September 2018 PTC Meeting Minutes

WestWood PTC August Meeting Minutes – 09/04/18, 6:30pm

Attendees: Jessica Olstad, Karen Zwolenski, Amy Zwart, Nichole Meyer, Becky Smith, Rachel Carlson, Brian Schulz, Joel Smith, Stacey Sorenson, Kim Affias.

Approval of August Minutes:  Becky S motioned to approve, Amy seconded. Motion passed.

Principal Update (Karen):

●  Back to school: The staff is currently in the middle of assessments and things are going well. The last week has been filled w/meetings and prep work. Everyone is very excited and ready to go! There will be an all school meeting on Friday. The staff really enjoys doing this meeting which is celebratory in nature, to welcome back the students, with a fun introduction of staff members. Be sure to ask your kiddos about how it went, as they have big plans in place!

●  Update from Glendale parent: Ajay Mandal emailed the PTC account to follow up after our last meeting. He has a meeting set up for Wednesday, September 26, 2018, 6:30pm at the Savage City Hall. He has a school board member commitment to join the meeting and answer questions. If you are interested in discussing the security concerns or have questions to bring, please consider attending.

Guest speaker (Joel Smith from Jostens) – Joel discussed with us some options for WestWood Spirit Wear. There are a number of ways to generate funds with clothing and accessory sales. He discussed ordering in bulk as an option, however this typically is the least lucrative. Another option, through Jostens, is having a partner (Jostens) that has a website that houses what you choose, and someone can go order at any time, any quantity that they want. There are multiple options to personalize, put your name on the back, add logos, etc. There is no inventory risk, no guesswork on sizes/quantity that you need, etc. and a 12% rebate goes to WestWood, minimum of $50 total. The importance of advertising this was highly emphasized, as individuals can forget it is there or pend it thinking they will take care of it later, and then forget. PLHS also uses this type of site. Joel discussed yet another option, where you set up a “Fan Shop” that is up (live) for a limited # of weeks (typically 2 wks), promote it, and have a certain # of each design available that is predetermined. The fan shop can be done a few times throughout the year and the school store (website) option is always there.

Also noted with the fan shop option, is that the items will be delivered 4wks after the store closes. Options on the fan shop can be of our choice regarding shirts, hats, bags, etc.

We discussed all the options briefly, school store vs. fan shop, pros and cons as well as ways to promote (Facebook, flyers, email, etc). Overall there was a general consensus that this appears to provide good options for us.

Guest speaker (Brian Schulz from D.O.G.S) – Discussed the D.O.G.S w/overview:

–  D.O.G.S – Dads Of Great Students.

–  Not lead by any one individual, however typically one coordinates emails.

–  Meet once per month for MNF at the Pointe, 7pm. (First meeting is 09/10/18.

–  Go to the schools regularly to have lunch with the students

–  Projects depending on what teachers need – past projects have included Wood Duck houses, bat houses, bee houses, boot racks, installation of benches, installation of a little library, cleaning up outdoor areas, crate seating

–  Redtail Ridge D.O.G.S went to Feed My Starving Children w/their students

–  Pancake breakfast fundraiser

There was discussion regarding how to promote and hopefully get things rolling at WestWood, perhaps Brian could come to Ice Cream Social? We all agreed that we need to start small, and that it is a great idea. He will still be involved @ Jeffers Pond and would like to try and build it here @ WestWood. Each school has their own D.O.G.S Facebook page which he could also begin a page for WW. Jess will post this on our WW FB page to invite our dads.

Treasurer Report/Budget Update (Amy):

 Current balance– see attachment.

 Review/approve budget – Amy reviewed budget in detail.

●  Funding requests: Kindness Retreat and Bakken (see below). Also there were 2 additional paraprofessionals added.


  • Field trip money is set at $175 per classroom and will be tracked at grade level (since they share buses). Amy & Beverley will share tracking spreadsheet. PTC will pay WestWood monthly.
  • Amy and Dana Sullivan (E-STEM committee) discussed the funds typically used for E-STEM Day (or Environmental Education Day) in the spring. Dana mentioned that grades K, 1, and 3 want to continue using Richardson Nature Center that day, but perhaps other grades want to use our district naturalist (Sue M.) instead. This could potentially reduce our cost, since we pay per classroom. However, Mrs. Zwolenski thought maybe some grades already did their own thing on this day. (5th grade goes to the park and does soil samples, rotating stations. 4th grade also does this day independently depending on their standards. Maybe we already are not charged for Richardson for these grades?) If there are cost savings, could we use these PTC funds for replenishing EIE (engineering is elementary) kits? Mrs. Zwolenski thought it may be possible to use school funds for this instead of PTC funds; Mrs. Zwolenski will check into the costs of this further. More discussion next month.
  • 4th grade had a price increase on their Bakken Museum field trip. This trip fits their electro-magnetic curriculum unit well and they would like to continue doing it. Ms. Niemann suggested eliminating the Kindness Retreat and using these funds toward the Bakken trip instead this year. Re-evaluate at the end of the year for next year. Mrs. Zwolenski agreed that teachers really want field trips that align w/standards and are holistic for the children. We don’t have data on Kindness Retreat and the effects that is has on the children (but have enjoyed/appreciated it). The day-to-day kindness emphasis is more important. Mrs. Zwolenski endorsed this fund change idea. PTC approved. The 4th grade classes will still have their general field trip money allotted for the year.
  • Becky Smith had a question regarding Art Adventure which includes grades 3-5, includes training, field trip (5th grade), lunchroom rental. Amy is the Art Adventure acting coordinator and she has notes in to the teachers for dates. She is asking the teachers if they want to do the Egypt track or do another topic. Amy submitted some field trip dates pending, March 22, 2019 (that week). The Egypt exhibit is open through April 14th, 2019 for families. If anyone knows someone who would like to take charge of it please let us know. WestWood is the only school that actually does the Art Adventure program. We are in need of someone who would be willing to take over as the Art Adventure Coordinator.

Discussion topics (Jessica) :

 Back To School Night: It went well. Amy discussed that there wasn’t a table like on other nights. Jess discussed that she was in and out and the atmosphere and energy in the school was good. Overall we felt it was a good choice to have planners provided through the teachers and leave PTC information there, vs. setting up and working a table.

●  Read-a-thon update: They are still meeting, securing prizes, donations.

●  T -shirt redesign: Deadline is 09/14 so they can have it for homecoming week. Homecoming game is 09/28. Jess will do a printout for teachers and she will also put it on the Facebook page.

●  Restaurant nights: Wendy’s is 09/18/18. We were paid from Wendy’s and Freddy’s. Many were approximately $150, Wendy’s and Chipotle were the most profitable. Amy feels they are still worthwhile to do and we can discuss and add to the calendar. We discussed doing a more sit down night, Charlie’s did not want to do it, as we would flood them. We discussed other sit down restaurants as well, and Jess is going after Culver’s for a restaurant night. They called her immediately to get things coordinated. The representative from Culver’s was great.

Movie passes: Jess will look at it again and review the timing so we can coordinate tickets, etc.

Wrap up:

●  Thank you to all who came to the meeting. We need to reach out for babysitting still. Becky has names for NHS students.

●  Please remember, the Ice Cream Social is Sept 20th, 6-7:30. Please join us for FREE treats, FUN FREE raffle prizes PER GRADE, and NEW parent meetings this year.

●  Next meeting is 10/02 @ 6:30 pm, WestWood Media Center

●  WANT TO HELP? We are in need of volunteers for the following activities: Restaurant Night scheduling, Bravo and Art Adventure coordinators, Movie Ticket Sales. Sign Up Genius emails are coming soon for ice cream social and picture day too.

●  Becky motioned to adjourn, Nichole second. Motion passed.

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