent shelter continues to grow, and the number at risk of becoming homeless is even larger, and

Whereas    there exists federal laws that protect homeless students and ensure they receive a free and appropriate public education but many families and teens are not aware of these protections and services, therefore be it



Resolved    that Kansas PTA and its constituent associations educate its members about the existence and needs of homeless students in Kansas and their school district, and be it further

Resolved    that Kansas PTA and its constituent associations share information about the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act with its members and partner organizations, and be it further

Resolved    that Kansas PTA and its constituent associations support legislation and services that protect the educational rights of homeless children and teens, as well as those designed to help reduce the likelihood of them becoming homeless in the first place.

 

Whereas,     approximately 1.4 million Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) related deaths, hospitalizations and emergency department visits occur each year in the United States

Whereas,     prevention to reduce occurrences of TBIs, improved acute care and rehabilitation to shrink the debilitating effects of a TBI continue to be high priority; and

Whereas,    within the United States there is an inconsistency in district policies regarding reporting of head injuries.



Whereas,    the failure to notify parent and/or guardians could result in serious consequences for the child including short term affects, such as concussions, or long term affects, such organ damage and possibly death; therefore be it

Resolved,     that National PTA and its Constituent Associations work to educate the public about the seriousness of Traumatic Brain Injuries; and be it further

Resolved,    that National PTA and its Constituent Associations work with legislatures to ensure that laws are in place to direct the state school board administrators and local board administrators in the reporting of Traumatic Brain injuries; and be it further

Resolved,     that National PTA and its Constituent Associations work with state and local board administrators in putting communication procedures in place for contacting parent and/or guardians at the time a head injury takes place during instructional time in a school setting.

Summary:
We as adults expect our schools to inform us when our child is injured. There are laws in place when it comes to protecting our children; child safety seats, texting while driving, driving after hours, etc. We expect policies/procedures in place on how to take care of injuries; especially head injuries.  A student who participates in afterschool sports and an injury occurs; policies/procedures are in place on how to take care of that injured child.  However, there is no such documentation that is consistent throughout the United States when it comes to injuries, specifically head injuries during instructional time in a school setting.

The most effective means of addressing reporting of head injuries during instructional time in a school setting is though an inclusive, district-wide program working with parents, students, administrators, teachers, and other school staff.  Programs develop an equally comprehensive, district-wide policy that includes a clear definition of traumatic head injuries and how school officials will respond.  

 

Whereas 1    Whereas, The national Safety Council estimates that at least 1.6 million crashes are caused annually by drivers using cell phones and texting, and the use of texting while driving has soared, and

Whereas 2     Whereas, It has been found that truck drivers face a 23 times greater risk of crash or near crash when texting than when not texting, which means texting far surpasses the dangers of other driving distractions, and

Whereas 3     Whereas, The time drivers take their eyes from the road to send or receive texts is typically nearly five seconds—enough time at typical highway speeds to cover more than the length of a football field, and



Whereas 4    Whereas, There is an eightfold greater risk of crashing when texting. By comparison, a four times greater risk of crashing is about equal to someone with a 0.08 blood alcohol level, generally the legal limit for intoxication, and

Whereas 5     Whereas, Nineteen states, the District of Columbia and Guam have passed all-ages bans on texting while driving, therefore it be

Resolved 1    Resolved, That Kansas PTA and its constituent organizations will support legislative action banning texting while driving, and be it further
 
Resolved 2     Resolved, That Kansas PTA and its constituent organizations will provide education and information on the growing threat to public safety from distracted driving caused by texting while driving.

Adopted Convention 2010

 

Whereas,     Youth fire setting has been identified as a fast growing fire threat in the United States; and

Whereas,     Novelty lighters have features including visual effects, flashing lights, musical sounds and toy-like designs which are attractive to children, and the functions of lighters can be achieved without these features, and

Whereas,     Many public safety agencies that are experts in the field of fire safety support the prohibition of the sale and distribution of novelty lighters; including the National Fire Protection Agency, National Volunteer Fire Council, and the National Association of State Fire Marshalls, therefore be it



Resolved    That Kansas PTA and its constituent organizations will support legislative action banning or restricting the sale of novelty lighters, particularly to minors, and be it further

Resolved    That Kansas PTA and its constituent organizations will provide education and information on the growing threat to public safety from juvenile fire setters and novelty lighters.

 

Whereas,        It is a purpose of the PTA to promote the health and welfare of children and youth; and

Whereas,        The death of a seemingly healthy child from sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) is a traumatic occurrence affecting entire communities, and

Whereas,        Survival rates increase from 5% to nearly 70% if defibrillation occurs within the first 3 to 5 minutes of onset; therefore be it

Resolved,       That Kansas PTA will support the development of medical emergency plans, including CPR (cardio-pulmonary resuscitation) and AED’s (automatic external defibrillators), in all Kansas schools; and be it further

Resolved,       That Kansas PTA will support efforts to educate the public about the importance of CPR and early defibrillation.

 

Rationale: 

The American Heart Association reports that an estimated 7,000 to 10,000 children, and up to 450,000 Americans total, die each year from sudden cardiac arrest.  They also report that as much as 20% of the combined U.S. adult and child population can be found in schools on any given day.  In a survey of elementary and high schools, 18% of teachers indicated that they have provided some level of emergency care to more than 20 students each academic year.  According  to  Medtronic, a pioneer of defibrillation technology for more than 50 years, the average response time to a 911 call is 6 to 12 minute.  The American Red Cross, a leader in First Aid/CPR/AED training, reports that each minute defibrillation is delayed reduces the chance of survival by about 10%.  With the development of specialized electrodes for young children and the simplicity of AED use, their presence in schools could be the difference between life and death.  Mary Newman, Executive Director of the National Center for Early Defibrillation, believes that by placing AEDs in schools and training students in their use, in time, a whole generation of adults will be comfortable with the devices and that a new response culture in which quick, effective “bystander” action is the norm, not the exception, will develop.

 

Submitted by the Kansas PTA Resolution Committee

Approved by the Kansas PTA Board of Managers on February 6, 2005                  

Whereas,                    Kansas PTA is concerned about the health and safety of Kansas children and youth; and

Whereas,                    Each year many children are left unattended in and around motor vehicles; and

Whereas,                    There are risks with deadly consequences related to leaving children unattended in or around vehicles, including the danger of abduction, heat stroke, strangulation, trunk entrapment, being backed-over, and personal injuries to themselves or others by causing accidental and uncontrolled movement of the vehicle; and

Whereas,                    The unnecessary suffering and death of children is a national tragedy and a major public health concern, therefore be it

Resolved,                    That Kansas PTA will support appropriate legislation making it illegal to leave children under the age of 8 years unattended in vehicles, and be it further

Resolved,                    That Kansas PTA , it units and councils, will work to educate the public about the dangers related to having children unattended in and around vehicles, and be it further

Resolved,                    That Kansas PTA will work with our Collaborative Organizations to address additional issues of child safety in and around vehicles that may be discovered in the future.

 

Rational:

According to Kids and Cars, a Kansas-based national child safety organization, more than 723 children under the age of 15 have died in non-traffic, non-crash vehicle-related incidents since 2000.  At least 165 deaths occurred in 2004 alone.  Backovers and hyperthermia claimed the most lives, with other incidents such as power window strangulations and cars being set in motion by a child, contributing as well.  A February 2005 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study found that an estimated 7,475 children from ages 1-14 years old were treated in U.S. emergency departments between 2001 and 2003 for nonfatal backover related injuries.  A May 1997 Research Note published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that of 499 total cases of injury caused by power windows between October 1993 and September 1994, 64% of victims were under the age of 14.  Kids and Cars also reports that 24% of non-traffic, non-crash fatalities result from children being left unattended in an overheated vehicle.  Since there is currently no formal collect of data by government agencies related these types of incidents, the information provided should be considered to be well below the actual number of incidents.

Adopted by the Kansas PTA Board of Managers 2/5/06

Whereas,    The Kansas PTA believes that all children and youth should have the opportunity, through free public education, to develop to their full potential, and that educators and the general public should unite in efforts to secure for all children and youth the highest advantages of physical, mental and social education; and

Whereas,    Research shows that teacher quality—the combination of teacher knowledge, skills and expertise—is the single most important educational resource influencing student learning and academic performance; and

Whereas,      All Kansas teachers should receive quality preparation, be fully licensed for their teaching area and age, and have an understanding of how to teach students from diverse backgrounds with an array of learning styles; and


Whereas,    Studies show that high quality teacher preparation that occurs along a continuum including well supervised and supported student-teaching experience in the areas of instruction, classroom management, lesson-planning and curriculum implementation; and the provision of induction and mentoring programs that provide support and assistance for beginning teachers, contribute to a more highly skilled teacher corps and to increase teacher retention, as well as to student achievement; and

Whereas,    High quality, standards-based and subject-relevant professional development, (including teacher in-service and continuing education) that is well planned and carefully targeted to help both new and experienced teachers improve their skills and expertise promotes opportunities for individual academic success for children; and

Whereas,    To sustain high-quality, licensed teaching pool, schools must have funding sufficient to provide compensation and benefits for teachers that are comparable to other professionals and sufficient funds for necessary classroom supplies, teaching materials, teacher support, adequate teacher resources and improved working conditions; now therefore be it

Resolved    That the Kansas PTA and its units and councils will work to educate their membership and the general public about the need for quality teachers who are knowledgeable in their subject matter and teaching methods, and who are able to provide learning opportunities that enable all children to develop to their full potential; and be it further

Resolved    That Kansas State PTA and its units and councils will advocate for and support state and local policies, programs and practices that promote the recruitment, hiring and retention of well prepared, fully licensed teachers; and be it further

Resolved    That Kansas State PTA and its units and councils advocate for

  • Rigorous standards-based teacher preparation programs that prepare competent, licensed teacher:
  • Policies and programs that provide financial and professionally-based incentives that encourage individuals to enter and remain in the teaching profession; and
  • Implementation of policies and programs that support beginning teachers; and be it further


Resolved    That Kansas State PTA and its units and councils will advocate that appropriate state and local agencies provide for all teachers high-quality standards-based professional development and continuing teacher education programs for which they are compensated, that are aimed at assisting both new teachers and experienced teachers to improve their teaching skills, methodologies and practices; and be it further

Resolved    That the Kansas State PTA advocate for sufficient state funding to provide for teacher salaries and benefits competitive with other professions, funds for materials essential to the performance of teaching responsibilities, and funds for teacher support, including but not limited to mentoring, peer assistance, networking and team building.

Adopted – Convention 2002