Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Association Meeting 06/12/12

The last association meeting of the year was well attended!

Members from the Emerson Student Council led the association in the pledge of allegiance.

Awesome slideshow :)

Secretary Mrs. Michelle Arslan, presented last months minutes to be review by a committee of three. (Last month, honorary service awards were presented... sorry no post, busy gal drops a ball on occasion)

President, Mrs. Paula Nathan, thanked the outgoing board members for their service during the President's report. The incoming board members were announced as well.

Two board positions are open, VP of fundraising and corresponding secretary. Please contact if you are interested!!

A few points about the PTA as an organization were reviewed.

"The mission of the California State PTA is to positively impact the lives of all children and families by representing our members, and empowering and supporting them with skills in advocacy, leadership and communications."

PTA is and organization that advocates for children and fundraising is not the primary goal. We are a registered Non Profit 501C3. PTA units are now required to become registered charitable trusts and required to file an RRF-1 form annually. The Bylaws are revisited and reviewed every 3 years. Emerson PTA filed bylaw changes this year that were reviewed and approved by the state parliamentarian. Emerson PTA is a unit that is part of the Long Beach Council that is part of the 33rd district that is part of the California State PTA that is part of the national PTA. 
PTA members and leaders are required and encouraged to attend training. PTA may donate to other charitable organizations. 

Your PTA, your time and your membership, positively impacted Emerson children with these awesome things this year (to name a few):
Back to School Packets, RIF (reading is fundamental, where your student chooses a book to keep), ELMOS for every classroom, recycling, beautification, box tops, back to school bash, silent auction, kindergarten tea, and Reading at Home...
Go You!

This upcoming school year, PTA will be supporting the Our Children, Our Future initiative. Please read more about that here. You may search our school in particular and see that if the initiative in November passes, Emerson will receive approx $525,000.00

Membership expires each year in October. Membership is open to everyone, parents, teachers, students and members of the community. Education is a shared responsibility, please consider renewing your membership.

Secretary, Mrs. Michelle Arslan read a motion proposed by the PTA board. "The PTA moves to donate $15,000.00 to the Emerson Foundation" The motion carried. (yay!!) A (fake) check was presented to Emerson Students.

Treasurer, Mrs. Cynthia Antonette presented the treasurers report. She moved to ratify checks #3178-3209. Kryssie Booth seconded the motion, it carried.
Mrs. Antonette moved to approve a preliminary budget for summer, Executive VP Mrs. Peggy Walker seconded the motion, it carried.

Financial Secretary, Mrs. Bridgette Jones presented the Financial Report listing the deposits that were made for the month of May.

Corresponding Secretary, Mrs. CJ Holder presented in VP of Membership, Mrs. Kris Williamson's absence... School Cents brought us $954!! We were 8th place of all participating schools. Thank you for your participation! 
When you sign up for your PTA membership, you are entered into an opportunity drawing held at the end of the year. Congratulations to Mr. Tony Sees for winning a $50 American Express gift card!

Carnival Report: After expenses, we cleared about $12,500.00! Wow. The position of Carnival Chair for next year is open.

Helene Ansel, from the office of State Senator Alan Lowenthal visited our association meeting to bring the Senator's congratulations to students, parents, educators and administrators on their hard work in earning the Distinguished School Award. A California state resolution was presented to Emerson.

Mrs. Maggie Kerns gave the principals report. She thanked PTA for an amazing year and gave thanks to so many who have been supporting the Emerson Foundation. Kudos were given to Jen White and Michelle Worden for heading the Emerson Foundation and to the wonderful supporters. Waldo's words had been written and already the news was old. In the last 3 weeks, at the time of this report, we have raised $45,000.00. Mrs. Kerns stated that if we can make it to $60,000.00 we would be able to save our science and PE programs and our block schedule. The $15,000.00 donation has helped us reach that mark!!

We will continue to raise the additional money as we will need to supply many things to our increasing school population like text books, chairs and desks, and many other necessities. Mrs. Kerns added that School Site Council and a Board of Directors will govern the funds from the foundation. She addressed concerns that had been raised regarding the recent Kinder play area construction and tree root maintenance. The tree roots were to be shaved down and the asphalt replaced. At the request of our school, grass will be put down instead. This is at not cost to us. 6-7 years ago, a fund was started to raise money for a soccer field. To reach that goal, approximately $300,000.00 was needed. It raised $28,000.00. As the money had been allotted to a Student Recreation fund, we were limited in the ways we were allowed to spend it. Extending the kinder playground is appropriate usage of said funds and will be largely necessary and welcome as we increase our kinder population by an additional 1.5 classes next year.

Classroom assignments will be handed out differently this year due to Student Right to Privacy. On a specific date, you will be able to pick up your child's class assignment in a confidential envelope.

We will continue to have full GATE and PALS classes as well as combo classes at every grade level. 

Student council members that were present, were thanked again for their service. 4th graders received certificates for their hard work and 5th graders will be presented with theirs at their promotional ceremony.

Mrs. Jen White and Mrs. Michelle Worden, representatives from the Emerson Foundation presented their report.  The foundation will be run under the School Site Council. A Foundation chair will sit on the committee. We can continue to fundraise throughout the year. The foundation is in need of a treasurer, secretary, an Emerson Store chair, an Art Auction chair, a banner real estate chair among other positions. We have 4 small businesses already committed to the banner program. We have a webmaster in place to help build a website where information regarding the foundation will be largely available and accessible. We are hoping to have the website live by September. We welcome volunteers, there are many jobs to be done and a job for all who are willing. Please contact helpemersonnow@yahoo.com and many thanks to those who have already given in any way they have given.

The Foundation thanked the PTA as the largest benefactor to date. Mrs. Michelle Worden explained the process of receiving the donations... Checks are made to the LBEF (Long Beach Education Foundation) for Emerson Parkside Academy. When they are turned in to the office, they are logged into a spread sheet. The checks are then walked into the LBEF office where they are logged, checked and cross referenced with the logs at the school site. As they are logged, a thank you letter is printed and held with the check until it is deposited. When LBEF deposits the monies, the thank you letters are then sent to the donors. The money we have collected thus far is specifically earmarked for PE and Science programs.

Fundraising efforts will continue. Pastry sales are still taking place in front of the school in the morning and have helped to raise $500.00. There will be a "Gold Party" in front of the auditorium on Wednesday 06/13 at 8:30am where you can bring your old unwanted jewelry. Emerson will receive 10% of the amount paid to you and you may chose to keep or donate your payment. Amy Word, a Cabi representative will be donating a portion of clothing sales from a 06/16 event. We will have an opportunity to celebrate Emerson and mingle with friends and neighbors at the Emerson Stroll that will take place from 6:30pm-9:00pm on June 30th. Six host houses in the plaza neighborhood will host snacks, drinks and cocktails. Maps will be provided and participants will "Stroll" from house to house. All proceeds from the $25 wristbands will go to the Foundation.

Questions may be directed to helpemersonnow@yahoo.com

No unfinished business announced. 

Under new business, questions regarding the $21,000.00 PTA technology donation were raised. Previously, at the unanimous recommendation of technology committee, which is made up of parents, teachers and administrators, PTA was going to fund the purchase of 30-31 PC computers. Much has happened and continues to happen with regard to district and state guidelines for computers in the school and compliance with national "Common Core Standard". Unsure of the specifics, it has been said that beginning in the spring of 2015, standardized testing will be computerized. Rumors suggest that the district will be providing Mac Labs for each school. As we are in the unique position of being a Charter School, funding for the computer lab would, as of this moment, not be provided for our school.  

With the help of Mrs. Kerns an active discussion was held regarding the allocation of those funds, the technology needs of the school and the desire for transparency and efficient communication as we all strive to give our school and our students the necessary tools to succeed. 

Due to the recent changing and unknowns, the spending of funds in the technology budget will be put on hold until more information can be attained, reviewed and made available to the association. 

Under announcements: there are a few year books still available, please see the office. Each 5th grader was given a year book compliments of the PTA. The Reflections Art program theme for 2012-2013 is The Magic of a Moment. Students may begin working on their submissions this summer! 
Emerson PTA won several awards at the Annual Long Beach Council In and Out Breakfast (no, not animal style burgers and chocolate shakes... for the incoming and outgoing boards) Thanks to the hard work of our many volunteers. Let's keep this train going!

The meeting was adjourned at 7:30

Side Note: This has been a wonderful and amazing year at Emerson. I've enjoyed hosting this blog and hope you don't mind my tendency to ramble a bit. I try to give you as accurate an account as I can but I too make mistakes... I also got pretty caught up with work/school/life, you all know, and dropped the ball on some posts. Many apologies. That being said, I like to keep the blog as sort of a journal for the Emerson PTA. At the end of the each year, I plan to print it and store it. If you EVER would like to contribute, PLEASE don't hesitate to contact me. I'd love your help. We try to remain very neutral and drop a little something to draw a chuckle so that readers don't feel like their eyeballs are going to pop out of their head by the time they FINALLY get here to the bottom... Are you still reading? Really? I'm impressed, and blushing just a teeny bit.
Thank you for a great year. Have a great summer!