PTO Meeting Minutes

            <div class="paragraph" style="text-align:left;"><span style="text-decoration:none; font-style:normal; font-weight:400; color:rgb(102, 102, 102); "><span style="text-decoration:none; font-style:normal; font-weight:400; color:rgb(102, 102, 102); "><span style="text-decoration:none; font-style:normal; font-weight:400; color:rgb(102, 102, 102); "><strong>October 7, 2014</strong><br />&gt;Next Meeting: October 28, 2014<br /><strong>Come to two consecutive meetings at PTO and you are a voting member!<br /></strong><br />Presidents: Jenn Irvine and Kevin Fudge<br />Treasury: Andy Forbes and Jennifer Lewis-Forbes<br />Recording Secretary: Sarah Evans<br /><br /><strong>The PTO bulletin board is on playground. Look there for the latest news! News also updated online!<br /></strong><br />Jenn Irvine (JI): A lot to get through tonight. <br /><strong><br />SCHOOL COMMITTEE REPORT</strong><br />by: Jenn Susse (JS) - School committee member<br />Jennifer.Susse at gmail.com<br /><br />-Evaluation of Superintendent<br />-Digesting MCAS - 5th graders were number one two years ago<br />-Youth risk behavior survey is coming up - take a look at this sobering document<br />    &gt;trend is good because of a decrease alcohol drug, increase stress<br />    &gt; but…. not increasing but some stats still too high - 20% of girls cut themselves; think of suicide<br />    &gt;survey is a good resource for parents of 4th and 5th graders.<br />-Stratton rebuild numbers - so come to parody to others they need to spend cash<br />-SPED review - was in trouble a few years ago with bad paperwork and bad communications. But this year we passed everything. Not perfect but no big red flags.<br />-Not official yet but looking to do outreach via survey to parents - idea is to give parents a chance to talk to school admin. So this is a baby step. Trying to take a consensus.<br />    &gt;ideas: principal happiness, scheduling (half days once a week vs random Tuesdays?), educational  issues, longer school day? wish list for 5-10 years? <br />-Jan/Feb - common core and youth assessment forum<br />JI: How can PTO support you?<br />JS: I am a conduit between parents and school committee. Send me little things that I can pass along. <strong>And send me email.<br /><br />PRINCIPAL REPORT</strong><br />Thank you to Jennifer. I can give guidance to parents but sometimes I can’t give more than guidance so nice to have a representative at the Council.<br /><br />First newsletter went out yesterday. I really have things to write about - kids have immersed themselves in the responsive classroom. Those are going well. We are settled and up and running. Schedule glitches being ironed out and teachers getting into meat of school.<br /><br />I also just finished school council and finished the school improvement plan. The plan talks about everything. It is big. Council picked out what they are responsible for. For example, I can communicate through newsletter. But teachers are the front line. Teachers will be encouraged do the Weebly websites. Some teachers are a bit nervous about making, updating and are parents looking at it?<br /><br />What would you go to the website for? The question is do we provide everyone a template that teachers can then customize? Teachers will have input at Leadership. Parents - we need input. <br />Please have feedback by October 28. Goal is to have minimum standards for teachers communicating to parents (i.e. newsletter or online only).<br /><br />JI will conduct a survey on the playground.<br /><br /><strong>BOOK FAIR  Oct 20-24</strong><br />&gt;Jill and Patty<br />Thanks to volunteers! And we need more help. <br />Friday 17th - we need help to set up. <br />Extended shopping hours 1:30 - 3 on Monday 10/23. <br />10-21 -  one to two more people please. <br />10/23 cash, fruit, baked goods <br />…and then Friday 1:30-3:00 to help break down book fair.  <br /><br />Any help you can give would be great. Thank you! <br /><br /><strong>HARDY HOEDOWN Nov 14</strong><br />&gt;Pete<br />JI: Need anything? <br />P: I haven’t got sign up out yet so that is on its way. I’m behind on that.<br />We will have live caller and live music. I need to finish that arranging.<br />Things are proceeding and both are available on 14th.<br /><br /><strong>WINTER CRAFT FAIR</strong><br />Any artisan vendors? send them along to committee chair if they want a table.<br />How about Open Studios and Jenn Flores? (she is at Thompson).<br /><br /><strong>NEW! HOLIDAY WRAPPING at HENRY BEAR in ARLINGTON Dec 13</strong><br />Sign for 1/2 hour or hour to wrap and you get percent of sales and tips. <br />You can go wrap and make a few bucks for PTO.<br />We have all day. Heather saw a flyer at the store and then just signed up the PTO.<br /><br />JI: That is us through the end of the year.  Additional things:  Arlington Education Foundation - at Flore - the big fundraiser for the year. More information coming. 11/24 And then Thanksgiving food drive? (AYCC  Mary DeCorsey) Who wants to be a liaison? Katie Garrett says yes. She will coordinate box and all that stuff.<br /><br />Next up? Committees!<br /><br /><strong>GARDEN COMMITTEE</strong><br />Cleaning Oct 26 at 2pm. <br />New garden shed!!! John Hoppy put it together and fifth grade girl scouts put it together. To be painted and decorated.<br /><br /><strong>PLAYGROUND COMMITTEE</strong><br />Presentation last year showed the dangers. We have gone around with town and district. Who maintains it? Attorneys have tried. Linda Flynn and Clara Dalton (nurse) did a review of the bad. Simple things that we could PTO fix.<br />Painting<br />1. painting basketball pole yellow<br />-three people have gotten concussions this year.<br />2. bars on the side of swing set are just the right height for head hitting - paint yellow.<br />Everything will be painted bright yellow so kids have a visuals.<br /><em><br />Woodchips</em><br />Last year 9 inches too low. Structural issue? Rain happens and they all float out to the sidewalk.<br /><br />What to do as a PTO? What about taking the $1100 from falsest which HASP will match for more wood chips. We will also need a border along fence so wood chip won’t float away. This is feasible cost wise just takes time to do. <br /><br />No motion needed for wood chip because budget has 500 for chips and we’ll see if Todd will match. And we can paint. That should get us 40 cubic yards or so. <br /><br /><em>Who owns it? </em>School department owns it but they won’t finance it. <br /><em>What to do? </em>Anyone want to spearhead the effort? Lisa and Mickey will have discussion and other parents will be involved. Talk to Kirsten who has report things don’t meet code.<br /><em><br />Peaceful Playgrounds</em><br />We need the basics. Like hopscotch and four square. So Andy and JI figure out a date and put out a volunteer call for the painting. We talked about hiring someone to do the US map. JI will ask if a contractor painter will do it “for the children”.  But if no volunteer, we’ll hire someone. <br /><br />Get your paint clothes out because we are painting the playground.<br /><br /><em>Bricks for garden</em><br />Deb and Tom donated bricks and PTO sold them. We asked them to be back by this Friday. We still have a pallet and a half of bricks. If you want to purchase a brick then buy one! Maybe each classroom get five bricks. John Hoppy can paint the rest and lay down the floor. We’ll need some   money to pay for the floor.<br /><br /><strong>-Get a brick!</strong><br /><strong><br />SPIRIT COMMITTEE</strong><br />Ideas for gear to sell: Sweatpants, flannel pjs, knit hats, mitten , scarf, water bottles, oval magnets for car, tshirts, headbands <br /><br />Store for website? Already have a Zazzle site for custom gear but maybe something on Hardy School for general gear.<br /><strong><br />NEW FAMILY WELCOME COMMITTEE</strong><br />Email to new families. Dana says “If you have any feedback let me know.”<br /><strong><br />FINANCE COMMITTEE</strong><br />Andy: Events - Hardy Fest made money, Ice Cream Social lost money (tends to be too much ice cream - plus supplies went up so maybe increase price per cup next year?). Appeal went out last Friday and as of Sunday PTO has nine donations with 20 checks in the bin. <br /><br />NOTE: You can go to website for information on company gift matching your d

onation.

>Field day t-shirts bought and sold at Back to School Night and other events.
>Teacher supplemental over $700
>$1390 science hardship for the camp (four day three night science camp)
>responsive classroom handouts – PTO split fee with school
>Promo programs like the Target red card and all that to get PTO a bit of money (365 last year).
>Box top $1000 a year. Lets reemphasize them around holidays.

Class Vice Presidents
Room Parent Letter – did people get it? Pete says I received it but didn’t process it. JI will send it out again. Last year Jill and I talked about how to communicate room parent and PTO. This year we want focus to be more on room parent and teacher along with the supportive PTO.

Patty will compile room parent list from VPs so JI has a list and then the PTOs knows who is who.

Official Business
Pushing By laws and annual appeal to next meeting.

Communication with Parents and the Community.

Facebook and social media discussion.
KD worries about the fallout in terms of Facebook comments. “So I think that maybe we try to do it carefully and what other options are out there.”
> Everyone feels the PTO needs more engagement with parents.

Next PTO Meeting: October 28, 2014