Muddy Brook PTA
Building Community, Enriching Education
Call to order
Kim Houston called the meeting to order at 7:01.
K. Houston reported that at present, we have approximately $13,000 in checking account. Most of the teacher stipends have been disbursed. $2100 has gone out for field trips, leaving $2900 in the field trip budget for the year. Winter Wonderland brought in approximately $1136 with expenses yet to be deducted. Holiday Craft workshop was very well attended with 136 students. We saved money by using most of the craft materials from the PTA closet. We have good upcoming sources of revenue for the rest of the year including: Read-a-thon, Mud Day, possibly art auction with individual classes making collaborative art to be auctioned.
Appointing School Council Representatives
M. Farrell described the purpose of the school council. The school council is intended to include the principal, representative teachers and parents who come together to discuss school improvement. School council is a way to share accountability with the community—create goals, specifically, measurable goals and hold the school accountable. K. Houston requested parent volunteers to join the council and has assembled a slate. K. Houston will move to appoint, Sabrina Jaffe, Maria Landeta Spratt, Jill Sweet, Selina Lamb, Corey Sprague, Tracy Weston, Michaela Dohoney, Kim Houston,(two were deleted here as they were not actually on the list – my bad. Michaela Dohoney moved that we accept the council as presented by K. Houston. Julia Krahm seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous.
Nominating committee for 2012/13 officers
K. Houston requested that we put together a nominating committee as suggested by National PTA guidelines. She asked for volunteers, people who might be interested in being officers or for people to approach individuals who might want to be involved or be a good addition to the PTA. Please contact K. Houston if you are interested in serving on a nominating committee.
Local Berkshire business fundraiser made $676.
Spring flower/bulb fundraiser: K. Houston proposed a catalog sale for spring bulbs and flowers and then asked for local alternatives. Corey Sprague suggested contacting Project Native.
After School Program & Spirit Wear: Cara Becker is working on a new schedule for the afterschool program. Because of previous commitments the gymnasium will be unavailable for much of February. Thus, the bulk of the afterschool programs will begin on Feb. 27nd, ones that need the gym will wait until later.
Rewards/Scrip Report: Jen Knopf reported that Box Tops have brought in $1200 so far; the deadline to submit boxtops for the year is February. Thus, we will plan one more challenge before February. J. Knopf suggested a Boxtops for Books challenge. She asked for volunteers to help sort labels for education.
Mud Day: C. Sprague reported that Mud Day is scheduled for Saturday, May 19th. She described the event as being a celebration of spring, the school and the community. It is intended to be a unifying event that brought together the teachers, students and members of the community. Mud Day focuses on healthy living including food, education and the environment. C. Sprague requested volunteers at all levels, coming to help for the day or helping to prepare by helping with preparations.
Family Game Night is scheduled for Thursday, January 19th from 6:!5-7:45. Anyone interested in volunteering should contact Kim.
Literacy Month (March) and Family Literacy Night (March 7th), Read-A-Thon (March 2-12th)
K. Houston: the school has proposed Literacy Month for month of March. M. Farrell described Literacy Night as one night involving dinner, transportation, and literacy information. Information disseminated will include topics related to how to help kids select books, how to create a reading nook, how to choose appropriate reading levels. The idea revolves around establishing a “family literacy routine”. The night will include a table for students to get library cards. D. Benham reported that the Read-a-Thon will start off with a Pep Rally during the all school assembly. “A Hungry Caterpillar” will be the theme of the event. It was suggested that we approach corporate underwriters to be engaged in this process. People should brainstorm about local companies to participate
Grant Requests –
Melissa Farrell: Digital Instant Camera
M. Farrell requested a digital instant camera. She proposed using it in order to catch kids being good, take photos of them and give them the photo in order to take home to show their caregivers. M. Farrell also suggested that the camera can be used at events for quick fundraising as well; for example, she can take pictures at events and sell them for $1. Julia Krahm moved to approve the grant request, Michaela Dohoney seconded the motion. The vote was unanimous.
Thad Dingman: iPads has asked for a $5000 grant to purchase iPads for student use. M. Farrell described ways in which iPads are used in the classroom, mainly for differentiated instruction. She reported that students can be called out to do extra work using an iPad both for enrichment and for remediation. H. Veague suggested doing a low budget fundraiser to “sponsor” an iPad. Julia Krahm suggested using local media to either acknowledge the donors or encourage community sponsorship. C. Sprague asked about the training of teachers to use the iPads for instruction and how to ensure that the iPads are being used equitably throughout the school. K. Houston suggested inviting T. Dinghman to come to the next PTA meeting to talk about the technology fund and the plans for implementing iPad use in the school.
Father-Daughter Dance will be tentatively scheduled for April and we will table the discussion to consider the details regarding the event. The dance will be considered again at February’s meeting.
The next PTA meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, February 8th.
Meeting adjourned by K. Houston at 8:04 pm.