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PTA Meeting Minutes 1.9.18

By Katherine Novello | Jan 25, 2018

Campbell PTA Meeting

January 9, 2018

6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Approximate
# of Attendees
: 20

I.     Welcome
and Introduction: Nathan Zee, President 

  • Nathan
    welcomed everyone to the PTA meeting
  • Nathan
    reminded everyone:
    • The
      Coat Drive was a booming success; PTA spent about $1,300 of the $3,000 we
      had approved because we received more donations of actual coats than
      anticipated (from a church in McLean); we were able to provide hats, gloves,
      boots, shoes, gift cards, etc. to supplement the drive
    • Added
      a Restaurant Night, on 3/8 at the Silver Diner; more info to follow
    • Nominating
      Committee still engaged in search for potential PTA officers; chair will
      be reaching out to members to find those who might want to serve on the
      board next year

  • Nathan
    introduced the guest speaker, Carole Goodloe, Outdoor Lab Board Member

 

II.    Outdoor
Lab: Carole Goodloe, Outdoor Lab Board

  • Ms.
    Goodloe introduced herself and gave a brief history of the Outdoor Lab
    • A
      non-profit that partners with APS to provide access to science and
      outdoor education for Arlington students
    • Founded
      by former APS science teachers; celebrated its 50th
      Anniversary this year
    • 225
      acres of pristine woods in Prince Willian County, exclusively for APS use
    • Currently,
      they are able to accommodate grade level trips at 3rd and 7th
      grade, as well as an overnight trip for 5th graders
    • Curriculum
      and staff coordinate lessons with APS science curriculum; opportunity for
      kids to engage in science curriculum in natural setting

  • Facilities
    are being strained by APS student population growth
    • Trying
      to work with APS to expand staff, facilities, and transportation to
      continue to provide same level of access
    • AOEA
      committed to rebuilding the cottage
    • Please
      talk to the School Board, Science Staff, Superintendent to support this
      vital resource (advocacy sheet distributed for talking points)

  • Summer
    Camp opportunities:
    • Three
      sessions (for rising 5th, 6th, and 9th
      graders)
    • Includes
      three overnights, lots of hiking, fishing, boating, and science
    • Can
      sign up through the APS Summer Course Catalog that will go home during
      March conferences

  • Ms.
    Goodloe opened the floor to questions:

 

 

III.   Benefits of Title 1: Maureen Nesselrode, Principal

·        
What is Title 1?

o  
Part of the
Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA)

o  
Provides
financial assistance to local educational agencies (LEAs) and schools with high
numbers or high percentages of children from low-income families to help ensure
that all children meet challenging state academic standards

o  
Federal funds are
currently allocated through four statutory formulas that are based primarily on
census poverty estimates and the cost of education in each state

o  
For more info: https://www2.ed.gov/programs/title1parta/index.html

·        
Arlington has six
Title 1 schools, all over 60% free/reduced lunch

·        
The Funding is
used for:

o  
Additional reading
teachers

o  
Professional
Development for teachers (on and offsite)

o  
Purchasing
instructional materials

o  
Classroom
libraries

o  
Summer programs
(such as: summer mailbox, summer school, summer enrichment)

o  
Parental
involvement events (Multicultural Night, Fall into the Arts, for example)

·        
Money cannot be used for:

o  
Supplanting
something that other schools already get (they intend for kids to get MORE than
their advantaged peers)

o  
Furniture

o  
School supplies

o  
Food (unless its
for a Parental Involvement event)

·        
Requirements for
Title 1 schools:

o  
Staff must be
highly qualified (assistants must pass an exam or have college degrees)

o  
Additional
documentation required (staff reports, parent attendance at events)

o  
Must meet testing
targets or risk sanctions

o  
Must develop a
school plan

o  
Additional
oversight/support from the Central Office

·        
Ms. Nesselrode
opened the floor to questions

o  
Q: Is Title 1
based on a percentage of economically disadvantaged students? And is it only
elementary schools? A: Yes, Arlington has decided to allocate its Title 1 money
to elementary schools where 60% or more of the students receive free or reduced
lunch.

o  
Q: Can you
explain the difference between a Title 1 school and a Focus school? A: This is
changing because ESEA is changing, but in the past, the difference was that Focus
Schools were Title 1 schools that did not met their testing targets (targets
set by the state). They receive additional scrutiny and additional support to
help them meet their targets. Campbell was briefly a Focus School at the
beginning of my tenure here (2011) based on a drop in test scores, but our
scores have improved significantly each subsequent year without a lot of test
prep, which is something I am very proud of. We’ve been testing above target
since the 2013-2014 school year.

o  
Q: Are the class
sizes in Title 1 smaller? A: Good question. Title 2 is the reason we have extra
staff, which leads to a lower student/teacher ratio. You can be Title 1 and not
have the Title 2 designation. Title 1 requires that we stay one below the
countywide maximum number of student per class. However, Title 2 means we get
additional staffing, so the student/teacher ratios are more favorable even if
class size doesn’t appear to be so different.

o  
Q: Will our class
sizes be affected by the new lottery that will be administered by the Central
Office? A: Possibly, though we do have that hard cap based on Title 1.

o  
Q: So kids will
be able to enter at any grade? A; Yes, if there is space. We don’t really know
how we might be affected. We’ll have to see what is stated at Kindergarten
Information night as to the lotteries. We do know that parents will be able to
apply to the lottery online.

o  
Q: How many
additional students might we get? A: Maybe as many as 40, if we maxed out across
the school.

o  
Q: Could our
Title 1 status be lost depending on who enters the lottery? A: It’s possible,
ultimately. My best guess would be that the people who currently apply here
would continue to apply, and that covers a wide spectrum of economic status.

o  
Comment: We’re
under the radar, so it will take a few years I think before that might happen.
People don’t even know we’re here.

o  
Comment:
Transportation is a wild card, as we’ve never provided it to North Arlington;
it may change who applies over time.

o  
Q: Will current
wailing lists be carried over? A: The current wait lists will be grandfathered
for one year. After that, there will be a different process.

o  
Comment: This
change will also be more equitable for families who are more transient or who
move to the area after Kindergarten, like military families. They had almost no
shot at the lotteries in the past. 

o  
Q: Will our
Montessori classroom be moved to the new Montessori building at the Henry site?
A: It’s a possibility. Not all classrooms will be moved there, but some might,
so it is a possibility. 

·        
Kate Sullivan,
School Counselor:

o  
As of yesterday,
rising 6th graders can apply for neighborhood transfers to Kenmore
and Jefferson Middle Schools; applications are available online. They are due
Friday, January 26th. The HB Woodlawn lottery deadline is January 19th.
Information sessions are being held at all Middle Schools this month; Middle
School counselors will be going over course options and electives for next year
with rising 6th graders on February 5th.

 

IV.  Treasurer’s
Report: Jenny Morris, Treasurer

·        
Highlights from December:

o  
Fun Run donations
totaled over $10,000

o  
Four Courts
Restaurant Night earned $700

o  
Amazon rewards
earned $ 353

o  
Zumba earned $280

o  
Took in our Project
Discovery payments and paid out instructors

o  
Expenses included
a new lamp for the Turtle Tank, Kindergarten Field trip support ($49), Teacher
Appreciation prior to winter break ($350), Outdoor Classroom expenses, VAPTA
and CCPTA dues paid, duct tape expenses, wellness event for the teachers ($78)

o  
Movie Night broke
even

o  
Spanish
Department bought puppets and subscription to a music website with their
allocated funds

o  
Any questions?

§ 
Q: How far back
does the Amazon rewards program look back? Does this include holiday sales? A:
No, there’s a lag time of about two months, so holiday shopping done on Amazon
will be reflected in future rewards payments.

·        
Funding requests:

o  
Ms. Berg, $100
for t-shirts for the Campbell Math Dice team

§ 
Motion to approve
funding; seconded; approved unanimously 

o  
Ms. Dooley, $200 for
positive classroom behavior support incentives for Interlude

§ 
Students earn
points for positive behavior and can trade those points for tangible items; teachers
have been paying for these items out of pocket, and we don’t want that to
continue

§ 
Motion to approve
funding; seconded; approved unanimously 

·        
As many of you
know, we’ve raised more money than expected this year and we’d like to identify
a larger or longer-term project. We’ve discussed the idea of Library Furniture
replacement. Thoughts, questions, comments?

o  
Comment: Looking
at more modern furniture that is also more adult-friendly, that can accommodate
ease of moving it and that is more flexible in terms of use for seating. Some
wobble-type pieces, and some pieces that are larger and better sized for older
ES kids and the adults who frequently use this furniture.

o  
Comment: If the
school purchases the furniture, must use an approved vendor from a list APS
provides; PTA would have more flexibility in vendor.

V.    New
Business: Nathan Zee, President

  • Wetlands
    Planning
    • Next
      meeting will be held next Tuesday evening, 1/16, at Barbara Martinez’s
      house at 6:30 pm, look for an email reminder shortly
    • We’ve
      signed contracts for the Dunk Tank, Rock Climbing Wall, and two Face
      Painters for the Festival

  • Paige
    Hamrick reminded everyone about Family Game Night on Friday, 2/2 at 6:30
    pm
    • Limited
      beverages and snacks will be available for purchase

  • Penny
    Wars will take place mid-February
  • Tammy
    Bewitz:
    • Reminder
      that the spring session of Project Discovery begins on 4/4
      • Any
        parents who have a special skill, interest, or expertise and who may
        want to lead a class, please get in touch

    • Something
      to think about: would Campbell be interested in the idea of partnering
      with a local CSA (Campbell would be the pick-up location for food)? This
      is a vendor we’ve worked with for a Project Discovery class. The CSA is
      called The Common Market.
      • Could
        we do a trial run to gauge parent interest?
      • Maybe
        have an information booth at the Wetlands Festival?
      • Tammy
        Bewitz will gather additional information and report back

 

 

VI.  Closing:
Nathan Zee, President

  • Remember:
    Tannia Talento will be our guest speaker at the February meeting.
  • Thanks
    for coming and I hope to see you then! 
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