Martin Luther King, Jr. PTA
General Membership Meeting
Tuesday, January 24, 2017
Martin Luther King, Jr. School Library

(To view as PDF click here.)

Called to Order: 5:42 p.m.

In Attendance: 20 members and non-members (including speakers); quorum met.

President’s Report: See attached. Ruel Gregory moving next month, and stepping down as Secretary; Wendie Siverts acting as interim Secretary, will vote for permanent replacement at February meeting. Received cyber-talk grant for $1000. Day of Chinese New Year Event is Friday Feb 3; note, this is now also a no-school teacher planning day. Would like to send 2-3 people to the Oregon PTA conference.

Treasurer’s Report: See attached. (Report presented by Jaime Cale.) Most of money received is from fundraisers; money has been spent on teacher’s grants. Received $2500 grant for Garden. Question about lead in water sidelining garden: SK: Soil has been tested, and passed.

Secretary’s Report: Motion to approve November 2016 meeting minutes (RG motion; seconded).  Request from floor to strike last section. Motion to approve November 2016 meeting minutes with corrections (RG motion; seconded). Vote: Passed.

Fundraising Report: Cookie Dough Fundraiser grossed $1900 and netted $440. Won $1000 Boxtop fundraiser contest. Food for Funds @ Moda Center – taking a while to get off the ground, but now have group ready, four events in February. Establishing an on-going partnership with Alberta Main Street, block between 10th-11th available during street fair for a fundraising event if we want to host one. Can also provide food in beer garden to raise money; non-profit fundraisers are less stringent about food-handlers cards. JC: PTA will help volunteers get them if needed.

Green King: Stephanie Sanchez of Green King reported on 1/20 community meeting. Presented samples of activity that attendees worked on at meeting, prepared by Architects Without Borders. Will be meeting with other groups in the neighborhood to complete the activity, such as St. Andrew School and St. Andrew Catholic Church. Will bring activity to Safety Night and MLK, Jr. School to get more input.

YC: Katie Schulz with KSMoCA will also be partnering with younger students designing playground equipment – grant in the works to potentially build some of the kid’s designs.

Principal’s Report: Principal Jill Sage discussed rescheduling the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration event that was cancelled due to snow; had hoped for a February date, but want to include the Black History 101 Museum as planned, so working on a date in April. Will confirm and announce soon. Teachers and staff visited Sitton to review new Literacy Program that will be coming to MLK, Jr. PPS is working to finalize school budgets sooner, allowing more time for hiring decisions. Pleased that the turnover at MLK, Jr. School is low, improving instructional consistency and learning momentum. West African Drum Recital coming up February 8th, at Jefferson – fantastic talent, don’t miss it.

Assistant Principal Yolanda Coleman discussed middle school: Great team of active, engaging instructors. Students are reading Renee Watson’s “This Side of Home,” a book inspired by the author’s experience growing up in NE Portland. The students develop their critical thinking skills while discussing the book in “reading circles.” About five middle-schoolers have chosen to take Mandarin as an elective, and now more students are interested. We have a native Spanish speaker to support our Spanish speaking students.

Construction Bond: Laura Hanson presented information about the PPS construction Bond. PPS committee created a long-range facilities plan to modernize every school.  The first phase, funded by a 2012 bond, is nearing completion, and included Franklin, Roosevelt, Faubian and Grant. The findings of lead contaminated water in our schools last summer exposed safety issues that require addressing as well, such as lead, radon, sprinklers, etc. In addition to continuing the modernization of the next group of schools in the plan (Benson, Lincoln, Madison, and Kellogg) the district would like to address safety issues at all schools. A website goes live tomorrow to solicit input from community regarding options: – based on this input and PPS staff recommendations, the board will decide at the end of February whether to refer a bond to the voters.

JS: One upgrade in the mix is an elevator for MLK, Jr. School, as part of addressing ADA access.

SUN School: Sharde Dennis provided an update. PTA funds used for soccer and Battle of the Books. For this term, there are 25 kids in soccer and 8 kids participating in BoB. Fall term had 120 kids enrolled, winter has 122. This term is focused on the arts, including drill team, jazz band and drawing. A “Showcase” of the student’s work is planned for spring. SUN is seeking chess teacher, as well as others with special skills (photography, comic book drawing, etc.) Planning on offering more sports in spring term. (In response to question:) Would like to offer baseball/softball, but need right coach. SUN League will start in February – all SUN schools under SEI umbrella will play games at SEI center Fridays 4-6. Question regarding the way registration worked this term: Had to do it this way this time; wanted to talk about mission of SUN school, classes had changed so couldn’t send out options. Next term will be more like before, but every year SUN will host one registration day.

KB: The “Princess Club” coronation night was great, drew 275 attendees – next year support with dinner, etc.?

Committee Reports

Safety & Wellness: Katherine Jones discussed Safety and Wellness night to happen at MLK, Jr. School on February 7: Susan Romanski of Mercy Corps will be there to discuss what will happen during a big earthquake, how to prepare. 5-6th graders and 7-8th graders will put on skits about internet safety. Red cross activities for K-3. Other booths: Community Cycle, NE Health Center, Jefferson Student-based Health Clinic, Leadsafe America (tentative.) Need volunteers for that night.

Auction: It is March 11 from 6-10 p.m. This is our biggest fundraiser. Tickets are $35, and available now: Buy online or drop check in PTA safe. Can also purchase tickets to donate. Need volunteers during, before and next day. We are doing volunteer “trades” with other schools. Need donations of items to auction – be creative! Location same as last year, North Warehouse. Will do 50/50 raffle again. Band is Jefferson HS’s “The Sounds of Jefferson Revival.”

MIP Parents: We applied for and received grant to allow MIP camp this summer to be a 3-week camp. Date still to be finalized, between 7/11 and 8/4. Jessica has more info.

Diversity & Inclusion: Next meeting this Friday. In the planning stages to host a “Courageous Conversations” event at MLK, Jr: Will meet with MLK staff and CC reps on 2/6.

Events: Want to host another movie night or a game night at the school on an upcoming Friday. March looks like a good month to do it.

Arts and Academics: Will provide volunteers for upcoming Authors Night and Multicultural Night. Also want to involve interested parents in conversation about how to support the arts and academics at MLK, Jr school. Contact Nick Mathern to be a part of this conversation.


Run for the Lions: In planning stages, Charlie Frye heading up effort. Will need volunteers, contact Charlie if interested.

KSMoCA Rummage Sale: Wieden+Kennedy (Portland-based advertising company) has donated the contents of their warehouse for a rummage sale to benefit MLK, Jr. School; they want the proceeds to fund our arts programs. It is February 4-5 – get the word out!

Meeting Adjourned: 6:46 p.m.