Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Association Meeting 11/15/11

If you missed it, here is a recap of last nights PTA meeting.

A quick shout out to our Hospitality chair, Mrs. Felice Sparks, who always has a wonderful selection of healthy and yummy snacks for every PTA meeting. That front table always looks fantastic! Kudos.

We showed a great (this is me tooting my own horn) slideshow featuring Trunk or Treat, Reflections Art and the Veterans Day Assembly. Although the assembly was a school sponsored event, and not a PTA sponsored one, I still felt it appropriate to share the experience of the day. It was wonderful for our children to understand why we get the day off of school and honor Veterans. The whole experience was very heartwarming. Slideshows are a treat at all association meetings so come on out!

Recording Secretary, Mrs. Michelle Arslan presented last months minutes for approval. Remember, ANY member of the PTA who is current on their dues, is welcome to view minutes and reports.

VP Mrs. Peggy Walker shared that in the 4 hours that Sergeant Shredder Mobil Shredding was on campus for our e-waste and shredding event, we profited over $200 and he even gave us an additional $20 donation! We are still waiting on the final numbers for e-waste but should be getting those soon. Thank you again to all of the volunteers.

Reflections Co-Chairs, Mrs. Nicole Halvorson and Mrs. Rose Jackman presented award certificates to our Reflections participants. We had 29 entries in all and four of those entries are continuing on to the council level! We will know in December if any of our Emerson entries will move further to the state level in this nationwide competition. Great job artists!

Treasurer, Mrs. Cynthia Antoinette presented the treasurers report. A motion was passed to ratify a group of check numbers. The report will be filed with Auditor, Mrs. Michelle Worden who is completing the July 1st - October 31st portion of the audit. We were also granted our Charitable Trust number. It is a new requirement that all PTA's file for this number and after filing the appropriate application and fees, we are set to proceed as a Charitable Trust. Want to know more about it? Find answers by the IRS to FAQs here.

Financial Secretary, Mrs. Bridgette Jones announced the total deposits for the month and from which events those funds came from. That report is also being filed with the Auditor, Mrs. Michelle Worden.

President, Mrs. Paul Nathan reported that the Sparkle Jewelry Sale, which was held last year around the Holidays and Mother's day will be held again this year in December. A motion was passed to hold this sale as a PTA event so that we may direct the donated profit toward the Technology Fund, as it will be a PTA event, credit card transactions will also be permitted.

A Technology Committee has been created or  IT professionals, teachers, administrators and parents that will be meeting after the Thanksgiving Holiday to assess the current state of the Technology Lab and to make recommendations on how to allocate the $20,000 in PTA funds that are presently available to help update our lab. Look for more updates to come!

Currently we have 465 members in our PTA at Emerson. Last year (2010-2011) we reached 600 members and this year, we have been asked by the council  to try and reach 625 members. The PTA is a national organization that advocates for children and education. If we do our part and reach 625 members, and everyone else does their part to reach their membership goals, we could potentially have 1,000,000! That is a very significant number when it comes to making the voice of our children and their education heard at the legislative level. JOIN! Spouses, students, aunts, uncles, businesses, all are eligible to join the PTA for a membership donation of $5.50.

The Red Bucket drive has been organized by School Cents and the Long Beach Rescue Mission to help provide Holiday Dinners to families in need. Emerson is participating in this program and will be collecting specific items from this list, which is available here, until December 2. Glass items CANNOT be accepted. Boxes have been placed around the school and in your child's classroom along with "buckets" in which we are collecting dollars and coins. These funds will go to purchase grocery gift cards in $15 increments which will also be included in the boxes for the recipients to buy a turkey or ham. We sincerely appreciate your generosity. Big Red Bucket Lists will also be available at Emerson's Shop for Schools night at Fresh and Easy on Spring and Palo Verde on Thursday, Nov. 17 from 4pm-8pm and donations will be accepted there.

If you would ever like to be included on the agenda to speak at the PTA association meetings, please contact President, Mrs. Paula Nathan.

VP of Activities, Mrs. Wendy Cuellar reminded about Fresh and Easy Shopping night, which is Thursday, November 17 from 4pm-8pm at the Fresh and Easy on Spring and Palo Verd. Emerson will received 5% of sales and will also get credit for receipts turned it. With Thanksgiving just a week away, we invite and encourage you to come out and support Emerson by doing your grocery shopping with your Emerson Friends! Bring your non Emerson friends too... and your families, and your neighbors! The more the merrier!! (A quick tip: Fresh and Easy Cinnamon Vanilla Gelato tastes EXACTLY like snicker doodles!)
We are still waiting on our Family Dinner night tally from Souplantation and from the Red Robin night, we earned about $100. We would like to encourage families to take advantage of these fundraising opportunities and join us for Family Dinner Nights! Next month is Papalucci's in Belmont Shore.

Principal, Mrs. Maggie Kerns said that with the conference period coming to a close (minimum days are done for now folks), we should expect 1st trimester report cards to be coming home before the Winter Break.
You might remember the great announcement that Emerson was one of two schools in the district that were invited to apply for the California Distinguished School's Award! We have been asked to highlight two best practices and the administration has chosen Emerson's use of the block schedule (you know where our kids go to P.E., Science Lab, Computer and Library) and Emerson's use of data.
The district will be visiting Emerson on December 1st which will coincide with the start of "Write from the beginning" which is an elementary writing program. The campus looks fabulous thanks to the Emerson Beautification team and the families and groups that have adopted plots around the grounds. Maintenance has also done a great job repainting the trim and taking care of many other small fixes in the school.
On the back of last week's Wednesday's Waldo Words was an updated Uniform Policy. Red has been added as a color for tights, leggings and socks. Red has also been added to the approved list of outerwear colors. Thank you for complying with the uniform policy at Emerson.
Safe Moves and the City of Long Beach are presenting Bike and Pedestrian safety course for all students this week. K-3 will be learning about pedestrian safety and walking a course, 4-5 will also be learning about bike safety and will have the option to bike the course. This is a wonderful program that is being provided to the school free of charge!
The Veteran's Day assembly was well received, Trimester Math Tests are coming up and Education Celebration will be on January 21st.
A parent posed a question regarding the Crossing Guard at the corner or Willow and Palo Verde. Crossing guards are employed by the city. Another parent suggested Parent Volunteer Crossing Guards to assist in the morning and afternoon drop off/pick up. Contact the office if you are interested in helping organize something.

Multi-Cultural Fair Chair, Mrs. Bridgette Jones gave us some details of the upcoming Spring Mulit-Cultural Fair which will help to extend the learning of diversity that was highlighted by this year's Reflections theme. Families especially, but ANY type of group is welcome, to host a "tent" that will educate attendees about different cultures. We are looking for craft booths, jewelry, musical and or dance groups to do demonstrations featuring different countries. We would love any and all representations of culture that are family/student/educationally appropriate to participate. We welcome your ideas, your skills and your participation to make this a wonderful all encompassing event. No one will be left out as we promote Diversity and Unity. Knowledge is the key, the more we know, the more accepting we are apt to be. Please contact Mrs. Bridgette Jones with any questions, comments and ideas. We are looking forward to this event.

Guest Speaker, Barry Cogert of the Jazz Angels has announced a new music program for Emerson. I was going to outline the details here but Mr. Cogert has wonderfully made the information available on his website!!  <-- Click to learn more. Thank you to the all those who made this music program possible at Emerson! We are looking forward to it!

There are still a few Beautification Plots available for adoption. Please contact Girl Scout troop #3093. We are still collecting Silent Auction donations until this Friday. The classes with the most student participation and the highest monetary contributions will win and exclusive Bubble Party.

NEXT MEETING will be as special AFTERNOON meeting!! 3:15pm-4pm. There will be supervised playground until 4pm. We hope to see you there.

If you read through all of this, thanks for being so rad and sorry for all of my rambling. I'm a terrible writer, I tend to type like I talk. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Trunk or Treat

 Trunk or Treat was held on Friday, October 28th. It was the first year being held as an evening event and was once again, wonderfully chaired by Mrs. Heather Peterson. Candy was donated by Emerson Families and collected for about two weeks before the event. We had 15 "Trunk Sponsors". They decorated their own trunks and passed out the candy to our trick or treaters. The trunks were amazing and each had a different theme. There was voting throughout the event for the best decorated trunk and the "Mad Hatter Un Birthday" trunk won with the most votes!

There were goodies for sale and a wonderful carved pumpkin contest! Costumes were abundant and attendees enjoyed a fun maze complete with a "Demented Doctor" and buckets o'brains.... See kiddos? I told you it was just spaghetti! The movie screen was set up again and Monsters vs. Aliens played throughout the evening. As it was the first year holding a night time event, we had unexpected electricity issues and things tend to get hectic when you combine kids, with dark, with Friday night, with lots of candy! We really appreciate your patience and everyone that helped out with planning, set up, execution and clean up. Hope you had a Happy Halloween!