Thursday, March 26, 2015

Meeting Minutes ~ March PTA Meeting

The March PTA Meeting was held on March 17th. The PTA publishes the minutes soon after the meeting so that everyone is aware of what is discussed and what decisions are made. 

As a reminder...everyone is invited to attend the PTA meetings. 

Esther Jackson Elementary PTA Board
Meeting Minutes

March 17, 2015


Daniel MacLagan, Jennifer Cassidy, Becky Anderson, Lisa Newara, Shannol Grant, Lisa Stamey, Loren Jackson, Leslie Greindl


EJ Media Center
Next meeting:
April 21, 2015, EJ Media Center

Call to Order – Dan MacLagan, 6:30pm

Old Business
·         Last Meeting’s Minutes Approved

President’s Address – Dan MacLagan
·         Bingo Update
o    Bingo went well.  Katie Troline was able to get a majority of prizes donated so we made about $200 for the evening. 
o    Becky asked if the relationship with the prize donors was something that was likely to continue with Katie not being at the school next year, or if we would need to budget accordingly for the 2016 Bingo night.
§  Dan responded that the relationship with the donors is with Katie, but she has made sure to document the donation history throughout her time as chair to make it easy for the next chair to request similar donations.
·         Hawks Game Fundraiser
o    Tia MacLagan collected order forms and money, and turned it by deadline only to find that the tickets had sold out.  She then had to issue refunds to disappointed families. 
o    It’s not the first time this has happened with GA PTA sports fundraisers.  They continue to sell tickets online through their website instead of holding them while the schools are selling making it common to sell out. Consensus is that it is probably best to avoid.
·         Reading for Education
o    Prizes have arrived and need to be distributed.  They came prepacked with the student’s names, so distribution will be fairly simple.
Committee Reports
·         5th Grade Party – Lisa Stamey
o    T-shirt is almost ready
o    Looking into booking a photo booth (Groupon)
o    Some 5th grade staff have agreed to get pie in the face during party and are setting up incentives for students to earn a chance at this.
·         Spring Carnival – Lisa Stamey
o    Lisa has solicited business partner funds
o    Kohl’s will donate $500 if 5 of their employees volunteer at an event. 
§  Lisa is working with Tia (who works there) to try and obtain volunteers and secure this.
§  The volunteers will be used to sell the tea that McAlister’s is donating.
o    Fundraiser during carnival: Girl’s Club is planning to make planters and grow plants and sell them.  They are working on getting donations for supplies. 
§  Lisa suggested that money raised should go to the underfunded Girl’s Club.
·         Spirit Nights – Lisa Stamey
o    Sky Zone – 3/19: Class with the most participants gets a Free Choice Day in PE
o    Sky Zone – 4/15: (Great stress reliever during Milestones!) Every jumper will get a free 30 minute pass to use during the summer!
o    McAlister’s – 3/24: Drop your receipt in the basket!
o    Aurora Movie Event – 3/28: Home, $7 per ticket.  Need to sell 100 by the 25th in order to have own theater.
·         Yearbook – Shannol Grant and Leslie Greindl
o    Leslie Greindl and Jodi Kaplan have agreed to be Yearbook co-chairs!
o    They hold meetings every Wednesday and have met with the Picaboo contact
o    Presales are going on now until May (presales are how we get free shipping – need to really promote this!)
o    Discussed photo uploading, naming.  They will work on a process where people can get them the photos.
·         Science Expo – Becky Anderson
o    111 participants entered originally, 89 displayed night of Expo for 80% participation
o    20 no shows, 2 cancelled before Expo
o    78 team/partner projects
o    76 entrants indicated that they did not participate in the 2014 Expo
§  Becky noted that this question should be changed on the entry form as it does not give a true indication of “first time” participants, which is what it is meant to capture. Some students may have participated in a previous year, just not the most recent.
o    The Grant Team obtained a “Bright Ideas” grant for the Expo from Sawnee EMC.  Not all grant funds were used for the Expo, and we have received the grantor’s permission to use them to buy supplies for STEM day classroom projects, or as needed for similar.
o    Becky asked for feedback to help make the Expo even better.
§  More monitors/check in volunteers.  (Only a few of the requested slots were filled.)
§  Rules for dry ice experiments (touching, someone ate a piece, etc…)
§  School assembly to give non-participants and students who are stuck at their displays all night a chance to see the other’s work?
·         Walk & Roll – Leslie Greindl
o    Leslie is working on this, will be in contact with Carissa to get info from last year.
o    Needs to obtain prizes.
·         Membership – Lisa Newara
o    Envelope Drive: Sent 400 envelopes, got 27 new members. 
o    Jennifer suggested making sure that there was a PTA Membership packet available to give out when a new family comes in and registers students in the middle of the school year.  This should be given to Dora, who handles the registrations.
o    Leslie suggested the idea that we have a PTA “hospitality committee” to welcome new families so they could meet someone in their student’s year with experience at the school to answer questions.  This led to a discussion of how this would work.  Ms. Cassidy would be willing to give us the info for all new families so we can contact them once we form a committee.  Something to plan for next year?
·         Volunteers
o    We still need a VP of Fundraising and a Spring Carnival Co-Chair.  Tara Barooah provided a “job description”  for these roles.  Dan and Shannol are to work with Ms. Cassidy to get the info out.
o    Tracey Preslan has stepped up to take the VP of Communications role on a temporary basis until the end of year and may continue next year.

Principal’s Address – Jennifer Cassidy
·         The School Governance Council has begun meeting and is in preliminary phase.
o    They are currently doing a needs assessment survey.
·         Thought the Sceince Expo was fantastic.  Felt like the kids did the work.  Great job!
·         They have been talking a lot about the move and packing up.
o    Everything in the school must be packed up by May 27th.
o    Movers come May 28th.
o    This summer, the EJ office will be temporarily at River Eve’s Elementary.
·         GA Milestone Test: Teachers have been busy preparing their students and they are ready to take the test when they return from Spring Break!

New Business
·         Fun Time Live – Loren Jackson (FTL’s Georgia Region Lead)
o    Attendance has dropped since start.
§  131 kids first night, lowest was 37.  Goal is at least 150.
o    Wanted to get PTA’s feedback on program and what could be done to increase business.
§  A discussion was held on safety, how to overcome some of the issues they are having, and how to clear up the negative impressions that some past incidents may have caused, even after they have been addressed.

·         Lisa wanted everyone to know that Martin’s Landing swim team registration is now open.  This is a fun way for kids to stay in contact and have fun over the summer. It is open to everyone, not just those who live in ML. More details at
·         Becky mentioned that she has gotten feedback from quite a few parents who say that always having the PTA meetings on the same day makes it impossible for them to ever attend, due to work/sports schedules.  Was wondering if a rotating day schedule should be implemented next year?  Dan will take this under advisement.

Meeting Adjourned by Dan MacLagan at 8:25 pm

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