9/13/2021 12:45 pm

DCES PTO Minutes 8/16/21 at 3:45pm (virtual)


2021-2022 Board Attendees:

Co-Presidents: Laura Weeshoff - Katie Makalele

Principal: Mrs. Mills

Assistant Principal: Ms. Costello

Teacher Representative: Holly Hooley - Jamie McCrensky

VP Finance: Tara McConnell 

VP Communications: Beth Williams - Alicia Haygood 

VP App/Web: Mary Olley – Dave McQuiston 

VP Events: Kelly Brown - Dina Engler 

VP Special Projects - Krista Kotsovos - Brenda Courtad  

VP Hospitality: Melanie Frisone - Caroline Magargle

Secretary: Marissa Andersen (absent)

VP Fundraising: Maria Aldrich (absent)

VP Outreach: Morgan Reader   (absent)

Mandarin Liaison: Kerry Dandan Sullivan  (absent)


  • August 19 PTO info session 5-5:30pm
  •  General Meeting Speaker Options:  (3 meetings to plan for)
    • Psychologist/counselor - target Brooke the DCES psychologist potentially as a free and vested person, a timely and interesting topic that we can focus on covid and coping with anxieties. 
    • SUSD IT: Discuss how to keep our elementary school kids safe online and electronics.  simple but useful tips that all parents should be aware of for keeping our kids safe online. 
    • ASU School of Sustainability: Graduate students discuss ways we can make impacts and help put perspective of why it can make a difference.   The graduate students have programs specifically designed to educate and engage elementary school students.   We can have them discuss with us and help set up simple programs within the school. 
    • Is Your Garage Filled With Items That Should Have Been Thrown Away 10 Years Ago? Robin Adrihan, Founder / Co-Owner, Smooth Transitions of the Valley Garage or home cluttered? Would you like to get organized or make some money by selling some of your treasures? Sometimes humorous, sometimes poignant Robin will give you tips on how to get through the challenge of letting go and what to do with the items that are going 
    • Self Defense At Any Age,Derrek Hofrichter, Chief Instructor, EVKM Self Defense & Fitness: Self Defense expert Derrek Hofrichter will share safety tips and strategies while demonstrating what to do in the most common violent situations. He has been teaching the Israeli self defense system of Krav Maga for over a decade, and can show how you can take measures to protect yourself at any age or physical ability.
    • TASK Board to add to questionnaire for feedback
  • Parents have asked about improved Covid mitigation strategies at pickup similar to last year
    • Mrs. Mills is monitoring  but it is a district decision
    • Resources aren’t available to monitor an add’l gate for pick up
  • Is there a need for an additional aid to assist with release? 
    • No interest in postings for noon aid, 3 para
    • Noon aid position could be split between 2 people
    • TASK PTO will post to Facebook to increase visibility
  • Possible PTO sponsored quiet room in library before school overseen by librarian? (suggested by another parent from experience at a previous school)
    • Tabled for now as this would need to be an extra position as the librarian does not have capacity
    • Kid’s Club closed to new registration due to difficulty hiring staff
  • Volunteering on campus: 
    • Running Club
      • Parent allowed on campus in the morning once a week for running club?
      • Campus is closed for August. Mrs. Mills will let PTO know when a decision is made for September. Any volunteer will need to be vaccinated and will need to wear a mask.
    •  Garden 
      • If parent is allowed on campus for gardening, can students garden with parent?
      • We will find out more in September. Tina will garden during after hours. Mrs. Mills will check to see how many additional volunteers she can have.
    • On campus activities during school day aren’t allowed at this point. Enrichment classes are allowed after school hours.
  • Can we auction marquee monthly messages?
    • The marquee on the South side continues to belong to PTO
    • Proposed auctioning pre-approved messages (such as birthdays) on the marquee on the North side. Sharon is trained on the marque but Mrs. Mills would like PTO to put something together she can review before approving the auctioning of the North side marque.
    • TASK Submit plan for North side marque auction to Mrs. Mills prior to next meeting 
  • Vote to accept changes to by-laws purposed last meeting
    • Board passed changes by vote
  • Spacing in classrooms? 
    • Teachers are spacing as much as they can. Mrs. Mills asks that a parent address the teacher first about possible changes in classroom


Principal Update


  • Parent pickup is getting quicker - normally ends by 3:30pm and we are now done by 3:35pm, so we’re getting quicker
  • Reminder that vehicles should not pull up to South gate, and vehicles should watch their speed
  • Reminder that North gate parents should back up from gate to allow space for children to exit
  • TASK Site council parents needed for K-1, 2-3 and 4-5.  Add post to FB page advising anyone interested to email Sharon or Mrs. Mills  


    • Spiritwear Sales Update - sales have exceeded where we were this time last year!
    • Peter Piper Pizza - $310
    • Over $100,000 in bank account!


Special Projects

    • North gate shade structure status
      • Manufacturer delay; should be shipped out early November
      • Once received, installation will be scheduled
      • Mrs. Mills ok with installation during school hours as long as it does not affect drop off/ pick up
    • City of Scottsdale sidewalk expansion and shad structure status
      • Pending City of Scottsdale approval
      • 2-4 weeks for drawings once approved
      • 3 months for fabrication/ manufacturing
    • Buddy Bench or sign at lower grade level playground 
      • Need to determine if we need to order a bench and a sign or just a sign
      • Teacher input pending with K-1 teachers
      • TASK Teacher Reps will follow up with K-1 teachers. If approved, need quote for new bench or sign
    • Tree in 5th grade cove
      • There has been some discussion about a replacement
      • Official decision pending
    • Frame for 2nd chalkboard - Brenda’s husband may be able to help
      • Approved vendor would need to install once approved
    • Mural at front of school 
      • TASK Need to find an insured vendor for quote
    • Signs for bus lane/ Kids Club and Parent pickup/drop off
      • School would like PTO to pay as they used some of their discretionary fund for new signage at the end of last year
      • Approved Vendors in place to provide quote: Image 360 and Next Day
      • Suggestion for sign to direct parents/ students to Front Office from North gate
      • TASK confirm text on all proposed signs and set up meeting with vendor


  • Pic and Bio of board members to help school parents know who we are and who to contact - Alicia and Beth will notify Board of specifics
  • Parking and street sign auction is online on Facebook currently - marque discussion noted above



    • Proposal to switch to Google Workspace for email hosting.
      • With no objections, we will look into moving our email to Google and have a concrete proposal at a future meeting
    • MTK now has the capability to host our domain instead of the long MTK domain name. We will try out the feature soon.
    • Request to obtain a list of students with their assigned homeroom teachers from school so spiritwear items can be delivered 
      • TASK Email sent to PTO members with a link to update student teacher information 



  • September 17 Back to School Bash
    • Move to October 22 - may need to have a go/ no go date
    • All advertisements should come from PTO so parents know it is not school sponsored
    • Plan is still to hold it outdoors with Covid mitigation strategies in place
  • Golf is interested in moving to November
  • Family Fun Nights 
  • PTO planned events - mitigation strategies / having them outside 
  • Book fair - still unknown whether this will be in person this year


Teacher Reps

  • Teacher allocations 
    • Lisa Lee will do reimbursements this year. She will be emailing teachers once she has been added to the bank account
  • Room parents 
  • Water bottle filler in PE room?
    • We will check notes for cost as PTO has paid for these in the past
  • Color cartridge for the printer in workroom?
    • Requested teachers provide a quote 
  • 2 chargers per classroom?
    • Pending quote 
    • Note: Different models require different wattages/power delivery besides the different ports. So we should make sure the chargers are future proof if provided


Fundraising/Sponsorship Update

  • 8 sponsors so far
    • Final push this week
    • Planning to order signage for the fence August 30th — likely will redesign to accommodate adding sponsors throughout the year
  • Total sponsorship dollars raised to date: $3800 ($3000 PAID + $800 in verbal commitments)
  • Dine-out for DCES nights: who is doing the scheduling?
    • Lou Malnati’s
    • Thirsty Lion
  • September is Vig Gives month - a portion of proceeds will go to DCES 
    • We will start promoting in September
  • Lou Malnati’s —new silver sponsor!
    • Agreed to donate $500 worth of pizzas to us this year. We can use for whatever events we’d like (TAW, Carnival, Movie Night). Could possibly donate more if needed
    • Donated a gift card that we can use for an auction or prize this year. They are mailing it to me directly.
    • They have an incentive program that we could leverage (think Pizza Hut Book-It)for our students. Maybe Amazing Race prize or some other fun incentive this year.
    • Bottom line — they really want to be involved in the community are open ideas working with us.



  • September 10 First Responders Assembly 
    • Students only, separated by grade
    • PTO to provide breakfast and water
    • Breakfast may be moved outdoors - if so, Facilities will put up tent
  • Teacher Treat Wednesdays
    • Sharon will handle set up