PTA Meeting Minutes, April 26, 2017

Ms. Rosa & kids

Ms. Rosa with kids before the PTA meeting (there was free childcare!)


Nina Crews (co-president) welcomed families and teachers.

Updates from Ms. Yvette


  • Middle School: If parents want to appeal the decision, please let Yvette know by May 2 – the deadline is May 5 but that gives enough time to get the appeal together.  If the appeal is not granted, families do not lose their spot at the school originally offered.  If the appeal is granted, the change is made automatically, and there is no option to revert to the original school.  The process should be decided by the end of May/early June. Letters of recommendation are prohibited.
  • Movers for Moms: Campaign to support mothers in shelters for Mothers Day, supported by Two Men and a Truck (Children’s school family).   Please donate anything you would like to receive for Mother’s Day – gently used clothing is ok.  Yvette is looking into gift cards.  The grade that brings in the most items will win an award.
  • Field Day T Shirts Thanks to the PTA and Exec Board for funding these. This year there will be one design, which each class color coded and staff identifiable.  Field day is May 16 (K-2) and May 23 (3-5);  permission slips went home and need to be returned.
  • Dismissal — If there are last minute changes, please call before 1pm, to Ms Iris at x1502. That is the only way to make sure the message gets to classroom teachers in time, especially for older grades who may not return to their classrooms after that time.

PTA President Nina presenting, using our brand new monitors!

PTA Updates

  • Readathon: Thrilled by results.  Our First Annual Readathon raised $24,000. 10% will go to multimedia for more books.  Approximately 60% participation school wide.  Thank you to our Readathon Committee – Merideth Finn-Beers,  Jessica Miksis, and Mimi Stauber-Levy. Logo by Lori Richmond.   Thank you to our multimedia teachers, Grace McGuigan and Aida Velez Minsky, for allowing children to take out extra books during the Readathon.
  • Silent Auction and Gala raised over $28,000! On target with past years, and this years’ goal.  Special thanks to the Auction Committee:  Merideth Finn-Beers, Rai Ariz, Jessica Miksis, Ledra Solomon, Lisa Chamberlain, Laura Mantell Heather Millen and Nina Crews.
  • Budget update. Ahead of budget projections.  Readathon an unexpected success. The executive board is working on a plan to spend some of those extra funds on more books. Also lowered the suggested admission for Arts and Science Day.  More details will be announced at our May 17th We will also vote on mini grant proposals on May 17.

Upcoming Events

  • PLANT SALE – April 28, 8 – 9:30 am & 2:15 – 3:15 pm Proceeds will benefit the Children’s School Garden. Sign ups for volunteers on Konstella
  • Wellness Committee Meeting – May 3rd
  • Mini Grant proposals due May 5th.
  • PTA Meeting at ASD – May 10th, 9:15 am, 300 Adelphi St in Ft Greene. All families welcome – come meet ASD parents!
  • Arts and Science Day – May 13th 12-4pm. This event will feature activities like Trash to Treasures cardboard maze; medical testing; rollercoasters; origami and mural making. Food fundraiser will be for the Undoing Racism Committee. There will also be an auction of art projects from each classroom – thank you Class Parents! Sign ups for volunteers on Konstella
  • PTA Meeting – May 17th. Mini grant vote. Discussion of next year’s PTA board and committees. PTA and SLT Elections will be held in June.

Introducing: SLT Wellness Committee (Paula Szuchman)

  • The group welcomes teachers, staff and parents. Our goal is to address health and wellness concerns within our school community, to lead initiatives that support healthy eating and physical activity, and to build partnerships with local groups that provide training, activities and grants. First meeting will be on May 3rd, 8:30 in the cafeteria.
    • How can we create opportunities for more time outdoors?
    • How can we create opportunities for more movement in class?
    • How can we create opportunities for healthy (and exciting!) snacks and lunches and celebrations?

Looking Forward at TCS: Comments from Ms. Rosa

  • Welcomes the Wellness committee, trying to get a salad bar in the cafeteria.
  • Upcoming Mr. C is organizing a whiffleball tournament for 4and 5th graders, to teach sportsmanship
  • Kids love when the Cheetah mascot appears, but since the current cheetah is often tied up in meetings, looking for other volunteers to wear it.
  • May 17: Curriculum night, 4:30-7:30pm.  Oportunity to meet with next year’s grades.  45 minute presentations will be repeated three times (4:30, 5:30, 6:30) so different groups of parents have opportunity.  Specialists also available in the cafeteria.
  • “My School Bux” – program to make school lunch payments easier. Reminder:  D75 students lunch is always free;  D15 students either can apply for fully funded or reduced price lunch.  No matter what, kids always eat if they are hungry;  whether or not they pay.
  • Articulation (forming next years’ classes). That happens Mid-June;  SLT will send a letter, as they did last year, on how classes are formed.  Rosa will not entertain requests for placement from parents.
  • Arrival/Dismissal: now in the cafeteria – 1st  Families seem to be getting used to the procedures – often kids running down the block before gates close.  Important to start on time, especially because an important part of the day is the Responsive Classroom morning meeting, which is at 8:25.
  • This year summer trainings continue in Responsive Classroom; now a Level 2 training institute over the summer at the school.
  • 4/28 First ever new family welcome for incoming Kindergartners.  There will be a tour, talk about the school.  The SLT Diversity Committee supports the “Buddy system”, matching new families with an existing family to help answer all the questions new families might have about the school, especially over the summer.  Please volunteer, in particular if you have language skills.  Also will have a day in June for pre-K students to introduce 3-4 year olds to school before the fall.
  • Early Childhood science: Cathy will be five days at the ICT site for 2017-8 school year;  PK-2nd grade will have science twice per week, and will also be doing lunch clubs for older grades.  Beth Huff, the math specialist, will be coteaching with her.
  • Professional Learning Communities: Fundations coaching for grades K-3.
  • Next year handwriting programs; learning cursive in 3rd grade, continue in 4th and 5th.
  • 2nd grade swimming and ASD;  part of a citywide Parks initiative to ensure that all second graders are safe around water.  Goal is survival (not learning strokes).  Summer school will also be swimming, as well as possibly tennis and golf.
  • Building changes: doors are painted, new color scheme (blue), and Ms. Marina is creating artwork with students to go up.  Next year, moving classrooms so 1st and 2nd graders do not have to climb as many flights of stairs;  4th graders moving up.
  • Other events in the school: 5th grade newspaper, Power of Progress (Pop) Opera for 4th grade — (June 7) – students designed, wrote and will act out the opera.
  • Thanks to the PTA for supporting all these activities (Pop Opera, Studio). Fundraising is essential for supporting Rosa and the teachers.

Closing (Nina):

  • Thank you all for coming. Please remember it is PTA dollars which support many of these activities, and the PTA needs your help.  If you are thinking of expanding involvement, elections for next year’s PTA Executive Board (and SLT) are coming up soon and there will be vacancies.  Any executive member happy to talk you through implications.