BTSN Message from PTO President Lisa McCluskey
I am a parent of 3 kids at Stoddert so I know that you have a lot of information to absorb. As Stoddert parents and guardians you are automatically members of the PTO- so we welcome your help and questions as we make it further into the year.
You can usually find me at pick up or drop off every day. Or you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I would like thank our current PTO Executive Board, Committee Members. These volunteers work many hours to ensure that everything that I’m going to outline happens.
The biggest question that I get is- What does the PTO do?
Throughout the year, we support school initiatives and activities and raise critical funds for the school. We do this in many different ways.
We plan and hosts events like the Back to School Potluck, Fall Festival, Book Fair, Family Fun Night and Teacher Appreciation.
All of these activities help build our student and parent connections and are fun.
But, we do not just plan parties or events. The PTO maintains the school website and weekly newsletter for the school. We work in the front office and pull up weed outside and shelve library books. It’s all PTO and volunteers
We provide support for enrichment by paying for special programs, buying sports equipment and thanks to money raised at our auction we just built a new sandbox for the kids and purchased new recess equipment- ALL thru PTO and volunteer commitments.
We advocate! We work the Stoddert Administrators, with DC government agencies and others to help keep our school safe and provide opportunities that reach every student. Including pest control, applying for grants and working on overcrowding.
All of these things are what help to make Stoddert one of the top DC schools. It’s indisputable the impact that local community organizations like our PTO make on schools. If you think that your child or children do not benefit from PTO activities you are wrong. Every child benefits.
There several big ways that you can help:
The dues amount is $400 per family. In case you have sticker shock- for comparison Mann just up the street is 1,500 per child!
Thank you to those who have already contributed. If you are an extended day family this was bundled in with your payment. Thank you so much for your contribution. We understand that not every family is able to give at this level but as all families benefit we encourage you to give what is financially comfortable.
Paying is easy-go online and pay at Stoddert.org or by check, we have monthly options as well. Checks can be given to front office staff for safe keeping. Please also check to see if your company matches because our PTO is set up as a 501-C3.
As you tour the classrooms this year please be aware that many items were purchased by the PTO including books in the classroom and the library, computers, carpets, teaching aides, posters on the wall- even the stools at the water fountains. Your dues bought these. Your Dues Makes a difference for every child at Stoddert.
Whether it’s writing emails to stakeholders, editing documents from home, volunteering to read in the classroom, passing out pizza or cleaning up after an event we rely on your help to make things happen and we need all skill levels. Click here to view some volunteer opportunities
In fact, we need future PTO leaders. If we don’t have new executive members, the PTO can’t continue. This means no school website, no weekly e-news, no events, no garden upgrades, no classroom stipends. Period.
Again, I am easily reached, you can ask your teacher about being a room parent and we have a volunteer sign up online if you are interested.
This year DCPS is enforcing clearance checks for all volunteers and chaperones. This means that if you are a volunteer for more than a one day birthday or event you need to complete this. You can fill out forms online and get a TB test at a minute clinic or use a current scan or test that is less than 12 months old. The next step is to be fingerprinted at the DCPS office downtown. We realize that this is a hardship so we have worked to have DCPS fingerprinting come to Stoddert. This will be on 10/10 starting at 9 am. We will post everything online and in Chalkboard.
Last- Stay informed. As I just mentioned we have a great website and e-newsletter. The e-news is called “Chalkboard” and comes out every Sunday.
On to something fun!
For the next 4 weeks the PTO will be giving away wristbands and 10 tickets for the Fall Festival to one family as a “thank you” for paying dues! All families who have paid PTO dues or have signed up for monthly payments are eligible. We will randomly assign numbers to your name and do a drawing. Winners will be announced in Chalkboard.