LECONTE PTA MEETING NOTES: September 2013
LECONTE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL PARENT TEACHER ASSOCIATION (PTA) MISSION: CREATING COMMUNITY FOR ALL STUDENTS AND THEIR FAMILIES FACILITATE COMMUNICATION BETWEEN PARENTS, ADMINISTRATORS, TEACHERS, AND OTHER GROUPS FUNDRAISE IN SUPPORT OF TEACHING AND LEARNING, INCLUDING ACADEMIC ENRICHMENT FOR STUDENTS
AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT FOR TEACHERS
SEPTEMBER 2013 AGENDA AT A GLANCE
Welcome and Icebreaker Introduction of Officer/Parent Leader Volunteers Principal Valerio’s Welcome Berkeley Public Schools Fund Response to Intervention (RTI) Presentation Common Core Presentation PTA Budget – In development, to be finalized in October Membership Drive Announcements: o Lunch forms o 4th/5th grade field trips o After-school enrichment classes begin 10/7/2013 o Annual Fund/One More Month o Volunteers Needed Grand writing PTA position Room Parent Translation/Interpretation assistance call-out Read-a-thon Literacy Night (Spring semester) o Script o Calendar – Next event and call for volunteers Closure. Next meeting date Wednesday October 9, 2013 – 5:30 PM Dinner / 6:00 PM Meeting Handouts: School Directory Forms PTA Role Roster 2013-2014 School Governance Council (SGC) nominations forms Volunteer opportunities LeConte Elementary Parent Groups LeConte 2013-2014 Calendar Berkeley Public Schools Fund PTA Outreach (pink handout)
WELCOME & ICEBREAKER
PTA Co-Presidents Angela Gallegos-Castillo and Minerva Tirado called the meeting to order and set the tone and intention of the meeting for creating community. Angela led an icebreaker and asked all in attendance to take a moment to introduce themselves to someone whom they don’t know. Angela and Minerva introduced members of the LeConte PTA (see handout, LeConte PTA Roles 2013-14)
Angela introduced Principal Veronica Valerio. Principal Valerio thanked the Parents and Teachers for coming out and being part of and helping to build our community at LeConte. Principal Valerio shared information about her
journey to our school and expressed her appreciation for the opportunity to serve LeConte as Principal, “I love your kids already.” Principal Valerio brings 17 years of experience as an Educator, during which she has taught 2nd grade in a bilingual classroom, served as Administrator and Site Administrator, and as a K-8th Literacy Coach. Most recently, Principal Valerio has been with BUSD for the last two years leading Professional Development for K-12 Teachers/Instruction.
BERKELEY PUBLIC SCHOOLS FUND
Mary Friedman (firstname.lastname@example.org, 510.848.0449) from the Berkeley Public Schools Fund (BPSF) PTA Outreach: Ms. Friedman provided an overview of BPSF, which funds initiatives in every public school every year, including pre-school thru high school, and highlighted a list of past grants and benefits to LeConte (>$10,000 last year). “Our mission is to inspire and empower extraordinary public education throughout Berkeley public schools.” BPSF raises money from the broader Berkeley community for educational benefits to our schools. Examples include funding for music in schools and the volunteer program for ~1500 volunteers (about 50% UCB students). Ms. Friedman announced that BPSF is a designated charity for the 2013 Berkeley ½ Marathon. Fifty percent of funds raised by individuals and groups who sign-up on behalf of a specific BUSD school (LeConte!) will go specifically to that school.
RTI PRESENTATION – DANA BLANCHARD
Dana Blanchard (email@example.com), former LeConte Teacher and current RTI Coach for BUSD presented background information and district goals for the RTI program. What is it? Quality core instruction in the classroom, strategic early intervention, frequent assessment, decisions by educators, and provision of appropriate intervention. RTI is an active iterative strategy to support learning; RTI will be used for the launch of Common Core standards. Essential elements include a focus on learning, collaboration, active assessments to define what every student needs to learn, and frequent measurements of effectiveness. It provides a systematic framework to instruction for each child, with different tier levels (1-3). All students have will have some involvement with RTI. At LeConte, RTI will include application in leveled literacy intervention (adjunct), story of units for math, and “Do the math.” In 2013-14 there will be a language lab for English and Spanish language instruction. RTI will include ongoing communication with parents (and teachers and district). If a student knows something already, they will be given an acceleration opportunity. Ms. Blanchard noted that there are lots of RTI materials available for review on the BUSD website, including the district’s 80-page RTI manual.
COMMON CORE STANDARDS – PRINCIPAL VERONICA VALERIO
Principal Valerio provided a presentation for the PTA on the Common Core (CC) Standards. CC provides a National set of standards that define what every student must learn and achieve. The standards are robust and rigorous in design so that all students are equipped to be confident and successful in the 21st Century. K-5th grade: building critical thinking skills, coherent progression, focus on a few standards at increased depth. The standards are taught in both conceptual and procedural ways to support fluent practice. In grades 3-5, for 201314, the focus will be on math standards. Pilot of “Story of Units” (SoU) curriculum in all (BUSD) K-5 schools. SoU will be assessed as a benchmark. Pilot has and will include professional support and development for teachers. In 2014-15, all schools will be required to implement the CC standards. Principal Valerio advised the parents that we can expect kids to have a deeper understanding; homework/classwork will be different and challenging. All homework should be an extension of what they’ve already learned. It should be practice. Also, report cards will be modified to align with the new standards. The SGC will support parent trainings on the CC standards. Parent Stacy Waters asked about parent information (e.g., communications from Teachers) to support her in helping her 2nd grader with homework. Parent Paz Canales asked who created the program. Principal Valerio answered that the need for new standards was identified with the low U.S. educational ranking internationally. Our H.S. graduates are not prepared for college and the job market. CC was developed by College Professors, Representatives from Fortune 500 companies, Teachers – and provides new national standards. Principal Valerio also noted that the District has flexibility in its implementation of CC. Parent Carol Perez noted that last year we started a focused program for academic support in the afterschool program; how will this be coordinated with CC? Principal Valerio noted that it is a good question and that it remains to be determined currently. Principal Valerio recommended that parents ask their children’s’ teachers about the CC standards at Back to School night.
PTA BUDGET 2013-2014
Final budget presentation and request for PTA approval is deferred to October. Treasurer Sinead O’Sullivan (firstname.lastname@example.org) reported to PTA that an annual Audit is needed and asked for a parent or community member volunteer. Please contact Sinead if you can help or know someone else who can.
Parents were invited to complete their PTA membership applications for 2013-14.
Angela and Minerva thanked Guadalupe for providing the PTA dinner. Lunch forms: parents were encouraged to complete their free and reduced lunch applications, whether or not they believe they are eligible or want to receive free lunches. 5th Grade Outdoor Education Trip: There will be a meeting on September 19th for the 5th grade trip. Parents are encouraged to pay what they can towards the expenses for the trip. The PTA will also support the trip. Afterschool classes: Parents Tanya Spanier, Ann Sperske, and Carol Perez provided highlights on the afterschool classes for Fall 2013, including several new offerings (e.g., Kids on TV, Fashionistas, Ceramics) as well as old favorites (e.g., Circus). K/1st grade classes will run from 2:30 to 3:30 and 2nd – 5th grade classes will run from 4-5 PM. The Berkeley Learns afterschool program will provide an option to purchase childcare for the period between end of school and the afterschool classes. There will be a fee (to be determined) for this care. Registration is due on September 27th and both online (preferred by coordinators) and paper registration is available. Wednesdays will be meeting nights (PTA, SGC, ELAC, Coalition of African American Families) School Governance Council – Call for nominations. Sally Grant invited parents to the SGC meetings which will be held on the 3rd Wednesdays of the month. Nomination forms for SGC positions were sent home and are due on Friday September 13th. The SGC is responsible for development of the school plan for student achievement and for directing funds. Angela and Minerva passed out the LeConte calendar for 2013-2014 Afterschool Tutors (more information in October)
FUNDRAISING TEAM: NEDA WILSON, FRANCIE MAGUIRE, AND CATARINA NEGRIN
Neda, Francie, and Cata announced the Annual and One More Month fundraising drives (any amount helps) and reviewed the importance of the PTA fundraising successes. The PTA was able to save our Farm and Garden funding ($50,000) and Playworks! ($25,000). Kinder families will received a t-shirt for any donation >$25. They encouraged parents to investigate company donation matching. Donations can be submitted in the lock box across from the school office or submitted online. All donations are tax deductible. Francie reported that the LeConte Spring Auction earned a record $54,000 in 2013. For 2014 we will need a new event space (to accommodate 250-300 people). Please contact Francie is you have a lead on a potential space. Scrip – Tasha will be available on Friday mornings to sell Berkeley Bowl (4% of purchases go to LeConte PTA), Whole Foods (4%), and Peet’s coffee (10%) scrip. The school raises approximately $3000 per year from these efforts. It’s a great way to support the school.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED / VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES
Room Parents (announcement will be made at back to school night Need for parents with translation / interpretation skills Read-a-thon coordinators (one or two coordinators). The Read-a-Thon is scheduled to run from 10/9 to 10/30. Last year the event raised $11,000. Coordinator for Spring 2013 Literacy Night.
CLOSURE – NEXT MEETING 10/9/2013 5:30 PM DINNER, 6:00 PM MEETING (CHILDCARE PROVIDED)
Angela emphasized that the PTA philosophy is One Community – One PTA for Everyone. Towards this end, Angela announced that PTA meetings will be held alternately in English (with Spanish translation) and then, the next month, in Spanish (with English translation). This aligns with the foundation of two-way immersion. The district will be providing interpretation equipment for future meetings. Angela and Minerva invited all parents to submit their ideas and to contribute. As Co-Presidents, they have an open door policy and invite and support participation by all families.