Friends Meeting Minutes ~ September 2016

Friends of SW Charter (FOSWCS)

Meeting Minutes

September 8, 2016


Everyone in attendance introduced themselves.

Explanation of FOSWCS

Emilie explained the role of FOSWCS in supporting the teachers and school, fundraising, and planning activities for families.

We stressed the need for volunteers for both one-time events or on an ongoing basis. Run for the Arts, on October 5th, is a great place to start volunteering.


Elise passed out copies of our proposed 2016-2017 budget. She explained how we raise money for scholarships, overnight field trips, and grants for teachers.

Our budget will be approved at the Board’s next meeting on September 15th. Hanne will attend.

Playground Update/Financials/Thanking Anderson Construction

Fara couldn’t attend tonight, but Melissa gave us an update.

Over the summer, Friends approved a $500 gift to the Playground Committee. This has been spent on picnic tables, potted plants, and other decorations.

The $15,000 from the auction has also been spent. At this time, there are no funds for Phase 2 which includes the more expensive additions to the playground.

During Phase 1, Andersen Construction lent 30 skilled workers to help with the playground rebuild. We brainstormed some ways to thank them. We’d like to have this underway by mid-October. Ideas included:

  • A thank you video. Not sure if we can realistically get this done.
  • Placing a plaque on the playground that is visible from the front of the building. JoLea will research the cost.
  • Still pictures that Hanne could put in slide show. Hanne suggested Sarah Mutal could take some pictures.
  • A framed plaque with an engraving and photos that Andersen can hang in their offices.

Parent Information Night

Parent Information Night for new and returning families is Tuesday, September 13. Emilie is hoping to get 5 minutes that night to reach out to the community. She is trying to connect with Suzanne about being part of the event.

Liz will update the FOSWCS brochure and have copies to distribute.


Nicole is new Room Parent Coordinator! Yeah!

We also have all our room parent positions filled!

Elise reviewed the list of Friends jobs. Here is a link to the jobs and how to sign up:

For brevity, only jobs that brought up discussion are included.

  • Carpool Coordinator – Still looking for someone to fill this position. Moanna and Jen Downer are creating carpooling pages for SW & SE on Facebook. Here is the link to the SE page
  • We will promote once they are up. Emilie will write something for Marlene to send out to the community.
  • Chinook Books – The soft deadline for ordering books is September 21st.
  • Community Coffee – Still looking for one or two people to fill this position soon. Coffees are the 1st Friday of the month. We usually get day-old treats from Grand Central.
  • Crafternoon – JoLea, Melissa, and Liz will discuss putting this together for Winter/Spring 2017.
  • Emergency Preparedness – Emilie and Elise are stepping down. But we have a great group who will continue this work.
  • Family Directory – Adrienne is finishing it up.
  • Field Day – JoLea will coordinate this year.
  • Hot Lunch – This is something we could probably drop.
  • Parent Business Directory & Parent Resource Directory – We will also drop these also.
  • Restaurant Night – Lisa has been busy setting up dates for this fall.
    • Pizzicato Dough for Dollars — November 15, pre-order due November 10th (Hillsdale). Lisa could use help passing out pizza.
    • Old Spaghetti Factory – Our last restaurant night with them wasn’t a great money maker, but might be good to build relationship. Wednesday, 9/28 is our preference.
    • Working on Bambuza and Burgerville as well as other restaurants.
    • Lisa is hoping we can thank yous from the kids. While Melissa can’t dedicate art time to this specifically, Lisa can have this be a side activity during art.
  • Transportation Coordinator – Christine Egan
  • Volunteer Coordinator – Elise would like to step down from this position.

Back to School Dance

Friday, September 16th 6:30 – 8 pm.  Scoop PDX ice cream truck will be there. It was too expensive to have two (sweet and savory) trucks.

There will be music and the playground will be open. Get the word out that it’s a dance!! Dance aspect was left out of school email.

Coral is doing decorations.

We can use the sound board. Jonathan is skilled with the soundboard.

They have notified South Waterfront Heated Storage of the party.

Foreign Language Classes (Nicole)

We have been in touch with Kids Like Languages, the company providing after school foreign language classes.

We received 50 responses from families who were interested in having their kids attend. Most requested language was Spanish. There will be classes for grades ½, 3-5, and 6-8 classes. We only need 10 kids per class. We could start after Winter Break.

The only hitch right now is that Amanda says after school classes can’t start till 4 pm. This means any child who enrolls for language class has to be in ASE for an hour until 4 pm. Also, that makes for a very long day for students. Nicole will discuss with Amanda.

Fundraiser/Auction Concept

Hanne discussed ideas for a smaller auction concept. This year is an opportunity to try something new.

It could be a karaoke dance party with a small live auction including accessible items thrown in with the more expensive ones.

We would still do class art projects but we may not need something from every class.

We would still have paddle raise, but no silent auction.

The EcoTrust Building or Multnomah Arts Center were mentioned as possible venues. The key item right now is finding a location for the event.

While we wouldn’t provide a dinner, we would serve heavy appetizers so that we can still serve alcohol.

Mini Grants

JoLea asked whether Friends would approve grants that are just for transportation costs? Sarah Anderson would like to charter a bus for 7th/8th grade Bull Run Project. Elise suggested that rather than a mini grant, money from the scholarship fund could be used. September 23rd is deadline for mini grants.

Field Trip Coordination

Finding drivers for field trips has been an ongoing issue, especially for middle schoolers. Sarah Anderson would like to have room parents help more with coordinating field trip transportation and requests that this be written into their job description.

We have a lot of working families and taking off days on short notice is difficult. Sometimes there is not enough notice about field trips for parents to arrange for days off. It would be helpful if they had a field trip schedule ahead of time.

There was some discussion about whether reimbursing parents for driving would increase participation. Most of us agree that we don’t want to use a service like Uber to drive kids on field trips. We also discussed other rental options like Enterprise 15-seat vans or Trackers/Audubon Society vans.

Sarah has a created procedures for field trips. This includes cancelling field trips if there are not enough drivers 5 days before the event.

We need to communicate with Sarah what is realistic to expect from parents as far as driving is concerned. Also, maybe we shouldn’t partner with organizations that cannot be reached by public transportation.

We will see how fieldtrips go in the next couple of months and discuss at the end of the first trimester.

Get a Google Docs version of the minutes here.

Upcoming Events:

September 13 Back to School Night
September 15 Board Meeting, SWCS 7:30 pm
September 16 Fall Harvest Dance/Social
October 5 Run for the Arts
October 11 Friends Meeting, Elephants on Corbett 6:30 pm
October 14 Statewide In Service Day – No School
November 3 & 4 Goal Setting Conferences– No School


This entry was posted in Minutes and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s