Thursday, October 15, 2009

PTA Meeting Update 10/13/09

These are not full meeting notes but a synopsis of what I felt to be the more pressing issues.
The President of the PTA Mrs. Champion called the meeting to order and announced the mission of the group. She announced the names of the current Executive Board which is as follows:
President: Ms. Champion
Vice President: Ms. King
Treasurer: Ms. Simon

Then we began to discuss the need to fill positions and to join the PTA. The gist being, there are more positions than volunteers at this meeting.
To join the PTA:
If you were not there and would like to join, we're actually still working on this. I'll post as soon as I know exactly the process. Nonetheless, the positions needed are:
Exec Board.
Financial Secretary
Fundraising Committee
Members would meet as often as agreed upon in order to outline existing forms of fundraising as well as new possibilities. Members would seek to inform all parents, students and community members about fundraising efforts. (Mike Showalter nominated himself for this).
Greening Committee
It has a budget! YAY! Members would plan how to use the funds in order to continue the renovation work that was begun with the new playground.
Community Liaison
Members would plan the School Information Night, plan possibly 8 Open Houses for new parents, send a representative to all community meetings(anc6a, anc6c, PSA meetings, Tommy Wells community meetings, etc) and seek to have a presence at all appropriate community events (Hilloween, H Street Festival, etc.). (Rachel Klein offered to work on this committee in order to get the ball rolling)
International Day Planning Committee
Members would plan an international day for the school.

LSRT Positions Available (Local School Restructuring Team)
Parents are needed. This board advises the principal directly. It is separate from the PTA. It is made up of parents and teachers and community members. It will meet with Principal Cobbs directly to help plan the course the school takes.

Nominations: If you are interested in being a part of the LSRT team contact Ms. Cobbs directly.

Non-Profit Status
It was suggested that the PTA seek non-profit status. No volunteers came forth and though it was suggested that it fall to the fundraising committee, I think anyone who would be willing to do this for us would be welcomed and appreciated. In other words--ANYONE, PLEASE!!!!

Please join us. It was expressed that what often happens is that the chair person for a committee will take on too great a role in planning and therefore burn out. We need the support of parents and community members in order keep this body functioning at a high level.

The next agenda item was the Principal's Report.
Mrs Cobbs focused on the Arts Integration Catalyst School program and touched on Reggio-Emilio.
Many of us wanted to know how these two programs will be implemented. Here is how it's going so far according to Ms. Cobbs. There are 13 Catalyst Schools in DC. Four of them will be Arts focused. The four that were selected are Tyler, Sousa, Takoma and Ludlow Taylor. The principals of these four schools have been going to Arts focused schools to watch how music, dance and visual arts are implemented in order to make the impact of education more profound, for example, the dance that was done to the text of "Where the Wild Things Are". When the children do a corresponding activity to reading material it helps their comprehension. The teachers are using their in-service days to learn how to implement the arts more fully. Their in-service days are also being used to learn the Reggio-Emilio program as well. As anxious as we all are to hear details of the implementation of both programs, we also must bear in mind that school has been in session for only 6 weeks. However, I thought this to be the most important point. Mrs. Cobbs feels that the key to increasing enrollment is to have a niche focus and then to be excellent at the niche focus. For me, this helped alleviate my fear that Reggio Emilio would get placed on the back burner.

We had some give and take during questions and answer time. Several of us offered suggestions and volunteered to get work going in advance of the November meeting. Rachel Klein suggested that Open Houses are too important to put on hold until after committees were selected. Rachel and I then offered to organize the MotH School Information Night and the Open Houses. Nadine Henderson, Michael Showalter and Rachel Klein offered to work on that project. (I'm sure her husband Donnie will be roped in too:-))

After that we adjourned. The meeting was over by 7:45 (It started a bit late at 6:40) thus taking only barely over an hour of active meeting time. Then there was cake and much rejoicing.

1 comment:

  1. Mike, thanks so much for taking and posting the notes! I'm looking forward to attending the next meeting and signing up for one of the committees. We are so lucky to be at a school that is on the move!

    Diane B. (Xavier's mom)