June 2013 Minutes

Friends of SW Charter School Meeting
Fulton Pub
June 25, 2013

In Attendance: Elise Christman, Nicki Stewart, Krista Rodriguez, Christina Cartwright, Liz Ward, Hanne Rousing, Adrienne Smith, Aileah Dorn, Jen Litwin, Chrissy

Review of 2012/2013 & Looking Forward to 2013/2014

  • Fundraisers
    • Nicki will get our official fundraising total for 2012-2013 from Karen in the school office.
    • Friends received a percentage of money raised from the Vintage Vegas Auction totaling $5000.
    • We raised $3000 from the Online Auction. This will be used as seed money for next year’s auction covering auctioneer deposit, venue rental deposit, and renewal of auction software.
    • Plant Sale – we still need a total on this, but money raised was similar to previous years.
    • Chinook Books raised $700
    • Restaurant Night at Fulton Pub raised $1500!
  • Community Events
    • Harvest Dance: Although we probably won’t have Chip Jasmin for 2013, we’d still like to plan a fall event. The Harvest Dance helps build excitement for Run for the Arts.
    • Some ideas suggested for a 2013 fall event included:
      • having a smores night
      • music with Lisa & Dave
      • combining the Back to School Ice Cream Social with a kids vs. teachers sports event that might appeal to older grades
      • Rent Fulton Community Center for a sport event
  • Movie at the Bagdad Theater. Tie this in with a food drive. We need to find a day when PPS is in session and we are not having conferences.
  • Family Reading Night (November is Literacy Month)
  • Crafternoon (December, or move to a different month when things aren’t so busy for families)
  • Board Game Night (maybe December) – Adrienne mentioned that Hayhurst Elementary received a donation of new board games. We might look into this
  • Parent Education Night (January) focusing on internet safety. Krista has a PTO Today kit on this topic that might appeal to upper grade families. Our parent education nights in 2011-2012 weren’t well attended. We didn’t schedule any in 2012-13.
  • Hanne will start plugging in potential Friends fundraisers and events into a draft calendar.

  • Teacher Support
    • During the upcoming school year, we’ll continue with many of our past teacher support activities such as:
    • Provide lunch for teachers on their 1st day back in August before school begins for students. SignUpGenius works well for this.
    • Potlucks for Teacher Conferences (Fall & Spring). Again, SignupGenius works well.
    • Monthly Birthdays – Provide cards & giftcards on teacher and staff birthdays. Also provide a cake at a Friday staff meeting during a birthday month.
    • Staff Appreciation Week (early May)
    • Teacher Party at Winter Break (2012 was at Amanda’s house). We provided some food and libations.
  • Field Day
    • Thanks to Hanne for coordinating field day this year!
    • We discussed what went well and what we could continue to improve for 2014.
    • Hanne found that delegating stations to individuals made planning field day much more manageable.
    • Dismissal is something we still need to work on. We had trouble keeping class groups together after students received their ice cream. Instead of using the ice cream truck next year, one thought was to bring ice cream to class groups in coolers. Teachers can then say goodbye and connect students with their parents for dismissal.
    • We need to communicate that we have extra ice cream for siblings.
    • We also need to do a better job keeping kids away from playground after ice cream is distributed.
    • Tug of war went really well.  All agreed it was good to have it at the beginning of field day and use “families” to compose teams.
    • Many thought it might be nice to have another all school event after lunch or right before ice cream/dismissal.
    • Some ideas for a second all-school activity included: Getting the families together and do a team-building, trust exercise; having family skits that everyone could watch; having a kickball game or sack races.
    • We need to make field day a little more controlled for youngest kids. Perhaps younger students could be assigned a buddy for the day. Some kids were distressed because they couldn’t find their teacher.
    • Middle school helpers were very good.
    • Kathy is a great resource for game ideas, etc.

Auction 2014 Update

  • Nicki Stewart and Juli Kirby will be co-chairs for Auction 2014
  • Date has been set! — Saturday, April 5, 2014 at the Multnomah Athletic Club
  • We’ll have lots of space for silent auction items
  • $45 per ticket which is a slight increase to cover food
  • Sponsors will cover auctioneer, décor, and other expenses.
  • Our auctioneer is already booked, but Aileah’s brother is an auctioneer. Maybe we could use him for 2015.
  • At last year’s auction, many thought the class projects were difficult to find and therefore didn’t bring in a lot of money. In 2014, the auction committee will make sure they are better displayed and more accessible.
  • We briefly discussed the qualities of a successful class project. A key element of a successful art project is that it shows each each child’s work individually as part of the whole piece. 2D projects seem to sell better. We need to have parents who are devoted to coordinating these art projects.
  • We concluded that it would be very helpful to have a list of successful class art projects from previous years and the elements that made them successful. This could serve as a guide for parents who help coordinate auction class art projects.
  • We agreed to add a way for people to sponsor anyone’s ticket when purchasing auction tickets online. In the past, we have done this for teacher tickets, but we would like to extend this to the larger school community and help families who may find the cost of tickets a hardship. This is a community building event and we would like as many members of the SW Charter community to be able to attend as possible.


This upcoming school year, we are forming a Grant Writing Committee composed of Krista and Adrienne! Anyone else with grant writing experience is welcome!

Aileah Dorn has volunteered to head up the Community Life Committee!

Elise Christman has offered to be our Volunteer Coordinator!

Multnomah Days

  • The Multnomah Days Parade is Saturday, August 17.
  • SW Charter has reserved a booth along the parade route and we would like to assemble a group of families to march in the parade and help staff the booth.
  • Adrienne will loan her face painting station for the booth and Anna Wantz will help with face painting. Adrienne says it takes $20-30 of face paint for the station.
  • We need a volunteer to commit to organizing this event. Christina and Elise will talk to Marlene to see what else is needed. They will ask Marlene to send out an email looking for a coordinator for this event.
  • Adrienne will look into SWCS temporary tattoos with the griffin logo. If reasonably priced, these would make a nice giveaway at the booth.


  • Over the past year, the Friends Facebook page and blog have helped to promote our events and get volunteers. We have over 150 friends and 200 blog followers.
  • We have added a calendar feature to the Blog which you can add to your personal Google calendar, iCal, or other calendar program. This will include Friends events as well as school events.
  • We will also continue to use the Bulletin board in the lobby to promote events.
  • The Board is also purchasing a waterproof board outside the school that can advertise upcoming events.
  • Currently, the log of volunteer hours for 2012-13 is missing.
  • We need someone to create a database that keeps track of volunteer hours. This might take the form of a Google Doc or maybe have a laptop at Kathy’s desk for people to log their hours.
  • We need to communicate to the community how important it is to log volunteer hours.
  • The Oregon Department of Education and other agencies often ask for volunteer hours when considering grants.
  • We’ve had a lot of success recruiting volunteers using SignUp Genius, Facebook, and the Friends blog.
  • We all agreed that Volunteer Appreciation Week (April) should not be our responsibility, but should be organized by the school administration.
  • While Krista has compiled a very good database of email addresses that she uses for SignUpGenius, we still need to work on a better way to generate a comprehensive database of family email addresses.
  • Elise Christmas will be our new Volunteer Coordinator!

Next meeting: Tuesday, August 6, 2013  7:00 pm at Fulton Pub

For a Google Doc of June’s minutes, click here.

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