Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

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Building a More Diverse, Equitable & Inclusive PTA

An organization that recognizes diversity values differences and similarities among people through its actions and accountability. These characteristics include age, ethnicity, gender, language and culture, socioeconomic status, among many different things.

When PTAs respect differences yet acknowledge shared commonalities uniting their communities, and then develop meaningful priorities based upon their knowledge, they genuinely represent their communities. When PTAs represent their communities, they gain strength and effectiveness through increased volunteer and resource support.


Diversity, Equity & Inclusion and Your PTA

Read Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion to explore how we define and embody diversity, equity and inclusion in our work.

Use the PTA Local Leader Guidance for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion to assess where your PTA is—and where your PTA is headed—on your DEI journey:

How to Welcome Diverse Perspectives into your PTA

This short guide shares the Do's and Don'ts of diversity outreach. Discover best practices from PTAs around the country and learn what your PTA can do to become more inclusive!

Enhancing Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in your PTA

Ready to take your diversity, equity and inclusion efforts to the next level? Discover best practices from one of our Jan Harp Domene award winners in the One Voice article, Enhancing Diversity, Equity & Inclusion in your PTA.

New! Tools to Turn Your Commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion into Action

Start your DEI journey in three steps! First, complete the diversity profile which asks you to reflect on who in your community is represented in the PTA and who is missing. Second, reach out and start talking with your community. The facilitator’s guide empowers leaders to start conversations with people who they have struggled to engage. Third, use the DEI action plan template to develop steps to become more inclusive.

Looking for more guidance on using these tools? Watch our latest webinar.

Multicultural Calendar

The rich diversity in our communities is reflected in the observances celebrated by various cultures and populations. National PTA’s Center for Family Engagement has created this Multicultural Calendar to highlight and celebrate the diversity in our PTA and school communities!

LGBTQ Glossary

National PTA partnered with the Human Rights Campaign to develop a glossary to help ensure your PTA understands and uses appropriate, affirming language to create inclusive environments for LGBTQ children and families.

How to Talk about Race and Justice in America

Are you looking to engage in anti-racist work in meaningful ways, but not sure where to start? We have compiled resources to help you begin these conversations. Explore resources from Embrace Race, The National Museum of African American History & Culture, Common Sense Media and more.

How to Respond to Inquiries about Critical Race Theory

Volunteers and staff have created these talking points related to National PTA’s position and response to inquiries about critical race theory. You can use this document to guide your own responses to membership, partner organizations, stakeholders and media on the issue.

Podcast Episode: Raising Kids Who Embrace Race

Do you want to talk to your kids about race and racism, but are not sure where to start? Check out episode 33 of our National PTA podcast Notes from the Backpack.

We spoke to Melissa Giraud and Andrew Grant-Thomas, founders of EmbraceRace, to learn how to approach conversations about race with young children. Using their professional expertise, and their own parenting experiences, Melissa and Andrew also share advice on raising advocates for racial justice.

New National PTA Learning Series

10 Minutes to PTA the Transformative Way

The first season of 10 Minutes to PTA the Transformative Way is dedicated to topics related to diversity, equity and inclusion! Tune in to learn from PTA leaders and experts in the field of ways you can make your PTA efforts more equitable.

New videos come out every Monday, so make sure to subscribe and turn on notifications. 

After watching each week’s video of 10 Minutes to PTA the Transformative Way, be sure to check out the reflection questions and related resources attached to each episode.

National PTA's Equity Fellows

National PTA’s Center for Family Engagement is excited to announce the five fellows taking part of National PTA Equity Fellowship. These fellows have been expanding their knowledge and influence related to diversity, equity, and inclusion in PTA. They have offered their insight and recommendations for developing new Diversity, Equity and Inclusion trainings and resources for local PTA leaders, have helped in prioritizing topics for resources to help guide local PTAs to become more equitable, and have shared their knowledge and experience with local stakeholders to champion equity in their own communities.

Caridad (Mini) Martinez

Caridad (Mini) Martinez is the former President of Crystal Lake Elementary School PTA (a 2017-2019 National PTA School of Excellence) in Lake Mary, Florida. Mini is committed to exploring new ways to create and maintain a culture of inclusion in her PTA by ensuring that there is intentional leadership training and development around diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). Mini believes that DEI training is both crucial and the first step in making sure that efforts of engagement align with a school’s needs. She is passionate about providing access to resources in multiple languages, as well as a growing knowledge and capacity for PTAs to be fierce advocates for all students and families. Through the fellowship, Mini is working towards increase awareness and accessibility to DEI resources within her PTA and beyond. She is engaging local units in planning DEI programming and empowering them to continue advocating for DEI initiatives in the future.

Katrina Long

Katrina Long is the principal of Reese Road Leadership Academy (a 2018-2020 National PTA School of Excellence) in Columbus, Georgia and is an active member of her school’s PTA. Katrina recognizes that her school’s demographics are quickly changing while PTA leadership has not. Katrina is dedicated to developing her own skills and strategies to become a more culturally responsive educator. Through the fellowship, Katrina is identifying and addressing barriers of representation and inclusion in her site PTA. She is progressively accomplishing her goal of making her PTA’s membership and leadership reflective of her school’s population.

Heather Zirke

Heather Zirke is the President of Berea-Midpark Middle School PTA (a 2019-2021 National PTA School of Excellence) in Berea, Ohio and is a firm believer that more inclusive groups create better outcomes. She is passionate about including parent, teacher, and student voices in conversations around diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Throughout the fellowship Heather has been designing a yearlong, equity-focused panel series led by parents, students, educators and community members on a variety of topics. She believes that this series will particularly help students feel empowered and encouraged to share their stories and experiences. Heather’s intention is that creating these spaces will not only bring different voices to the conversation, but also cultivate a more inclusive school and PTA.

Valentina Conetta

Valentina Conetta has just closed out her second term as President of APPLES PTA in Stamford, Connecticut (a 2019-2021 National PTA School of Excellence) and is transitioning into her new position as treasurer. Valentina decided to take part in the fellowship to learn new ways to engage families from diverse backgrounds because in her words, “you can’t succeed in your mission until all families are engaged and represented.” Valentina is passionate about early childhood and special education, particularly in linguistically diverse communities. During her fellowship Valentina has been working on strengthening parent-teacher partnership and making way for meaningful membership and leadership in her PTA.

Tiffany Foster

Tiffany Foster is the current president of Durham Council of PTAs in Durham, North Carolina and a member of the National PTA Membership Committee. She is a longtime child advocate, committed to championing children and families to have positive, empowering and enriching experiences. Tiffany’s work in membership has driven her to look deeper into PTA communication strategies and diversity in leadership. She understands the importance of communication tactics and the direct correlation between who communication efforts reach and who gets involved. Throughout her fellowship Tiffany has been focused on attracting and retaining new and diverse members by organizing fireside chats, virtual panels and by building partnerships with local non-profit organizations that have helped her PTA reach and assist families facing various realities.

National PTA Position Statements

National PTA Position Statements are official documents outlining the opinion, will, or intent of the association and require national action to seek resolution on the issue.

National PTA

PTA is committed to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion at all levels of the association. If you have witnessed or experienced bias in your PTA, please reach out to diversity@pta.org

Personal Action Plan

I _____________________________________________________, (name)

________________________________________________________, (PTA title or affiliation status with PTA), will support the Diversity, Inclusion and Outreach efforts of my (state, council, region, unit) by utilizing the Diversity and Inclusion Toolkit. My PTA and community will benefit in the following ways: ___________; __________; and _________.