PTO Meeting Minutes 02-25-21

NOTES from the 2.25.2021 Meeting

Board Composition and opportunities to get involved in the PTO!  (JOHN)

  • Diana McLaughlin – Has stepped into the Board as the Social Chair — Thank you Diana!!
  • We are always looking for more help on the Board and in the PTO Committees.  Please let John Ball know if you are interested in getting involved (

    Survey Output (JOHN)

    • 50% of people would prefer a safe in-person alternative for a Parents Night Out
    • Events that caught the most people’s attention the most were outdoor (i.e. Walk-A-Thon, Scavenger Hunts, etc.)
    • Feedback on the Parent/Child events was that 39% said they would prefer to do so in a socially distanced way.
    • We received some helpful feedback on the play equipment that children are interested in having added to the playground. 
    • There is also great interest in there being more black top space.  Kerri Grundy mentioned that Sean may be available to support the blacktop project and the PTO would like to fund it.
    • Little Angels playground needs leveling and mulch — Good project for the Spring (potentially)

      Golf Tournament (KATE) – Secured Richmond Country Club for Saturday, June 12th – 8am (shotgun start)

      • We have a small committee started; however, we would like to welcome more
      • Please email Kate Smith if you are willing to Chair the committee or support as a committee member

        Social Event (DIANA)

        • Focus is on two events between now and the end of the school year
          • Early April 10th/11th  – Whole Family Scavenger Hunt on the Walking/Bike Path and/or MCS campus.  Maybe split location by age.
            • Traditional (pictures + Palette) OR QR Code
            • Considering if a virtual option is possible
            • Looking for volunteers to help with the planning.  Please email Diana McLaughlin if you are interested in helping.
            • End of May – Combo Mother/Son & Father/Daughter Formal Outdoor Event [COVID dependent] on the back lot of the MCS property. 
              • Option 1 – Maybe a 2 night event to keep numbers lower if there are issues with the number of people allowed for social gatherings
              • Option 2 – Family Field Day – Idea to have a picnic and a DJ or cookout and DJ as a way for families to interact safely outdoors.
              • Option 3 – Split a combo event by age groups to keep group size smaller
              • Right now, catered events can be 30 inside or 50 outside; however, we expect it to be increased by May
              • NEXT STEP – Idea proposed to have a student survey of the 8th grade class or general survey and will run the survey past Administration before it is sent out

            Popcorn Sale (KATE) –

            • 4-day online popcorn sale via Double Good, tends to generate good funds
            • Tentatively looking at March 8th
            • More information to be sent via the Weekly Update

              School Store Fundraising (DIANA)

              • We are currently less than 50% of where we were last year
              • This is an extremely helpful fundraiser for the teachers — School Store Cares Now — D. McLaughlin shared the impact it has made on her ability to purchase science materials and kits.  For the younger grades it has helped with manipulatives. 
              • Number of emails has been reduced; however, we may consider turning them back on for a little while to keep it top of mind

                Teacher Appreciation Week in May (MELISSA WRAY)

                • Theme has been selected; ideas are in process. Please contact Melissa Wray if you are interested in assisting!

                  PTO Agenda for 2/25/21

                  AGENDA – Monsignor Clarke School
                  February 25, 2021 @ 7pm via Zoom link (see Parents Update)

                  Board members: John Ball, PTO President | Kate Smith, PTO past President | Amanda Andrade, Room Parent Coordinator| Diana McLaughlin, Social Event Chair |

                  7pm – Welcome – John
                  7:05pm – Old business and approval of last meeting’s minutes – John
                  7:10pm – Update on board composition, request someone fill in as fundraising chair
                  7:15pm – Trends/Results from PTO Family Survey

                  7:20pm – Social Events Report – 2021 Golf Tournament Update – June 12 @ Richmond Country Club, 8 am shotgun start; need chair and committee members; Spring activity – walk (potentially fundraising purpose) or

                  scavenger hunt
                  7:25pm – Fundraising Update – School store, Squad Locker, Shopping programs (Amazon Smiles, Stop and Shop A+ rewards, Box tops). Popcorn fundrasier. Explore addition of blacktop/asphalt area to Elementary playground and additional playground equipment – does anybody know somebody?
                  7:30pm – Principal’s Report
                  7:45pm – Open Discussion, Q & A

                  2021 PTO Survey Request

                  Happy New Year to our MCS community from the PTO! While we are all hopeful 2021 is quite different from last year, we are still under certain restraints when it comes to PTO events and community building activities. We’d like to hear some thoughts from you all in terms of how you would like the PTO to engage this winter / spring, realizing our limitations. Thank you for taking a few moments to participate.

                  MCS Christmas Raffle Calendar

                  As you know, we are not having the MCS Christmas Festival this year. We are very saddened to have to cancel as our Christmas Festival is not only a school tradition but a community one. We know this year has been hard on everyone and our school is not immune to that. We have been so fortunate to be able to send our children back to school, everyday all day, but as you imagine it has taken a financial toll and we had to cancel our two biggest events. In an effort to help raise awareness and promote our loyal vendors as well as local businesses, while also helping our school’s fundraising efforts, we are holding a calendar raffle in lieu of the festival.  
                  Instead of 1 day of festivities, we are offering you 31 Chances to WIN!
                  MCS Christmas Raffle Calendar will run from December 1st to December 31st offering a $25 value prize daily from a vendor or local business! Vendors from our Christmas Festival and local businesses have partnered with us to offer you 31 Days of Gifts valued at $25 each day! We are trying to make this as safe and contactless as possible so each participant that purchases a calendar will have their name entered into a spinner app. We will host a Facebook LIVE daily to spin the app and announce the winner! Your name will remain in the drawing even if you win so you have multiple chances to win!
                  We will have a Facebook event on the Monsignor Clarke School page that will have the listing of prizes for the raffle as well as information and links to all the vendors and local businesses that have graciously donated to this fundraiser! We hope you will help support Monsignor Clarke School by purchasing calendar entries and by supporting our vendors and local businesses that have supported the Festival now and in the past!

                  Christmas Activities!

                  PTO Virtual Social Event
                  Christmas Crafts and Carols with the MCS Community

                  Date: Sunday, December 13, 2020
                  Time: 3:30pm
                  Place: Zoom (link to be shared with participating families)

                  Join fellow MCS families as we complete festive Christmas crafts and listen to some carols all in the warmth and safety of our homes.

                  MCS parent Cassie Barbato of Life Expressions has provided a few different craft options ranging from $15-25 per craft.  NOTE:  In order to participate you must pre-order your selection(s) with Cassie by completing the following form by Sunday, November 29th.   Your order will be available for pick-up at MCS on Friday, December 11th.  We hope you’ll join us virtually on Sunday, December 13th as we hop on Zoom as a community to make our creations together.  Cassie will be in attendance to answer any questions while you make your holiday masterpiece.  We hope to see you then!

                  PTO Christmas Video
                  ‘Twas the Night: The Nativity Story | MCS Community Video starring… YOU!

                  PTO Social Chair, Stephanie Bernaba will be helping us recreate the magic of the true story of
                  Christmas through the creation of a video of MCS families reading lines from the book ‘Twas the Night: Nativity Story.  Lines of the story are set to the rhythm of “The Night Before Christmas” but instead tell the beautiful story of the Nativity.  It is sure to be an Academy Award winning sensation but in order to make movie magic we need YOU and YOUR FAMILIES!

                  Next steps:

                  1. Please email Stephanie at by Sunday, November 29th to volunteer to participate.
                  2. Stephanie will email you a line or two to read and request that you use your mobile phone or another device to record a MP4 or .mov file.  When recording, please hold your mobile phone vertically and provide a 5 second pause before and after you recite your line(s).
                  3. Please submit your family’s recording by Tuesday, December 15th.  NOTE: Instructions for uploading your video to a Google Drive will be supplied.
                  4. Enjoy the show!  Stephanie will share the video for all to enjoy the week of Christmas!

                  PTO Update 11-18-20

                  Whew! Time is flying this fall and we hope this update finds you all well and looking forward to the upcoming holiday season.
                  We are planning a Thanksgiving surprise for our wonderful MCS teachers to show our appreciation for how challenging this year has been. To make the surprise even better, we are asking that you please have students write and send in notes of gratitude by this Friday, November 20th. Please address the notes to the intended recipients.
                  We did not meet the minimum orders for either the MCS masks or the water bottles, so the fundraiser has been cancelled. Thank you to those of you who placed orders. If you have not yet received your refund, it’s on its way!
                  Upcoming PTO dates –
                  • TODAY!!! Help support MCS by ordering from Panera on November 18th from 4 – 8pm. Panera will donate a portion of proceeds to MCS! Show this flyer!
                  • November 19th – PTO meeting @ 7pm.
                  • November 27th – November 29th: Wakefield Books is proud to partner with MCS for this year’s book fair. Orders can be curbside pickup, online or in store. Just present the voucher found here.
                  Stay tuned for information on a fun holiday event for all families, COVID-style!

                  Last Call for Halloween Costumes, Masks and Water Bottles

                  HAPPY NOVEMBER!!
                  We hope the fall is treating everyone well. The PTO would like to remind you about a couple of current initiatives:
                  • Halloween Virtual Costume Contest Submissions! – Don’t forget to submit your costume pics here! (5) $25 Amazon gift cards will be awarded as prizes to the top vote getters!!!
                  • Halloween Voting!– We need YOU to vote for your favorite costumes! View them here and click the heart symbol to cast your vote!
                  • MCS Children’s Masks – This is the nicest quality mask we have seen. The face mask provides 3 layers of protection and has adjustable straps to fit all heads. Order deadline is November 6th!
                  • MCS Water Bottles – Slim grip sports bottle with a flip straw handle lid with the MCS logo. BPA free Tritan™ and FDA compliant. Order deadline is November 6th!

                  Stay tuned for info to join our next meeting (November 19th) and fun events planned for December!

                  10.22.2020 | PTO Meeting Minutes

                  I. Welcome (7:05PM) – John

                  II. Old business and approval of last meeting’s minutes

                  III. Introduction of new Board Members –  All new board members 🙂

                  John Ball, PTO President
                  Kate Smith, PTO past President
                  Amanda Andrade, Room Parent Coordinator
                  Stephanie Barnaba, Social Event Chair
                  Nicole Paliotti, Fundraising Chair

                  IV. Social Events Report – Halloween Picture Contest (Stephanie)

                  ○ Virtual Costume Contest
                  ○ Students/Families/Pets can dress up, pose for a picture, and submit it to the padlet for the school community to vote
                  ○ Open now; winners will be announced Nov. 8th –

                  V. Future Social Events

                  ○ Cocoa “bombs”/pottery
                  ○ Twas the night before Christmas/Advent Event

                  VI. Fundraising Update (Nicole)

                  ○ School store
                  ○ Squad Locker – Nicole is reviewing Squad Locker as we speak and will be including items that are approved by the Administration. We intend to include: apparel, mugs, chairs, etc.
                  ○ Virtual book fair – Via Wakefield Books (website, in-person, or call and order). Will be promoted after Halloween. Nov 27 – 29th. MCS will get 20% of the proceeds.
                  ○ Family restaurant nights – Hoping to do it monthly!
                  ○ Shopping programs (Amazon Smiles, Stop and Shop A+ rewards, Box tops)
                  ○ Reorder masks and water bottles – Selling now –

                  VII. Principal’s Report (Dr. Lisi)

                  ○ Thank you to all who attended and to the Board
                  ○ It’s a different year for us as some of the traditional fundraising opportunities/events will not be possible (Christmas Festival/Golf Tournament/etc.)
                  ○ Annual Fund has been successful
                  ○ This is an expensive year for MCS due to the need for PPE, cleaning equipment, etc.
                  ○ Dr. Lisi would love for us to think of creative ways for us to support teachers. This new environment puts a lot of stress and added pressures on the teachers. Due to constant caution and trying to keep the students healthy.
                  ▪ IDEAS: Gift card rally, luncheons, can teacher appreciation be spaced out or done earlier/maybe we do something 1x per month vs. 1 week in the Spring, have a food truck visit, have the students write thank you notes/draw pictures

                  VIII. PTO Goals for the Year

                  ○ Sense of community (finding opportunities to come together virtually) – Parents Night in, finding ways to bring new families together, etc.
                  ○ Supporting Teachers
                  ○ Fundraising
                  ○ Laminator needed for the teachers –> $1,500 – 2,500 — Ask the Catholic School Office to see if they have a bulk purchasing idea
                  ○ Air filtration for the classrooms (Sara is looking into Corporate Sponsorships)

                  IX. Open Discussion, Q&A Group

                  ○ A.M. Finlay
                  ○ Shared an idea for GeoCashe
                  ○ Online Internet Escape Room (
                  ○ Michelle Main/Audrey Scott/Cassie – Christmas Festival is not possible; however, should we close the loop with vendors and give them a “Save the Date” for next year (1st Sunday of December). Audrey is happy to inquire to see if vendors could be interested in donating items for an auction/raffle in exchange for advertisement.
                  ○ Kate Smith – Idea (!) – Daily “Calendar” Raffle with vendor donations as a fundraiser or create a silent auction/fundraising site. We can advertise for them on the PTO website. Minimum – $25/Send picture.
                  ○ John Ball – Idea (!) – Zoom raffle live on the 1st Sunday of December
                  ○ Diana McLaughlin – Advertise the Christmas Festival vendors etsy shops
                  Decision : Audrey Scott will go forward with the Daily “Calendar” Raffle. Sara is going to help with verbiage on the email.
                  ○ Nicole – Virtual Jog – a – thon/road race – can be tracked by an app
                  ○ Sara – Mr. JP would like to do a Living Nativity/drive thru at the school (ask for donations). Consider doing that the 1st Sunday of December.

                  Adjourned at 7:57PM

                  MCS Virtual Costume Contest

                  Are you ready for a freakishly good time? Join the MCS PTO for MCS’s Virtual Costume Contest! Gather your family (and maybe your pet!), and snap a hair-raising photo to upload to our Virtual Costume Board! Five spooky, silly, or startling winners will receive $25 Amazon gift cards! Upload your photos here!

                  Join our First PTO Meeting of the School Year!

                  This year promises to be like no other.

                  Please join our first PTO meeting of the school year via Zoom on October 22nd at 7 pm to meet the new board members and to discuss how we can all help support one another during the pandemic.

                  We want to identify some new ways that the PTO can continue fostering our tight-knit school community in an era of social distancing and limited events.

                  Check your email for the Zoom information!

                  Agenda –

                  – Welcome
                  – Old business and approval of last meeting’s minutes
                  – Introduction of new Board members
                  – Social Events Report
                  – Fundraising Update
                  – Principal’s Report
                  – Open Discussion, Q & A
                  – Adjournment