PTO Board Meeting Minutes: March 11, 2021

Called to order 7:05 via zoom call.  

Principles Report

  • More than 200 kids planning to come back for Hybrid. Between 0-7 kids per class that are planning to remain virtual. Still working out details of which Letters will come back on which days due to need to balance (targeting by end of next week, in coordination with other schools). Young 5s class seeking to all come back on the same days as one cohort due to the small size (9).
  • Plan is for five full days in person by Fall per Dr. Swift.
  • Equity team met and they are very happy to help with outreach to underrepresented families to support the Equity engagement with Lawton. Dates for sign-up will be shared with Dicken PTO and parents; Jen will work to finalize the details.
  • Kindergarten round-up will be virtual next Wednesday. We will be offering yard sign to incoming Y5 and Kindergarten families; Hallie to coordinate pick up times. New to Dicken families are welcome to participate.
  • Setting up time for donation of Clorox wipes. Looking into restocking the Dicken PTO closet before staff returns. Unable to provide snacks. However, current direction is that we may be offering breakfast for all kids for free.
  • May schedule an additional virtual principle’s coffee to answer questions; Principle Halabu is open to calls and emails to answer any individual questions.

New Business

  • Next year’s PTO Board: If you intend to keep your position or are interested in a new position, please let Jen Miller know. If you are not planning to continue, please let her know and identify anyone new who may be interested in joining the board.
  • March is Reading Month:
    • Approved purchasing most of the books through Nicola’s. Hallie will place the order tomorrow and confirm when we are targeting to get the books in. Then, we will schedule a distribution date.
    • Balance from credit at Scholastic will be given to Ms. McHale to order books for the library.
  • Yearbook:
    • Adrienne connecting with Lifetouch to get details for 24 pages Yearbook, reviewing the contract and how to get pictures.
  • Jen set up a new Google group for Dicken PTO; invitations submitted on 3.11.
  • Outdoor Learning Opportunities – Augustina and Jess
    • Reviewed proposal and budget for outdoor learning spaces. Looking to use $18,000 slated to invest in an outdoor learning space and an additional $12,000 from the 2020-2021 PTO Budget.
    • Seeking grant funding for a Rain Garden.
    • Eagle Scout interested in a garden project.
    • Next steps Secured some teacher and parent feedback.
    • Note that use as an outdoor classroom may be limited in the Spring due to the need to also teach the online students.
    • Motion approved to move forward with the preliminary budget. Adjustments will be made based on teacher and parent feedback as well as input from the District on any other investments.
  • Translation Services
    • U of M has a program called the Language Bank that Alex is looking into as an option for multiple languages.
    • Some other resources were explored but they are very expensive.
    • Our current translations are “not good” so we may not continue until we can get a plan for a better option.
  • Teacher wish lists will be updated by the weekend and will be sent out in this week’s newsletter; and, they will be continued in the next few weeks.
  • Jen to investigate what has been done in the past for 5th grade graduation to put together a committee. Planning to give them the rainbow pinwheels as they become alumni.
  • Consider getting lanyards for staff and students (need to be break-away to avoid a choking hazard) – Hallie. Also looking into jump ropes for distribution. Both ideas will be on the April agenda for review and approval.

Report Outs:


  • Community Night Out at Noodles and Company is planned for next week.


  • Gift bags were provided to staff at their first visit back to Dicken and very appreciated.
  • Discussed options for ongoing support and appreciation.

Secretary – Kim Walsh

  • Decision: February 18 and February 25 meeting minutes approved.
  • Requested that people send Jen meeting minutes for 2015 – Spring 2019 if they have them in their files.

PTOC – Rebecca Ankeney

  • Continuing discussions regarding Equity. Addressed interest in having more inclusion and diversity on our board and interest in encouraging members to participate in meetings if not on the board.

Meeting adjourned at 9:06 pm.