Meeting Notes – March 2019

Meeting Notes – March 2019

2018-19 Horace Mann PTA Minutes

March 5, 2019

Welcome and Introductions


Teacher Representatives

  • Mr. Linskoog – Starting in kindergarten students take a home language questionnaire at placement and note if they speak another language at home. He does a screening of those students at the school to see if those students need ELL services. He typically has around 40 students, which includes ELL and literacy students. He’s half time at Horace Mann and splits his time with Highland Elementary.
  • Ms. Harmon – The 3rd grade started the year above the class size, so the teachers were able to add a ½ time 3rd grade teacher who has been able to help with small group work. They also have someone from Apple come in twice a month to help enhance their use of technology – this year their alphabet research books will be published this year.
  • Ms. Traxler – 3rd grade is a big transition year and it can sometimes be a tough transition for kids and parents. The teachers think about this and use growth mindset to help the kids really handle the transition well. They’re maturing and able to really look at things through the lens of others and take responsibility socially and academically,

New Business

  • Standing rules adoption
  • Bylaw adoption
  • Education advocacy postcards – postcards were handed out, along with instructions for how to find out who your Representative and Senator are. Parents were encouraged to send a personal note advocating for increased funding for education and have their children decorate the front.
  • NAAPID recap – the Student Advisory Board helped plan this day. They helped lead the ‘I believe’ statements that every student in the school did.
  • Parenting speaker
  • SPPS PTA/PTO request

Treasurer’s Report

YTD Total Revenue: $54,895            

YTD Total Expenses: $75,334    

YTDDeficit ($20,439)                                                                                                                                        Total Account Balance as of 2/28/19:  $56,311                                                                      

Also see handout for complete budget report. If you are interested in more details of the PTA budget please contact Jackie Hippen directly at

Principal’s Report

  • Levy/budgeting/staffing updates on the April PTA agenda
  • Parent/teacher conferences advice and suggestions

Landscape committee speaker

  • Holly Johnson, Master Gardener
    Sue Miller, Master Gardener
  • Master Gardeners vis a program run through the University of Minnesota. They volunteer their time, and have continuing education requirements to ensure they’re up to date on all the latest information.

Committee Updates

  • Silent Auction
    • Anne Pavlis:  The 2019 Horace Mann PTA Silent & Live Auction:  ‘One Small Night for Mann, One Giant Leap for Mann Kids’ This year’s Silent Auction is THIS FRIDAY March 8th at Harriet Island!  If you have not yet done so, turn in your RSVP asap.  
  1. We are collecting donations of adult beverages to be raffled for our WALL OF ADULT BEVERAGES.  Donations can be dropped in the school office.
  2. We are selling raffle tickets for some “Out of this World” prizes.  $10 per ticket.
  3. Questions?  Please contact Anne Pavlis (
  • Spring Plant Sale
    • The Plant Sale is a fantastic opportunity for school families, neighbors and friends to contribute to the many wonderful PTA programs that support our school and teachers.  Plus your order is delivered directly to school!
    • Order information will come home with kids on March 22nd – be on the lookout!
    • 2019 Plant delivery date is Thursday, May 16th.
  • Please contact Anne Pavlis ( with any questions…thank you!
  • Landscape Committee
    • Maya Missaghi: The Landscape Committee has had a great year so far. We had a very successful Fall Clean-up and are hopeful to figure out Spring weather enough to plan a Spring Clean-Up at some point before June.
    • Other accomplishments are submission of a Silent Auction item for our school fundraiser: MannPower yard Clean-up Crew powered by our own 5th grade volunteers (and adults)!
    • Questions/comments: and
  • Business Partnerships
    • Karla Lauerman Cummins:  We had our 3 of 4 Business Partnership Events at Noodles & Company in February. We raised $332.35. Thank you to everyone that came out to support HM.
    • Business Partnerships this year have generated $1,269.35 thru 3/1/19.  Employee Giving/Company Match/Give to the Max donations have totaled $9,834  +________thru 3/1/19.  Two local restaurants have donated dinner for the teachers at Parent/Teacher Conferences.  Thank you to Shish and Jimmy John’s  
    • Requests/Input from Attendee’s: Anyone that wishes to join our committee of 3  is very welcome and/or if you have any new ideas of BP opportunities or ways to thank our partners please let us know. and/or   Questions?
  • Box Tops
    • Heather Clark: Spring Box Tops submission deadline was March 1st and to date for the 2018-2019 school year Horace Mann has earned $797.70 ($546.40 from the fall submission and $251.30 for the spring).  
    • We will collect box top collections again prior to the end of the school year.  
    • We also will distribute bags to incoming Kindergarten families at Kindergarten Round Up in May and every student (K-4) will also get another collection bag prior to the end of the school year to remind families to continue to trim box tops.
    • Many thanks to the volunteers who have assisted in the sorting, trimming, and grouping of the box tops to prepare them for submission this school year – many hands make light work – and when you think about each box top being worth 10 cents and the total amount the school has earned – that’s a lot of box tops that have been touched by these volunteers.  Look for another reminder in mid-May to bring your box top collections to school! Heather Clark
  • Art Adventure
    • Amy Holter: The Art Adventure Program has been up and running throughout the month of February and will continue into March as all classrooms will visit the Minneapolis Institute of Arts (aka Mia) this month on a field trip.
    • In February, all 17 classrooms viewed 6 poster replications of art pieces from Mia, passed around touch and feel props relating to the art, and were led in discussion by Art Adventure volunteers. This program is designed to foster critical thinking skills, creativity, curiosity, and an appreciation for art. This year’s art theme was called Sources of Strength and can be viewed by following Art Adventure links on Mia’s website.
    • The generous funding for the Art Adventure program from PTA pays for all volunteers to receive training at the museum, rental of the art kit that we use for instruction in the classrooms, and also bussing to and from the museum for Art Adventure themed field trips for every classroom. We are so happy to have had another successful adventure bringing this wonderful program to the students at Horace Mann this year!  Amy Holter
  • Conference Meals
    • Amy Holter: Putting on a meal for teachers and staff during conferences is one of the staples at Horace Mann of showing our appreciation for all the work of our teachers.
    • We will provide meals again during spring conferences this March with a mix of donations from families and local restaurants Shish and Jimmy John’s.. Anyone wishing to contribute can contact Amy Holter to be put on the sign up list.
  • Free Family Fun Nights
    • Alex Kotze:  Bingo Night was a huge success.  Over 160 people came with family, friend, neighbors, and grandparents.  Ms. Kortuem called numbers making it a fun and educational evening.  Laura Vander Wegen organized it all with popcorn and lemonade.  
    • Look for another Fun Family Game Night in April.  If you would like to join in the fun everyone is welcome and if you would like to join in the fun and volunteer on the committee you are always welcome.  Contact Alex Kotze

Attendees: Eric Zakovieh, Amy Holten, Karla Cummins, Allison Litzenberg, Jim Litwin, Amy Koertem, Jill Mack, Nancy Boos, Katie Sexe, Amy Hannigan, Andy Streasiek, Celeste Kopacek, Maya Missaghi, Marian Saksena Hatch, Maya Missaghi, Ellie Pavlis, Anne Pavlis, Meg Adson, Jen Williams, Katie Daigh, Melanie McMahon

Co-President-Nikki Mechelke,  

Co-President -Karla Lauerman Cummins,

Treasurer-Jackie Hippen,

Teacher Representative-Amy Kortuem,

Co-Communications Secretary-Allison Litzenberg,

Co-Communications Secretary-Libby Stanton,

Recording Secretary-Melanie McMahon,

Co-Volunteer Coordinator-Katie Sexe,

Co-Volunteer Coordinator-Tracy Riekenberg,

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