PTSO board meeting minutes: December 11, 2018

NEWTON NORTH PTSO

Minutes of Board Meeting

December 11, 2018

Attendees

Sally Brickell, Co-President

Valerie Pontiff, Co-President

Agi Sardi, Co-President

Millicent Lawton, VP Communications

Linda Hanusaik, VP Programming

Patty McCabe, VP Fundraising

April Stein, Co-Treasurer

Joel Bloom,Grants and Projects Co-Chair

Jane Stackpole, Grants and Projects Co-Chair

Vani Sayeed, Grants and Projects Co-Chair

Judith Sydney, Nominating/Volunteers Coordinator Co-Chair

Lexi Turner, Recording Co-Secretary

Henry Turner, Principal

  1. Educational Excellence (Ed Ex)

The campaign has netted a little over $8,000 thus far.  A donor has offered to match donations going forward up to $15,000.  More email outreach is planned for the months of December and January.  The campaign has an ambitious goal of $43,000 this year to fund needed science classroom equipment, but should be achievable with the match.  Participation in the campaign is usually 10%.

  1. Grants and Projects 

The committee received a lot of worthy and exciting classroom and education project requests this year amounting to twice the funds available.  The committee met with Amy Winston to coordinate decisions about which projects to fund and/or and at what level to fund projects.  The result is a commitment to fund $18,000 for projects this year.  

  1. Teacher Appreciation

The planned events have gone well this Fall, such as the class-sponsored breakfasts.  Teachers, and history department in particular have been receiving Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests from an organization called Advocates for Peace and Tolerance (APT). This organization has raised concerns (for years) regarding what it perceives as anti-Israeli bias in the high school curriculum.  Parents have organized additional efforts to provide food – fruit and cookies – for the history department to show their support.  

  1. Programming/Calendar

The Science and Education PTSO meeting went very well and was well attended on Thursday, December 6th.  

Planning is starting up for the Just Think Expo. As in past years, this event is offered during lunch and in the evening and this year will be on 1/8 and overlap with 10thGrade Parent night.  Volunteers are needed.  

The next PTSO sponsored meeting is planned for February 12th- Making the Most of Your HS Years.  Families with sophomores and freshman can particularly benefit from this information so they can plan a balanced schedule before class registration decisions.   

  1. Class Liaisons 

The Co-Presidents are working with the class liaisons to clarify roles and responsibilities and lines of communication, especially with class houses and class advisors.

  1. Northside Dining

The event on October 20thwas very successful this year and exceeded its revenue target.  The plan is to set a date for next year soon and begin recruitment of hosts earlier to broaden participation even more.

  1. Nominating/bylaws

An ad-hoc committee (Co-presidents, VP fundraising, co-secretaries) has begun meeting to look at updating the bylaws, last amended in 2012.  Proposed changes will be presented to the board in January. The goal is to ensure a sustainable board and leadership structure going forward, including formalizing a nominating process.

  1. Principal Update

Chromebook rollout for 10thgrade is set to begin and will be introduced at the 10thGrade Parent night.  

There are three proposed schedule change scenarios for the high schools.  The intention is to get feedback from students and teachers and then the school committee will make a decision with the goal of implementing the change in 2020.  The question regarding start-time is separate but any change to start-times would likely be implemented in 2020 as well.