October 2009

1. Welcome and introductions
2. Watch DOGS Program

Paul Schreiber explained to the group that he decided to suspend the program after some parents complained. The program had worked very well at his previous school and he felt there was a need for additional volunteers at Edmunds, particularly males. He apologized to anyone that was offended. The group then discussed ways to encourage more volunteering in general. We decided to create a focus group who will explore the idea and report back at a future meeting. Warren, Carol, Karen, and Peggy volunteered. Ideas included creating a comprehensive schedule, a “volunteer for the day” program, and shirts to identify volunteers. We discussed how much screening should be done. The consensus was that unless the adult will be alone with a child, then full background checks aren’t necessary. Mary Ross mentioned she had developed a questionnaire for parents in her class that was very helpful.
3. “Bee” Program
Pat Hulbert described the “Bee” program, which is now in its second year. The Bees are given to students when they are “caught” exhibiting good behavior. After 10 bees, the student gets a “Super Bee” and is celebrated at lunch and receives a popsicle. She also described the Green Slip, which is for disruptive behavior. Each teacher keeps track of how many Bee each student has, and Pat is also keeping track.
4. Sports Swap
Warren gave an update on the planning process. The event is next Saturday, October 17th from 2 to 4 pm. Drop off will be on Friday afternoon from 2:30 to 6 pm. Items include all sports equipment as well as outdoor clothing. We still need more volunteers to help staff the event, particularly people with ski-fitting knowledge. We could ask the UVM Outing club and Burlington High School to see if any students want to volunteer. Warren is planning to put notices around local ski shops and on the Front Porch Forum. Other ideas include posting on Facebook, the school website and the school district’s website. We should also let middle school parents know about it.
5. No Frills Fundraiser
Sandy described the fundraiser and asked for volunteers to help produce and mail the letter to families by the end of November. Ursula will do the layout. Lisa Lord, Claire, and Valerie will help stuff envelopes. Nancy offered to mail the letters again this year. Valerie will send thank you letters to all who donate.
6. Ronald McDonald House
Melissa said that the pop-tab receptacles and the donation boxes are in place. There’s also a fun run coming up.
7. RMH Grant Update
Laura looked into the Ronald McDonald House grant program. The next deadline is December 30th. Applications are accepted every three years. Laura said she is willing to write the application. She will check with Kathy Neil about technology needs. The Four Winds program was suggested as another use for the grant. Laura will report back at the next meeting.
8. Champlain College
Nancy reminded the group to continue thinking of ways that Champlain College could help us. They have expressed an interest in getting their students more involved in the community. Spring clean-up day would be a great opportunity to ask for volunteers.
9. Walk to School Week
Ann and Linda are heading up the effort. They hope to designate a week in October as “walk to school week.” The group discussed ways to get the kids involved. We have fewer than 300 pedometers, which is not enough for every student. One idea is to give each teacher a pedometer for one student to wear per day to show how many steps the class took during the day. Valerie will do the tally again. Melissa suggested jump ropes and hula hoops at morning drop-off time. Classes could challenge other classes. Each neighborhood could track their steps to school. Jason at Local Motion already donated a bike rack to the school and expressed an interest in continuing to work with us in the future to encourage biking by the students.
10. Field Trip Funds
Valerie said some of the 5th grade teachers asked whether they could use field trip funds for other enrichment activities (most of their field trips are walking field trips and require no funds). Ursula moved to approve the use of field trip funds for other enrichment activities. Lara seconded. The motion passed.
11. Mayfair
Lori Hayes has volunteered to be the Mayfair coordinator. Her job will be to find chairs for each activity. She will also be documenting best practices for future use. Lisa will check with Don regarding the date of the middle school play. Once we know that date, we can set the date for Mayfair.

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