October 9, 2012 PTO Meeting Minutes

FINAL MINUTES (10 yea, 3 abstentions, 0 nay)

Meeting Called to Order by Kim McAllister at 2:38 pm

Members in Attendance:

Sandra Blough, Wendy Cleworth, Tina Gourlay, Kristi Goulette, Megan Green, Melissa Harris, Angie Johnson, Sara Kiel, Tracy Knaack, Kim McAllister, Jason Messenger, Tracey Oullette, Jennifer Swanson, Laura Veldman

Approval of Minutes

The minutes from the last meeting of the school year 2011-2012 were not available.  Kim McAllister pointed out that anything discussed from that long ago was moot by now. The group agreed to move on.

Treasurer’s Report

Barbara Hagadorn, the Treasurer, is sick, and was unable to provide an updated budget. She did report to Kim McAllister that the current balance is $12, 303.05. She also reported that the No-Hassle Fundraiser has raised $2,991 so far.

New Business

Review and Approval of By-Laws

Kim addressed the group for any questions or concerns about the revised by-laws. There were none. Kim asked for a motion to approve the by-laws as amended.  Wendy Cleworth made the motion, and it was seconded by Tracey Ouellette. All in favor, none opposed. Motion passed and the by-laws are approved as amended.

BoxTops – Due Oct 26th

Kim reminded the group to remind their children to bring in their boxtops, as the deadline is October 26.


Kim McAllister pointed out that the current amount raised for the No-Hassle Fundraiser, $2,991, is far short of expectations.  Kim mentioned that Barbara Hagadorn knows there are still donations to pick up at the school, and she will do so when she’s well. Kim McAllister pointed out that the amount raised only covers the basic budget items. If the PTO wants to provide extra help to the classrooms, then additional monies will have to be raised. She asked Jason Messenger if he would send out an instant alert reminding parents to donate, and he agreed.

PTO Forms

Kim McAllister reported that request and reimbursement forms have now gone out to all Middle School teachers. She reminded the teachers that, due to our 501(c)3 status, we must comply with Federal law, which means that we MUST have receipts to accompany each request for reimbursement. She also asked that teachers fill out and submit the requests in a timely manner, so there is no issue of short deadlines.

Old Business


Staff Reports

6th Grade

Sara Kiel reported that the 6th grade received a Lakeshore Excellence Foundation grant which allowed them to put a document camera and projector in every 6th grade classroom. She said they are all very appreciative of the technology.

She reported that 6th grade now has an extended advisory period.

She also reported that the Horn Museum at Andrews University is coming to provide a demonstration on Cuneiforms.

Kristi Goullette said that Mr. King is flipping his science classes this year; the kids watch a video of his class online, at home, and then do an online quiz. He reviews the quiz and determines who “gets it” and who doesn’t. He then splits the class into small groups during class time, where they can work on weaknesses or do some advance work.

7th Grade

Tracy Knaack reported for the 7th grade. She introduced Melissa Harris, a new science teacher for 7th grade. Tracy Knaack reported that there are many changes in the 7th grade this year. The teachers teach 2 subjects, instead of 1 and they have 5 classes instead of 4. So, they are very busy. As a result of this, she said, they have less planning time. She requested of the PTO that some volunteers be found who could come in once a week or so to make copies for the teachers, to help with this time crunch. 8th grade teachers agreed that they would like this, too, and the 6th grade teachers chimed in that they would love to have any help if there are some volunteers “left over”. Tracey Ouellette said she would work on this, and should be able to provide volunteers.

Jason Messenger reminded the group that anyone volunteering in the middle school must have had a background check, even if they are not volunteering directly with the students. He said the Central Office has a list of which volunteers have already been screened.

Tracey Knaack commented that MEAP has started.

8th Grade

Laura Veldman reported for the 8th grade. She said the students are working on the elements of fiction, and finishing up the book, Flowers For Algernon, which she said they enjoyed. In history, she said, they are in the middle of the Revolutionary War, are investigating volcanoes in science, and reviewing fractions and working on algebra concepts in math.

She also commented that the 8th grade has started MEAP testing.

Sandra Blough reported that she is going to have meetings and start to work on the Career Day this month. She asked Kim McAllister if she would once again help with finding gifts for the approximately 60 Career Day presenters she anticipates, and Kim agreed. She also said that last year’s donation of food to Career Day worked wonderfully.


Nothing this month.

Principal’s Report

Jason Messenger reported that the Middle School has been chosen to host a technology Open House for the donors to the Lakeshore Excellence Foundation’s Technology Campaign. The open house, which is by invitation only, is on October 22. He said that volunteers will be doing demonstrations of the various technologies in the classrooms during the open house.

He further reported that the 8th grade band has been honored to be invited to perform for the Band Directors’ Conference on October 23. They are the only 8th grade band who will perform.

The Middle School band will also perform at halftime for the October 19 football game.

On October 25, at 7pm, will be a choir concert.

This Friday [October 12] is picture re-take day.

Finally, he reported that the Middle School is preparing to launch a Twitter account after the MEAPs are done (about 2 weeks from now). The hope is that the account can be used to update parents and students on upcoming events and the need for volunteers, donations, and the like.

Other Business

One funding request was handed in by Angie Johnson. She has many special education students in her 8th grade class and, in partnership with a Special Education teacher, Mrs. Gantenbein-Ungrodt, has determined that the special education students would benefit greatly from a “word wall”. This “word wall” would merely consist of 2 large whiteboards, mounted next to each other, and whiteboard markers. The students could use those boards to sort words and add vocabulary words as they came up during the course of the year. The total cost is approximately $82.

The next meeting of the PTO will be held on Tuesday, December 11 at 2:30pm

 at the Middle School Media Center.

Meeting Adjourned at 3:00 pm


Minutes prepared by Megan Green, Secretary