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Current Opportunities

National PTA and the Center for Family Engagement offer a variety of grants and fellowship opportunities throughout the year as part of our ongoing effort to catalyze leaders to advance transformative family engagement in& PTAs across the country.

Center for Family Engagement Grants

Current Grants


2023-2024 Advancing Family-School Partnerships Challenge Grant

National PTA awarded eight district, council region PTAs across the country with a grant to mobilize their community around the adoption of the updated National Standards for Family-School Partnerships by their school district and/or board of education.

View Grant Recipients
  • Hillsborough County Council PTA (Florida)
  • Huntsville Council PTA (Alabama)
  • Nassau Region PTA-10 (New York)
  • Northwest ISD Council of PTAs (Texas)
  • Orange County Council PTA (Florida)
  • Parma Council of PTAs (Ohio)
  • Richardson ISD Council of PTAs (Texas)
  • Ventura Council of PTAs (California)

Past Grants


2022-2023 Family-School Partnerships Challenge Grant

National PTA awarded 10 state and district, council region PTAs across the country with a grant to advocate for the National Standards for Family-School Partnerships in their local communities.

View Grant Recipients
  • Florida PTA
  • Illinois PTA
  • New Mexico PTA
  • New York State PTA
  • Tennessee PTA
  • Utah PTA
  • Durham Council of PTAs (North Carolina)
  • Fairfax Special Education PTA and Fairfax County Council PTA (Virginia)
  • Montgomery County Council PTA (Alabama)
  • Montgomery County Council PTA (Maryland)


2020-2022 Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Grant

As part of the grant, these local PTA leaders completed a community profile, conducted listening sessions with underserved and underrepresented members of their community, and created an action plan to address the needs identified during their focus groups.

View Grant Recipients

2021-2022

  • Arleta School PTA (Oregon)
  • Bertha Casey Elementary PTA (Texas)
  • Big Creek Elementary PTA (Ohio)
  • Bromwell Elementary PTA (Colorado)
  • Catonsville Elementary School PTA (Maryland)
  • Earl Warren Middle School PTSA (California)
  • East Silver Spring Elementary PTA (Maryland)
  • Elmont Memorial High School PTSA (New York)
  • Ferdinand T. Day Elementary School PTA (Virginia)
  • Foothills Elementary PTA (Colorado)
  • Francis Nava Elementary PTA (New Mexico)
  • Harrison Park School PTA (Oregon)
  • Homestead PTA (Illinois)
  • Lincoln PTA (Illinois)
  • Little Run Elementary PTA (Virginia)
  • Lynbrook High PTA (New York)
  • May Watts PTA (Illinois)
  • PHACT PTA (Connecticut)
  • Ridgeview Middle PTA (Texas)
  • RISE PTA (Kentucky)
  • Robinson High School PTSA (Florida)
  • Rock Creek Forest Elementary PTA (Maryland)
  • Rockdale Elementary PTA (California)
  • Roger Ludlowe Middle School PTA (Connecticut)
  • Scott Libby PTA (Arizona)
  • South Shore PTA (Washington)
  • Swanson Elementary PTA (Colorado)
  • Windsor PTA (Illinois)

2020-2021

  • Albert Einstein High School PTSA (Maryland)
  • Davidson Middle School PTSA (Florida)
  • Douglas Elementary PTA (North Carolina)
  • Horsemen PTA (New York)
  • James Lane Allen Elementary PTA (Kentucky)
  • James River Elementary PTA (Virginia)
  • Jefferson Lighthouse Elementary PTA (Wisconsin)
  • Orem Junior High PTSA (Utah)
  • Palmer Way PTA (California)
  • Price Elementary School PTA (California)
  • Rancho San Diego PTA (California)
  • Ridge Creek Elementary PTA (Georgia)
  • RM Moore Elementary STEM PTA (Georgia)
  • Wilcoxson Elementary PTA (Connecticut)


2020-2021 Gates Influencing School Funding Grant

The Center for Family Engagement set out to support 5 district, council region PTAs, in understanding more about education funding data in their community, with a focus on per pupil expenditures.

View Grant Recipients
  • Austin Council of PTAs (Texas)
  • Duval County Council of PTAs (Florida)
  • Hillsborough County Council PTA (Florida)
  • Pinellas County Council of PTAs (Florida)
  • Vancouver Council PTA (Washington)


2019-2020 Transformative Family Engagement & Whole Child Learning Grant

National PTA helped to build the capacity of 3 district, council region PTAs by deepening their learning and leadership in transformative family engagement and whole child learning.

View Grant Recipients
  • Austin Council of PTAs (Texas)
  • Lake Washington PTSA Council (Washington)
  • Pinellas County Council of PTAs (Florida)


2018-2020 State PTA Family Engagement Challenge Grant

The Center for Family Engagement empowered state PTAs to be go-to resources for transformative family engagement through this two-stage leadership initiative. In the first stage, 
5 state PTAs received training, networking and technical assistance support from the Center for Family Engagement to engage key partners and develop a roadmap that outlines the goals and activities that will advance their leadership in transformative family engagement. In the second stage, challenge grant participants were eligible for additional funding to implement ideas from their roadmaps.

View Grant Recipients
  • Colorado PTA
  • Kentucky PTA
  • Minnesota PTA
  • New Jersey PTA
  • New York State PTA
  • North Carolina PTA
  • Ohio PTA
  • Oklahoma PTA
  • Oregon PTA
  • Tennessee PTA


Center for Family Engagement Fellows

Begin Your Leadership Journey


Many of the Center for Family Engagement Fellows began their PTA leadership journey with the School of Excellence program; these fellows are designated by this icon: 🎓

Through the School of Excellence program, PTA leaders identify and implement an action plan for school improvement based on PTA's National Standards for Family-School Partnerships and Transformative Family Engagement. Local PTAs are encouraged to enroll to strengthen family-school partnerships the PTA way. Learn more.

School of Excellence

Meet Our Current Fellows

National PTA Principal Fellows for Family-School Partnerships

National PTA's Center for Family Engagement is pleased to announce that five school leaders from across the country have been selected to expand their knowledge and influence related to family-school partnerships. Specifically, they will identify a local problem of practice with the goal of strengthening their leadership around family-school partnerships; develop and implement a leadership plan around their problem of practice; and advise on the development of new resources for school leaders to support implementation of National PTA’s updated National Standards for Family-School Partnerships.

View Fellows

The fellows are listed below.

  • Dr. Latonya Cooper 🎓 (Florida)
    Dr. Latonya Cooper is the principal of Sea Castle Elementary School in Miramar, Fla. Dr. Cooper has over 23 years of experience in education. Through the fellowship, Dr. Cooper looks forward to networking with other school leaders who are taking innovative approaches to family engagement so that her school can engage all their families to help them feel safe on campus and comfortable speaking up about their needs as a community.
  • Demetria Geathers (Florida)
    Demetria Geathers serves as assistant principal for instruction at Sheehy Elementary School in Tampa, Fla. Geathers has over 15 years of experience in education, predominantly in Title I schools, and is actively involved in her school’s PTA. Through the fellowship, she hopes to find innovative ways to engage families despite limited resources available to do so.
  • Dr. Julie Haake 🎓 (Illinois)
    Dr. Julie Haake is the principal of Twin Echo Elementary School in Collinsville, Ill. Dr. Haake has over 30 years of experience in education, with 23 of those years in her current role. Twin Echo Elementary PTA was recognized with the 2023 Phoebe Apperson Hearst Family-School Partnership Award of Merit. Through the fellowship, Dr. Haake hopes to learn more about involving extended family members in the school and increasing membership in their PTA.
  • Katrina Long 🎓 (Georgia)
    Katrina Long is the principal of Reese Road Leadership Academy in Columbus, Ga. She has over 16 years of experience in education and is also involved in many civic and community organizations. Long wants to use this fellowship experience to expand her school’s positive culture to be one of belonging for families who speak a language other than English and families of students with disabilities.
  • Richard Schwartz 🎓 (New York)
    Richard Schwartz serves as assistant principal of Seaford Manor School in Seaford, N.Y. He has multiple years of experience in education with this year being his first as an assistant principal. Schwartz is interested in learning how schools across the country are finding a balance between consistency and innovation so that every family is engaged positively and meaningfully in their child’s education.

Meet Our Past Fellows

Whole Child Fellows

In 2021-2022 National PTA’s Center for Family Engagement welcomed four fellows take part of National PTA Whole Child Fellowship. These fellows are developing their understanding of and advocacy for whole child development and social emotional learning in PTA. They also will offer their insight and recommendations for developing new Healthy Minds resources for PTA leaders, and will help in prioritizing topics for resources to help guide PTAs to become more focused on whole child development. Lastly, they shared their knowledge and experience with local stakeholders to champion whole child development in their own communities.

View Fellows

The fellows are listed below.

  • Danni Kim 🎓 (California)
    Danni Kim is president of Benjamin Franklin Magnet Elementary School PTA in California and is an advocate for empowering children through social and emotional learning and development, diversity, equity, inclusion and art. She has a wealth of experience implementing relevant programming having previously chaired the culture of kindness committee.

  • Ashley Miller (New Jersey)
    Ashley Miller is president of Benjamin Franklin Elementary School PTA in New Jersey. Professionally, she holds a master’s degree in social work and is an adjunct professor, teaching introduction to sociology and student success. Miller uses her social work expertise to enhance families’ understanding of mental health terminology, policies and concepts.

  • Laura Mitchell (Maryland)
    Laura Mitchell is involved at every level of PTA and is the president of her grandchild’s school PTSA, and vice president of advocacy and chair of the substance use prevention committee for Montgomery County Council of PTAs. She is particularly passionate about ensuring equity in mental health and substance use prevention and treatment, trauma informed care and other issues that create barriers to student learning.

  • Michelle Smith 🎓 (Texas)
    Michelle Smith is president of Northwest High School PTSA, vice president of programs for Gene Pike Middle School PTA, vice president of advocacy for Clara Love Elementary School PTA and programs chair for Northwest ISD Council of PTAs. Smith believes strongly in diverse and equitable learning for all children, focusing on the whole child. She also values providing volunteer opportunities for students and parents to model mentorship and build a strong sense of community.



National PTA's Equity Fellows

In 2020-2021 National PTA’s Center for Family Engagement had five fellows take part of National PTA Equity Fellowship. These fellows have been expanded their knowledge and influence related to diversity, equity, and inclusion in PTA. They also offered their insight and recommendations for developing new Diversity, Equity and Inclusion trainings and resources for PTA leaders, have helped in prioritizing topics for resources to help guide PTAs to become more equitable. Lastly, they shared their knowledge and experience with local stakeholders to champion equity in their own communities.

View Fellows

The fellows are listed below.

  • 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.



Transformative Family Engagement Fellows
In 2018-2019, four PTA leaders from across the country were selected as the first group of fellows for National PTA’s new Center for Family Engagement. The fellowship was an initiative to embed transformative family engagement practices, programs and policies across the educational system. These PTA leaders were selected because of their outstanding contributions and commitment to strengthening family engagement in education.
View Fellows

The fellows are listed below.

  • Amy Fox (Utah) 🎓
    Amy Fox currently serves as the National Standards Specialist for Utah PTA, leveraging her two-time experience as a National PTA School of Excellence lead to help PTAs across the state engage families using National PTA’s programs and resources. She is also passionate about reaching out to school administrators, particularly in her local Alpine School District, to inspire and support them in building more meaningful partnerships with their families.

  • Heather Losneck (Ohio) 🎓
    Heather Losneck has served as president of the PTA for her child’s elementary school and middle school. She has also served extensively as a leader of the Berea City School District PTA. In these roles, she has created opportunities that bring multiple perspectives to family engagement, including the creation of a PTA Advisory Board for her school’s National PTA School of Excellence program. She has also advocated with other PTA leaders to include more robust commitments to home-school communication in their school district’s Strategic Vision.

  • Michelle Montemayor (Texas)
    Michelle Montemayor is president of the PTSA for her child’s high school and serves as Field Service Representative for Texas PTA, supporting districts with non-English-speaking populations. She has also worked with Northside Independent School District PTA to bring awareness and support to the National PTA School of Excellence program from the mayor of San Antonio and the district superintendent.

  • Tracie Potts (Maryland)
    Tracie Potts serves as Cluster Coordinator for Montgomery County PTA Council and is also a member of the Galway Lions PTA and Banneker PTSA. As a PTA leader in the country’s 14th largest school district—which serves students from over 150 different countries—she is committed to discovering new ways that transformative family engagement can empower diverse families as their child’s first teachers and advocates.