PTO Report -- Nov. 2012

Below are the minutes to the November meeting of the Marshall Parent Teacher Organization:

Marshall Elementary Magnet School PTO Meeting Minutes 
Wednesday November 7, 2012 6:30pm
Next meeting: December 5, 2012 6:30-7:30

Christie Kinkade ran tonight’s meeting
(15 in attendance)

General Report 

  • Jog-a-thon recap= $18,475.00 
  • Exploration Stations= 30 vendors. 
  • Student council will have food for purchase 
  • School Cents update- currently in 5th place. Extra points in November and December 
  •  Box Tops – Total $1,161.80. Mr. Macias’ class won contest 
  • Clothing Exchange- Melissa Bianco is contact. Still need volunteers on Wednesday and Thursday from 8-11. Also need plastic or paper bags and hangers. Emily Manone volunteered to translate flyer into Spanish. 
  • Teacher lounge- furniture needed. Working with $1000 donated to school by Linda Evans when she won teacher of the year. Suggested we use World Market and get School Cents points for purchase. 
  • Parenting AZ- need funds for supplies ($75 for 3 months). Approved $225. 

Upcoming Events 

  • Cookie Walk- December 13th Andrea Shaw had agreed to organize this at a prior meeting. Time is 6-7pm 
  • Holiday Teacher/Staff breakfast- December 18th. Bernadette Chavez will organize this. An email will be sent to ask for food items from parents. Time will be 7:30-8:30am 

Principal’s Report- John was unable to attend. Report was read as follows:

  • We survived Picture Day on 10 Oct. and we’re pleased that pictures have already been delivered and sent home with students. 
  • Mr. Shaddy and Mrs. Arnold’s class collaborated to bring us the first installment of the Mustang Madness newscast early in October. It played for nearly a week on the TV at the front of the building and is also available for viewing via YouTube on our blog, www.marshallmagnetschool.com. We’re awfully proud of what Mr. Shaddy, Mrs. Arnold, and all of her students were able to accomplish in this regard. 
  • A small contingent of the FUSD and Marshall School community attended the Flagstaff Community Foundation Awards on 11 Oct. to receive more than $6,000 in grant money to ensure the sustainability of the Suzuki violin program at Marshall. 
  • Parent Teacher Conferences took place on 17-19 Oct. School was released early, at 11:45 each day, and our teachers were able to spend valuable time with our students’ parents discussing their progress. Parent teacher conferences will occur again in March. 
  • The Second Response To Intervention (RTI) cycle began on 16 Oct. Classroom teachers and our RTI specialists, Page Ballard and Joy Pavich, spent many hours poring over our benchmark testing data to rearrange students by hand into one of the many daily intervention groups we’ve put in place to meet their needs, from our most exceptional students to those who require the greatest support. 
  • The Second Grading Period, likewise, began on 15 Oct. This grading period will conclude with report cards being sent home on 21 December. 
  • We are pleased that Mrs. LeMoyne was featured in on the front page of the Arizona Daily Sun on 29 Oct. and had a chance to tout some of the great things going on in early childhood education at Marshall. 
  • One of our most unique and popular annual magnet opportunities, fifth grade Taiko drumming, has begun again with the return of our one-of-a-kind instructor, Tony Trapasso. The three week artist in residency will conclude with a public student Taiko drumming performance on 17 Nov. at Coconino High School Mini Auditorium at 11:30 a.m. 
  • Teachers were able to attend a two-hour Professional Development seminar on 02 Nov. led by our RTI specialists and geared toward helping our teachers strengthen their classroom instruction. 
  • Our Violin Rental Program is off to a great start. For just $10.00 per month we are able to send home a practice violin with students to use to review the things they learn in Suzuki class each week. 
  • We now have 235 Facebook followers and had nearly 1200 unique pageviews during the month of Oct. on blog, www.marshallmagnetschool.com. 
  • Six-hundred copies of The Marshall Magnet, our quarterly school newsletter, were printed and sent home with families during conferences. 
  • We collected $443.00 towards the required Tax Credit Participation fee and are hopeful that this will be sufficient to demonstrate our earnest effort to collect this fee. This fee is required by the state and must be assessed if we are to be allowed to use Tax Credit money to support our extracurricular programs. 
  • Our annual Tax Credit contribution drive begins in earnest next week. We only have until 31 December to collect these crucial contributions. Without Tax Credit contributions our magnet programs would cease to exist. Families may contribute up to $400.00 and individuals up to $200.00. All Tax Credit contributions are a dollar-for-dollar credit against the taxes you otherwise owe to the state. Tax Credit works for you, and it works for us by allowing Marshall to provide many unique magnet programs to your students free of charge, and by allowing you to have direct control over where and how your tax dollars are spent. More information about the Arizona Public School Tax Credit program is available on the blog, www.marshallmagnetschool.com. 

Treasurer’s Report 

  • $12,000 plus in account (have cards to recently purchased that will be sold) 
  • $25,000 plus in JAT account ($7,000 already there from last year- needs to be moved into a separate account so it can still be used for Science Lab) 
  • Another scrip order will be placed for the holidays. Flyer to go home soon 

Council Report 

  • Scientific study with Suzuki program and kindergarteners underway. Under the guidance of Karen Hallberg who is working on her PhD, 50 students selected at random for 5 week study. One “treatment” group who will receive more Suzuki instruction in both time and focus, and one control group. Looking at working with the memory and visual and spatial concepts. This is the first study like this done with early childhood students. 
  • K-2nd Music Mindgames curriculum being implemented through a grant. For now, just Suzuki students/teachers but all teachers will be trained in December. Marshall is part of a national newsletter on this topic. 
  • Violin Rental Program has begun. $10 rental per month with a $300 deposit. As of yet, not sure how to proceed with deposit but necessary because already 2 violins have disappeared when 2 families left Marshall. It was suggested the checks be cashed to avoid this but it also presents a problem with access for all students. 
  • Marshall was one of 10 schools nationally that received the SCA tissue grant. We are using the $1,935 to build a fence around the garden 
  • Waiting to hear about the $10,000 Heritage Grant we submitted. 

 Additional Business 

  • Tax Credit push is under way but Marshall currently raised $400. Last year we were at more than $38,000 
  • Parenting Workshops with Parent AZ begin tomorrow.

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