The North Carolina
Association of Teacher Assistants



The North Carolina Association of Teacher Assistants promotes
the important role of teacher assistants in the public schools,
provides professional training opportunities, and works to
improve salaries and employment security.

Members benefit from

* invaluable PEER NETWORKING





* opportunities for RECOGNITION and AWARDS.

Special Events

Thursday Evening Welcome Event

Thursday evening at 7 PM we will have our Welcome Event with Keynote Speaker Dia Collins Thomas. 

Dia Collins Thomas

Dia Collins Thomas is currently a principal at Bladen Lakes Primary in Bladen County Schools. She has been an educator for over 18 years, formerly a high school math teacher and a math instructional coach. She graduated from Elon University with her Bachelors degree in mathematics and from Fayetteville State University with a Masters degree in education. In 2016 she graduated from Gardner-Webb University with a Masters degree in Executive Leadership Studies and is continuing on to pursue her doctoral degree in Educational Leadership.This is her fourth year presenting at the NCATA annual conference and her first as our keynote speaker. She enjoys learning something new each year! Dia Collins Thomas will also be a workshop presenter on Saturday, teaching "H.A.T. S...Google's G Suite."

Thursday Evening Karaoke immediately after the Welcome Event

Friday Evening Awards Dinner

Friday evening at 6 PM doors will open to enter the banquet hall for the Friday Evening Awards Dinner with Keynote Speaker Yevonne Brannon. Initial and upgrade PDP recipients will be awarded their certificates as their names are announced and will walk across the stage for this special recognition. The meal will be a buffet served by the hotel staff. We ask that our attendees wear red this evening, if possible.

The Hat Parade: At past conferences we had dress up nights to go with our themes. This year we will have a "Hat Parade" so start thinking about how you might want to implement the conference theme into a hat you will wear on this special night as we all parade around the banquet hall, proud of all the many hats we wear! 

Dr. Yevonne Brannon

Yevonne Brannon
 is a former Wake County Commissioner and PTA President, who has directed the Center for Urban Affairs and Community Services at North Carolina State University since 1991. She also serves as chair of Public Schools First NC, a statewide organization that advocates for high-quality public education.

Dr. Brannon received her Ph.D. in sociology from NC State University. She has over 35 years of experience in applied social science research and has devoted her adult life to child and public advocacy with a focus on education and the environment. She has served as President of the Wake County PTA Council and in leadership roles at two groups she helped to create, WakeUP Wake County and Great Schools in Wake.

Dr. Brannon is also involved in numerous civic and church groups including the Western Boulevard Presbyterian Church where she started the "Hands to Hearts" Prayer Shawl Ministry. She has also served as a Sunday school teacher for more than 20 years.

Dr. Brannon has received numerous awards for her contributions to state and local PTAs and was recognized with the Governor's Award for Outstanding Service in 1988. She has earned an Outstanding Service Extension Award and the Mary Frances Hester Service Award for her work at NC State. She was inducted into the YWCA Academy of Women in 2011 and named a 'Champion of Children' by the North Carolina Foundation for Public School Children in 2014. 

Dr. Brannon was the impetus for the 2019-20 Senate Bill 329 and its House Companion Bill 428 called "The K-3 Reading and Literacy Improvement Act" which sought to appropriate funds for every kindergarten through second grade classroom to have a full-time teacher assistant and every three third grade classrooms to have a full-time teacher assistant. 

Lynn Edmonds, Outreach Director for Public Schools First NC, will be presenting a workshop on Friday called “Communicating Your Value: How to Talk With Lawmakers.”

Friday Evening E.H.R. Bingo after the Banquet
in Timberlake Hall
11 cards for $10 or $1 each.
Limited daubers will be available for sale.

Saturday Evening Awards Banquet

Saturday evening at 6 PM doors will open to enter the banquet hall for the Saturday Evening Awards Banquet. This is our gala night, the night we award our student scholarships and recognize schools that have achieved 100% NCATA membership. We recognize our district level Teacher Assistant of the Year finalists and then award the state NCATA Teacher Assistant of the Year. The meal will be a plated dinner served by the hotel staff. This is our dress up night, the night we celebrate YOU! 

Sunday Morning Praise Service

The Praise Service is a time for attendees to gather for prayer, hymns, and praise before heading home from conference. It will be held in Timberlake hall at 8:30 AM. At the Praise Service, we remember teacher assistants who has passed away since our last conference in a special ceremony to honor and remember them. 

North Carolina Association of Teacher Assistants
PO Box 334
Welcome, NC 27374
Phone Toll Free: 1.800.979.2077
Fax: 1.800.979.2077

For issues on this website, please email Melinda Zarate, Communications Director.  (

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