April 2019 Leadership Meeting Minutes

PTA Leadership meetings are open to anyone that is interested in contributing to the hard work of the PTA’s board, teachers, event leaders, volunteers, and various team leads! 

RATTLESNAKE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL PARENT-TEACHER ASSOCIATION

Leadership Meeting Minutes for April 23th 2019 from 7-9pm in the FCC

ITEMS AS DISCUSSED

Becky K: Wellness

Name for the cafeteria, contest for idea submission. There will be some naming criteria and the board and/or Principal Wright will limit to several suggestions. Timing of process needs to be incorporated into other commitments in the end of the school year. The Fun Run fliers go out by the end of this week (4/23) and so the Cafeteria fliers should Tuesday of next week (4/30) with a return deadline of 2 weeks. The cafeteria naming process is currently being introduced by Principal Wright and a subset of the PTA.

There was some discussion of making it (cafeteria naming) a sponsorship of the Wellness committee, but decision was to not pursue that due to the Wellness Committee not yet being an official committee of the school nor PTA.

Pam: Yearbooks

Yearbooks will be distributed close to end of the year. Online orders ended April 22nd but cash orders are still accepted. We’ll need to figure out a deadline for cash and check orders to make the process run smoothly.

Currently 200 yearbooks have been ordered but more could be made available if more orders come in. This is the first year and it turns out the yearbook process was very time intensive for Stacy. Next year it will need to be a parent volunteer project. Needs to be led by one or two people so as to have efficiency and continuity. Approx 40 volunteer hours estimated for next year. Big thanks to Stacy and Michelle N for leading up the first year of yearbook!

Leadership General Business

Elections and Expected Vacancies 2019-2020:

Regularly scheduled elections (VP and Treasurer) will be conducted at the 7 MAY general meeting. VP will be open to staying (as a new VP was elected in on an “off” year), but may be open to having another candidate. Treasurer and VP are the two that are open as per the charter.  Shannon M is currently the only candidate for Treasurer and has been expressing clear interest in the position. It is possible that secretary may be changing as well, that would be at the discretion of the Secretary (term formally ends May 2020). Molly C will also be resigning as Co-president. Teacher appreciation coordinator and the volunteer coordinator will also be open at the end of the year- these are not elected positions and can be filled/changed at any time as needed.

Board Structure, Roles, and Responsibilities:

Secretary has had some question regarding duties and responsibilities. Treasurer beyond the tracking of funding has a few additional requirements. VP also has not been well defined for specific areas. The roles are written down in the charter but are currently not closely followed.  Previously focus sessions have been focused on what the organization wants to accomplish, but not as to who specifically does what. A specific meeting ideally should be dedicated after the election so as to define those responsibilities with the new board members plus new leads (i.e. volunteer coordinator). More about board roles here.

Montana PTA Day on May 18th (Saturday) at Missoula Public Library:

Open house held by the Montana PTA overarching organization for all PTA members in the Missoula area.  Timing: 10:30-11:30 Training Session, 11:30-12:30 Open Networking. It would be good to have all old and new Rattlesnake PTA’ers attend if available and willing.

Standing Rules Revisions Note:

Revisions don’t necessarily need to be made, but a statement needs to be submitted regarding no changes if that’s the case. Leigh will be looking through standing rules to see what is relevant and realistic to keep or change. Process is that then the board will sign off on and then the submission will be made to the state PTA to hold on record. Required by State PTA to be done annually for best practices.

Process and Schedule for 2019-2020 Budget building:

Discussion on how to conduct this process. Last year, was a 3+ hour meeting which was not completely effective, it proved too complex to tackle productively in a single meeting. Proposal to set a series of task focused shorter meetings and session. Idea was to focus on what we want to accomplish (what are PTA and Teacher Priorities) and then work to allocate funding to those categories and programs. This will then drive what is necessary for fundraising and spending. Concept is to make sure we let priorities drive the budget. This process is conducted with both incoming and outgoing leadership.

Break down as proposed: One meeting to discuss and set priorities (suggestion to be during May Leadership was put forth and agreed upon). Second meeting to assess anticipated cash position and allocate funding across those priorities. Secondary sub meetings to share those outwards (to parents and teachers) prior to formalizing and voting. Then formalize and vote on budget. Fiscal year turns over 1 July.  We do want to get approx 90% complete and voted on by the fiscal turnover, and ideally prior to end of school year for simple logistics (i.e. personal vacations). Third (conceptual) final meeting to determine fundraising events and requirements for the coming year, fundraising works as step three since it funds the following year. Fundraising takes up most of the time, effort, and energy of officer time- discussion as to how effective that is.

May Meetings:

May Leadership meeting Scheduled 28 MAY 6:30-8:30: Proposal to use at least half the time to set priorities with both incoming and outgoing leadership. Other items to be placed on agenda in a rolling document.

Set Agenda items for May general meeting (7 May 8:30am FCC): Need for Elections: VP, Treasurer, possibly secretary (TBD). Announcement that Molly is no longer going to co-president. Other items TBD.

June General Meeting:

Decide if we will hold a June general meeting: Decision- yes- will be primarily used to announce priorities for the next year and then touch bases with the teachers to ensure coordination of efforts with the teachers. Could also use the time to look at whether or not the hoedown is desired again for the next year. Any last minute Fun Run needs can also be addressed at this meeting. June 4, 830am in FCC.

Academic Enrichment Votes

Mr. Z’s Speaker:

Finish up discussion and decision re: Mr Z’s speaker cost: Pam- the PTA was looking at splitting with the school. There are some funds available in the Academic enrichment budget, but the cost was $600 so a big ask. The school will be looking at and deeply believes in the value of the request. Acad Enrichment budget level is currently $2,977 however there are commitments already on parts of that funding. The board voted unanimously to fund half- $300- for the speakers, on the assumption that the school will cover the other half or more. In the event that the school cannot fund $300 or more, we will need to revisit. Vote yes, 7:0:0.

K Team for Buses:

Discussed the requests, the funds were confirmed to be from the teachers’ discretionary classroom budgets. Does not require a vote. The various bus bills will be billed to PTA as a single invoice per event and then parsed out to classroom budgets for PTA accounting needs.

Dombrowski Request:

$74 for May 21st field trip bus. Parents are leading the field trip opportunity. According to Pam it is to go to the trail at the end of Duncan Drive for bird watching field trip. Some discussion on bear spray, wildlife precautions will be taken. Vote taken 7:0:0, in favor to fund bus request.

Available Funding:

Discussion on funding available in Academic Enrichment (current balance $2977).  Some set commitments are in motion and not yet subtracted from that total; trip to Butte $500, Band speakers $300, other programs and requests. It is clear that some funding is still available for additional needs as/if they arise.

Events

Fun Run and Running Club:

Running club will begin next week (week of 29APR – 3MAY) pending final logistics (sidenote: now finalized starting May 2nd!). Emily has talked with Pam and cleared all major dates and ideas. Flier will go out at the end of the week with all details and asking for volunteers. Anticipated to be a replay of last year format wise. Glitterpops are not an option this year (family that made them has moved). Course will have a new starting point to avoid tripping hazard that was a problem in past years. Need to explore food possibilities for the end of the race, i.e. see what Emily has planned for fruit, bagels, water, milk, etc. Sponsors for Fun Run – currently have $350. Idea is to have have a picture area for the event for the kids that has sponsors logos beyond it as their recognition. Dye free Otter Pops are available at Costco to replace the glitter pops, Judith will look into this or other choices to simplify end of race options. See Fun Run webpage for full details and volunteer signups, https://rattlesnakepta.org/2019/04/26/fun-run-and-running-club-2019/ 

Teacher Appreciation Week May 6-10:

Jacqui is managing. Will need to call for many volunteers. Signups are available https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0D49A8A92EA31-rattlesnake 

Additional Updates

Crisis Buckets for the Classrooms, Pam’s Request:

These are literal buckets for lock down drills, to facilitate hygiene, food, and water in emergencies. Idea to ask parents for items and funding, vs PTA straight funding. Discussion to have PTA fund directly so as to not induce extra anxiety with the larger parent population. Request to have Pam create a budget request for cost of all items that the district cannot provide on school funds, and then PTA will vote on it at May Leadership meeting. Pam was comfortable with that method.

Spring Fling:

Cost benefit analysis brief overview. Idea to buy baskets on sale now that Easter is over, to save money. Judith or Molly will ask the project leads from last year so as to have a number to procure.

Raised $8400 in gross income, Molly reviewed budget $1300 was unspent in what was allocated for expenses. Therefore, net $7700 plus estimated $500 in income still to come plus $1300 in reserved budget roll over (Estimated effective total raised therefore $9,500). The event does raise substantial funding however is very high in its commitment for volunteers hours and resources. The in kind donations decreased direct costs, but the time commitments are extensive.

Swag Updates:

Reuable lunch bag update- unfortunately have been returned for credit.  They were of poor quality. Full refund was given, new (hopefully better) things are being purchased instead.

We now have trucker hats for sale. Also would like to initiate the next online school spirit order period. With the recent folks missing the yearbook sales, they will likely miss this with the other announcement. Prior online sale did prove efficient as no inventory is on hand, low minimums and for purchases. Easy to initiate. Board approves another spring online sale. Discussion to set up table for sales at events (Fun Run, K Parent Night, other?)

Box Top Funding:

Check cannot come to the PTA for funds, Box top has changed the rules and can only be received by the school. Could also fund Mr Z., Recycle, and Crisis buckets.

Recycling Bills and Schedule:

Discussion on if box tops be used to fund the bill as the PTA is covering classrooms. Yes it is a shell game, but allows that to be funded by the school as we are funding support to the classrooms. $604 has been paid so far this year and box tops can cover that. Tabled with the need to engage with Pam and Stacy (Pam departed prior to this item).

 

ADJOURN

February 2019 Leadership Meeting Minutes

PTA Leadership meetings are open to anyone that is interested in contributing to the hard work of the PTA’s board, teachers, event leaders, volunteers, and various team leads! 

Rattlesnake Elementary School Parent-Teacher Association

Leadership Meeting Minutes for Feb 27th from 7-9pm in the FCC

Attendance

Leigh (CoP),  Molly (CoP), Alex (T), Judith (VP), Stacy (FCC), Pam (Principal), Maureen (Teacher Rep), Kristie (Boundary Study Rep), Carissa, Becky

Items as Discussed

Call for additional items- Check in on the request for $600 for a speaker for the band teacher. PTA is still looking to split that cost and Pam will pursue some other funding.

Votes or Discussion on Open Funding Requests

  • Regular classroom grants (no vote)
    • Three teachers confirmed request for $300/each, no vote needed.
  • Academic Enrichment
    • 5th Grade (via Ibis) $500 for field trip in April
    • Field trip to the Berkeley Pit in Butte, already have $1000 grant from the National Wildlife Federation
    • Current academic enrichment balance= $2977
    • Motion to vote, unanimous vote in favor

FCC General Updates (Stacy)

  • Box Tops – 9000 collected, will be sent in this week = $900
  • Family Fun Nights – Portrait night was good
    • Thinking of doing an internet safety class in the spring
    • Thinking of summer kickoff party at Mt Jumbo again (kickball, Feed the Need Truck, Ice Cream truck)
    • Will clean out lost and found after March 8th – PTA will remind parents again to check the Lost and Found during conferences

Boundary Study (Kristie Scheel, Rattlesnake Parent Representative)

  • Kristie updated the group: There was a committee meeting in January at which guiding principles were set forth. Data is starting to come in which will help inform decisions. Still waiting on demographic projections. Rattlesnake held a special meeting to address rumors, which 35+ parents attended. (see summary: https://rattlesnakepta.org/2019/02/22/rattlesnake-parent-boundary-study-meeting-summary/) Nothing concrete is on the table yet, all ideas being considered. Comments are welcomed via the website, Kristie or Pam. There is an open house Monday, March 4 at Russell School from 6-8pm. Final recommendations will come in May, some changes may be implemented in Fall of 2019, or later. Ideal school size was deemed to be 450 students, which is why renovations at the fuller schools were not made even bigger.

Quick Report Outs or needs for Events and Fundraisers

  • TOP PRIORITY: Spring Fling Planning (Molly and Judith)
      • Wrapping up silent auction donations
      • Handouts are going out to parents on a regular basis
      • Becky requested a schedule of events- Judith noted and will follow up
      • Erik will do morning message
      • Hired a dance caller to try to engage kids in country dancing
      • Big push now is to recruit volunteers for the event via the Sign Up Genius
      • https://www.signupgenius.com/go/20f0d44ada62aa3fe3-spring1
  • Wellness (Carissa/Becky)
    • Carissa and Becky updated the group: Things are moving slowly because the district is making some new wellness policies and the school and Pam would like to wait until those are passed down for implementation before forming a committee of teachers and parents. The best time to form new committees is in the fall, but Pam will see what her advisory committee thinks. The cafeteria will be painted this summer as part of lunchroom improvements and they hope to put up a Catch Corner bulletin board in the cafeteria. Catch Corner is a place to reward via acknowledgement of good cafeteria/food choices by students. 
    • It was suggested the Wellness Committee connect with the Garden Committee.

Spring Swag Plans (Erik/Brittany)

  • Brittany has ordered pencils, sandwich bags and mugs that will be ready for Spring Fling
  • The group decided to donate 3 school t-shirts to the 5th graders competing in a district wide competition.

Teacher Updates

  • No major updates, but Pam and Maureen talked a little more about IRLA (Independent Reading Level Assessment) and those implications- allows for more individualized reading plans

General Financial Updates

  • GFS scripts bringing in about $250 a quarter- PTA can push this to parents to possibly earn more
  • Book Fair brought in $2030 net income
  • Approx $18,200 raised in income so far this school year

Administrative Tasks

  • Set agenda for March 5th General Meeting
  • Update that Gail reached out and is willing to volunteer for Chess Club again. Follow up is needed to ensure Gail has what she needs.
  • Decision that due to schedules, no Leadership Meeting will be in March.

ADJOURN

2019 Jan 22 Leadership Meeting Minutes

PTA Leadership meetings are open to anyone that is interested in contributing to the hard work of the PTA’s board, teachers, event leaders, volunteers, and various team leads! 

Attendance

Matthew N (Secretary)
Leigh G (President)
Alex S (Treasurer)
Molly C (President)
Judith B (VP)
Becky K
Carissa B
Stacy J (FCC)
Erik F
Brittany H
Carrie S (Teacher Rep)

 

FIRST HOUR

Principal’s Updates  (Pam was not present, covered topics conversationally)

  • Boundary Study updates, Kristie Scheel has agreed to be on the committee, there may be an additional slot opening.  There was an East Missoula applicant. There may be some further revision regarding the district updates and representatives, which would make sense for East Missoula.
  • Mt Jumbo Elementary may be reopened in 5-10 years, or longer, but is not actively part of the current study.
  • The district web site has been updated and there is more information available.

FCC General Updates (Stacy- Box Tops, other needs)

  • Box tops officially kicked off today
    • Sorted by 50/bag to be submitted  
    • Ultimately they are counted in class and submitted in envelope. It has been a student job in the past and continues to be popular.
    • Proceeds will go back to the general PTA grant budget as it has in years past with the exception of last year’s funds, which was administered by Pam and Julie.
    • Party will go back to less cost/food oriented and additional recess/activity to keep it simple and inexpensive.

Quick Report Outs / Needs for Events and Fundraisers

  • TOP PRIORITY: Spring Fling Planning (Molly)
    • Need more volunteers and guidance has posted
    • Guidance is available for solicitation of auction and sponsorship.
    • NEED A PROJECT LEAD FOR THE PLAN AS A WHOLE – Judith agreed to talk with Molly about being the event lead
    • Maggie W and Anne T lead one last year, but are taking on a smaller role this year.  Donation phone calls take more time than expected.
    • Carissa mentioned Michelle B may be able to help with event planning
    • Judith will jump in and assist where she can, but has not participated in the event in years past due to being out of town.  Happy to help in a capacity other than tracking the financial aspects of it. Will do mock ups of promotions (Sandwichboard, banners)
    • Erik, food committee report– Famous Daves cannot donate due to rising costs.  We got our request in on time, but pork prices are rising and making impossible. February will be a deadline to know if food can be donated (basket).  We may be able to get a reduced price depending on how prices move. Erik will ask.
    • Differences between sponsorship (business giving money) and Baskets is goods and services (Silent Auction)
    • Discussion that using old school carbon paper might be super useful for the auction process
    • Kate got a whole bunch of carousel tokens for Spring Fling to reduce food rewards
    • Donations need to be more targeted and less 300+ small items.  Maggie W has guidance for this years committee regarding that
    • Lucia or Maggie A have worked with CFS on their auction software but we have not because the cost is prohibitive but it is something to be considered because it happens year over year.  Brittney will follow up.
    • Raffle tickets will fall under Maggie W.

 

  • Family Fun Nights (Stacy)
    • Family fun night in January will be out of East Missoula and in the Mt Jumbo library pending site inspection by Stacy to ensure that it is in functional condition.
    • No cost to participate
    • Family fun night in February will be on the 13th at the Rattlesnake School
    • 13FEB – Michelle N Photography for the evening for families.
    • Photography has some variations and can be flexible for families/friend groups.

 

  • Idea for Evening Class on internet safety, in the same way there were parenting classes
    • Detective to come by for a class on internet safety. Detective Katie Peterson date: TBD
    • Might be in coordination with Washington Middle School
    • Parenting nights used to be common but are now on hiatus until a new curriculum is developed. The district was supposed to start this semester, but no further information has posted.

 

  • Wellness (Carissa/Becky)
    • Kate’s idea for better cereal choices for the lunchroom (healthier selection- less percent calories from sugar) was adopted district wide
    • Walk through was conducted as for a pilot program within the lunch room.
    • Paint color choices for the lunch room are coming up soon.
    • MTF with upcoming dates (thus far, nothing for prior release).
    • Policy review with district administrators and the Principals with a meeting in Feb.
    • Kate got a whole bunch of carousel tokens for Spring Fling to reduce food rewards
  • Spring Swag Plans (Erik/Brittany, hold til B arrives)
    • Need to look at if there are additional things that we would like to sell.  Also want to look at the online sales. We did receive a check from UA for $398.  
    • We were unable to get an itemized list
    • There has been some positive feedback regarding more variety.
    • Do we need to have more on hand for regular events. Cups and inventory available will work for the meantime. Maybe order tote bags, reusable lunch sacks, grocery bags, pencils, ball caps?
    • Bring out the table for concerts and class level events.
    • Let the online sales be available for moments where tables/volunteers/foot traffic is untenable, but events we should stock inventory conducive to a table.

 

SECOND HOUR

Teacher Updates (in general – Carrie)

  • Teachers got a new Kettle and it is appreciated.
  • Inservice in February (Monday) before President’s Day (determined by the district)  
  • Curriculum to be updated, it is new to teachers so may be the first time most teachers are using the program.
  • We are one of three pilot schools for IRLA K-5, this is part of the new English Language Arts curriculum.

Financial Updates

  • PayPal Giving Fund
    • Got a letter, initially seemed possible as a scam- turns out it is a legit way to receive the funds electronically from our Direct Donate vendor (Crowdrise). Otherwise we’ll just get a paper check.
  • Status of CD Move  – (Alex, Matthew)
    • The CD has moved to an account with Edward Jones Account.  The maturity is July 2020 at 2.7% paying monthly.
    • We did discuss moving the money market over as well as it has a higher interest rate and would allow the interest from the CD that is accumulating monthly will also be at a higher rate (currently 1.7%).
    • Carrie was concerned this would be more confusing, discussed how it is the same banks just a different configuration so it shouldn’t be more confusing that it already is.
    • Alex motioned to move the money market over from First Security to the EJ account.  All in favor, Matthew abstained.
  • Others as needed
    • Votes or Discussion on Open Funding Requests
      • Reviewed teacher classroom grant requests
      • Currently all fall within the grant parameters and do not require discussion or approval.
      • Academic Enrichment
      • Kast’s request canceled (she said they will just use Box Tops money from last year)

Administrative Tasks

  • Schedule Executive Board meeting in the first or second week of February
    • Want to set up a pattern of each month for Leadership (i.e. 3rd week of the month)
    • Leadership meeting to be within Feb 25 – Mar 1st.
  • Treasury and VP will term out at the end of this year. Judith can continue her term rather than hold it as an additional election if desired
  • Set agenda for February 5th General Meeting

2018 Dec 17 Leadership Meeting Minutes

PTA Leadership meetings are open to anyone that is interested in contributing to the hard work of the PTA’s board, teachers, event leaders, volunteers, and various team leads! 

Attendance

 

Matthew N (Secretary)
Leigh G (President)
Alex S (Treasurer)
Molly C (President)
Judith B (VP)
Stacy J (FCC)
Kate D
Erik F
Brittany H
Pam Wright (Principal)

FIRST HOUR

  • Discussion on how to make general meeting more inclusive and engaging. Major points of discussion included not making it longer, how the current format gets good attendance in general, how only 4 general meetings are strictly required, perhaps adding Leadership minutes to the blog on a regular basis, making the Leadership meetings more open to additional folks if desired, asking folks “what brought you to the meeting today” as a way to engage better, featuring a topic of the month for further discussion (i.e. like the SPARK Arts person).
  • Welcome new Teacher Reps (if able to attend)
    • Carrie Sweatland and Maureen Loewenwarter were not able to attend, but are our new reps!
  • Quick Report Outs or needs for Events and Fundraisers
    • Direct Donate (Leigh) – going well, final promotions and handouts are planned prior to start of Winter Break. Most donations coming in via checks.
    • Spring Fling Planning (Molly) – Molly and Judith plan to start working on promotional materials (poster, etc) soon. Feedback to swap the Cake Walk for a Swag Walk or other non-treat related prize. Idea to add a structured Contra Dance or square dance or Super Skippers as an activity. Discussion on how past formats were more or less engaging for younger vs older kids, which is always a tough nut to crack.
    • Reschedule on Limo Lunch (Alex/Pam/All) Has been rescheduled to January 10th to start at 11:30 am, one or two parents at Pizza Hut would be great if feasible.
    • Swag Distribution (Erik/Brittany) – sold about 30 items, distribution went well, earnings were good for the amount of effort required but lower than had we handled sales more independently. Discussion on pros and cons of this method. May or may not be something we want to do in the Spring.
    • Wellness – Pam has ordered No Idle signs idea, not clear when they will be arriving. Kate Devino gave an update on handwashing stations. The estimates came back roughly as $800/hot water plumbing, $8950 for the station itself, and $3-5000 for the floor and wall rebuild and repair. Low end amount is thus $12K. Kate also updated on the smarter lunchroom progress- items moving forward slowly, such as painting cafeteria, creating a healthy choices space. The District Committee on Smarter Lunchroom will be doing a meeting at Rattlesnake, date TBD likely January 2019, from 2-3pm at our school. Kate will update us as that moves forward. Kate has been working to improve the quality of breakfast cereal choices by eliminating a few most sugary choices. Pam mentioned this would have positive behavioral impact, as the kids all want to sugary ones so it creates conflicts. This change would come from district level (procurement) and is not particularly controversial- many widely acceptable cereals would remain (i.e. honey nut cheerios would stay, lucky charms would go).
    • YAY for Target Field Trip Grant! $700 for 4th Grade!! Congrats Molly for spearheading!
  • Feedback on Holiday Scheduling
    • Parent confusion on school events – how can PTA help? Discussion on expectations vs reality on this. Pam talked about how they are not permitted to have religious programming, and while that rule has been bent in the past, it is best to modernize approach. Judith and Leigh both mentioned that they appreciate school was moving away from Christmas themed activities since their kids started 4 and 6 years ago. Ideas discussed for 2019-2020 school year include holding the K-1 musical assembly (non-denominational) in December to help parents transition to the public school expectations. Stacy mentioned it might be good to do a Family Fun Night winter themed in December as well. Someone said perhaps it would be good to explain this in brief at K Roundup in the Spring, so that new families better understand.  

SECOND HOUR

  • Votes or Discussion on Open Funding Requests
    • Reviewed 6 teacher classroom grant requests
  • Fundraising Committee Idea
    • General Discussion on how we can proceed – Discussion on how general feel was that we do not need a committee to be formed right now, but it was good to make sure we thought it through
    • Sponsorship of Fun Run by Headwaters – Molly will pursue. Discussion of Spring Fling v Fun Run, and how Fun Run should be a better fit
    • Sponsorship of Fun Run by new dentistry office – idea to have dentists also give out toothbrushes at Fun Run.
    • “Community Hand Up” at the Dram- OK to have a bar sponsored event – this was discussed and agreed that from the PTA position, it is generally acceptable. Molly followed up with Pam after the meeting, Pam has asked the district if there is a policy here. Leigh said she would follow up with Sarah Millar (will cancel the night if Pam says district forbids it)