Help Out with the SW Charter School Block Party!

block_partyOn Thursday, September 10th Southwest Charter School is partnering with the S. Waterfront Farmers Market for Block Party 2015 – an event for the entire South Waterfront community!

Bring a picnic dinner from home, or pick up dinner from one (or more!) of the vendors at the Farmer’s Market. Then join in the fun at the park! We’ll have some outdoor activities and games, a raffle, and you won’t want to miss the Mediterranean music of Hurqalya.

We need volunteers to make this event happen! We’re looking for people to help set up, provide games, man our booth, take photos, and assist in tear down. Please see what’s needed and how you can help.

It’s going to be a fun event!

Posted in Events, Volunteer | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

School Clean Up Day ~ Saturday, August 29th 9 am – 3 pm

cleanupdayLet’s all pitch in and make Southwest Charter School shine!  Join us on August 29th  from 9 am – 3 pm for our annual back to school cleanup.

We need cleaners, sweepers, gardeners, teacher helpers, organizers, and painters galore. We have lots of tasks for people of all sizes.

Bring a friend, your sweetheart, a neighbor or co-worker.  School will even throw in snacks and a tasty BBQ lunch to boot.


Please RSVP to so school can purchase the correct amount of food for this event.

If you can’t make it on the 29th and have time during the week of the 24th please let Marlene know.  She can certainly find something fun and exciting for you to do.

Date/Time: Saturday, August 29, 2015, 9:00 AM3:00 Pm
Location:   0640 SW Bancroft Street, Portland, OR 97239

Posted in Community Building, Events, Staff Appreciation | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Meal Train for Teacher (and new mom!) Courtney

mealtrain_logoLet’s make life for teacher Courtney and her husband a little easier by providing yummy meals for them and leaving them with more time to snuggle their sweet new boy.

Since Courtney has just got home with little Bodhi, they are not quite ready for visitors. There will be a large cooler on the porch that you can place the meal in.

Disposable containers are ideal so the new parents do not have to worry about returning dishes. Also, I have made Courtney promise to not worry about thank you’s.

To sign up, visit:

Posted in Community Service | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Friends of SW Charter Meeting Minutes ~ August 2015

Friends of SW Charter

August 4, 2015

Meeting Minutes

Dates to Remember

  • August 7th – 22nd ~ South Waterfront Art Exhibit (SWCS kids art featured)
  • August 24th ~ SWCS office reopens
  • August 31st ~ SWCS teachers back
  • September 8th ~ First Day of School for Grades 1-8
  • September 9th ~ First Day of School for Kindergarteners
  • September 10th ~ Block Party with S. Waterfront Farmers Market
  • September 15th ~ FOSWCS Meeting @ Elephants Deli
  • June 24-26, 2016 ~ Camp Wilkerson

Open Forum Community Comments

Family Camp Week at Camp Wilkerson

  • Scheduled for June 24-26, 2016

Run for the Arts (Adrienne)

  • Run will be Wednesday, October 7th
  • Caruthers Park is reserved.
  • If there is money available, Adrienne would like to have some race bibs made that can be used for the next few years. Color-coded bibs make it easier for parent lap counters. 200 bibs of 4 different colors cost approx. $210. Bibs could be used for other events as well.
  • We are partnering with Young Audiences again this year. No one had great energy or ideas to break away from Young Audiences.
  • Adrienne could use help with planning the Run for the Arts kickoff assembly on September 11th. Specifically, she is looking for ideas for an all-school incentive prize and assistance with banner and sign making. We need about 11 individual prizes. E.g. Wunderland, movie passes, restaurants, etc. There may be things left over from the auction that we could use as a prize

2015 Block Party with S. Waterfront Farmers Market        

  • Thursday, September 10th in cooperation with the S. Waterfront Farmers Market at Caruthers Park
  • Elise and Liz are working on a scavenger hunt, online or otherwise. Farmers Market has tattoos and magnets and maybe bakery coupons we can use for prizes.
  • Mandy doesn’t have the signs she made for activities from last year. Aaron will check with Marlene.
  • Because of the activities at the Farmers Market itself, we don’t need to have as many of our own activities.
  • We will have the dress up booth, guessing game, corn hole, and scavenger hunt.
  • Farmers Market will have music and food.

FOSWCS 2015/2016 Board Member Openings

  • We are hoping to increase the size of the FOSWCS board to 5 members that act as a collective to make decisions. Our hope is that people can feel out the roles they are suited for. People can put their heads together and share tasks.
  • We need to recruit people outside the immediate circle. It would be helpful for people to know what’s expected, time commitment, etc.
  • It would be nice to have voting at the meetings, but we need more people on the board.
  • Melissa will join as a member of the Board. But she doesn’t want to give up her staff appreciation duties, etc.
  • Elise also expressed interest in being on the board.
  • Maybe put out a call that at least each class has a few people attend Friends. There are a lot of new Kindergarten families that we may be able to draw from. Melissa’s son will be in Kindergarten and she can maybe get some new parents interested.

Committee Openings – Community Life

  • The Community Life committee is responsible for scheduling restaurant nights and monthly coffees.
  • Last year, Harmony and Amber filled this role. Christina is waiting to hear back from them. We are hoping they’ll at least do September until replacements can be found. Christina will be working and she won’t be able to help out in the AM.
  • It was suggested that instead of having the AM coffees the 1st Thursday of every month, we change to a certain day of the month like the 5th of every month. We might be able to get some people who can’t come on Thursdays.
  • In the past, we picked up snack donations from Grand Central the night before an AM coffee. This could dissuade some people from taking on the Community Life committee. It was suggested that we just spend $20 a month on treats. Then, those purchasing the treats can be reimbursed.
  • If we get more people on the Board, there might be someone who might be interested in doing Restaurant Nights.

Room Parents Needed

  • We will start looking for room parents soon. We’ll have an email all in one and then we’ll see if we need to do individual emails.
  • It was suggested that either on the blog or Facebook we do a “Volunteer Spotlight” to feature someone who does something for Friends. E.g. Elise and the chickens, etc. Why they enjoy it, how they get involved, how they fit it in.
  • Adrienne would like to see an all-school directory this year. She is willing to work on it. Friends needs to get the data from the office and Adrienne will do it on her own. Christina will talk with Anne about this process.
  • School Board is actively looking for Anne’s replacement. They hired a head hunter.

Financial Update

  • Nicki received a report from Karen this evening.
  • We’ll need to vote on where the remainder of our funds will go. Last year, we raised $5508.24 from restaurants nights, chinook books, yearbook, t-shirts, plant sale amazon smile, Fred Meyer, etc. But there may be expenses that haven’t been taken out of this amount. Christina will need to check with Nicki.
  • We put $2100 toward the school scholarship fund last year.
  • We also offered teachers $200 mini grants. We had 4 teachers apply. Christina already has teachers who are interested in applying for grants this upcoming school year.
  • We need to promote that our fundraising activities go toward the scholarship fund and teacher grants!
  • We need to do an article that promotes what we do more like the mini grants, etc. We need to promote ourselves more.

Final Community Comments

  • Buddy Bench – kids broke the bench before it could get painted. We need to get another bench.
  • Playground beautification committee – this is something we should have as part of the FOSWCS Board.
  • All-School clean up before school? No one on the Board has talked about it. Aaron will bring it up next meeting. 3rd Thursday of August 20th.
  • TLC Committee – Melissa Allen would like to start a committee that supports school community members (staff and families) who are going through a difficult time. This would be a good announcement for Back to School Night. We could also email or have a handout.
  • Maybe we need a handout with all the things Friends does and an introduction to all board members and committees.
  • Put pictures on blog of board members and have lanyards for Board members to wear at events.
  • Halloween Candy Exchange – Melissa is looking for someone to take this on. It’s a really easy project. Melissa has prizes and contact with a dentist who will take all the candy and pack it up.

For a Google Docs version of the minutes click here.

Posted in Minutes | Tagged | Leave a comment

South Waterfront Art Exhibit Opens This Friday, August 7th & Volunteer(s) Needed

swaeTeacher Mike’s 1/2 class created four Jackson Pollock-inspired paintings that will be a part of the South Waterfront Art Exhibit which opens this Friday, August 7th and runs through August 22nd. The exhibit is located at 0841 SW Gaines St. (The Atwater building in the South Waterfront.)

If anyone is interested in representing our school as a gallery sitter at the South Waterfront Art Exhibit, our volunteer slot is Friday August 7th (opening night) from 5-9pm. This could be split into two shifts. Contact Melissa Allen if you’re interested.

The student-created paintings will be for sale and 70% of profits will go back to our school.

Exhibiting artists and their guests are invited to an Opening Reception on Friday, August 7, 2015, 5:30 – 9 pm.

Here is the South Waterfront Art Exhibit site for more info…

Posted in Events, Fundraising, Volunteer | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Friends of SW Charter Meeting ~ Tuesday, August 4th

pto_meetingFriends of SW Charter will have our last summer meeting this Tuesday, August 4th at 6:30 pm at close-in Elephants Deli on Corbett in Johns Landing.

We’ll be meeting upstairs in the Corbett Room at 6:30 pm. There is ample street parking as well as a parking lot with 2nd floor access.

While you are of course welcome to eat and drink, purchase of food is not necessary. Elephants closes at 8 pm, so our meetings will not go late. Hope to see you there!

Posted in Events | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Volunteer Still Need for Rox in Sox This Saturday, August 1st

This Saturday at Rox in Sox we still need a volunteer to run the art station from 1-3pm. Great chance to volunteer as a family. It’s going to be a really fun event. Can you help?

The details for signing up are below!

Rox in Sox with Aaron Nigel Smith

rox in sox

We are partnering with King School and Aaron Nigel Smith to participate in Rox in Sox on Saturday August 1st from 10 to 3!


Rox in Sox is an exciting festival that celebrates children’s music and literature. During this free charity event Rox in Sox will collect socks, shoes, and books for kids who need them in the USA, Kenya & Jamaica.

Since 2013 they have donated 2457 pairs of socks, 1199 books and 185 pairs of shoes to kids around the world.

This unique interactive family festival features performances by some of the country’s leading children’s musicians and authors. There are plenty of fun activities for kids and families to enjoy together, great food and a chance to exciting prizes!

To sign up:

More details here

Location: King School Park 4906 NE 6th Portland, OR 97211‎

Posted in Community Service, Events, Volunteer | Tagged , , | Leave a comment