PTA meeting 15th of November, 2017
Hardeep Singh – Joelle White – Michaela McLachlan – Mrs O’Mahony – Mrs Conroy - Katie Hone-Smith – Natalie Reid-Hughes – Lizzie Perry – Nina Milner – Kira Holland – Victoria Strudwick.
Jill O’Donovan – Sarah Rodi.
Deep chaired the session.
· Welcome and thanks
Deep welcomed everyone to the meeting, in particular new people and explained what the PTA does.
· Events and actions since last meeting
The events since last meeting went all well (Bags to school, Disco and Film Night), see the Finance section below.
Actions since last meeting:
- Lizzie is coordinating the Christmas Fair this year and said everything is very much in hand (see section “Calendar of events”).
- Sarah has prepared all the bar licences necessary for the coming events.
- The Swimarathon has been scheduled in January (see section “Calendar of events”).
- Alfie agreed to do the parents quiz night at the beginning of the year (see section “Calendar of events”).
- A second Bags to school collection is scheduled in March.
· Financial update
Jill could not attend the meeting but sent some update through.
Bags to school managed to raise a respectable £202. The two events for the children (Disco and Film nights), free of charge, cost £180.49.
There is an amount of £2400 available for spending, as we always keep £2000 as working capital on the account.
Mrs O’Mahony gave an update on the most recent projects.
Mrs Daniels plans on building a self-sufficient cabin by the running track. It will be used for the school clubs, for art sessions, etc… and could be rented out without having to keep the school open. The building costs are now covered by a charitable donation of £150,000 from Spoor, Merry and Rickson Foundation.
The other project of an astro turf track being set up around the school field is also covered by charitable donation and the sport premium given out by the government.
Mrs O’Mahony asked if the PTA can hold on to the money for the time being, build up that pot of money so it can be used towards equipment that will go in the cabin (scheduled to be built in Spring 2018).
Deep explained that the PTA has an obligation to spend the money raised and is not allowed to have money sitting on the account for a long period. However, as it is only for a few months, the committee agreed to earmark the money available towards the furbishing of the cabin, until it is needed later on in the school year.
· Calendar of future events
Term 2 (30th of October – 19th of December)
- Christmas Fair, 8th of December.
Lizzie is coordinating the Christmas Fair. The parents reps are involved and very committed to their specific stalls. The list of floats that Jill put together is correct. Michaela said parents reps are working towards getting volunteers to man the stalls on the day. They can call out if they are short of people. Lizzie mentioned it is particularly more difficult for parents with young children as they have to stay with them during the Fair.
Michaela flagged that some help will be required to put the Christmas tree up in the hall, at least 3 people.
The community room is booked from 9am for refreshments, cakes, mulled wine and a stall for school uniforms.
The hall is available from 1:30pm and the classrooms will be available to set the games from 2pm. The Year 2 class will be used for the photo booth. There will be a Santa Grotto with a Father Christmas.
Michaela said the silent auction already has promising prizes. Louise (Year 1) had suggested each year group could put together a themed toy hamper as prize for the silent auction, and donations are already pouring in from each year.
Michaela also suggested we could repeat the Christmas trees idea from last year, that were decorated by the children from each class, and sold as silent auction items. Mrs O’Mahony will get back to her after talking to the staff as there is not much time before the Fair and she will let us know if this idea goes ahead.
- Christmas shows, 7th, 13th and 18th of December.
The PTA will set up a refreshment stall for each performance, with wine for the evening one. Some volunteers will be required to help.
- Swimarathon, 6th of January.
Sarah Renton is in charge of collecting names for the teams, parents can get in touch with her if they want their child to take part (see details in the newsletter).
- PTA AGM, 11th of January.
Annual meeting for elections, summary of the year and planning of the rest of the year’s events.
- Parents Quiz Night.
Alfie will do his last Quiz this year and it is themed on the 80-90’s idols with fancy dress required. The committee suggested two possible dates to him (26th of January or 2nd of February), Alfie will confirm which suits him best. Someone will have to take charge of organising food, bar, tickets sale. Michaela will ask the parents reps to find a volunteer.
Term 4 (19th of February – 29th of March)
- Bags to school.
The date is yet to be announced.
- Parents Disco.
Marissa is happy to organise a Parents Disco this year with a live band. The committee suggested to have it in early March. Michaela will contact Marissa and ask her when she prefers to do it.
Term 5 (16th of April – 25th of May)
- Bingo Night/Fashion Show/anything else.
- Sports Day.
Term 6 (6th of June – 24th of July)
- New parents meeting.
- Summer Fair, 8th of July, Happy Circus.
- Picnic for new parents.
- Mrs O’Mahony will confirm shortly if the Christmas trees idea goes ahead.
- Michaela will contact the parents reps to find a volunteer for organising the Quiz Night.
- Katie will get Alfie to confirm a date for the Quiz Night.
- Michaela will contact Marissa about the Parents Disco Night.
· Any other business
- Summer Fair, 8th of July, Happy Circus:
Deep has made some pictures of the school entrance, as required from the Happy Circus company. He is waiting to hear whether that will be enough for them or whether they need to schedule a visit to the school site. The gate is wide enough for the lorries to get through as the fire engines can manage. The issue will be with the road that will have to be free of cars. The committee will contact the community police to see how they can help and will contact the school neighbours as well for their cooperation on that matter. Additionally, the tree near the bike pods will need to be trimmed.
Deep will confirm with Happy Circus when they plan on arriving, setting up and clearing up.
Mrs O’Mahony asked how many tickets were to be sold. Jo said the website indicates the marquee can hold up to 600 people.
The committee agreed that we need to:
- Have more details concerning the schedule on the day (if there is a kids workshop, how long the show lasts, if there is a break in the middle, etc.) so we can better plan which stalls we need to organise around it.
- Advertise through the Cookham schools and nurseries to rally parents, and get the school parents to come accompanied with guests as well, to make sure we get the 600 tickets sold.
- Check what Happy Circus supplies on the day (popcorn, candy floss).
- Parents talk:
Kira asked whether there was a possibility to have another parents talk scheduled in. Deep said it is only a matter of booking a speaker. Mrs O’Mahony said she encouraged the parents to come forward and mention at the parents forum or the school office, if they have identified a special need/concern to be addressed. The school will then look at what/who is available and put a suggestion through to the PTA to fund that talk.
- Elections at the AGM:
Jo raised the question of the elections taking place during the AGM (next meeting). Sadly, it is Deep’s final year as chairman of the PTA, as it is a requirement to be a parent at the school to occupy this position. Deep will remain as an acting chair until the end of the school year, to help with a smooth handover.
Deep is available for anybody who wants to come forward, to give information and talk about what the role entails.
At the AGM in January, people present at the meeting will elect the chair, the treasurer, the secretary and the events coordinator(s).
We will get the information to circulate that we are now looking for a new chairman, via the newsletter, Parentmail, the class reps, the school website, a poster on the gate.
The AGM will also be the time to look at the PTA constitution in order to submit it to the Charity Commission.
- Deep will contact Happy Circus to get more details on the schedule on the day, the access to the school, etc.
- Deep will write a little letter to call for a new Chair.
Next meeting (AGM): Thursday 11th of January, 7:30pm