PTO Meeting 5/10/23

  • #WelcomeToThePTO! 

Attendance: 18 

Physical:  Juanita Lane, Rob Astle, Julia Paredes, Moriam Aime, Omar Woodard, Michelle Miles, Carleigh Steele, Sarah Jennings, Dr. Susan Moore

Online: Chan’nel Howard, Cat Chamberlain, Caitlin Brauer, Kate Wilkinson, Beth Ward, Shanna Armstead, Tiffany S, Trice Holder, Robert Chick 

Chan’nel welcomed everyone to the meeting, and gave shout outs to the Robotics Team, the team that put on the Arabic Night, the 2nd grade Chinese students, and thanked Wegmans for their donation. 

Dr. Moore gave the school update: 

  • May 30th the 8th Graders are going to Urban Air as part of the PBIS (positive behavior incentive system) 
  • Testing is going well, and Dr. Moore said a big thank you to the PTO for the Teacher Appreciation efforts
  • The school has multiple staffing challenges that are being filled through direct hires and through the volunteer transfer program within BCPSS. The vacancies were due to personal reasons.  We should be fully staffed by the beginning of next school year. 
  • They need help for the Middle School formal dance, we are getting more specifics soon. 
Questions to Dr. Moore
  •  Is there going to be a change in the bell schedule for next year? Not that we know about, she will check. 
  • Do we have a contact at the strip mall next to the school that could help with the trash that blows into the school? Dr. Moore doesn’t know, will look into it
  • Can we reinstate the community service requirement for families for next year?  Dr. Moore will check with Mme Lokounia
  • When people want to donate by check, who do they write the check to? BIA East 
  • Would it be possible for us to sponsor kids for the dance that don’t have the means? Most likely, We need to talk with Ms. Joyce 
Next we discussed the Spring concert which is Thursday @4:30, Ms. Levitsky has requested parent volunteers to help usher and keep things running smoothly. She wanted us to try and provide snacks/a small reception after the different concerts, but ultimately the group decided not to try and get snacks together so late in the game. Next year, we will have a lot more planning so we will be better able to support requests like this. 


For International night next week, we are also looking for volunteers. More details to come. 

Ms. Holder will be printing out a bunch of PTO Volunteer nametags for people to wear to the concert 

Then Sarah talked through the business things we are trying to figure out for the PTO. We are in the process of becoming a non-profit, which involves bylaws and all kinds of other stuff. We intend to have the Incorporation documents and the EIN by the end of May which means we can start a bank account. We then will be able to start the 501c3 process over the summer – Caitlin Brauer and Omar Woodard graciously offered to help as they have experience with this kind of thing. 

We briefly discussed other things for the summer – Julia Paredes brought up an opportunity for BIA to have a free booth at the Md Hispanic Festival in August where we could sell things or do something as a fundraiser, as long as it’s not making food. We will come with a more specific plan of how to attack this at the next meeting. We may have a series of meetings over the summer at a park and do a picnic so the kids can play while we get things together. 

Sarah then briefly reviewed the drafts of the Mission Statement, bylaws, and other documents that are linked above. The goal is to set up a system that encourages continuity from year to year so we don’t find ourselves in another situation like we are currently in. We discussed having the terms for officers be 2 year terms, with a new VP being elected every year that would move up to the president during their 2nd year. 

Michelle Miles gave us an update on the financials 
  • We started with a balance of $849
  • we have spent $51
  • we have gotten over $700 in in-kind donations so we have not spent all of our money yet
We then talked about the committees – there are 3 that currently have chairs, and 4 that don’t.  A few names were brought up to help out – including Ms. Joyce Anderson and Ms Holder. 
For the last official meeting of the year, we want to have chairs listed for each committee and we would like for those people to come to the school in person so we can do a working session around the calendar/plans for the summer/ figure out the august fundraiser, etc. 


To Dos: 
– Make PTO Volunteer name tags for events to raise visibility
– Make “Quiet Please” signs for volunteers to hold at concert
– Sarah will make some website updates that were requested
– Find the letter we are supposed to use for donations, or make our own
– Talk to Ms Joyce to get more details on needs for International Night
– Talk to Ms. Joyce to get more details about needs for the Middle School Formal
– What is happening to the playground over the summer? 
– Figure out fundraiser MD for Hispanic Festival August 6th
– Get a tentative calendar together for next year to show at the meeting in June
– Find Chairs for the rest of the committees
– Please read and comment on the bylaws and other documents before the next meeting