PTA February General Meeting Minutes

PTA February General Meeting Minutes

February 13, 2020

Auction / Party

  • Early Bird ticket sales lowered to $35
  • We have 115 donations
  • We do need more donations – vacation homes, classes, anything you like to do makes a great donation!
  • Have great sponsorships but do need more.  
  • Forms to donate/sponsor are at the PTA desk or you can email the committee

Treasurer Report

  • Session 2 of Pizza Friday begins February 14th. Our target is $62,000 and we have reached $36,000
  • Approximately $8-9,000 has been raised so far for 2nd session
  • Annual Appeal target is $35,000 and we are at $15,000

Literacy Supports – Assistant Principal Frank Ammirata

  • Fundations for K-3 (expanded to 3rd grade, typically ends at 2nd grade) Teacher practices are being looked at and attendance is important because Fundations happens at the beginning of the school day.
  • Words their Way for 4-5th grades
  • Fountas and Pinnell Guided Reading (small groups of 4,5,6 students at similar reading levels)
  • Leveled Literacy Intervention – Extra support in school for struggling students.
  • Units of Study
  • Academic Intervention Services – Extra support before or after school
  • Instructional Leadership Framework – Data is collected about reading and literacy.  Weekly reviews
  • Benchmark Assessments – 4 times per year, some students may require more. Looking at decoding/comprehension
  • People – Susan Tierney (Reading Specialist), Carla Greene-Felix (Second Literacy Backup /Supporting teachers with Data), Leah Vasquez ( D75 Literacy Coach, Making sure Fundations is being used to it fullest  potential), Speech Therapists (Thinking Maps supporters) Administrators (Present in classrooms, observe, work with teachers)
  • Staff Engagement – Professional Learning Communities – Making sure there are literacy connections with word problems in math
  • Coaching support – Consultants from programs we use like Fundations
  • Team Meetings – meet weekly to review data
  • Thinking Maps – Where we are, where we fall short, what we need to do, how do we support the students.
  • MyOn accounts were given to teachers K-5.  Meant to engage kids in reading.
  • Thoughts/Concerns by attendees: This topic should be discussed at the beginning of the year.  This was not done due to the new Envisions math program. Discuss this with teachers at curriculum meetings at the beginning of the year.  A concern with writing too. The programs pair reading with writing to balance the two.

The following is a copy of Mr. Frank’s Powerpoint presentation regarding PS 372’s Approach to Literacy:

372K Approach to Literacy (2020) – Key Programs and Terms 

Academic Intervention Services (AIS): Before/after school support for students in need of additional small group instruction

Advanced Literacies: refers to the skills and competencies that enable communication, spoken and written, in increasingly diverse ways and with increasingly diverse audiences. Advanced literacies also promote the understanding and use of text for a variety of purposes. Likewise they make way for participation in academic, civic, and professional communities, where knowledge is shared and generated. 

Coaching: support provided by District 75 instructional coaches to work with students and teachers in maintaining the fidelity of programs, problem solve/brainstorm 

Fountas & Pinnell (F&P) Guided Reading: small-group instructional context in which you support each reader’s processing of new challenging texts with using thousands of exquisite original texts and lessons for grades K–6. By bringing together a small group of children who are at a similar point in their reading development and guiding them to process a test that is leveled on a gradient of difficulty, you are able to provide an incremental amount of challenge at each reader’s edge of ability to process text.

Fundations: a multisensory and systematic phonics, spelling, and handwriting program for all K-3 students.  It also includes a supplementary activity set for Pre-K students. Fundations is designed as a whole-class, general education program used for prevention purposes. It also can be taught in a small group or 1:1 setting for intervention.

Instructional Leadership Framework: a system-wide approach to: ï Ensure that every school has the strategy and tools to continuously improve instruction, and provide our students with the rigorous learning experiences they all deserve, and ï Take stock to identify what instruction every student is receiving, how they’re receiving it, why they’re receiving it, and how it can be improved.

Leveled Literacy Intervention (LLI): is an intensive, small-group, supplementary literacy intervention for students who find reading and writing difficult. The goal of LLI is to lift the literacy achievement of students who are not achieving grade-level expectations in reading.

The Orton-Gillingham Approach (OG): a direct, explicit, multisensory, structured, sequential, diagnostic, and prescriptive way to teach literacy when reading, writing, and spelling does not come easily to individuals, such as those with dyslexia.  It is most properly understood and practiced as an approach, not a method, program, or system.

Thinking Maps: are consistent visual patterns linked directly to eight specific thought processes.

Units of Study: study help teachers provide their students with instruction, opportunities for practice, and concrete doable goals to help them meet and exceed any set of high standards. Each reading unit represents about five to six weeks of teaching, structured into three or four “bends in the road.”

Words Their Way: a developmental spelling, phonics, and vocabulary program. … Based on assessment results students are given words to study in order to discover the common attributes. In this manner students are actively constructing their own knowledge of spelling patterns.


  • There will be a script in the packet for children interested in the fundraising aspect.
  • Still need volunteers for the mid tally day Friday, the 14th
  • Parents, please subtotal minutes to help volunteers on tally day.
  • Badges will be handed out for milestones
  • Raffles will be done for each milestone, prizes are book store gift certificates and PS372 gear.
  • Do not need to fundraise to participate.
  • All of the money raised goes to enrichment programs for the kids at the school.  20 % of the money raised goes to the libraries at both the ICT and ASD sites.  
  • Classes that reach 100% participation get a pizza party.

Arts and Science Day – March 7th 12 – 4 at the ICT gym

  • Stations set up with arts and science crafts for kids
  • Need volunteers
  • Anybody with an idea for a table can contact the committee
  • Food supplied by 4th-grade families as a fundraiser for the 4th-grade class trip

Pizza Friday

  • Session 2 begins tomorrow, February 14th.
  • Forms are available online if you still need to sign up.
  • Volunteers needed

Parent Updates / Ms. Yvette

  • 4th and 5th-grade Studio celebration, Friday, February 14th in the gym at the ICT site
  • Career Day – Parents can share what they do with their child’s class.  Sign up with teachers.
  • Field Day t-shirt design contest – both sites participate, must include the cheetah mascot and PS372 The Children’s School in their design.  Nothing scary, please. The deadline is February 28th.
  • Families as Specialists Partners March 6th after drop off.
  • Census – March 12th – happens every 10 years and it is very important to participate because it helps determine to use of federal resources.  Please participate, it can be done online now.
  • No Enrichment Friday, February 14th, but Afterschool will continue as scheduled.

Thank Yous

  • January Movie Night crew, Special thanks to Brooklyn Pizza Market on Smith Street for donating pizza (owned by PS372 parents)
  • Katy Crile – Book Swap Organizer
  • Jaclyn LaRosa and Stephanie DeVito – Pizza Friday Co-Chairs
  • Meredith and Jessica for running the Readathon for the 4th year
  • Many volunteers and 5th-grade parents – ticket and food sales at the Valentine’s Day Dance
  • Michelle and Scotte for organizing a fabulous Valentine’s Day Dance
  • Yvette for her continued support of the PTA and events between both sites
  • Parent Volunteers – Without you, none of these events would be possible!

PTA Volunteer Opportunities

We need you! Please let us know if you would like to help at any of these events. We rely on volunteers to make all of our events take place:

  • Pizza Fridays – every Friday – sign up on Konstella
    • Sign up to help hand out pizza, both early & late shifts available.
  • Readathon – Midway Tally February 14th ICT cafeteria 8:45 – 12
    • Need helpers to organize and tally the minutes at the middle and end of month
  • Auction & Party – March 27th – Friday evening at Littlefields 
    • Help with donations, decorations, and Bidding for Good

Number of attendees: 18

Submitted by Lori White