PTA Meeting Minutes

Spencer School PTA Regular Meeting Minutes    

Date: 9/18/19 | Time: 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM | Location of meeting: Spencer School Library

Board Members Present:
President: Missy Hein
Vice President: Nick Ficaro
Treasurer: Sandy Pinero
Secretary: Lacey Weiss
Fundraising Coordinator: Annie Sansone
Staff Rep: Jen Gudelski
21 people preset including board member

Treasurer’s Report: Treasurer reviewed parts of the budget and how to read the page.

President reviews activities planned for the year.
9/16 – Pie and Cookie Dough Fundraiser
9/24 – Restaurant night
10/16 – La Boca Restaurant
10/18 – Boo Bash
11/5 – Bake Sale
11/6 – Restaurant Night, Chipoltle
11/8 – 11/22 – Book Fair
December – pottery event
January – Yoga night, movie night, trivia night, STEM night etc…event not decided yet.
February – Someone Special Dance
March – Game night
April – Bake Sale, voting day
May – Panda Jamboree – end of year party, Picnic in back of school
Second book fair in spring; a New Britain Bees or Yard Goats game.
Budget Vote – Missy Hein Moved “that Spencer School PTA 2019-2020 Budget be approved.” The motion was adopted by PTA members – none opposed.
Chair persons decided for Bake sale, someone special dance and pottery event
Open Discussion topics – Fundraising ideas, National PTA – Art activity and school of excellence, Spencer School PTA applied for grants through National PTA

 PTA Meeting Minutes: May 10, 2017
Attendance: Erin Giuliano (President), Jennine Goldenberg (Vice President), Lisa Morris (Treasurer), Christi Maiese (Secretary), Sandy Pinero (Fundraising Coordinator), Suzanne Zahner (Principal), Erica Bufumi (Teacher), Jennifer Gudelski (Teacher), Parents: Jen Hein, Jamie Bruno, Kelli Lenihan, Michelle Lis.
Principal’s Report: Check backpacks and folders every night, there are lots of field trips and concerts coming up.
Testing in progress, the smarter balance is going on now for grades 3-5 and the NWEA for grades 2-5 will be in a few weeks. Kindergarten had F&P testing to see if they meet grade level. All tests will be done by May 24th and the last 3 weeks of school there is no major testing.
Suzanne Zahner will be moving to Tennessee, her husband got a job at Eastern Tennessee State University. She turned in her resignation and will be here for the remainder of the school year. They will be looking for parents interested in being on the board for the new principal. If interested, let Mrs. Zahner know and she will forward information to the board of ed. A letter went home today notifying all families.
Fundraiser Recap: (Erin) Artwork $608; BOGO Bookfair $300 in Scholastic dollars (typically we don’t make anything so this was a bonus); United Technologies $250 (for Sandy’s volunteer work); Box Tops $179 (collection and payout 2 times a year); Shirt Sale $75; Price Chopper 50 thousand points (Mrs. Antmanis spent the points on items for recess and field day); Stop & Shop $296.
Panda Jamboree: (Erin) We are still looking for donations however we are set with the bubbles! Looking for volunteers to man the stations. Kelli said that she will sell refreshments. Our tables are reserved and won’t be loaned out to other schools for that night. Mrs. Matikowski and Mrs. Papandrea will help with face painting. Mrs. Cardella can only do one hour. Wendy Roy can help with the raffles and Jamie can face paint. We will have Henna so face painting may not take so long. Mrs. Cardinal can help with ticket sales, Amalia (High School student) can face paint, and a few other high school kids can help. There will be 3 bounce houses.
E-Board Voting for 2017- 2018 School Year: Nominations are as follows
President- Jennine Goldenberg
Vice President- none nominated
Treasurer- Lisa Morris
Fundraising Chair- Sandy Pinero
Secretary- Jamie Bruno
Mrs. Zahner nominated to vote the whole slate, Erin seconded the nomination to vote in the whole slate. It was a unanimous vote with all present to vote in the new e-board.
The E-Board typically meets over the summer, after a new principal is hired a meeting with the board can be set up. Erin said she will still do the Holiday Shopping Night and will try to plan it before the other schools do theirs. Mrs. Zahner said we can have it on Saturday but the janitor and principal need to be there.

PTA Meeting Minutes: April 5, 2017

Attendance: Erin Giuliano (President), Jeanine Goldenberg (Vice President), Lisa Morris (Treasurer), Christi Maiese (Secretary), Sandy Pinero (Fundraising Coordinator), Suzanne Zahner (Principal), Jennifer Gudelski (Teacher), Parents: Jen Hein, Jamie Bruno, Theresa Long, Kate Martin.

Principal’s Report:  Grades 2-5 will start testing in May.  Parking lot safety was still an issue.  Parking lot is one way, can we get that repainted? The sign is tipped over (will be fixed tomorrow) and the lights are out in lot.  These issues will be brought up.

Jen asked about a flyer that she just got in her folder today for a meeting tomorrow night.  Why not give us more notice?  Mrs. Zahner explained that she herself just received it from the district.  They are adding to the health curriculum lessons “The Great Body Shop”: about human trafficking, rape, stranger danger, and assault at grade level.

Tomorrow night from 6-7pm is Kindergarten open house.

Spring concert is May 23rd.  Jamie asked about a Tuesday singing group, they will perform at the next student of the month assembly.

Jen asked if we can be chaperone for field trips? We just need to pay $5 and fill out a form.

Fundraiser Recap: Lisa stated Launch, we made $16 & they will donate gift cards to Panda Jamboree.  Movie night was more of a fun event but we ended up making $85. Chipotle we made $136.68.  Artwork fundraiser has been extended due to not all artwork was finished on time.  Deadline is now after spring break.

Teacher Appreciation lunch is coming up.  May 5th from 11- 1:45. Need about 4 volunteers.  We use the teachers’ lounge, set up food and if nice we can put tables outside.  Maybe someone can donate a dessert or fruit salad.  We usually buy main course from Lino’s.

Panda Jamboree will be on May 19th from 6-8pm.  It’s our big end of the year event with bounce houses, face painting and teacup raffles.  Need volunteers for face painting, house attendants, raffle tickets, etc. 

As of now our last day of school is June 16th.

Book Fair May 1-5th:  May 3rd will make an evening event with guest readers.

Cinderella Project: April 28th an assembly for whole school during school hours.  New Britain Youth Theater, arts and culture grant was given plus PTA gave $250 for this.

Mrs. Zahner stated math night is May 11th from 6:30- 7:30pm.

The 5th grade fundraiser is at Illiano’s on April 27th.

It was brought up that parents complain about the cost of some events.  55-60% of the student population is on free or reduced lunches. Mrs. Zahner says our prices are reasonable and we have the free panda Jamboree event at the end of the year.

Mrs. Gudelski said a fundraiser can be the roller-skating rink downtown.  Maybe a Dairy Queen fundraiser before the end of the year.  Maybe bringing the Vechitto’s Italian Ice Truck to the Jamboree.  Mrs. Zahner doesn’t want families to be left out so food trucks at the free event aren’t a good idea.  Maybe a separate “Night at the Playground” event can have ice cream truck or for open house.

Jeanine started making lists for each grade for donations.  Once we have all the donations we will need help creating and wrapping buckets.

Executive Board: Erin is stepping down as president.  May is the last PTA meeting where voting will take place.

Erin nominated Jeanine for President, Jamie seconded the nomination.

Sandy nominated Lisa for Treasurer, Jamie seconded the nomination.

Lisa nominated Sandy for Fundraising Coordinator, Jamie seconded the nomination.

Christi nominated Jamie for Secretary, Jen seconded the nomination.


PTA Meeting Minutes: March 8, 2017

Attendance: Erin Giuliano (President), Jeanine Goldenberg (Vice President), Lisa Morris (Treasurer), Christi Maiese (Secretary), Sandy Pinero (Fundraising Coordinator), Suzanne Zahner (Principal), Erica Bufumi (Teacher), Parents: Jen Hein, Jamie Bruno, Paul Costello, Michelle Lis, Kelly A.

Principal’s Report:  Climate survey is going to be underway and it needs parent involvement.  Grades 3-5 and staff also take it.  It is a district wide survey and our results are compared to other Middletown schools.  Our goal is to exceed last years of 54%.  An extra recess will go to the class with the most participation.  During conferences, computers will be available.

Fundraising Update: Sandy stated that our profit for Mondo was $290, Iguanas Ranas was $100 plus 4 $25 gift certificates, and Launch donated gift certificates for the Jamboree.  Chipotle fundraiser will be April 4th and they will donate 50% of the profit.

 Movie night we will show Moana on March 31st, 5:45-6:15 for pizza then movie.  Paul will look into speakers from work for movie and call Suzanne tomorrow.

Buy One Get One Book Fair will take place May 1-5th and we need as many daytime volunteers as possible and we will have a night time date available.

Panda Jamboree will be May 19th, Jeanine said we still need donations.  We will assign a theme for each grade to help out.

Nominations for 2017-2018 PTA Executive Board:  Erin stated that nominations for next year PTA will take place and we must have a President and Treasurer.  Erin said that she is not interested in being President next year.  If anyone is interested in any of the eboard positions, email the spencerschoolpta or bring the nominations to the next meeting.

Artwork Fundraiser: Sandy said the order forms for this will go home in about 2 weeks.  Mr. Callahan is tying in his lesson plan with recommendations from the fundraiser company. 

Open Forum: Sandy asked if there was a Math Night.  Yes there is on May 11th. 

The maximum number of people for movie night is 224 people and we can bring blankets or chairs.

Middletown Emergency Management Disaster Preparedness Presentation:  Joe, Jack and Liz came to speak with the PTA. They are not first responders but they support them.  Community outreach is their focus.  Ice, flood, snow, tornado- what do you have on hand in case of emergencies.  Mrs. Zanher stated that schools and teachers are trained through FEMA.  Schools are trained to cover emergencies.

The presenters are encouraging volunteers for the Citizen Emergency Response Teams (CERT).  It is a 20-hour course in disaster preparedness, fire safety, disaster medical operations, disaster psychology.  The class will be offered soon.

Have awareness for family reunification, what the school policy is, make sure the school emergency contact information is up to date.  Know how to talk to your child after a traumatic event:  calm voice, let them know what adults are doing to keep them safe, minimize their exposure and encourage questions and reassure them.

Be prepared by knowing where to find information: city resources web page, 211 for local information, library, Red Cross, Fema.

Ready Kit Go Bag- keep a kit in car and one at home, enough supplies for everyone in household for 3 days.

Emergency List: have doctor info, medical info, insurance numbers, credit card numbers, medical equipment serial numbers.  Know the nearest shelter. Check on neighbors.

Notifications- sign up for text or email alerts at

Make a plan for pets and service animals.

CERT meets every Thursday on Randolf Road 7pm.

PTA Meeting Minutes: February 8, 2017


Attendance: Jeanine Goldenberg (Vice President), Lisa Morris (Treasurer), Christi Maiese (Secretary), Sandy Pinero (Fundraising Coordinator), Suzanne Zahner (Principal), Erica Bufumi (Teacher), Sandra Cardella (Teacher). Parents: Jen Hein, Jamie Bruno, Scott Long, Paul Costello, Trish Roy.

Principal’s Report: The American Cancer Society Fundraiser is where the children collect spare change, kids helping kids.  Fundraiser ends 2/17.  There will be awards for whose class donates more.

The Climate Survey- last year we had 54% participation, we didn’t have translations available.  This year translations are available for families.  The survey wants to know about parent involvement in the school.  How do you feel when entering the school?  Are we a welcoming community?  Besides the parents/caregivers, children in grades 3, 4 & 5 will also take the survey.  During March conferences, the computers will be available to take the survey.  Jeanine offered to give out cupcakes to those who take the survey.

Bus loop- parents should stay out of the bus loop for drop off.  After 8:52, it’s okay, before that, it’s too dangerous.  Stay out of the loop for pick up also, there is a bus driver shortage and one of the drivers has two routes.

Officer Hurtler has spoken to parents that park in the no parking area by the gate in the parking lot.  Suzanne will see if we can get cones to put there or to repaint the no parking zone.

Jamie asked about repainting the map on the playground.  Suzanne said that goes through the district and she will ask them about repainting.  It may take a while, there is one painter for the city of Middletown and due to their union, it needs to go through them.

Fundraiser Update:  Jeanine- bingo night was a huge success, we sold out.  Thanks to all who helped and donated goodies, thanks to Domino pizza and Metro Movies for donating popcorn.  Jen stated that it was disappointing to the kids who didn’t preregister and got the message that bingo night was sold out.  On the actual invitations, we should have an RSVP.  It was brought up that in the future, we may be able to have overflow in the gym (2 bingo games going on at once).  Jeanine also said in the future we will save aside a separate area for those wanting to play other games.

Sandy mentioned the Iguana Ranas fundraiser, Feb 16th, bring the flier or mention Spencer school and they will give us 20% of proceeds.  March 3, we will have a Launch fundraiser, mention Spencer and they will give up anywhere between 10-25% back depending on how many show up.  For 50 bouncers, they will give us 25%.  And Mondo night is March 7th 10% given, take in or eat out.  And Chipotle on April 4th they will give us 50% back, located on the Berlin Turnpike.

Jamie mentioned, to make it more fun for the kids, create a restaurant passport.  If they can get a certain number of squares signed off on they can be entered into a drawing for a prize.

The Book fair is coming up, May 1-5th.  Buy one get one free.  Need parent volunteers.  We can create an evening event and maybe get Mayor Dan Drew to read a book.  Suzanne said she can ask Officer Hurtler to be a guest reader.  We can have snacks available.  Jamie volunteers for the register for the evening book fair.  We may give incentives to volunteer such as scholastic dollars.

Movie night- Jamie had given Erin all her information on movie night.  We can give kids 3 options to choose from (Moana, Secret Life of Pets or Zootopia) and let them vote.  Jamie had coloring and word searches for those who weren’t into the movie.  We must be out of the school by 9pm so we need to end by 8pm to give us time to clean.  We will start by 6pm and feed pizza and popcorn.  We still need to find out the maximum number for the gym.

Sound system was asked about and Sandra Cardella said a new audio system was $2000- 2500.  Paul may be able to get a sound system from work.  PTA may be able to buy a new sound system at the end of the year after all the teacher receipts have been reimbursed and field trips taken.

Jamie suggested raffling off the movie being shown.

Sandy brought up the Spring Fundraiser.  We will be doing kids artwork on t-shirts, mugs.  We need to see if Mr. Callahan will be able to assist with this.  Jeanine will contact him.  Our goal is delivery before Mother’s Day.

Lisa brought up the need for more PTA members, we need at least 25 members therefore we will have a winter drive to get members.

Lisa also mentioned to remember to bring in box tops and enroll in Stop & Shop, Price Chopper and Shoperoo.

Trish asked how we get the money.  Price Chopper we accumulate points and we shop through a catalog and Stop & Shop we receive a check in June.  We made $19 from Shutterfly and $2000 from Scolastic.

Panda Jamboree planning has begun.  Sandy will go online to see who will donate and Jeanine will go around town during April vacation.

PTA Meeting Minutes: January 11, 2017



Attendance:  Erin Giuliano (President), Jeanine Goldenberg (Vice President), Lisa Morris (Treasurer), Christi Maiese (Secretary), Sandy Pinero (Fundraising Coordinator), Suzanne Zahner (Principal), Erica Bufumi (Teacher), Jennifer Gudelski (Teacher). Parents:  Kate Martin, Jen Hein, Jamie Bruno, Ms. Valay, Scott Long.


E-Board Changes:  The PTA President is now Erin Giuliano and Jeanine Goldenberg stepped in as the new Vice President.


Treasurer’s Report:  Future fundraisers were mentioned, Iguanas Ranas February 16th and Mondo’s March 7th.  Lisa went over book fair scholastic dollars made was $1900. We received a check for $800 for box tops.  The e-board decided to raise the amount allotted for each child per field trip to $15.   Game night is January 27th.  Our current balance is $6980.


There is quorum at this meeting therefore, Jamie Bruno made a motion to approve this year’s budget.  Jen Hein seconded the motion.


Principal’s Message:  Suzanne Zahner wanted to remind parents of safety during drop off and pick up.  Wait in line, no passing and avoid the front bus loop.  Many times, the children that are walkers will run through the parking lot to their parent’s car, meet your child on the black top.


Winter benchmark testing will be taking place, NWEA for grades 2 through 5.


Next month there will be an initiative to help students have better conversations.  Many children lack common social norms (not waiting their turn, interrupt others).


After a complaint was made about people parking in the no parking area by the playground gate, Suzanne mentioned that the officer was aware and will get a sign for that area.


Flyers went home about the Family Reading Night, Kate asked if she could bring her 3-year-old.  Jennifer Gudelski said yes, it was a night for all.


Jamie Bruno asked about protocol for the Holiday Concert.  She said that it was very disappointing watching parents get up and leave after their child sings, the children singing at the end were probably disappointed after working so hard.  Suzanne explained that we spilt the concert into two shifts because everyone would not fit into the parking lot.  She said they can’t have evening concerts due to teacher contracts, and a concert during the work day is very difficult for those working parents.


Fund Raisers:  Erin said we made $1900 in scholastic dollars at the book fair, and shopping night raised $565.  Upcoming we have Game Night on Friday, January 27th.  Flyers will go out early next week.


We were talking about doing a movie night.  Jamie mentioned she did a movie night at Lawrence.  They spent $100 for a permit for a one time showing.  Without a permit, you would have to look through a database of non-copyrighted films (and those would be black and white or not appropriate for children).  They got the movie theater to donate 2 huge bags of popcorn and McDonalds donated lemonade.  Lawrence made $200 that first year.  They charged $2/kid or $5 per family.  They made money on the snacks.  The kids came wearing PJ’s, Jamie mentioned she would forward her info onto Erin.


PLTI- Christine Solimini-Swift: Parent Leadership Training Institute.  Free class is offered February 15th, Wednesday night from 5-8:30 at W.W.M.S.  The first half hour is dinner and the rest is class.  Children 4 and older will have a children’s program with a teacher and get a free book every week.  They will also arrange transportation if needed. 


The program is focused on schools and change, how to make sure your child gets the best education and how to advocate for them.  An example of a previous class, they presented to the Middletown Governor to establish a sensory playground at Butternut Hollow, which will be introduced in the spring.


This class is a great way to connect and network with others and meet other parents.  This is an eye-opening class, there are 1-2 class sessions available per year.  There needs to be 20-25 for the class and they are looking for 10 more people to fill in the slots.  If you are unable to attend classes, at least follow PLTI on Facebook to see what’s going on and when future classes might be offered.  The class is 13 weeks long and you receive a certificate at the end.

PTA Meeting Minutes: November 9, 2016


Attendance:  Sarah Duda (President), Erin Giuliano (Vice President), Lisa Morris (Treasurer), Christi Maiese (Secretary), Sandy Pinero (Fundraising Coordinator), Suzanne Zahner (Principal). Erica Bufumi (Teacher). Parents:  Stacy Demarco, Jen Hein, Jamie Bruno, Jeanine Goldenberg, Michelle Lis.

Principal’s Report:

Mrs. Zahner gave an update on the fingerprinting policy.  The school needs to do due diligence to vet our volunteers.  If a volunteer will be alone with the children, they will now have a form to fill out, located in the office.  The screening takes less than a week and costs less than $9.

Mrs. Zahner also spoke of restorative practices, rejecting the act, not the person.  To repair the harm done and not blame/ shame others.  They are doing community building circles at least weekly in the classroom.  They also do resolving conflict circles where those that are causing harm come together to resolve the issue.  They ask focus questions to get them to recognize how their acts affect others.  In these circles a talking stick may be used.

Fundraiser Update:

Sandy expressed her gratitude to the volunteers for the Boo Bash and the Bake Sale.

Passive fundraisers to be aware of: Amazon Smiles, local grocery stores (make sure to apply the card number every year!), boxtops, shoperoo (we are almost at 50,000 points so we will soon get $100 for the school).

Pie pickup is next Tuesday from 3:30- 6pm.

Book Fair is coming up Nov 28- Dec 2nd.  We need volunteers so that we may be able to stay open during all the parent- teacher conferences.  The conference forms will go home next week.

Michele Lis spoke about PAT (Parent Assisting Teachers), this occurs every other Thursday from 9-11am.  Teachers leave projects (ie. Copies, laminating, cutting patterns, prep centers).

Lisa spoke about net profits from our fundraisers (pies- $1918, Boo Bash $526, Bake Sale $724, Iguana fund raiser $300).  We can in the future, plan Mondos, or Chilis where the kids can host or Froyo.

Jeanine said we make less from chain restaurants and local gives us more money.

La Boca was mentioned as another option.

It was mentioned that staff attending these events will bring more excitement for the children.

No PTA Meeting in December.


PTA Meeting Minutes: October 12, 2016


Attendance:  Sarah Duda (President), Erin Giuliano (Vice President), Lisa Morris (Treasurer), Christi Maiese (Secretary), Sandy Pinero (Fundraising Coordinator), Suzanne Zahner (Principal). Erica Bufumi (Teacher). Parents: Scott Long, Stacy Demarco, Jen Hine, Jeanine Goldenberg, Marlena Reynolds, Kelly Torignerson, Laverne Ofori.


Principal’s Report:

Smarter Balance Report (see attached).  These tests are state and nationwide assessments of common core for grades 3, 4 and 5.  The test is individualized for each student as it adjusts difficulty level depending on how student answers.  The state average has increased in both ELA and Math in the past year.  Our district is grouped with others in cities similar to ours.  We are 2nd in our group, however in the last year there has been a decline in scores.  Therefore, Spencer has been focusing more on Reading and Language Arts.  Spencer is also focusing on guided math (research based approach centers to work with small groups, independent work, hands on and games).  Students are having issues with vocabulary development and student to student discourse.  Spencer will have a math night and reading night this year.

Growth Mindset (see attached).  The thoughts behind growth mindset is that intelligence improves with study and practice.  There are two initiatives, growth mindset and restorative practices (which will be discussed next month).  Spencer is providing quotes of the week to help students relate and come up with examples.  Instead of praising your child for a job well done, praise the effort they put into it.

Upcoming Events:

  • Fundraisers are due this Friday the 14th.
  • Boo Bash, October 21, 6-8pm: goal is to start setup by 2:45.  There are donated costumes and masks from Bonnie.  Photo booth, there is concern if we have the booth or if they belonged to Kevin Elack, props may be in the PTA closet.  Erin said maybe a Spencer mom has a photography business and she will reach out to her to take pictures.  Marlena suggested maybe doing a “Trick or Trunk” for next year.  Lisa Morris and Jen Hine both agreed to loan decorations for the Haunted Courtyard and Jeanine’s daughter will dress up and scare those in the courtyard.
  • Election Day Bake sale: Need volunteers and bakers from 6am on.  Jeanine said she will do 6-7am and will bring baked goods.
  • Book fair, November 28- December 2. Need volunteers so we can set up a schedule for teachers.  The Parent-Teacher conferences take place Wed, Thurs, and Fri from 1:40- 4pm, so hopefully we can have volunteers available so we can have book fair open at that time.
  • Parent Shopping Night: Looking for more vendors, $30 for the space.  Looking for Spencer parents as vendors before going with others.


School Closure Committee Update:

The subcommittee was asked three questions 1.) Do you feel as though a school should be closed? 2.) What school? And 3.) Do you feel as though the BOE needs to take anything else into consideration?

The committee recommended not to close a school and if they did then it should be Macdonough School.  The considerations made would be to redistrict instead of closure.

The recommendation goes to the BOE and they will make the final decision.  The next BOE meeting is October 18th at 6:30pm at City Hall.  Parents from Macdonough show up to meetings, we need to work together and show up too!  A decision will be made by the December meeting.



PTA Meeting Minutes: September 14. 2016


Attendance:  Sarah Duda (President), Erin Giuliano (Vice President), Christi Maiese (Secretary), Sandy Pinero (Fundraising Coordinator), Suzanne Zahner (Principal), Teachers: Jennifer Gudelski, Amanda Amtmanis, Erica Bufumi, Parents: Marlena, Jeanine Goldenberg, Jamie & Rich Bruno, Jen Hine, Stacy Demarco, Michelle Lis, Paul Costello, Scott Long

Physical Education: Amanda Amtmanis gave a presentation on “Pokémon Move”, a program designed to create opportunities for children to move throughout the day, as children who move more learn better and are more focused during class.  The children are able to get badges and collect Pokémon stickers for the movement they do in recess, in class and at home.  Each class will have one game board.

The 100-mile club will be implemented where the children set their goals and run laps a recess.

Principal’s Report:  Suzanne Zahner explained that there is a new state regulation on volunteering in the classroom.  Any parent wishing to volunteer in a manner that will leave a child alone with a volunteer, (not in direct supervision of the teacher), must be fingerprinted.  The screening cost has increased to around $65.  Fingerprinting only needs to be done once and is good for future years as long as every year the parent fills out a volunteer form.  There is concern for the cost of the test and the exclusion of parents becoming volunteers because of the cost of fingerprinting.  There was also concern that lack of volunteers might alter future fieldtrips, however, Mrs. Zahner stated that these are important for the children’s learning and if there were not enough volunteers, she would have to supplement with paid staff.

An introduction to Growth Mindset was made, designed to work with children to power and harness their brains to they can achieve their potential.  More details at October’s PTA meeting.

Mrs. Zahner emphasizes to stay safe during drop off and pick up times, don’t pass other cars and if your child needs assistance with doors or getting out of the car, please park in a space and walk your child to playground.

Student emergency information is no longer done on paper and is now online through “Info Snap”.  Out of the 275 students, about 100 have still not been filled out.  For those who don’t have internet access, you can access the forms in the school office or at Russell Library.

It is important to become involved in your child’s school, especially with the school closing meetings your passion for this school needs to be heard.

Fundraising Updates: Sandy Pinero went over the Otis Spunkmyer and Lyman Pie Fundraiser.  The average cost of a pie is about $17.  Forms will be passed out around September 29th and due back October 14th.  Pickup will be on November 15th just in time for Thanksgiving.

Passive fundraisers were discussed, including box top for education collection where we will have a competition between classes to see what class can collect the most.  We are also collecting labels for education.  Download the Shoparoo app on your phone, take a picture of all your receipts and points are collected for Spencer school.  Also register your Stop & Shop and Pricechopper cards so Spencer school benefits.

Boo Bash:  Erin Giuliano is heading up this year’s Boo Bash.  It is October 21st from 6-8pm.  There will be the Haunted Courtyard, a photo booth and story time from 6-7pm, at 7 we will have a magician in the gymnasium.  We need volunteers to coordinate this event!

Election Day Bake Sale:  We need volunteers to help run the bake sale and to make goodies.  Start time is aimed at 6am to reach early voters.

Book Fair: The book fair will run the same week as the parent teacher conferences, November 28- December 2.  Need volunteers to run.  Try to staff an evening event where maybe the principal can read a book to the children.

Parent Shopping Night:  Erin Giuliano is coordinating a shopping night/vender event on December 2nd.  This will cost $20 for the vender space and this will be opened up to Spencer families first.  An idea came up that while parents are shopping maybe we can have children make ornaments as gifts as well.

School Closure Committee Update:  Suzanne Zahner is a representative from Spencer on the closure committee.  She explained that throughout Middletown, we are having declining enrollment, none of our 8 elementary schools are running a full capacity, therefore, a school will be closed for the following school year.  Three schools are in discussion, Spencer, Macdonough and Moody.  Spencer is centrally located and will be easier to move our students.  Macdonough is the smallest school but they receive more grant money and funding, 99% of their students walk, they are a true neighborhood school.  Moody is in the outskirts of town therefore it is not so easy to relocate those students.  All the options are presented online in full.

If Macdonough is closed and option is to move the entire student body as a whole to Spencer so all their grants and funding can continue.  That would relocate 2/3 of the Spencer student body to surrounding schools.

Spencer needs so spend 1.6 million on a new roof.  Macdonough needs a lot of work on the building.

The next closure meeting is tomorrow, September 15, 2016 at 6pm.  This is a public meeting however the public will not have a chance to speak at this meeting.

The next PTA meeting will take place October 12, 2016.