Seth Kroll, Ana Tol, Doris Johnson, Sonia Sanchez, Blerina Rista, Jen Douglas, Nadine Desharnais, David Juralewicz, Tracy Triplett, Amy Gusefski
Translation was provided by the Boston Interpreters Collective.
Introductions were made.
Upcoming Events: Family Game Night and Potluck
Tracy reported that the Family Potluck and Game Night will be held on Thursday, November 7, 5-7 p.m. The goal of the event—aside from fun game-playing for families—is to provide a low-key opportunity for parents to get to know each other. As in prior years, City Year will assist with the food service, to be held in the gym, and parents and City Year will be responsible for running 3-4 game rooms in the nearby classrooms, as well as a music game area in the entryway. Volunteers are needed!
Amy and other parents discussed the role of the Parent Council: to provide representation of the parent community within the JFK in order to ensure that parent concerns are addressed, to promote networking and engagement within the parent community, and to support the JFK through fundraising and school community events. Each of the available Parent Council positions and School Site Council positions was described.
Tracy described the role and makeup of the School Site Council: to set key school policies, develop the school’s discretionary budget, address significant concerns raised by parents, teachers, community; consists of parents, teachers/staff, and Dr. Copeland, the chair; five parent members and one alternate are required, three-year staggered terms; first meeting is Thursday, October 17, 2019, 4-5:30 p.m.
Elections of School Site Council members were held (given that new members are required before the next meeting). Three parents volunteered to serve on the three open seats. As there were no other volunteers, a vote was not held. The new members are:
- Seth Kroll (three year term)
- Tracy Triplett (three year term)
- Blerina Rista (one year alternate)
No parents volunteered to run for the open Executive Board positions, and so it was agree to postpone elections until the next evening meeting, November 13. A morning meeting will be held on October 25. In the meantime parents should publicize and recruit for the open positions.
Website / Facebook update
(from Michelle Juralewicz and Meredith Sandiford, read by David Juralewicz)
JFK Social Media and Website Updates
Volunteers: Michelle Juralewicz and Meredith Sandiford would like to help populate and monitor JFK’s social media accounts and website
They have met with Ms. Nelson and she’s offered to help provide a better channel of communication from Dr. Copeland, to result in a more constant stream of news to post on social media and website.
Content would include: School events, class photo day, snow days, principal newsletters, concerts, BPS-wide updates. Content would be streamlined to cross-post on website and social.
Website: Meredith is rebuilding the current website into an old domain, www.jfkelementary.org, and will share with Dr. Copeland and Parent Council to get official approval
Facebook: Michelle and Meredith are asking for approval to be added as Facebook Admins to the Parent Council page and begin communicating with Ms. Nelson, Dr. Copeland, and the Parent Council about approved school content to post. Who runs the page now and can make them FB Admins?
There’s also an unofficial FB page we can merge into the JFK Parent Council Page (must be done by a page admin).
Twitter: Did you know JFK has a Twitter account?! @JFKennedySchool We’ve obtained the password and would like permission from the Parent Council to begin populating it with content approved by Ms. Nelson, Dr. Copeland, and the Parent Council.
Note: how does the Parent Council want Michelle and Meredith to communicate when they want to add something to the website or social media? Does the council want to be super-informed and decide what we can/can’t post, or can Michelle/Meredith just post anything school-sanctioned and then loop in the council if there’s anything questionable?
Photos: we will not post any photos of children’s faces (unless we have express, enthusiastic permission from the parent).
It was agreed that Meredith and Michelle should move forward with their work. Given the limited Executive Board attendance at the meeting, however, it was agreed that the Executive Board would separately confirm with Meredith and Michelle what line of communication makes sense for updating the website, Twitter, Facebook content. The Executive Board will also provide the contact information of the current Facebook page administrator. It was noted that the website and social media posts should be bilingual (Spanish) at minimum.
There was a discussion of the Parent Council’s fundraising goals. Aside from using funds raised to pay for food, translation, and other miscellaneous items to support the regular meetings, in the past we have contributed to the cost of Playworks at the school. Parent Council funds were also used to pay for a popcorn machine to be used at school events. Nadine (treasurer) offered that we would benefit from setting a specific fundraising goal/purpose for this and subsequent years to work toward. Tracy suggested that the Parent Council work with the School Site Council to plan one or more movie nights in the winter using the auditorium, which would allow fundraising to expand beyond the school to the outside community. It would be helpful to have one or more parents agree to take that project on.
Jen noted that she cannot attend the meeting on 10/25 and Tracy agreed to pickup the translation equipment. Jen also provided written information (attached) related to simultaneous interpreting and family engagement.
Communication with Dr. Copeland
Tracy noted that she had conveyed to Dr. Copeland during their School Site Council planning meeting the parent concerns raised at the last meeting. She would like to attend one or more upcoming parent council meetings in order to speak directly with parents about the school and to address concerns. She also encouraged the Parent Council chairs to meet regularly with her to discuss any concerns raised.