Creative Science School

PTA Meeting Minutes 4/19/16

brittneyComment

 

  • Policy in past has been to meet as a board and bring issues to the larger group; we’ve switched that so the board is not driving the agenda. The purpose of tonight is to get community input in planning for next year.
  • Introductions-around the circle
  • Todd reviewed our meetings this year-2 socials, some speakers. Want community input: What is useful and meaningful for people?
  • Montavillage: community event to foster relationship with community
    • Food, music, dunk tank (for staff), art activities, cupcake walk
    • Sunday May 15, 1-4pm
    • Help needed setting up stage, sound, supervision of bouncy castle, monitoring dunk tank, supervising art tables, sell raffle tickets at welcome table for Great Wolf Lodge stay and laser tag party package (raffle tickets will actually go on sale May 1). Need donations of cupcakes (store-bought only).
    • Suggestion to contact community schools and involve them.
  • Financial Issues:
    • Every August we determine the budget for upcoming year. We overlooked some things:
      • There is a line item for sexuality education paid to Ada Dortch, but we are not using her. We went through all of the Creative Arts money for music through Vibe. Would like to reallocate the sexuality money to pay for music.
        • PTA will bring Ada back to consult/teach as needed if the staff feels like they would like her services.
        • Brittney motioned to move $2,000 from SE to Music, was approved.
      • $2500 each which is traditionally used for 7th and 8th grade trips was overlooked back in August. We had an extra $5000 extra in the budget that can be used for that.
        • Allison moved to move the money, was approved.
      • Fundraising done this year goes to next year’s budget. We need to talk about how we raise our money, and how we spend it.
        • We haven’t been able to raise as much as usual.
        • Schoola drive is this week. Don’t forget to bring in your old clothes!
      • Survey:
        • 158 respondents.
        • Surprising how many responded, “I’m not able to give” Want to dig deeper into underlying reasons.
        • Possibility of doing a PTA membership drive. Dues include a $9.50 fee that goes to the state. Whatever we decide to charge over that goes to our community.
        • It may make people feel unwelcome if not members.
        • A lot of people may not realize what ways PTA funds enrich the school. Hard to know what is provided by PPS and what is provided by PTA.
        • We should do a drive to get as many people apply for free and reduced lunch as possible. Could we qualify for Title I funding?
        • Back to school night is well attended it is critical to get budget information out early at that point.
        • As a parent, you can come up with an idea, make a proposal and ask board to help. If you feel like something in missing and you want to start something, do!
        • Anyone is welcome to budget meeting in August.
        • Website discussion: run by parent volunteers, we are moving the parent designed 1990s website to Square Space very soon.
      • Halloween Party was the most popular event on survey.
        • There was not a lot of help planning or putting it on.
        • Next year we may have to set a date in early October and if there are not enough volunteers, the event is canceled.
        • People were also disrespectful to volunteers. We need to address how we acknowledge and celebrate the volunteers who help.
        • Suggestion to keep better records of events.
        • Suggestion to keep binders with information about all our events. Someone should be the keeper of the binders. Get everything laid out for the year early so people can commit to something at the beginning.
          • Have at an event that has teachers present for more involvement. And on that note, teachers could be helpful by communicating how the PTA supports the classroom/school.
          • Send home a backpack flyer with a list of all events throughout year at beginning.
          • Have a separate event from back to school night that explains the nuts and bolts of our school to new families. Can be overwhelming and mysterious.
          • Volunteer orientation sessions used to be helpful. They were not well attended this year. Call it orientation or information session. Have the first PTA meeting of the year be Parent Orientation.
        • Suggestion to have sign up sheets at back to school night/ice-cream social type thing. Make it safer for people who don’t usually show up for those things.
        • We were not able to fill the volunteer coordinator position, which has been integral to involvement.
      • Next Meeting we will elect the officers for next year. Site Council has two positions open we need to vote on as well. In Oregon they want SC to decide on professional development for teachers. Here it decides on budget items.
      • Question: If we are justifying our existence as a Focus Option because of our constructivist philosophy, shouldn’t we be spending our money on constructivism? Why are teachers (except kindergarten) not using Jules and Deb? Todd gave some history into Jules and Deb’s involvement through PTA and how it has diminished over time. Can we find some new constructivist consultants to come in and support teachers in that, especially someone who understands needs of mid-level students?
      • Parents were supportive of having a training about constructivism/storyline.
      • Suggestion to make YouTube videos by teachers about what is going on in school. Our new website will make this easier.