November 2015 General Meeting Minutes

Helman Elementary PTO

November 2015 General Meeting Minutes

Date, Time, Location: Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2015 at 6:00 p.m. in the library

Meeting called to order by President Sheri Cellini at 6:04 p.m.

Attendance: Mia Driscoll, Michelle Cuddeback, Nancy Rodriguez, Sheri Cellini, Gus Janeway, Sean Smith, Jessica Bendaw, Anne Robison, Bridget Bloch, Phyllis Cooley, Sue McGrath and Avril Betoushana. There were 13 members in attendance; a quorum was reached. There are 2 guests in attendance, Niki Del Pizzo from Lomakatsi and Jeanne Renaux from Stories Alive.

Minutes: The minutes of 10/6/15 and 9/16/15 meetings were read and accepted with minor changes.

Lomakatsi Ashland Pond Project presentation: given by Niki Del Pizzo

  • Ashland Pond Project- 12 acre project, 5 blocks from Helman Elementary, 8 years running, ongoing collaboration with Lomakatsi and Helman to facilitate education and stewardship of the Ashland pond.
  • Projects being worked on: pond access through blackberry abatement, pond shore stability, native tree planting, weed suppression with cardboard and mulch, trail work and education
  • This year the project will take place Dec. 2,3,4th 2015

Stories Alive presentation: given by Jeanne Renaux

  • After school active literacy program free for students K-5, getting children into the process of writing, with a performance element
  • A kick off assembly engages kids to get excited about writing and teaches how to craft a story, introducing the “story machine” that will then “turn” their stories into skits performed by actors with an assembly of skits.
  • Last year this program was free to our school due to in kind donations. This year the cost to the school would by $3,000.
  • Teachers will discuss adopting this program again this year at the next staff meeting. We will continue the discussion at the December PTA meeting.

Old Business:

Walk-A-Thon recapgiven by Gus Janeway

  • Giving a Big Thank You to the walk-a-thon committee of Gus Janeway, Kayde Lemley, Colleen Gibbs, and Janine Twining for their hard work! They are happy to run this event next year.
  • To increase participation, along with raffle prizes, this year a class pizza party incentive was added, classrooms that had 80% envelope return won pizza for their Halloween party, donated by individual private donations.
  • This year there was close to 70% participation with 5 classes winning a pizza party.
  • Looking for feedback from teachers on rewards and incentives for the future
  • In the future of this event, Sheri made the suggestion to always have trash cans outside at the event to keep the grounds clean and that teachers have direct input and more information into the event details on the day of the event.
  • A request from the teachers, through Mia Driscoll, is that school events be brought to the PTA meetings to give teachers the info they need and time to discuss the event at the staff meeting, with final feedback and approval of event details at the subsequent PTA meeting.
  • $10,392 was raised this year!

Committee Reports:

Fall Book Swap: given by Bridget Bloch

  • This fall it will take place in the cafeteria on the stage Nov. 18, 19,20th, before class 7:45-8:15am and during lunch times.
  • Through an email via Malinda, parent volunteers will be recruited for the morning shifts one week before the event.
  • There are plenty of books for every child, even a free box of books to choose from for those who don’t have any to swap.
  • Bridget can no longer run the Spring Book Swap and we will need a parent volunteer coordinator.

Giving Snowflake: given by Sheri Cellini

  • Daisy Herring will be the new parent volunteer coordinator of this event as Sheri Cellini is stepping down after this year.
  • Every year is different in how many families ask for assistance, Sheri is suggesting that if there are not enough snowflakes for all those who wish to contribute, that we ask Maslow Project for gift suggestions that can be sent to families through their organization. 
  • A motion was made by Mia Driscoll, seconded by Anne Robison and approved by the group that in years where we don’t have a high need with in the school, to extend the snowflake project to add the Maslow Project.
  • Communication of this activity will be sent out via email from Malinda the Friday before Thanksgiving. The deadline for gift requests is Nov. 16th.  Snowflakes will be hung the Monday after Thanksgiving break.

OBOB:  given by Jenny Hall, via an email sent to Sheri

  • There are many more participating students this year than in years past. There are 23 teams created.
  • The battle will be held in February. There is a need for volunteers to help with judging or asking questions.
  • Books have arrived and the cost was $711.70
  • Sheri has asked Jenny for an updated budget.

Treasure’s Report: given by Anne Robison

  • Oregon PTA dues fully paid
  • There are some uncleared checks that need cashing or will be voided
  • Mia, the teacher rep. will ask teachers at their staff meeting to verify their approval of distributing classroom funds to each class by a per pupil amount.
  • Budget approved

Website: given by Sean Smith

  • Sean is noticing many outside attempts at hacking our website. He is very diligent about making sure this doesn’t happen and will take further measures if needed.

Open Items:

Sandboxes: given by Mia Driscoll

  • Sand has arrived and will be delivered Sat. Nov. 6th in the morning. Mia will be at the school to receive the delivery.
  • Avril motions that we hire and pay $25 each for two high school students through the “rent-a-player” service, to move sand. This motion is approved. Sheri will hire the students.

Student Council Project:  given by Michelle Cuddeback

  • They will be writing and presenting a proposal for funding a project this year
  • Some ideas they have are: a “work it out wall”, a “Buddy Bench”, new playground equipment

Tower Garden Project: given by Sheri Cellini

  • To go along with our garden project, Sheri made a suggestion to add tower gardens in between the garden beds
  • Cost $500 for the initial set up which includes 12 vegetable plants of our choice.

Non Plastic Silverware donations for cafeteria: given by Mia Driscoll

  • Our reusable silverware supply as dwindled. She requests that an email go out asking for silverware donations. Avril will construct an email to be sent by Malinda to Helman families.
  • Every part of the program is in place and in working order; we just need more forks and spoons, NO knives.

Movie Day Popcorn

  • Popcorn is handed out at Movie day to each student at the assembly before winter break. In years past a giant bag of popcorn is purchased at Food For Less. She is looking for clarification as to if PTA pays for this. We also need to purchase popcorn bags.
  • Yes, PTA does pay. There is money in the budget under “events other”

4th and 5th grade bike repair:

  • Still waiting on a report of needs from Mark Sherbow

Website Contact info Update:

  • Contact info has been updated on the school district website and will be updated on the Helman website as well.

Next meeting is at 6pm December 1st in the school library

Meeting adjourned at 8:00 p.m. by Sheri Cellini

Minutes compiled by Jessica Bendaw, Recording Secretary