PTA Executive Board Meeting Minutes: October 2019

Clinton PTA Executive Board
Meeting Notes 7:30 p.m.,
October 16, 2019 | Clinton Library

Present: Candice Davenport, Bebe Greenberg, Liz Gordon, Emilia Hallquist, Brooke Horowitz, Jennifer
Kemp, Jean Leonard, Kerith Lewis, Kristy Lynch, Kelly Mortimer, Margy Nolan, Sandy Smith,
Mark Truscinski, Ambra Teague, Kali Williams

Absent: Jennifer Connors, Joy Friedman, Brian Gunther, Kathleen Hong, Polly Kelekis, Alison
Kessler-Slavin, Jess Murphy, Delta Sepulveda, Katy Walmsley


Candice moved and Jenn seconded the motion to open the meeting at 7:30pm

September meeting notes were modified to include Jess Murphy was present at the meeting.

Margy moved and Kelly to approve the modified September 2019 meeting minutes. The
modified meeting minutes were approved.
Treasurer’s Report:
Margy presented a new summary page of expenses that showed from the last meeting through
today. We are pacing similar to last year. Spending highlights include; two assemblies, Leader
in Me, field trips, and dedicated grade funds. Income included Book Fair.

Bebe to tell the teachers that $200 was approved at the General PTA meeting last week. Bebe
has told teachers they get $1750 for grade sponsored project.
Principal’s Report:
Assistant Principal Smith reports the school year has started off well. There are many teacher
trainings happening, including math trainings.

The district continues to work out issues with the Star Renaissance Assessment program. The
program is internal and not reported to the state but since the results are real time, it helps
teachers guide their instruction across all classrooms. The program was launched in Spring of
2019 and the results were not shared because it was undecided if the assessment would be
used again. This month’s assessment had some technical difficulties and may not provide
accurate results. The intention is to have the Star Renaissance Assessment testing three times
a year with the results being shared with the parents.

The NJSLA is a state test and used for school rankings. MA has always held the #1 spot but NJ
took first this year. The district will be mailing out last year’s results at the end of this month.


The Leader In Me program will be part of the weekly faculty Tuesday meetings and groups will
be assigned (i.e. parent involvement, curriculum incorporation) in an effort to build enthusiasm.


A friendly reminder that children should not climb the school trees, dogs should not be on the
property, and cars should follow traffic signs and crossing guard signals. Everyone should notify
the Principal or Assistant Principal, who will be standing at the front doors, if they notice these

Assistant Principal Smith will be putting together a Green Team to help fulfill a new initiative
coming down from Superintendent’s office, the NJ Sustainable Green Initiative. A letter will be
sent to the staff, then to students, to solicit team members. Sandy will send Candice the link to
the website with the green initiatives and next steps. Goals achieved will have grant money
associated, but even if we fall short of our goal, it increases awareness and changes mindset.
Our goal is to reach Silver.
Teacher’s Report:
Bebe reports that the Box Top video is adorable. The teachers had a delicious lunch and
enjoyed a great Book Fair. The Farmer’s Market was fun.

Bebe has been feeding the fish because doesn’t think automatic feeder is feeding them enough.
Our current vendor, Michael, has been paid through 12/1/19 and will not be contracted or paid
for further services. Bebe is concerned we did not receive all of the new fish we requested, but
unfortunately his contract doesn’t specify services so it’s unlikely we can demand them, but
Bebe should ask Michael for them as an effort. Emilia has found a new vendor whose cost is
within the budget. He will start in December.

Assistant Principal Smith will confirm the start time of the Halloween parade and
communicate it to parents. She will also ask Principal Connors if she wants to limit the number
of parents in the classroom for Halloween. A permission slip for Harvestfest and/or Halloween
will be sent home this week. Assistant Principal Smith will look into timing and space for
Harvestfest and communicate it to the teachers and parents.
President’s Report:
Candice put together a great Box Top presentation. The next Parenting Center meeting will
take place at Clinton and focus on how to address lock down drills in school. Kali will include
this is her class parent update.

The Artist in Residence is a Circus theme, Bebe to tell Alison.


The General PTA meeting last week went well. Did anyone videotape? Maybe Vanessa Pollock
Vice President’s Report:
Kali shared that MAPSO Cares, a group of Columbia HS students, will have their monthly food
drive at Clinton in January.

At the President’s Council meeting, it was reported that PowerSchool reminders will be sent to
all parents. If parents have misplaced their codes, they can ask the district, which might take a
week, or Jen Latimer and Principal Connors can help Clinton parents get their codes. The
directory is expected to be incomplete until maybe the end of the year.

The district does not have translation support in place. Ann Bodnar may pursue using Seton
Hall students. An Arabic translator will be needed for conferences.

Individual teacher professional development was not being approved this year because there
are district-wide initiatives the Superintendent is trying to roll out including; Restorative Justice
and Teacher’s College.

The Board of Education Debate for President’s Council will be held in person, and broadcast, on
October 24 th at 7:30pm.

It is unclear what is the district’s responsibility with regards to food insecurity, prom dress pop
ups, homecoming tickets and sports subsidies. The HSA doesn’t have a parent organization, or
the same rules as the PTA which is to provide for each kid equally.

Kali to remind class parents about Socktober.
President Emeritus Report:
Ambra reports the store is open until Sunday, and everyone should order their gear. Kali will
include this in her class parent email update.
Honorary Emeritus Report:
Liz reports that the Leader in Me program has had a slow rollout this year and the individual
Lighthouse teams haven’t established their plans yet. Kelly would love to help work on any
parent communication and also add it to the website.

The safety patrol team has been established, and they are holding open doors. Everyone
should let Liz know if there is any feedback about the program. Sometimes students receive
multiple jobs, and others don’t have any. Mark will look into if he can tag kids with roles, and Liz
can run reports to make sure they are evenly assigned.


Liz reports that Trivia Night will be at 7pm, the same location and price set up. Dan Sloan is the
MC. She is working on prizes. Flyers and payment information will come out next week.
Teachers will receive a discount to participate. Wednesday the e-blast will be sent, flyers will be
sent home, and the ticketing link will go live at the same time.

Kali to remind class parents to tell parents to pick up students on time from Beyond The Bell.
The fencing BTB is stored in the PTA closet and will leave at the end of the session.

It would be great to get a step stool for the PTA closet to reach the items on the shelf.
Membership Report:
Joy was absent but reported via email that 123 have signed up for the PTA via the website, 48
have signed up via paper forms, and 4 signed up via Venmo.
Communications Report:
Kelly presented the list of upcoming Communications. She has been looking for allergy
regulations on the district site but can’t seem to find it. Ambra was able to find the link in the
meeting and share it with Kelly.

Communications can consolidate all conference sign ups, but since teachers manage it
independently it doesn’t seem to need help.

Jean has started a “thank-you Thursday” on Facebook and would love ideas from this group of
subject to post. Past posts have included the Farmer’s Market and Book Fair.

Candice has put together a blog of people in your neighborhood that includes cross guards but
can expand to include social worker, custodial staff, etc..
Fundraising Report:
School pictures will be October 24th and 25th. Kali to remind class parents to find out from
teachers when their class is scheduled and tell their parents. Kerith should ask Katy who
should be asked to help during class pictures.

Box Tops are due October 25 th and must be postmarked by Nov. 1st. There is a bag in the PTA
mailbox that Kerith will collect and send in. We have a $2,000 goal on Box Tops.

Kerith reports that three of the four main auction roles are filled. Candice requests Kerith add
Kerstin to the committee.


Display My Art will have a window of buy from April 20th - May 1st. Kerith will get class lists
from Mrs. Robinson. Items should be ready by Mother’s Day. The art teacher will lead the

Teacher Appreciation lunch is on December 18th. Kerith to research if Chipotle or Panera will
offer a better deal. Bebe to inform teachers.

The No Frills fundraiser is at $2,000 now, but trying to reach $5,000. We should continue to
highlight the Clinton Amazon link where appropriate.
Cultural Arts Report:
Polly was absent, but there have been two awesome assemblies held including, Hip Hop for
Health and The Farmer’s Market. The next assembly will be in January to celebrate the Chinese
New Year.
Community Events Report:
Kerstin was absent.
Special Ed PTA Report:
At the October 10 th meeting, they announced the search for a new Director of Special Services.
The current Director is only planned to be there through January.

These meetings rotate through schools throughout the year, and are always in evenings,
7:30-9pm. Brooke can request to have them at Clinton as long as she gives a couple of weeks
notice and completes a building use form so that the custodians know to keep the lights on.
ELL Report :
Delta was absent. But it was discussed that an Arabic translator will be needed for conferences.
Webmaster Report :
Mark reported that 80-85% of class lists are in the database. When he receives new class lists,
he activates and updates any who were outdated.

Mark is working on a new homepage format that will be more blog like with consolidated
information, rather than it being divided. It was suggested that next year, class polls should be
on the website instead of on Doodle. Facebook should continue to be more of the community
posting, not just the PTA. The PTA should use Facebook to direct the community to the website.


Show registration opens Friday. Registration will be linked from the website but information will
be captured on a Google form because the website does not have the functionality needed. All
show tickets, t-shirts and DVD orders will still go through website.


Members-At-Large Report:
Brian was absent, but he had been looking for GoogleSuite information. Margy will respond to
Brian, and may also need to reach out to NJ PTA for more information.
New Business :
Anyone should let Liz know if you would like to help with Trivia Night or with the February
Candice moved and Margy seconded the motion to close the meeting at 9:32pm.




Emilia Hallquist






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