WES PTO Meeting Minutes
December 6, 2016
Present: Laura Staneff, Nick Pesce, Sloane Torres, Chris McAlister, Kelly Paul, Kathy
Hughes, Hailey Rinaldi, Jenna Dickinson, Elena Traister, Tanya Maramag, Lindsay Neathawk
Meeting called to order 8:45 am
1.Introductions : several new members were in attendance; welcomed by the group.
2. Update on Clothing Sale:
- Pop-up Sale: Brought in approximately $200. Laura reported that she feels this was a
good thing to try as a proof of concept, but that it turned out that more grandmothers
seemed to attend the craft fair than mothers, so that while some impulse purchases of
cute kids clothes were made, not as many larger sales happened (with a few
exceptions). The group discussed other possible pop-up venues and ideas for things to
try in future including the possibility of a pop-up on Spring Street during the Holiday
Walk next year.
- Laura reported that the regular sorting of incoming donations on Wednesday
afternoons is going very well (with the help of 5 th and 6 th grade babysitters). Pricing at
the off-site location has been slower to establish, but that is also started and working
well so far.
3. Update on school signage – Signage for visitors was proposed at the last meeting. No
new information was reported. Sloane will check with Dan Randall (not present).
4. Chain Replacement : We have a proposal for the cost of replacement chains for the
playground equipment. Lindsay believes that any Licensed General Contractor can perform
the install; Chris will follow-up with Joelle or Elea to discuss options.
5. PTO groups – next steps. There have been several new sign ups (some of whom were
present at the meeting!), but so far no one has volunteered to act as a Walk for WES
co-ordinator. Kathy will lead the charge for this year with the hope being that one person from
the Fundraising committee could shadow her to provide some continuity for next year.
Lindsay has agreed to be the Babysitter Co-ordinator. Chris explained the reasoning behind
the sign-up and the vision for how it will be organized with a lead member for each group who
reports to the Board.
The group discussed making the PTO meeting minutes public on the website (link from the
WES Newsletter?) The general agreement was that this would be a good idea.
- a. Boxtops contest (Nicole Landy): idea is to have a grade-level contest, winner gets
a pajama day the day before spring break; other prizes possible. Principal’s office has signed
off on it. New mailbox-type box in the works plus a free-standing box specific for the contest.
- b. Art to Remember: the plan is to do it, Kathy has reached out to the Art teacher to
discuss the timeline. Artwork would need to start in early Feb, submitted to the Art to
Remember organization in March. Chris pointed out that WESE is holding its auction this year
(Sun Feb 12) (usually they are on alternate years with ATR) and that could be a conflict but
the timeline sounds like it could work. Kathy said that the ATR schedule can be adjusted if
needed, and that she is hoping that there could be an adjustment in the types/subjects of the
artwork from past years.
7. WES Parent gathering: Lindsay suggested scheduling the next one at the end of
Jan/early Feb (before break). The group discussed the benefits of holding the event on a
Friday night instead of a Saturday night and agreed that it would be held for three hours.
Different venue possibilities were discussed; Hops & Vines will probably not be used again;
Water St Grill is another possibility and would still work with the WCP for babysitting. Mingos
was also suggested, and bowling in general, but possibly for a later date.
8. Update on Superintendent – Joelle was not present to provide any new information. A
search committee is being formed to look for an interim Superintendent for the next 18
months through the MGRHS building project. In the meantime, Kim Grady, the Assistant
Superintendent is filling in.
9. PTO Parent Programming
Strategic Planning forum: Chris and Laura discussed the fact that the Strategic
Planning Forum that had been proposed has now been tabled with the possibility that it may
happen in January.
Janell Burley Hoffman: MG PTO looking for co-sponsorship with the other area PTOs
for a possible event featuring her; topic is management of technology and healthy family and
parenting, to be held in March; will cost money for co-sponsorship. General agreement was
that WES PTO would like to sponsor.
Northern Berkshire Community Coalition. This group is currently sponsoring a program
called “Guiding Good Choices”; they have also reached out about the possibility of partnering
with WES on other topics. Chris will touch base to discuss possible topics and connection to
10. Budget Review: Kelly reported that it was a slow month, but we did make more money
from the school photos than we had budgeted for. Discussion of school photos and whether
another photographer might offer other more attractive packages and products (such as
lanyards, magnets, keychains, etc). Kelly relayed that there is a general trend in recent years
to spend more than we bring in, because we’ve had a surplus that needed to be spent down;
at some point in the future, however, this will have to be adjusted so that we don’t suddenly hit
a financial crisis.
Discussion of how to budget for future Parent Social events: Lindsay will try to keep each one
11. New Business: None reported.
Meeting Adjourned 9:45
Minutes submitted by Laura Staneff, Acting Secretary