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October 2019 . GO-PTO Meeting Minutes
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GO-PTO  Meeting Minutes

Tuesday October 1, 2019  

7:00-8:30 pm



Kristin Defrancisco, Principal, Gibbs

Brian Meringer, Principal, Ottoson

Officers PTO Board :

Christine Thielman, President

Steve Berczuk, Co-treasurer  

Tracy Swyst, Co-Treasurer

Ashley Lorenz, Communications

Farah Shafi-Recording secretary

Marisa Martin Sobczynski-Special Event Coordinator



Jamie Wallace, Susan Vickers, Beth Saunders, Nicole Kelley, Nicole Flory, Daniel Jalkut, Brigitte Majewski, Melissa Johnson, Lindsay Tomlinson, Kathryn Hopkins, Ann Chhabra, Paula Dimattia


  1. Introductions

  1. Review and approval September minutes

  1. Principal’s Update: Kristin Defrancisco, Brian Meringer


-A good start to the school year.

Surveys done re: skills and advisory

PBL focus on executive functioning skills

Building was open this summer so they were able to use the building for Trailblazers orientation

Lots of communication via email

-Question re: field trips. Kristin expressed the idea that field trips should be tied to the curriculum, not necessarily to get out of school

Will start to do some field trips to augment project based learning

Saving the team building trips (eg. Teamworks), Canobie for later years

Kristin emphasized that was due to the budget

-Question re: middle school dances: Kristin answered questions related to dances-- she notes that all 5th and 6th grade dances are not sponsored by the school ; staff don’t attend as they are not paid for the event. There isn’t room in the budget to pay for this. Brian noted that the dances are not very popular at Ottoson; one was cancelled due to a lack of ticket sales and one in the spring had little attendance

-Ottoson/Brian -

-Starting to address issues like the website

-He mentioned the lack of an after-school program - decided late last year not to run this again. He came up with an “extended hour” program but currently only have 4 kids enrolled

-had an author who came in today to speak to the kids

-Brian addressed questions re: facilities, water fountains

 He also discussed ongoing issues with building maintenance


-members reminded parents to update info in Power school in order to receive communication from school

-parents questioning re: access to grades in Power School. Grades on portal are visible sooner than they receive the paper copy. There are some concerns that the focus may be on the grades but not on the questions that were missed

  1. Treasurer report: Steve Berczuk

-Steve doing coordination of accounts and Tracey doing the bookkeeping

-about to kick off annual fundraiser

-currently have $5500 in the bank; already raised $2000 and spent about $2000

-Buying guidelines for Amazon to be sent to Principals to share with staff

  1. Diversity and Inclusion Update- Christine Thielman

-DIG from all the schools will be having a meet up on Sunday November 3rd

  1. Fundraising Update:

-planning annual drive via letters and mention in the newsletter

-Ashley discussed fundraising event that can be done at UPbeat Cycling- they will donate trainers and bikes for an hour . Thought about doing a social fundraising event there. Attendees discussed logistics for the event

  1. Special Events Update: Marisa

-had Principals breakfast a couple of weeks ago at Ottoson; not that well attended but did have a nice tour of the school for parents

-planning one with Kristin at Gibbs on Friday October 4th at 8:15am

        -Teacher appreciation dinner to be planned in November→ to be catered and parents             donate drinks/desserts

-attendees discussed possible ideas for forums: homework, technology issues

-parents questioned re: how much exposure kids are getting to dangers to vaping, drugs

-Meeting adjourned at 8:30 pm

Next meeting: Tuesday November 5th at 7:00 pm at Ottoson