General Meeting Minutes 10/5/21

Rattlesnake Elementary School Parent Teacher Association

Meeting Minutes for Tuesday October 5, 2021 from 8:15 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. 

Virtually Attended by Janel Chin, Dana Hupp, Shannon Murphy, Melody Nelsen, Christy Cheviron, Jennifer Oakland, Carrie Sweatland, Eliza Clayton, Molly Cottrell, Jen Sheldon, Hanna Lewis, Kim Shappee, Lee Martin, Molly Bradford

Welcome and Intros

  • Call for other items 
  • Principal and Teacher Updates
  • Committee Updates Reports
    • Battle of the Books (Dana): starts this week for 4th and 5th graders. Encourages reading and reading comprehension. Students read 12 books over the year. Once weekly meeting with a parent volunteer at 2nd half of lunchtime and through recess. Then in April, a student from Rattlesnake will be eligible to compete in full MCPS BOB.
    • Garden (Jessica)
      • Produce distribution on October 1st some volunteers reported that it was a lot of fun. Molly Cottrell said it was a big hit and all the vegetables were taken except for a few tomatoes.
    • ROC (Jen O.)
      • Celebration planned for Friday October 15th from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. Animal Wonders has  been invited to attend
        • Celebration and thank-yous for the first ½ hour – we hope to raise money to support future collaborations to install bird boxes, elk spotting binoculars and/or native plants or other outdoor education displays. Carrie Sweatland will work with some students to make thank you poster.
        • Animal Wonders’ live animal presentation scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m.
          • Masks will be required to protect those not eligible for vaccination yet which includes RE students and Animal Wonders’ animals!
        • Swag will not be available unless a volunteer is available to set-up, sell and take-down.
  • Teacher Appreciation (Lauren / Jen S.)
    • Jo Boyle donated scones which were distributed during the 3rd week of September– thank-you already done
    • Voted for using swag mugs for teacher appreciation this year, 40-50 mugs approved.
    • Lauren, Jen and Heidi assisted Sarah Smith with Picture Day yesterday — how’d it go?

Health and Safety Updates

  • Hospitals remain quite full in our community. Discussion of what we can do to help:
    • Make sure our students have clean, well fitting face coverings
      • There is a still a need for cloth face coverings that fit small faces, please consider making and donating to our school
    • Check our students for symptoms before sending them to school each morning
    • Use face coverings in settings with the potential for transmission
    • Keep our social circles small
    • Keep gatherings outside as much as possible
    • Encourage those who are eligible to get vaccinated to do so
    • Isolate after potential exposures
    • Report questionable situations related to the school day such as buses without windows cracked
    • The school is looking for a couple of noon duties to support teachers and staff with outdoor lunches, please consider applying if you have time between the hours of 10:45 a.m. and 1:15 p.m.
    • Discussion about lunch outside over winter. Comparison to MIS and Sussex. Our larger student population poses a significant challenge and we need to consider inclusion in terms of students who may not consistently come to school with appropriate clothing for outdoor lunch.
    • RE could also use more substitute teachers for those who have availability during the school day to work.
    • We are looking for a volunteer to coordinate communication regarding an outside, volunteer supervised option for students whose families may not want their students eating lunch indoors.
    • How else can we show appreciation for healthcare workers? Hannah Lewis working on gift card drive for CMC and St. Pats

Fundraising Updates

  • We are looking for volunteers to take pictures at events and help create a yearbook.
  • We have many items of swag that are available for sale, we are looking for volunteers to assist with potential future swag sales.
  • Sign-up genius is live for the Book Fair (November 9th-11th), please consider volunteering! Schedule may be adjusted b/c parent teacher conferences will be mostly virtual.
  • We hope to hold a salmon sale again at some point this fall (TBA) but without some of the complications that contactless delivery created.
  • We plan to hold our annual Direct Donate fundraiser in December.
  • We plan to hold an on-line auction again in April but will need volunteers to make that possible.

New Funding Requests

  1. Halloween Celebratory Funding.
    1. Last year Dana Hupp donated a healthy snack and small Halloween themed trinket to every RE student to minimize the pressure on teachers to celebrate during the unprecedented October we all experienced last school year. Principal Wright has asked if the PTA could do this again as it was VERY well received but more financial support is needed as our PTA does not budget for holiday celebrations.
      1. Dana estimates that with increased enrollment it will cost close to $800 to provide this once again (~$300 for popcorn, ~$264 for gummies, ~$200 for trinkets like the ‘color-yourself’ bracelet the 1st – 3rd graders received last year and/or the mechanical pencils the 4th & 5th graders received. We have raised around $200 so far.
    2. Dana has graciously offered to once again order and distribute in advance of Halloween. If parents want to contribute, they can drop off a check with secretary at entrance of the school to be placed in the PTA box. In memo write “for Halloween treats”. funding goal is 800 dollars. After discussion, PTA voted to cover this expense.
  2. Robin Nygren is hoping for some additional funds beyond her classroom grant to help her adjust to the new schedule for specialists this year. 
    1. She believes that the new schedule is conducive to incorporating STEM and literacy based learning centers into library time.
      1. She would like to purchase building sets and apps for the ipads (30 licenses), some listening center equipment and audio books and some think fun games
      2. She is happy to offer more specifics but asked for an idea of what kind of budget she could expect.

Funding Requests Granted:

  1. New kindergarten teacher Clarke McGibbens was granted $299 in academic enrichment funds for an area rug. These academic enrichment funds can not be reimbursed until Shannon receives receipt.
  2. Sara Ibis was granted $60 in academic enrichment funds for science related Professional Development
  3. The board approved a request for an additional $399 classroom grant for special educators at RE.
    1. Taylor Sanchez and Michelle Louquet have each requested $300 classroom grants. We only budgeted $300 to be split between special ed teachers but because they teach different grades (Michelle teaches 3rd – 5th graders and Taylor teaches K – 2nd graders). 
  4. Shannon asked but we had not yet heard back about Nicole Luther and if funds would be shared beyond the two special education teachers who have made this request.
  5. Many teachers have been using their $300 classroom grants to purchase books and other supplies for their classrooms.

Announcements

  • The following events are in need of volunteer committees in order to occur, please let us know if you might be willing to help out with the:
    • Spring Auction
    • Bike Rodeo (tentatively planned for Friday April 29th) 
    • Running Club (tentatively planned for May 2021)
    • Fun Run (tentatively planned for June 9th or 10th)
  • The next PTA General Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday November 2nd at 8:15 a.m.
  • PTA Leadership meetings are generally held the first Thursday of each month from 4:30 – 5:30 p.m. Please let us know if you have a topic that you would like to present to the leadership board at one of our meetings. 

General PTA meeting Minutes 9/7/21

Rattlesnake Elementary School Parent Teacher Association

Tuesday September 7, 2021

In Attendance: Janel Chin, Dana Hupp, Melody Nelsen, Lauren Sheetz, Jessica Carter, Molly Cattrell, Jen Oakland, Judson Corn, Sara Lee, Pam Wright, Gloria Cahill

Committee updates

Teacher Appreciation Committee: Flowers for teachers went well

Garden Committee: 54 families adopted the garden with 74 garden visits. Good engagement. Daily sign up was popular. Will likely stick with that. Working with century link regarding soil remediation and plum tree replacement after chemicals were sprayed. Planning two distributions of harvest to the kids. Looking for a few more parent volunteers for the 2nd distribution October 1, 2021. 1st grade and 4th grade will do the harvesting prior to Oct 1.  If teachers have needs for pumpkins, let us know so we can get the pumpkins from the pumpkin tunnel to those teachers. 

Teacher updates: 

-A lot of new staff, particularly kindergarten. Maybe reach out to that team to ask if they have needs.  

-Families need to avoid using playground until 3:40 because some buses are arriving after dismissal and they need the playground to supervise that group safely. 

-Reminder to walk bikes on school grounds. Some close calls in terms of riding through parking lot and riding through buses. 

Health and Safety Updates

  • Delta variant is presumably transmitting even amongst vaccinated populations and thus the requirement that face coverings be worn indoors at this time.
  • Outside of school hours, we ask that RE families do their part by avoiding un-masked indoor settings as much as possible for those who have contact with not yet vaccinated individuals. AND if your student is exhibiting any symptoms and/or you know of any potential exposures, keep them isolated.
  • The school is looking for a couple of noon duties to support teachers and staff with outdoor lunches, please consider applying if you have time between the hours of 10:45 a.m. and 1:15 p.m.
  • RE could also use more substitute teachers for those who have availability during the school day to work.
  • If you would like to donate cloth face coverings to our school community, please let us know. 
  • If you would like to contribute to enhancements to outdoor learning at R.E., please let us know as plans for the Rattlesnake Outdoor Classroom (ROC) are underway. ROC is in its last stages now and should be completed this week.  The amphitheater should accommodate an entire grade.  Next step is enhancements. ? Signage on local birds ? Bird boxes ? Elk spotting binoculars to point at Mount Jumbo? Native plant garden (maybe partnering with local nursery or landscaping company)
  • There will likely be maintenance needed twice per year and PTA can coordinate volunteers. 
  • ? Animal wonders for kick off ROC event 10/14/21 or 10/15/21?
  • Outdoor lunch- discussed tents for rain or snow.  Kids will be inside for cold temperatures.  Max of 5 close contacts b/c of assigned seating. Some families may take kids out of school for lunch during indoor eating days. Need to sort out how this will be communicated with parents.  Could utilize ROC to reduce numbers of kids in the cafeteria when weather permits.

Fundraising Updates

  • We have many items of swag that are available for sale, we are looking for volunteers to assist with potential future swag sales.
  • We are looking for volunteers to help create a yearbook.
  • We hope to hold a salmon sale again at some point this fall (TBA) but without some of the complications that contactless delivery created.
  • We plan to hold an in-person book fair in November but will need volunteers to staff it.
  • We plan to hold our annual Direct Donate fundraiser in December.
  • We plan to hold an on-line auction again in April but will need volunteers to make that possible.

Approve our proposed 2021-22 Budget

  • The proposed budget includes:
    • $9,000 for $300 classroom grants as well as an additional $6,000 in Academic Enrichment funds that can be awarded on an individual basis throughout the school year.
      • $1,000 has been committed to the Montana Natural History Center so that the 4th graders can once again learn from visiting naturalists
      • Funds have also been committed to boom folders, the school garden, battle of the books and the Missoula Writing Collaborative in the past
    • We plan to fund teacher appreciation efforts at a similar level to past school years.
    • We will continue to support early literacy via funding for a paraprofessional to assist kindergarten teachers and support for families in transition via the FRC. 
    • Our budget also continues to allow for administrative costs such as recycling, dues, insurance, etc.
  • Fundraising was down last year but we are hopeful that with increased vaccinations availability the economics in our community will support robust future fundraising efforts.
  • Jen Oakland made motion to approve the budget. Dana Hupp seconded the motion. APPROVED. Discussion about being more transparent with parents about what PTA is funding
  • Recommendation about direct donate- make smaller donations mean something (i.e. suggest that a 10 dollar donation would provide 10 boom folders, etc.. maybe take out the suggested donation of 50 dollars per student)

Funding updates

  • In addition to the funds for the 4th grade to have visiting naturalists mentioned above, the Board approved $241 for a magnetic dry erase easel with wheels and storage for 1P– the current whiteboard in 1P will be offered to other teachers
  • Several teachers have used their classroom grants for items such as books and supplies for their classrooms. It has not always been clear whether teachers are requesting their classroom grant versus extra academic enrichment funds– discussion of how we might clarify this distinction better in the future.

Announcements

  • Please join us in reading the Wizard of Oz in anticipation of our movie night at Ogren ballpark on Wednesday September 22nd at 5:30 p.m. Free event except for concessions. If weather is bad, decision will be made that morning b/c they are allowing to reschedule. Swag will be available.
  • Rattlesnake Creek’s Watershed Group is looking for creative/artistic individuals to assist them in creating a banner for their fall festival on Sunday September 26th from 12:00 – 4:00 p.m. at Ten Spoon Winery the event involves food, music, activities, art and games. Bring apples if you would like to press cider and let us know if you would like to be part of the banner decorating in advance of the event.
  • Battle of the Books is on the horizon for 4th and 5th grade students, please let us know if you have lunchtime availability and could volunteer to help them prepare for this engaging literacy competition.  Looking for two 5th grade parents: Jen Oakland volunteered and she will contact Becky as well.
  • The following events are in need of volunteer committees in order to occur, please let us know if you might be willing to help out with the:
    • Spring Auction April 2022, planning online.
    • Bike Rodeo late April 2022,
    • Running Club May 2022
    • Fun Run late May 2022
  • Book fair- Nov 9-11, 2021. Same week as parent teacher conferences
  • Direct donate December 2021
  • Fall Picture Day has been scheduled for Monday October 4th
  • The next PTA General Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday October 5th at 8:20 a.m.

PTA Leadership meetings are generally held the first Thursday of each month from 4:30 – 5:30 p.m. Please let us know if you have a topic that you would like to present to the leadership board at one of our meetings. 

PTA General Meeting Notes: October 6, 2020

Present:

Janel Chin, Dana Hupp, Judith Bledsoe, Jen Sheldon, Leigh Greenwood, Pam Wright, Christy Cheviron, Molly Cottrell, Shannon Murphy

Halloween Idea from Dana Hupp:

Individual bags of popcorn, gummies, pencil, packaged for each student.  Worden Thane has agreed to cover the cost. Pam said that paras can help assemble bags. 

New Office Support:

Erin Berryman is our new part-time secretary, working every day from 10-2.  Her email is eberryman@mcpsmt.org

How can we thank Worden Thane? 

Pam Updates:

district is staying in hybrid until November, teachers and Pam feel this is manageable.  Benefits from the smaller classes: more focus, less distractions, getting more done, students experiencing more success.

Schoolyard Improvements:

funnel ball approved funding for, but the shipping costs are exorbitant – $500 for toy, more than $500 for shipping.  Now have: 4 hopscotch squats, tetherball, ping-pong style soccer, assorted balls, hula hoops, chalk.

Salmon Fundraiser:

Ryan Ashworth offered to help us do a large scale fundraiser for frozen, 1.5 pound filets, flyer is ready to go out.  Pricing sounds good. 

School Garden:

has been open to families, volunteers in the garden can check out the whiteboard for needed tasks.

Teacher Appreciation:

health and wellness gifts for teachers with lots of community support got a great reception. Pam says that the first week of November is intense for teachers prepping report cards, could be a good time to “stock the fridge” with individually packaged items.

East Missoula:

Distributing food there, banner and flyers hung in E Missoula to advertise food. YMCA and district working together in 2.5 rooms in Mt. Jumbo for extra support.  New MOLA program for full days there on Mondays plus kids off days.

Support Outdoor Learning:

Air sensor for school to make assessment on sending kids outside on smoky days, mystery? Reopen discussion in December in time for inversion season. Move forward with getting one if in fact we don’t already have one.

Sit Spots: mostly donations, have enough right now,

Survey of teachers completed to see how we could improve outdoor space.  Amphitheater area ideas: seating could be more comfortable, writing surfaces either permanent or lap desks, shelter for rain/snow, stage set with bricks or cement. Parents interested in helping?

School Website Calendar:

Add book fair, salmon fundraiser, send dates to Robin Nygren to add

Volunteer Needs:

Need a volunteer to shadow Leigh for Direct Donate in November, easy, online, simple way to support our teachers and school.  Great job for someone who wants to do all the work from home.

We will continue to have general meetings the first Tuesday of the month at 9am.

November General PTA Meeting Minutes

Rattlesnake Elementary General Monthly PTA Meeting

November 5, 2019 8:30am FCC

In attendance: Becky, Michelle, Shannon O, Dana, Judith, Maureen, Stacy, Molly C, Jessica, Pam, Heidi, Estee, Lucia.

General Notes:

Judith presented upcoming volunteer opportunities:

  1. Spirit Gear sorting before Christmas (probably the first or second week of December), contact rattlesnakepta@gmail.com to volunteer or reach out to Brittany directly
  2. Book Fair – Sign Up Genius is now open, volunteers needed
  3. Co-lead of Direct Donate needed, contact rattlesnakepta@gmail.com to volunteer or reach out to Leigh directly

Michelle N presented on 2019-2020 grade-level liaisons progress and notes

  • Michelle is working on a card for your wallet to remind you to ask them to credit your purchase to Rattlesnake
  • Will be pushing Amazon Smile for fundraising and also wish lists
  • 4th grade is getting a traveling trunk from MNHC, parent has donated to cover the cost
  • Feedback from teachers is need for more books in each grade, Maureen Lowenwater thought non-fiction books were more needed
  • 4th grade is considering a field trip to volunteer at the Food Bank
  • 5th grade will need an extra bus for the spring Butte field trip
  • Fire Science curriculum will be presented to several grade levels
  • Not sure if the liaison parents want their email addresses public

Pam presented on new Wellness Guidelines coming from the district

  • Generally promotes physical activity
  • Will follow best practices of removing food as a reward
  • Will be implemented fall 2020

Estee presented on the Battle of the Books

  • 4th and 5th grade competition of 12 books read over the course of a year
  • First meeting for the kids is Thursday 11/7, need a permission slip to join
  • Would like to get 5-6 copies of each book for the school, which would cost $350-400
  • -Judith said the board had talked about it and will fund the cost. Can be built into the PTA budget in future years so it’s not reliant on parents paying out of pocket (what they did last year)

Dana presented on MCT play

  • Play will be Peter and Wendy and take place Feb 3-6th
  • 60 kids will be in the performance
  • 1 performance during school on Friday, one Friday night performance for families
  • Should we sell tickets of ask for donations for the performance? Open for discussion
  • Cost will be $40 per kid that is in the performance, with scholarships available

General discussion of food being provided for Parent Teacher Conferences

  • Ali is the lead on this, and will circulate a Signup for food

Judith showed the new Rattlesnake t-shirts that are for sale for $20. Proceeds will cover the cost of a staff t-shirts.

Adjourn 9am

October General PTA Meeting Minutes

Rattlesnake Elementary General Monthly PTA Meeting

October 1, 2019 8:30am FCC

In attendance: Leigh, Michelle N, Jen O, Janel, Judith, Jessica, Kirsten, Carrie, Stacey, Dana, Kate D, Molly C, Matt N, Shannon M, Shannon O, Kristie, Lucia, Pam.

General Notes:

Teacher Update: Carrie Sweatland had questions re: gmail contact list, PTA email system: Need to update teacher and parent list to reflect current teachers for 2019-2020

FCC Update: Volunteer slots for picture day are taken.

Events:

Re: Bike Rodeo, still no event coordinator has been found to lead bike rodeo- delegation. Kirsten and Shannon will meet with Leigh will meet re: delegating tasks. (NOTE: after this meeting adjourned, a decision was made to move Bike Rodeo to Spring 2020)

Welcome Caitlyn Scholle! Our new school counselor.

Volunteer needs: people to sort beef jerky once it arrives. Reach out to Lucia, if interested. Sorting may need to occur over the 4-day weekend.

Family fun night with Animal Wonders- 10/24 in school gym from 6-7:30pm: greeters needed.

Spirit Gear Sorting- volunteers needed in early December, ~1-2 hours needed to sort. Reach out to Brittney if you can help.

Book Fair Nov 12-14. Will need volunteers to work the fair. Ali will coordinate.

Discussion of budget and voting. General Budget was approved for 2019-20 school year. If anyone wants to participate in budget building, anyone is welcome. It happens in May-July for the coming year.

Idea of boomerang folder and school supply return/re-use/recycling. Will revisit in April when it is more relevant and we can make a plan.

MCT production update:

No try-outs, grade 1-5. Names are drawn and those who are not drawn, are added to a list for future programs. Would be a Mon-Fri after-school program. Lots of supervision help would be needed from volunteer parents. Parent supervision would be available for the 3:05-3:30 time gap, via volunteers.

Funding from school or PTA would not be necessary: ~$3000 total cost will be covered via other funds. Washington Corporation is willing to provide funding, at Lewis and Clark School there is a $40/student cost with scholarships available. And local business is willing to provide backup funding. Dana is willing to be event coordinator. Timing would be between Jan-March. Available dates and programs:  Feb 3-8 Peter and Wendy. 60 kids can be in the performance. (NOTE: after the meeting, these dates were confirmed)

Brainstormed ideas to make it a fundraiser opportunity: sell flowers at event and/or actor/actress photos?

Michele N: 8 parent volunteers part of “teacher/liaison team;” one assigned to each grades.  Team’s focus is communicating with teachers and identifying classroom/grade “needs” such as supplies or field trips, and then working on meeting those needs through applying for grants, asking for local donations, PTA support, ect.  

Update on Amazon Smile: each teacher can create their own “wish list” where parents can go on and purchase supplies needed for classrooms, and PTA can benefit from some fundraisers.  Anne G is going to create accounts for each teacher. A majority have discussed needing book sets. Keep Pam in the loop re: what types of items are on the list.

There is an account at Book Exchange for parents who want to donate books, the credit then builds up and the PTA gives it to teachers upon request.

PE (Delaney) may request funds for a mindfulness program.

Discussed grants available and to be applied for- Garden Grant and Bee Grant are a few, of many.  

ADJOURN 9am.  

 

September General PTA Meeting Minutes

Rattlesnake Elementary General Monthly PTA Meeting

September 3, 2019 8:30am FCC

In attendance: Leigh G, Judith B, Molly C, Shannon M, Jen O, Stacy J, Lucia T, Dana H, Matthew N, Heidi and Ryan K, Erin B, Janelle C, Carissa B.

In need of a volunteer coordinator: Mostly home-based and sending emails and entering in signupgenius.com.  Reach out to someone on exec if interested. It’s a good way to get to get to know parent community😊  It’s also possible that PTA can directly reach out to recruit volunteers if we cannot identify a VC. (note: this position now filled, 9/27, by Alison D, thank you Alison!)

Beef Jerky fundraiser: Erin and Heidi will work with Alex to get forms, etc. And will recruit volunteers to help sort and collect forms. Lucia will assist as well.  “Reward” for top fundraisers will be a limo ride to the Carousel and Dragon’s Hollow with Pam Wright.

Bike Rodeo: date TBD in mid-October. Parks and Rec will set up a mobile bike park and volunteers set up other aspects. 

  • Helmet-fitting station and bike flare station- Stacy said that we have a supply of helmets and bike flare supplies available from last year. 
  • Matthew indicated that Montana Brain Injury Alliance can offer helmet-fitting station. Also idea of hosting several Bike tuning stations.
  • Reminder from Stacy to communicate to families that parent supervision is required at this event and Stacey will look into requirements for parent volunteers need for background check.
  • The Cycling House possible sponsor and assistants?

Teeshirts and Swag: Judith has worked with Andy S to create a t shirt logo design that is super rad. Stacy asked if it might be possible to get Rattlesnake School t-shirts for staff?  Will look into possibility of getting those for staff…

New Parent-Grade PTA Liaison position: discussed that Michele N will be leading and has a group of interested parents identified.

Fundraising committee: In the works. A spreadsheet with grant opportunities has been created in google docs to track and monitor grant opportunities.

Dana and Jen presented idea of MCT after-school “play in a week:”  50-60 kids selected to participate and after-school practices. Afternoon performance for school, one in evening for parents.

  • Questions: Do we have the volunteer power for this? And way to address exclusivity issue with kids getting “cut.”
  • Move forward by Dana discussing idea with Principal Pam and move forward with gaining more information on costs, grants, etc. To share at next PTA meeting.

April 2019 General PTA Meeting Minutes

Rattlesnake Elementary School Parent-Teacher Association

General Meeting Minutes for April 2 2019 from 830-9am in the FCC

SPECIAL NOTE: This is a busy time of year so here’s the quick list of upcoming dates for reference:

  • April 9th: PTA Fundraiser at the Dram Shop from 5-9pm
  • April 10th: Classroom Photos and spring individual photos
  • April 10th: District Boundary Study Open House from 6-8pm at Russell School
  • April 12th: Last official day of Kindergarten Registration (reg is ongoing for families that move, etc, but best to get it done before the 12th!)
  • April 22nd: No School, Teacher Education Day and also Earth Day
  • Late April (exact date TBD): Running Club begins
  • May 6 – 10: Teacher Appreciation Week
  • May 27th: No School, Memorial Day
  • May 29, 5:30-6:30pm: Kindergarten Parent Orientation
  • June 11th: Fun Run!
  • June 13th: Last Day of School
  • August 28: First Day of School, K-5th. See Start of School info below.

Attendance: Leigh (CoP),  Molly (CoP), Judith (VP), Alex (T), Matthew (S), Pam (Principal), Maureen (Teacher Rep), Kristie (Boundary Study Rep), + 5 additional parents 

Items as Discussed:

  • Welcome and Intros
  • Call for other items
  • Carissa B brought a new community event idea. Concept that community events should be more participatory, less just watching a movie. Storytelling idea like “Tell Us Something” for kids, teachers, staff. Focus of communication based on stories with more interaction.  Approx $300 for a workshop same as movie night, but could be more educational. Mark Moss is the coordinator, can help with focus for stories. He is promoting workshops. Would be for next fall at the earliest. Workshop could be in or out of school hours, using as an assembly suggested, but unlikely to be effective for his expertise. Carissa will meet with Mark to further research how this might work for the fall, what Mark can and cannot do, and will report back.
  • Positions: VP and Treasurer positions are up for May election: Leigh introduced the process in the recent changes for 2 year terms as well as how we have had some off year turnover. If anyone is interested in becoming VP or Treasurer, or take on any other job or event within the PTA, they are encouraged to reach out to the PTA to discuss via our main email, rattlesnakepta@gmail.com      
  • Principal’s Updates
    • All schools are currently conducting Kindergarten registration.
    • Dates have been posted for Smarter Balance (SBAC) for grades 3,4, and 5.  Technology has provided the ability to be complete in a few days rather than over the course of 2 months.  Parents, please check the schedule and avoid trips, appointments, and out of school events to allow for the most efficient use of time to get all the testing done. Learn more about SBAC schedule for Rattlesnake here: https://www.mcpsmt.org/rattlesnake and the testing itself here: https://www.mcpsmt.org/Page/11547
    • Kindergarten Round up Update: This spring schools will be doing a “Parent Orientation” in the evening in late May (May 29, 5:30-6:30pm for Rattlesnake, other schools may have other dates/times) instead of a school day kid-centric Roundup event. Schools will not be sending the current Kindergarteners home for a day, wanting to keep the day of instruction. There will also be a kid orientation the day prior to K starting (Aug 27th) during the day, to allow kids to see their classrooms and meet their teacher.
    • Start of School Year Addendum (not directly covered in PTA Meeting due to time constraints, but instead covered due to parent interest at a quick meeting with Principal Wright and PTA Co President Leigh): There will not be Kindergarten home visits this August, that program is not being run for year 2019-2020. For this coming school year, the school start schedule is being planned as follows:
      • Wednesday, May 29, 5:30-6:30: Kindergarten Parent Orientation (this is a new parent focused event, formerly Kindergarten Roundup was a more kid focused event). Free childcare will be available by reservation through PTA and FCC.
      • Mid to late August: Newly registered 1st-5th Families Tour (date TBD, likely mid afternoon, 2:00-3:00)
      • August 27th, scheduled times throughout the day: Kindergarten Student Orientation. Small groups of students w/ their parents will be scheduled to visit the classroom and meet the teacher.. Classrooms for 1st-5th will not be available for visits during this time, to allow for prep. Registered K families will receive an email with their scheduled time.
      • August 27th, 5:00-6:00: 1st-5th All Families Back to School Night. K Classrooms will not be available for visits during this time, as K will have had a separate morning orientation earlier in the same day.
      • August 28th: First Day of School for full school, K – 5th. K will end after lunch, will have separate buses, precise time TBD but rough guess is 12:30ish. 1st-5th will have a full standard day schedule and regular busing.
      • August 29th: Second Day of School K – 5th. K will end after lunch, will have separate buses, precise time TBD but rough guess is 12:30ish. 1st-5th will have a typical Thursday Early Out day schedule and regular busing.
      • August 30th: Third Day of School K – 5th. K will end after lunch, will have separate buses, precise time TBD but rough guess is 12:30ish. 1st-5th will have a full standard day schedule and regular busing.

 

  • Teacher’s Reps Updates – Maureen Loewenwarter
    • Garden –  there are 6 beds in the garden that will need to be replaced due to age and natural decay. The wood boxes are wearing out and looking at a tiered replacement of two per year.  Will anticipate using the $500 allocated in the budget to enhance the garden. Becky D stated that her family business may be able to donate wood to defray cost- Maureen and Becky will follow up.
    • Garden Cleanup week of 22 April.  Kindergarten will be in the garden starting in May. This will also be a student job listed on the Meaningful Work board by the FCC.
    • Garden City Harvest will invoice the PTA directly for costs. They buy compost, tools, gloves, etc.
    • District has in the past paid for some aspects of garden with some of their own available budget, for instance, the garden path improvements to make it ADA accessible was covered by the district.
    • 23 April is scheduled for some garden clean up. Additional volunteer opportunities will be available. Shannon, volunteer coordinator, will reach out to volunteer core to reflect these events. Ain’t no party like a working party!
  • FCC Related Updates
    • Classroom School Photos coming up on April 10th! Volunteers needed, reach out to Shannon at rattlesnakepta@gmail.com to volunteer. We will be making a yearbook as well this year which will be for sale as an additional fundraiser.
    • Book Gift Certificates and process
      • We were planning to do a drawing due to more demand than certificates. Becky D offered to make a donation to cover additional demand and an additional ask was made to contribute. Carissa explained the process as part of the exchange and had built up credit.  Does seem there will be some donation to cover additional expenses to get gift certs to all teachers that were interested. Some will come from the PTA and Molly, Matthew, Alex, and Judith all agreed to allocate additional funds to cover deficit of demand.
      • An announcement will be made via FB and teacher newsletters to have the parents if they are clearing out some of their old children’s books (or any books) in their homes can drop them off at the book exchange and credit to Rattlesnake PTA. This is open year-round.
  • Events Past and Upcoming, Updates and Summaries
    • Spring Fling Summary – Almost $8k in profits at this time (some money still incoming from auction items being picked up post-event).
      • Face painting was the largest single “donation can” income at the event, bringing in $70, as well it was positive feedback to have the older kids (5th graders) doing the painting.
      • Thank yous are going out, more are needed to finish up.
  • Running Club, Fun Run, and Fun Run Sponsorships
    • Emily Linton will be running it again this year!
    • Date is now set, June 11th. Many volunteers will be needed on that date.
    • Running Club will be starting in late April, exact date TBD.
    • For the actual run event, we will be soliciting sponsors. Currently we have $300 in sponsorships, hopeful to bring in more.
    • Not doing T Shirts, but will be doing popsicles again as well a local pediatric dentistry office will be handing out toothbrushes after the event.
    • There are leftover carousel tokens that will be turned over to the PTA for prizes and other events.
  • District Boundary Study Update
    • Still a lot of information available on the website. Commentary and maps are available, another commentary period is open until April 10th meeting, which will be 6-8pm at Russell School. Next committee meeting will be this coming Thursday.
    • Committee is currently working on three different options. Some significant change options and some more modest options. The planners and committee determined that more time was necessary to make a thoughtful change regarding the boundaries, hence the end dates later this spring rather than planned end that was in April originally.
    • Rattlesnake school is projected to have declining population over the next ten year span. There are some discussions as part of the boundary study process regarding whether to not to move either Lower Rattlesnake or E Msla to Lowell to ease some of the current crowding at Rattlesnake.
    • There has been neighborhood support to open Mount Jumbo in E Msla which does better align with the guidance to make neighborhood schools and safe routes.  The intention however to move kids only once does complicate that possibility. Also Grandfathering would negate a lot of the intention of possibly building a community for the Mt Jumbo school.
    • Committee meeting this Thursday will be available to the public.  Public involvement has been helpful and has had an effect on the process.
    • Currently Mount Jumbo does not have enough students in area, but may grow to have enough within 3 years depending on how the neighborhood changes.
    • Cost impact of reopening Mount Jumbo the school will be significant, but the school structure is good.  Will need some tech and HVAC upgrades. We have enough teachers within the district but will have to hire all new administrative and support staff.  If a school is opened it may drive more population and young family growth.
    • Overall for Boundary Study there are 17 total option areas that may be adjusted, 4 are seriously considered, but will possibly end up combining options.  Please see the Boundary Page for more details on the proposed options. https://www.mcpsmt.org/elementaryschoolboundarystudy

PTA General Meeting for May will be 8:30am on May 7th. This meeting will include voting for VP and Treasurer for 2019-2020 and beyond.

March 2019 General PTA Meeting Minutes

Rattlesnake Elementary School Parent-Teacher Association

General Meeting Minutes for March 5 2019 from 830-9am in the FCC

Attendance

Leigh (CoP),  Molly (CoP), Judith (VP), Stacy (FCC), Pam (Principal), Maureen (Teacher Rep), Carrie (Teacher Rep), Kristie (Boundary Study Rep), + 5 additional parents

Items as Discussed

    • Welcome and intros
    • Call for other items
      • No additional items to be added to the agenda
    • Teacher Rep Updates
      • Touched briefly on donations for the baskets/auctions and how the teachers felt that process was going
        • Becky was not available for an update as she was consolidating donations.
        • Also had some monetary donations come in for baskets, used mainly to cover costs of basket materials.
      • Parent teacher conferences have been going smoothly, although sticking to 15 min has some difficulty.  
        • Question was raised of what to expect when your student is part of the conference (3rd grade and up, optional).
        • Dinners have been changed to offer also fresh fruit, salad, and salad in addition to some donations.
        • Volunteers have been slower this year to fill up the roster.
        • 40 staff members are the goal for bringing enough food.  Market on Front will offer some donations.
        • Consider saving the gift card donations for teacher appreciation week in May.
        • Next years sign up will be sent to the broader public for sign ups (suggestion to encourage Teacher Appreciation Committee signups twice a year)
    • FCC updates
      • Boxtops came in just over 9000 so we raised just over $900.
      • Yearbooks will be offered this year as part of the school photo process.  Will be part of a fund raising effort with the PTA. We do have a new vendor for individual and classroom photos that will hopefully make the process easier and better.  Each class will get their own page for candid and activities.
      • There was some discussion as to are we allowed to include photos for all kids and what would the process be to add that.
      • Stacy will ensure students with a “no photo” note on file will have that need respected in the yearbooks
      • Open to parents to include broader pictures, there will be a call for photos later in the spring
    • Principal’s update
      • Boundary meeting has several more meetings (see: https://www.mcpsmt.org/elementaryschoolboundarystudy)
      • Also has begun a search for a new superintendent.  Will be having several meetings regarding the search and requirements for that position. Mark Thane is departing at the end of this school year.
      • Kindergarten Round Up has been delayed due to the boundary study and possible changes.  Registration in years past has been conducted in conjunction with Parent Teacher Conferences and Round up will be in the evening this year.
      • Kindergarten Registration is delayed due to the boundary study (NOTE: K Registration is NOW open, see: https://www.mcpsmt.org/Page/9045)
    • Boundary Study (Kristie)
      • The next open house will be March 21st 6-8pm at Russell School. The committee met last Thursday.  Demographic study was farmed out to a group out of state. They did produce some maps and all are now available online-  it breaks down all the schools and forecasts for the next 10 years. See: https://www.mcpsmt.org/Page/13833
      • Demographic study indicates Rattlesnake is currently peaking in population and will decline in future years.  Currently all options are on the table as for as decisions and recommendations.
      • Walking and busing routes are part of the process and conversations currently.  There will be some changes in at least some parts of the district, and inevitably some people will be unhappy.  Some changes may be deemed unnecessary. Rattlesnake’s high populations may resolve naturally according to the demographic projections.
      • Other neighborhoods are starting to present their opinions, ideas, and feelings.  Parents from every neighborhoods were represented which provided the cross section of worries and thoughts.
      • On the 21st  (Russell Elementary 6-8pm, Open House format so all are welcome to come and go) the initial proposals for the boundaries will be presented.
      • The comment and interactive map is now closed.  The Open House is now the best way to present and write down thoughts and ideas.
      • There is a lot of process, there are parents  involved but experts too.
      • Some of the issues regarding safe routes and busing.  Busing as far as schedules and releases needs to be brought up in comments and proposals.  
    • Spring Fling Planning (Judith/Molly)
      • Promotions – The first flier has gone home.  
      • A follow up promotions with schedule will be sent out shortly
      • The morning of the Spring Fling, Pam will send out additional announcements with Erik’s help.
      • Vinyl banner is ready, will be hung with balloons.  We will start to see fliers around town.
      • Decorations will be simplified and more cost efficient this year.  Students will paint the majority of them as well as some decorations recycled and donated.  Hay bales are needed, will be supplied by a volunteer’s family.
      • A Saddle may be made available for the photo booth and will need to be finalized.
      • Activities (funds will go to PTA in a donation format for activites, or via traditional means for raffle and auction)
        • Face painting
        • Prize walk – Not just cake this year, instead it will be a mix of small prizes and cupcakes
        • Country dancing – with instruction
        • Wooden toys
        • Raffle
        • Photo booth

 

  • In need of Volunteers – in particular set up/clean up.  Has been sent out to the whole school.  Kids can run around during set up, kid friendly.

 

    • A lot of pizza has been donated along with Albertsons and Costco. We do need coolers to be volunteered.
  • Quick Update
    • Treasurer Status Report – Not available
    • Fun Run – Emily has stated she will run the event again.  Although she cannot do both the before school, and the recess, running clubs.  Will go one or the other or we need some additional volunteers. Starts in April, FCC may be able to coordinate for volunteers.
      • Will not do T shirts, cost prohibitive.
      • 3 rivers dentistry will have a hand out for tooth brushes to go along with popsicles
      • Other sponsorships may come through- PTA will finalize those in early April
      • May do a drawing contest to be included in the final graphics for the Sponsor acknowledgement, design TBD.
    • Wellness Committee Updates – Carissa
      • There have been some tineline changes that will be discussed at the leadership meeting.
      • Will ask Pam to make some changes  to see what we can affect and the district may or may not be in position to perhaps implement on a larger scale. And will be implemented in the fall in the earliest.  
      • Will have some desire for painting the cafeteria and may have a mural as part of the process.  Test paint runs approx. $5 and may be a request to the PTA to fund.
      • May include a contest to name the cafeteria
    • Spirit Gear Updates – Brittany has ordered some smaller items.
    • Dates of Note and Open Discussion
      • All are welcome to attend Leadership meetings
      • March/April Leadership will be after April 2nd due to Spring Fling and Spring Break schedules- likely mid-month in April.
      • PTA General meeting for April will be April 2nd. 8:30 in the FCC

 

February 2019 General Meeting Minutes

Rattlesnake Elementary School Parent-Teacher Association

Meeting Minutes for February 5 2019 from 8:30am-9:00am

Attendance

Leigh (CoP),  Molly (CoP), Alex (T), Matthew (S), Judith (VP), Stacy (FCC), Pam (Principal)+ 10 other parents

Items as Discussed

Wellness committee Updates

  • Provided some updates related to the district.
  • The latest meeting included school principals
  • The meeting did establish an estimated timeline for admin/comment this spring

Principal Wright’s Announcements

  • English language and arts curriculum has changed district wide
  • The new curriculum focuses on small group reading and writing.
  • Also provides standards and overview

Teacher announcements (skipped- teachers were unable to attend this month)

FCC updates

  • East Missoula Family Night was successful
    • E Msla families like the proximity
    • Board games always a good time
  • Lost and found will be donated at the end of the month, PTA will announce on FB
  • Box tops so far are approx. 5000 collected, which is about $500
    • Last year amounted to approximately $1100 net, hopefully more will come in

Spring Fling planning

  • We will have the same theme as last year (Hoe Down)
  • Need donations for the action.  Sponsorship financial donations are also being solicited this year.
  • Spreadsheets are available to solicitation volunteers to stay organized
  • Alcohol as a donation
    • Alcohol can be auctioned, however cannot physically be present on school grounds.
    • Donations from bars and restaurant are acceptable so long as they don’t visually promote alcohol
  • Decorations
    • In years past have been time consuming and perhaps not the best use of time- maybe scale back a bit on decorations
    • Kids can volunteer and make posters/decorations
    • There are some decorations from years past on hand in the FCC
    • Teachers like to be kept in the loop on setup of decorations to minimize disruptions
  • Volunteers are needed for set up/operations/cleanup
    • A signup genius will be established for volunteers

 

District Boundary Study Update by Rattlesnake’s Parent Representative, Kristie S

  • The first official committee meeting noted a lot of concern regarding impacts
  • Involvement and transparency are a key aspect of the current process
  • This effort is meant to create a 10 year plan
    • Attempt to prevent unnecessary transfers of kids to non-neighborhood schools looking forward.
  • Webpage has comments/notes/updates (https://www.mcpsmt.org/elementaryschoolboundarystudy)
  • Rattlesnake is currently at 96% capacity
  • Rattlesnake’s community meeting in January was the best attended of all the elementary school meetings.
  • The discussion does include the concept of Mount Jumbo possibly being reopened- this will be dependent on population and other needs/conditions.
    • The district is currently renting unused space as the population grows
  • Lowell is currently at 62% capacity.
  • Safe Routes to School conversation- noted that the city has some money, but currently improvements in some areas such as sidewalks are the responsibility of homeowners.
  • The Open House meetings will go from start to end as scheduled, but participants can come and go and there is not necessarily a structure or presentation to drive that entire time.
    • 3-4 more meetings are planned this spring

– The PTA’s website will post more information once our rep (Kristie) has written up a summary

 

Adjourn

 

December 2018 PTA Meeting Minutes

Rattlesnake Elementary School Parent-Teacher Association

Meeting Minutes for December 4th, 2018 from 8:30am-9:00am

Attendance

Leigh (CP), Alex(T), Molly (CP), Judith (VP), Stacy (FCC), Pam (Principal) + Becky, Erik, Sienna (SPARK), Lucia, Keila

Items as Discussed

  • Principal Wright Announcements – There will be a superintendent led School Boundaries meeting at Rattlesnake Elementary on Monday, January 7, 2018, at 6:00 p.m., all are invited and an email was sent out
  • Speed Updates on Events! (5m)
      • Holiday Book Fair Results (Molly) – reported that all went really smoothly and we had our highest gross sales ever! Thanks everyone. Total of funds raised for Rattlesnake should be just a hair over $2700!
      • Direct Donate Progress Report (Leigh) – totals as of 12/4 are $4504 with checks and online donations coming in steadily. Donations are accepted year round but the big push for Direct Donate is from mid November to December 31st. Idea was brought up to send out postcards for folks to send to their parents (i.e. kid grandparents) next year. Idea to focus on “Sponsor a Kid” language in an upcoming handout, as a way to motivate.
      • Swag Ordering (Erik) – Lots of positive feedback on the convenience of the online ordering and convenience. Still no set date for material to be distributed to students- hopefully it will be before winter break begins as hoped! We had a brief conversation about the snake logo vs mountain logo- both logos are being used but for this first ordering process, it made sense to use just one (it costs more money per logo printing). Future orders may be with mountain logo, or both logos, TBD.
  • SPARK Arts – Welcome Sienna Solberg! (6m) – Sienna talked about all the great things SPARK Arts bring to the school. Each grades gets either a field trip, or an in-school experience, each year. This year’s planned schedule is K- Puppet performance, 1- Drum Brothers, 2- MCT Androcles and the Lion play, 3- Dance at UM, 4- Symphony performance, 5- visits to MAM. SPARK also brings in visiting artists- this year is B Martinez, Sneed Collard, and more. These programs are funded through private donors to Arts Missoula from various groups like LogJam Presents, Washington Foundations, some district funds. The Rattlesnake PTA’s contributions include longer terms for 2nd Grade Dance (this extends the program for more weeks) and others. Alex mentioned that last year’s handout was excellent, it’d be good to have a refreshed version to give to parents for this year.
  • Wellness Update- Becky-  Wellness Committee had a meeting with Principal Wright earlier in November. Talked about how in late January there will be an important district meeting, and much is on hold until the results of that meeting are in.
  • General discussion on confusion regarding holiday events at the school. Leigh agreed to create a comprehensive list and put it onto PTA blog for general reference.
  • Upcoming Items
      • Box Tops Competition will be in January
      • Holiday rush: remember Good Foods, Fresh Market, and Amazon – Idea came up to get the reminder email from Cassidy (Clark Fork) and rework to use for Rattlesnake. Lucia will contact Cassidy.
  • Fundraising Committee idea was discussed. Idea is to better coordinate, communicate, and plan fundraising throughout the year.
  • Dates of Note
      • Dec 13th 8am – 9:30am Open House on Spring Fling, Rattlesnake Cafe
      • Dec 17th 6:30pm – 8:30pm Leadership Committee Meeting, FCC
      • Jan **8th** 8:30am General PTA Meeting, FCC