While summer vacation still has several more weeks to run, the Huntington UFSD PTA Council and individual PTA building units have all reorganized and are ready to welcome families to the new school year.
“We are a district-wide group of parent and teacher volunteers aspiring to be a voice for all the families in our district, a resource for administrators and staff, and powerful advocates for every child in our community,” said Kristin Cosover Kanzer, Huntington PTA Council president. “We welcome fresh energy and we embrace new ideas. We hope you will consider joining as a member of your children’s school units. A small donation of time or money can make a huge difference for our children.”
Parents are encouraged to attend PTA meetings whenever their respective schedule will allow. “Your attendance will help you stay well-informed of all the wonderful events and opportunities your children will be offered this year,” Mrs. Kanzer said.
The PTA Council will meet six times during the 2019/20 school year in the School Heritage Museum at Huntington High School. “It is your chance to get district-wide updates and to have broader discussions on state and federal changes, student health and welfare, school safety and state and district budget matters,” Mrs. Kanzer said. “All PTA members are welcome to attend.”
The roots of Huntington UFSD’s PTA date to 1923 and Lowndes Avenue School in Huntington Station (which was located on the plot on which Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School stands today).
“The nucleus of the first PTA of Lowndes Avenue School/Roosevelt School, consisting of about six parents, met together in Room 115 to discuss ways and means of providing free milk to a large number of undernourished children whose parents were economically unable to supply their children with the necessary amount of milk for good health,” wrote Roosevelt Principal Agnes B. Bailey in 1958. “This was about 1923.”
The parent’s milk campaign was the start of something special in Huntington. “At this time we were buying milk in quart bottles (retail price) and serving it in paper cups,” wrote Mrs. Bailey. “The front of our auditorium was the area used for this purpose.”
The group’s first organized fundraiser was a roast beef dinner prepared and served on the second floor of the old four-room School Street School. It was located across the street from the current Jack Abrams School parking lot (the one with the basketball courts on the south side of the building).
“PTA’s mission is to make every child’s potential a reality by engaging and empowering families and communities to advocate for all children,” Mrs. Kanzer said. “We are the oldest and largest child advocacy association in America, comprised of over 24,000 local PTAs and four million plus members. ‘Every child. One voice.’”
Even after 96 years, Huntington UFSD’s PTA units show no sign of slowing down. The 2019/20 district calendar is filled with PTA events in every building. An exciting year lies ahead.
“Last year our Huntington students were the recipients of thousands of dollars and hundreds of volunteer hours donated by our community to our PTA,” Mrs. Kanzer said. “Among the many services PTA provided were community and family events, arts in education programs for our schools, school beautification projects, child anxiety and stress discussions and input to the district’s budgeting process. We look forward to another great year and hope you will join us in continuing to build our community.”