Coffee with the Principal / HSA Meeting Oct 7, 2015

8:40 AM: Library

Ms. Rock led the “Coffee with the Principal” and provided updates on school information.

PSSAs are now aligned to the common core, and McCall is ahead of the curve. Ms. Rock walked the attendees through the scores and they are available online at the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s website. A writing course is now incorporated into grades 3 through 8. Multiple answers are now more common in the testing. 5th and 9th grade entrances will be based on a curve. McCall did very well: we were the third highest in Math (after Masterman and Penn Alexander) with a 61.5%. In English we had 71% (and we have 20% English Language Learners). She discussed the PVAAS (PA Value Added Growth System). 80% of our students pass the Algebra Keystone. Our middle school teachers are exceptional, and the three year average shows vast improvement.

Ms. Rock discussed that a few of our classes are very full, particularly first and fifth grades. She is working on a plan. We will be getting an electrical upgrade in December. Each classroom will be upgraded for one week at a time, with the class using the Library at that time.

Mr. Sykes and Ms. Rock survey the schoolyard. She discussed the changes in clearance policy and the new attendance policy for half-day absences as well as ongoing fire and lockdown drills. Visitors are reminded to proceed directly to the office. Nobody wants children to miss recess, so teachers and kids are motivated to behave and get their work done.

People that are interested in substituting should apply with Source4Teachers.

Laurel Landau led the Home& School Association meeting. She introduced herself and the board members and explained that the HSA is the key connection between students and parents with the teaching staff and it fills the gaps through fundraising (to supplement things that the district cannot afford).

She announced that the safety surface will be replaced this fall!

Laura Sepe, Treasurer, gave her report. HSA’s big fundraising campaign is in progress, we have reached over $30,000 of our $60,000 goal! We have $77,000 unrestricted cash and $14,000 restricted.

Then the upcoming events were described.

  • Andrea Laden spoke about the evening’s Welcome Back Dinner at Aqua.
  • Frank Schaffer discussed Picture Day on October 15th, asking for volunteers and noting that McCall makes money through people’s orders.
  • Lauren Summers spoke about NELSON Green Apple Day of Serviceon Saturday 10/17, from 9AM to 3PM, and that we still need donations of food, planters, and other supplies.
  • Merle Becker spoke about the Jewelry Party on 10/22. A neighbor sells jewelry and donates all profitback to McCall
  • Sheri Feinberg spoke about the Halloween Party on 10/29 will be from 3:30pm to 5:00pm. We need help with setup, cleanup, running stations, but most of all: organizing it with ideas and activities.
  • Wendy Ramunno spoke about the Election Day Bake Sale on 11/3. We made over a thousand dollars last year. We need people to bake and volunteer to run a shift. The signup sheet will be posted shortly.
  • Movie night will take place on 11/10 (no school on 11/11). Ellen Charpentier is chairing it.
  • Sara Chrismer is chairing a new event on 11/14, which will involve several families hosting dinners with specific themes as a way to raise money and build community. Stay tuned for details.
  • Laura Sepe is organizing the Sixers game on 12/11 and the first 20 kids who sign up will get to do the high-five tunnel.

Laurel discussed ongoing fundraising campaigns, such as Shoparoo (just load the app and snap photos of receipts), Boxtops(Christie Weidner reports that we submitting in November so that we can get a check in December); Dress Down Day (monthly themes and $1 to play!!! ($165 last week!)); Target – use your card and we get points back; Amazon Smile – if we do through we get money back.)