Minutes of October General PAC Meeting

Here are the minutes of the general PAC meeting held on October 17. You can download them in pdf format from here.

École Heather Park Elementary Parent Advisory Council (PAC) Minutes
General Meeting – Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Heather Park Computer Room
Attendance: 13 Parents, 2 guests (Mr. Fleck, Mrs. Shaw)

Pre-PAC Teacher’s Presentation:

Teaching Self-Regulation to Children – the Marshmallow Test (hand-out from Mrs. T-Allen)
Mrs. Attree reviewed the importance of self-regulation & tools to teach it:
http://www.thestar.com/atkinsonseries/atkinson2009/article/719586–part-3-how-a-marshmallow-can-predict-your-future

  1. Call to order: 7:12 PM
  2. Welcome and Introductions
  3. Administrative Matters
    • Lesley reviewed PAC definition, Roberts Rules of Order, format of motions (Discussion –> Consensus –> Motion –> Vote), ‘parked’ items (to be addressed as time permits or scheduled into the next meeting), invitation for additions to agenda, etc.
    • PAC e-mail is operating: help@heatherparkpac.info. PAC website: http://www.heatherparkpac.info/
    • Previous minutes and forthcoming agenda are posted no later than the Monday preceding the next scheduled PAC meeting (Tuesday for holiday weeks). Minutes are unapproved until adopted at next council meeting.
    • Council meetings are on the 3rd Thursday of each month. Next is Thurs, Nov 15 – 6:45 PM; free childcare available in the library.
  4. Approval of Minutes
    • Minutes for Sep 19, 2012 were reviewed
    • Motion: Karen moved to approve the minutes. Seconded by Gina. Carried.
  5. New Business
    • Request for lines to be added to the floor of the Multi-Purpose Room
    • Request to subsidize choral risers from Mme. Shaw.
    • FoodSafe Course
    • A FoodSafe Course will be offered Friday, November 30 (NID) from 8:30 – 5:00 PM for parents planning to volunteer at PAC concession events. The school pays $500 for the course and the PAC pays $17 per attendee. Attendees may pay this fee themselves if they choose. 18 spots available – to register please e-mail Tami Rowe at tlrowe73@gmail.com

    • Teacher Survey results
    • Lesley reported that overall surveyed teachers (eight respondents) are very happy with how the PAC is functioning and supporting them. They enjoyed the Staff Appreciation days, so the PAC hopes to have more in the Fall and in June (preferably on Wednesdays), possibly involving the students as well. More hand-held radios were requested for outside safety surveillance, but Mr. Fleck noted HP already has eight (sufficient). A year-end teacher survey was recommended to gauge the PAC’s success over the year.

    • Parent Survey (19 respondents so far)
    • Some parents reported that they were unaware of the survey, indicating the new paperless format for the PAC newsletter needs to be better advertised. E-mail notifications are to be sent again.

    • Return of Spirit Days / Spirit Weeks
    • First event starting Nov 21 – flaunt your HP pride with your HP gear and/or the colour red.
      Lesley suggested the PAC reward the class with the most participants with a pizza lunch.

    • Accessible Playground
    • Cindy is composing a proposal to the school district care of Mr. Bryan Mix which is to be sent out by Jan by November, with an invitation for him to come see the success and high utilization of the newly installed playground, “Little Shippy”. Jane questioned how much parents are interested in another playground, so Pam recommended a survey to measure support and hopefully garner an agreement with SD57. Mr. Fleck promised his support.

    • Fund-raising for trips to Ft. St. John (Grade 4) and Barkerville (Grade 5)
    • Lesley is meeting with several teachers on Oct 21 to discuss. Fund-raising suggestions include Mme. Ling’s cupcake sale, popcorn day, movie night – teacher’s day, bake sales (not cost-effective but have math values, etc.), cake walks, Christmas shopping recycle/re-gifting sale in the gym over two days (can allow children the satisfaction of buying something affordable for their parents), sale of Timmy’s gift card to parents for teachers, frozen cookie dough, coke float, rummage sale open to the community, St. Valentine’s Day candy-grams, bulk meat sales, pumpkin smash, raffle and parent donations. Big kudos sent out to Yvonne and Sara for setting up the On-line store, which was a great success. A prize was drawn by Steve for on-line purchasers; Keith Little won a $10 Timmy’s gift card.

  6. Upcoming Events / Volunteering Opportunities
    • Fri, Oct 19 – Non-Instructional Day
    • Fri, Oct 26 – Hot lunch (Pod A & B)
    • Tues, Oct 30 – Fruit and Veggie day (apples)
    • Wed, Oct 31 – Pumpkin viewing; transport your pumpkin in a box for display at Heather Park
    • Fri, Nov 9 – Remembrance Day Assembly
    • Mon, Nov 12 – Stat holiday (Remembrance Day Nov 11)
    • Thurs, Nov 15 – SWPBS meeting 6:00 PM; PAC meeting 6:45 PM
    • Fri, Nov 16 – movie night (teachers to run?)
    • Wed, Nov 21 – School Spirit Day / Staff Appreciation
    • Fri, Nov 30 – FoodSafe Course (Non-Instructional Day)
  7. Mme. Shaw’s Vice-Principal’s Forum
    • Mme Shaw’s childrens’ choir was formed again in October with about 40 students at practices and more on performance days. She petitioned the PAC for funding aid for ‘fold and roll’ choral risers to facilitate practices and performances and to improve student postures for better vocalization. She has researched the purchase and selected a reliable Canadian company as the most suitable supplier. The risers are modular and so can be expanded in the future if more funding becomes available, and they are very portable for easy movement between storage (upright in the band room) and various venues. Costs are projected from $3340 to $4438 (shipping included) and include a 10% discount. This estimate doesn’t include a back railing, but the riser are 20” deep and are carpeted (i.e. not slippery), so safety should be fine. A back railing can be purchased and added as funds allow. The PAC discussed renting the risers to recoup costs, but some parents discouraged this idea because of possible damage and because the objective is to use the risers regularly at Heather Park for choir practices and other functions.
  8. Treasurer’s Report
    • Treasurer Pam Saulters asked for a reporting schedule; the PAC requested one Treasurer’s Report now and one in the spring. Sarah recommended cross-referencing cheques for funds released against incoming funds as a good safety-check for both the PAC and the Treasurer.
  9. 2012-2013 Budget Review
    • Pam accordingly reviewed the proposed budget and noted that starred items indicate changes from the previous budget. $1000 was added for the future projects fund and $2000 for choral risers, $110 for website maintenance and $25 for the annual fee to remain an incorporated society.
    • Motion: Sarah motioned the proposed budget be approved. Seconded by Nicole. Unanimously carried.
  10. Safety Report (Tami absent)
    • PAC parents were upset that many parents are illegitimately using the handi-cap spot in the parent parking lot, so they requested more supervision from the school to police this problem. Steve canvassed PAC attendees to help monitor the handi-cap spot during the morning drop-off period and agreed to improve morning supervision there. He recommended that the PAC post an image at the sign to promote empathy for handicapped drivers, but some parents felt an empathy-bid would be lost on most offenders.
    • It was further discussed that parents and students need to use either of the sidewalks alongside the parent parking lot instead of walking unsafely in the traffic area.
    • Parents continue to mis-use the bussing lane during school/daycare/Smart-Start hours, as well as the teacher parking lot.
    • Brad raised a safety concern about no crossing guard available at the Elk Centre crossing, but Steve advised it is barely used in the morning, being mostly used in the afternoon when people are less rushed and so are more cautious. He assured the PAC that a crossing guard will be reinstated there when the bad weather arrives and creates poor road conditions.
  11. District Parent Advisory Council report by DPAC Chair Sarah Holland
    • DPAC meets the first Monday of each month at the Van Bien Training Centre at 7:00 PM (311 Wilson Cres).
    • BCPAC Northern Regional Conference, Saturday October 20, 2012 in Prince George
    • Sarah reported that the DPAC will fully fund two representatives from each PAC to attend (for a cost of $65 each). Individual workshops are detailed on the DPAC website: http://sd57dpac.ca/.
    • EHPE PAC will elect a new DPAC rep next meeting
  12. Mr. Fleck’s Principal’s Forum: School-Wide Positive Behaviour Support (SWPBS)
    • Steve was thrilled to report that Bev Schreiner engaged the BC Justice League – with real Crown attorneys and judges – to present a mock trial at Heather Park about cyber-bullying. With the recent roll-out of the SWPBS initiative, the timing could not have been better. The presentation was riveting, powerful and effective, and it really hammered home the significance and impacts of bullying on people’s lives.
  13. Teacher’s Forum
    • No teachers were present
  14. Fund-raising Update
    • Purdy/Regal ordering initiated.
    • Catalogues and web-links were distributed for Purdy’s Christmas Chocolates and Regal Christmas Gift catalogues.
    • School Spirit-Wear Sales (On-line Store)
    • Yvonne reported that the PAC On-line Store sold 55 hoodies, 105 T-shirts, 44 touques and 4 pairs of shorts; the PAC may revive the store in late January since more students will likely want to join their classmates in demonstrating their school pride on Spirit Days/Weeks.

  15. Open Business / Parked Items
    • Hot lunches
    • Discussion that parents have been requesting more hot lunches, so a special meeting will be held over the next couple of weeks to firm up dates and funds. Lesley proposed a pay advance to cover hot lunches over the next five months.

    • Multi-Purpose Room
    • Some parents have requested lines on the floor to make the MPR more like a gym. Mr. Fleck reported that staff are requesting a circle to facilitate more team sports. Some are even requesting a sprung floor. He noted that the MPR is used more by pre-school children and primary grades, who use it more for free-play than for structured games; however, he committed to looking into having lines put down.

    • Provincial Flag
    • Tammy and Nicole complained that the BC flag is faded and tattered and does little to inspire provincial pride; Mr. Fleck revealed he has a new flag available and so will replace the old one.

    • Access to back playground for primary grades
    • Some parents of primary students complained that their children had been allowed to play in the back playground last year when they were in Grade 1 but cannot this year even though they are older and are thus separated from their siblings/cousins/friends. Steve reiterated that, due to the logistics of so many students in such a large school, the first floor returns from breaks via the front door and second floor students use the back door. To maintain teaching schedules, teachers need students to return to class on time. First floor teachers have been requested to determine for themselves on a classroom by classroom basis whether their students are allowed in the back playground or not.

  16. Adjourned 8:37 PM
    • Next Meeting: Thursday, November 15 @ 6:45 PM, Computer Room
    • Next meeting to be preceded by the monthly SWBPS meeting with Mr. Fleck and Mme. Shaw at 6:00.