• Welcome to the 2018-19 School Year! I hope everyone is settling in to the new school year!
     
    What an amazing year 2017-18 was for SEPTAR with 11 meetings, with some of our largest audiences yet and a variety of interesting topics, relevant to the families and students of the Redwood City School District and beyond.
     
    SEPTAR continues to be one of the only PTAs in the entire state solely in existence for the benefit of families and educators of special needs children. As a member of the 17th District of California PTAs (the chapter of the state PTA council for San Mateo County), we have to file regular reports stating the number of paid members for the organization, and the 17th District takes a portion of the membership fees to cover our "membership" and recognition as a PTA in California. SEPTAR collects a small amount over the 17th District fees, bringing the dues to $10/year. 
     
    Membership dues and general donations help SEPTAR pay for speaker fees, babysitting fees, translator fees at our association meetings, and also helps us offer microgrants to the Redwood City Special Education staff. Any classes/workshops/training that the Special Education staff wants to take, above that provided by the District's Special Education department, is all paid out of pocket by our teachers and staff so we work to support them. They also get a very small budget for classroom supplies/equipment, so our grants can be used to pay for those supplies/equipment.
     
    We hope you will consider joining SEPTAR and taking advantage of the benefits of becoming a member (especially as a staff members). Your annual membership gives you access to the SEPTAR Yahoo Group, notices of upcoming meetings, and access to the community of families receiving special education services in the Redwood City or surround school districts and professionals in the field of Special Education and therapy.  
     
    In addition, your membership allows you access to $250 mini-grants for professional development, field trips, supplies, or anything else you may need to better support your students. In the past three years, we've only received four grant applications, and we want to be sure that you know that this money is waiting to help you!
     
    This year, we have joined the California State PTA in offering online membership through TOTEM. To join/renew your SEPTAR membership, please go to:
     
    A $1 processing fee will be added to the membership fees, thus raising the electronic membership payment to $11.
     
    There, you'll be able to select to auto-renew your SEPTAR each July 1st (the fiscal year is technically July 1 - June 30) and/or add a donation with your membership. 
     
    Membership scholarships are available and can be requested by sending an email to septarinfo@gmail.com
     
    We will also accept paper memberships; please print out the membership form on our website at http://www.septar.org/join and mail in your membership form and dues.
     
    Please join SEPTAR today!
     
    Also new this year, please find attached a new SEPTAR brochure in English and Spanish which will be given to all our Special Education staff to hand out to families. Please share with anyone you feel could benefit from learning about and joining SEPTAR. 
     
    We are collecting donations to help print the new brochure as we will need to print close to 2,000 pieces to hand out to all families, have on hand at our meetings, and share with community members. 
     
    I look forward to a great year ahead!
     
    Best regards,
     
    Leslie Stafford
    President, SEPTAR
     
    Family + Educators = Community