Hillside PTA/SATp Meeting Minutes
March 11, 2022
- Approval of minutes from January 14, 2022 meeting: Amber Reed presented the minutes and they were approved unanimously.
- President’s Report (Yvette Frazier)
- January Trivia Night 1/22
- Talent Show 2/7 – You can still watch the video; wonderful to see the kids perform.
- 2021 – 2022 STEM + Families Science Festival Grant, Sponsored by Bayer Fund – Working with Ms. Bartol to put an activity together for Science Day.
- Double Good Popcorn Fundraiser 2/21-2/25 – Thank you for participating.
- PTA Treasurer’s Report: No report.
- Principal’s Report and Q&A by Dr. Samanthaa Anglin
- Recently sent communication on updated COVID protocols and mitigating measures. There is updated quarantine and isolation guidance on district website and in email.
- Communication to play production families: Parent viewing will be on Wednesday, 3/16 at 1:30pm for parents/caregivers of cast and crew.
- Masks are not required even in large events. We cannot require it but would encourage people to mask up to protect others.
- Found out at PTAC meeting that there may be in-person tours during daytime. Tours will be run by PTAs. Dr. Anglin and Mr. Adamo will speak, but teachers will likely not participate uncompensated.
- Building leaders have requested that Central Office organize and streamline Q&A sessions for 5th graders moving up to middle school.
- 5th grade picnic and moving-up ceremony are in the works. Scheduled for Woodman Field. PTA is working on plans.
- Dr. Anglin has requested more details from B&G on readiness of Room 2 and overtime approval for staff to set up the room.
- Principal’s Q&A
- Q: We did not receive Dr. Anglin’s email to play production families.
A: We will re-send to all families.
- Comment: PTAC will be hosting a Welcome to Middle School event for parents on March 29 at Glenfield School, with representatives from all three middle schools.
- Q: Concern about masks not being required at large events.
A: Dr. Anglin and other building leaders advocated to maintain mask requirement for large events, but it did not ultimately make it into the district guidance.
- Q: Guidance says contact tracing will still be in place. How will we track when kids were unmasked next to other kids?
A: Dr. Anglin asked Nursing Supervisor and Mr. Cooper how we can identify close contacts now that it is impossible to manage and know the groups. Is it anyone in a child’s classes during the day now? They did not have answers at the time. We will keep trying to find answers.
- Comment: Asked Dr. Ponds for guidance on when family members are positive, even if vaccinated.
- Comment from Betty Shvetz on MS event for 5th graders at Hillside: PTA is looking to coordinate student panel for students, with sixth graders from all three middle schools.
Response: It seems like students at every school should have access to the same information, so concern is that these things are not being normed across schools.
- Q: Have you heard back about Beautification Committee’s questions?
A: Things have gotten muddied with referendum – overlap between work of Beautification Committee and turf/new playground that requires bonded money. There was discussion of some things the Beautification Committee could proceed with on their own. Everyone lamented the state of the front lawn.
- Comment: Happy to hear about walkthrough to identify locations of Little Free Libraries. Thank you.
A: There will be two Little Free Libraries on Hillside grounds, one on front lawn and one on St. Luke’s.
- Q: Will 2nd graders from Nishuane be able to visit Hillside this year?
A: Yes, it’s on the calendar in June along with the 2nd grade picnic.
- Q: How’s it going with the new mask policy?
A: Hard to gauge numbers. Feel like she sees about as many people masked as unmasked. Mr. Adamo and Dr. Anglin are still wearing masks so that kids whose parents have instructed them to stay masked don’t feel alone.
- PTA Calendar Review/Event Planning (Betty Schrem Shvetz)
- Fundraising events:
- Commemorative T-Shirts: Will send ordering info soon and should have them in mid-April. Shirts are commemorating return to school.
- Committee updates:
- Fireball: planning in progress, please reach out if you can help.
- 5th grade moving-up celebration: will be a picnic on June 21st during school hours.
- Explorers Volunteer Information session: Yvette is still looking for more Explorers volunteers and there will be an info session soon.
- Cyber Committee meeting next week: Trying to organize cyber information events: cyber bullying, safeguards, etc.
- Bingo night: waiting to see if we can do something in person.
- February Membership raffle – $25 gift card: only one new membership in Dec/Jan. Will do raffle after we have 10 new members. 156 members now, goal is 200.
- Hillside hoodies (currently in stock) will be on sale at the SATp Hillside Skate Date on 3/11.
- BOE/PTAC Updates (Brian Fleischer)
- Good to get into habit of keeping up with district website, especially Board reports page.
- Timeline for budget presentations has shifted later due to shift to Type II budget. Doesn’t look like it will be a year for major cuts, and Governor recently announced increased funding. You can still watch PTAC Budget 101 forums recorded last year.
- PTAC will be hosting forums/info sessions for those new to elementary schools, middle schools, high school.
- Saw list of projects submitted by each school for bond referendum. Focus will be on ventilation and end-of-life systems. District needs to quickly decide which items can be included as well.Referendum will be at least $60m but could go as high as $120-130m depending on how many projects they think they can design and execute.
- PTAC has Board position openings – please contact Amira Williams for information.
- SATp Updates and Overview of Social Justice Committee
General updates (Dee Thompson):
- Skate date tonight.
- Women’s History Month: new Inspiring Woman initiative will invite women of Hillside community to participate in a FlipGrid and talk about a woman who’s inspired your family. Look for info in eBlast later today.
- Double Dutch and Soccer Stuff in spring: two teams of Double Dutch on soccer field, led by parent volunteers.
Social Justice presentation (Jenn DiLullo):
- Trying to get word out about Hillside Social Justice committee. Started in Fall 2020 and is part of SATp. A number of schools in district were setting up equity committees at this time. Connected to PTAC DEI committee. Hillside Social Justice is about creating programming and education around social justice concerns.
- We’ve had two virtual Kwanzaa celebrations, a Lunar New Year celebration, a Spanish heritage fiesta, and an author event during AAPI Heritage Month.
- Trying to create and promote education around social justice. In addition to events, have created lesson plans to support teachers with social justice. Several teachers are involved in committee and Dr. Anglin and Mr. Adamo support this.
- Example: Black Lives Matter Week of Action lesson plans created by parents and distributed to teachers. Other examples shown.
- Student Voices Spring 2022 initiative: opportunity for students to start talking about race and racial equity.
- Most volunteers are 5th grade parents. Need new volunteers who can continue this work next year.
The meeting adjourned at 10:47am.
Hillside PTA December Newsletter is available here.
Dear Hillside Parents/Caregivers:
Tis’ the Season, at no other time during the year is the spirit of giving and sharing more alive in people’s hearts. Remember that the happiest people are not those getting more, but those giving more. I wish you all the very best. Please see below for more information on how you can support our Hillside Care’s Annual Make-A-Wish initiative.
- Mask-Wearing: As you know, all students will be expected to wear masks upon return to in-person learning. Nurse Boyle will be providing classroom lessons on proper mask-wearing protocols. If you would like your child to participate in a 1:1 session with Nurse Boyle to learn about and practice mask-wearing, please reach out to her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can help by giving your children time now to practice mask-wearing for extended periods of time (covering the mouth, nose, and chin and having elastic loops or ties), having a variety of appropriately-sized masks around your home to increase interest in mask-wearing, allowing your child to select a mask that they prefer, talking to your children about the health benefits of wearing masks (click here for the CDC’s explanation), and washing your masks with your children. For more information, you can visit the CDC’s website here.
- Ventilation: As a reminder, Hillside rooms will be ready for students and staff either through mechanical ventilation, air purification, windows being opened and reduced class sizes. We currently have 50 rooms identified as having mechanical ventilation and 13 rooms which now have air purification systems. The CDC recommends that we provide as much fresh air as possible. We will continue to provide you with updates as repairs are made to the ventilation systems.
Cycle 2 CI and Aesthetics Courses:
Please check your child’s Cycle 2 Aesthetic courses on Genesis and look for invitations to the Google Classrooms. Cycle 2 aesthetic courses will begin on Monday. The week of 12/14 will be A-day aesthetics for all students.
Hanukkah, (Hebrew: “Dedication”) also spelled Ḥanukka, Chanukah, or Chanukkah, also called Feast of Dedication, Festival of Lights, or Feast of the Maccabees, Jewish festival that begins on Kislev 25 (in December, according to the Gregorian calendar) and is celebrated for eight days. Hanukkah reaffirms the ideals of Judaism and commemorates in particular the rededication of the Second Temple of Jerusalem by the lighting of candles on each day of the festival. Although not mentioned in the Hebrew Scriptures, Hanukkah came to be widely celebrated and remains one of the most popular Jewish religious observances. For more information: https://urlsand.esvalabs.com/?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.britannica.com%2Ftopic%2FHanukkah&e=58a64f15&h=01f45a4b&f=y&p=n
MFEE Real Talk
Please join us on December 14th at 8pm for an engaging session with Dr. Yolanda Sealey-Ruiz, an award-winning associate professor at Teachers College, Columbia University. Wherever you are in your racial literacy development, treat yourself to an hour with this warm, wise educator who was the co-creator of MFEE’s America to Me: Real Talk Montclair process. Dr. Sealey-Ruiz will lead an interactive session that energizes us to continue the life-long work of racial literacy development.
Racial justice work starts with the internal work of peeling back the layers of our own experiences, beliefs, biases, and ideas that shape our perspectives, thoughts, actions and inaction every day. Racism is deeply embedded in our society, and if we do not think deeply about how it lives
within each of us, we compromise our actions to promote social justice. We risk doing more harm than good.
Register for the free event here: https://bit.ly/mfeeA2Marcheologyofself
The next Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SEPAC) parent/caregiver support meeting will be held on Tuesday, December 15th from 7-8pm. This call is intended for parents and caregivers of students with special needs to exchange information and best practices.
Meeting ID: 852 3101 1212 Passcode: 145921
Hillside Virtual Talent Show: The Movie Edition!
Calling all dancers, signers, actors, comedians, magicians, and performers! Are you ready to film your talent? Mark your calendars! This year’s Talent Show will be held the last week of January. Virtual auditions/Rehearsal will be announced during the first week of January.
For additional information contact:
Zoom Info for PTA/SATp meeting next Friday, 12/18
Topic: PTA/SATp Meeting
Time: Dec 18, 2020 09:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting:
Meeting ID: 854 4007 6741 Passcode: 7iy0eM
Introducing Healing Huddles, starting January 2021 (sign-up by December 6th):
* 1-hour conversations, over a 6-week period, with 5-6 other parents and caregivers
* Parents and caregivers share stories, gain some connection with parents, and learn tools and strategies to manage today’s challenges
* Groups are led by parents trained to provide just-enough structure and support to the conversations (curious about this training? Learn more below)
* Groups can be formed around shared affinities or challenges
In the Huddle:
MFEE is looking for “Conversation Coaches.” As a Coach, you’ll get quick and specific training from Helaina Altabef, parent coach, and Dr. Melissa Robinson-Brown, clinical psychologist. You’ll learn how to create space for fellow parents to build connections, find support, and manage stress. You’ll get tools and resources to share with your Huddle. The time commitment to be a Conversation Coach is two short interactive trainings, and then the 6 weekly one-hour conversations.
Conversation Coaches can be anyone – no special skills needed. Consider asking a friend and coach together. Groups can be formed around shared challenges – like families with special needs children, parents of preschoolers, single parents. As a Conversation Coach, you can create a group that speaks to you as a parent and caregiver. Conversation Coach training starts December 16. Reply by Sunday, December 6, to email@example.com or click here to learn more or sign up.
Two schools…..one trivia game…which school will be crowned the winner?! Team Hillside or Team Nishuane?
Join us on Saturday, December 19 at 5:00 pm and have some family fun playing team trivia on Winter themed trivia! The trivia questions will be geared to our student population (K-5), but we will include some older sibling/parent-focused questions so everyone can have some fun.
Please RSVP for Trivia Night by completing the short form on CheddarUp: https://nishuane-hillside-family-trivia.cheddarup.com
Suggested donation is $5 (any donation is appreciated) but not required to participate – you can go directly to the RSVP form. Proceeds raised from Trivia Night will go towards Hillside‘s 5th grade moving up ceremony activities and Nishuane’s Community Cares committee and the 2nd grade moving up ceremony.
As you are making plans for class parties (virtual for 2020) and collecting money for teacher gifts, please read the information below from the PTA regarding holiday gifting guidelines for homeroom/switch teachers, in-class support teachers, the related arts teachers, and paraprofessionals. This guideline can also be shared with parents in your homerooms.
Every year Hillside families are so generous with classroom gifts, and every year individual classes have questions about how best to disperse the monies to reward everyone who helps to make the school experience so wonderful for our students.
In response to requests to make this process simple and equitable, we’re pleased to present the following gifting guidelines that all classes will used:
- Classroom donations will be pooled between switch classes (if applicable) and then split up at a rate of 80% and 20%.
- 80% Designation – “In Class” Teachers
- If your class only has a homeroom teacher (no switch teacher), the 80% will be for that homeroom teacher.
- If your class has a homeroom and switch teacher (2 teachers = 2-way split) – the 80% will be divided evenly between the homeroom and switch teachers.
- If your class also has an “inclusion teacher” (3 teachers = 3-way split) – the 80% will be divided evenly between the homeroom, switch and inclusion teachers.
- 80% Designation – “In Class” Teachers
- 20% Designation – Paraprofessionals
- Class Liaisons will send the 20% to the PTA via Venmo to (@Colleen-Dougherty-6) labeled “PTA – Para Holiday Fund” and note the Homeroom teacher name as well. Venmo transfers should be completed by Friday, December 18.
The PTA will pool the monies and disperse them equally between all of the paraprofessionals that make our classrooms run so well for all.
- A Second donation will be collected by the PTA to be dispersed to members/teachers of:
- Special Education Resource Room
- Related Arts Teachers
- Curriculum Support Teachers (Literacy Center & Math)
If you’d like to contribute to this second collection, please use the following link to donate: https://hillsidepta.new.memberhub.store/store/items/100922
PTA Memberhub Givebacks!
Introducing a great new fundraiser called Givebacks! You get to save on things you can actually use – and our PTA gets up to 20% back!
Here’s what you need to do:
1. Go to our eStore to shop, save, and support
2. Our PTA automatically gets up to 20% donated back!
3. We’ll be adding new Givebacks about every week from brands you know and love, plus some new finds to discover.
This is the perfect way to jump start your holiday shopping! It’s that Simple – CLICK – SAVE – SUPPORT. Don’t forget to share your purchases on social media! The more you share, the more funds we raise.
P.S. If YOU own a business and you’re interested in doing a Givebacks to benefit our school, please let us know! We want to include your business.
Hillside Care’s Annual Make-A-Wish NOW through December 18th ONLY!
Many wishes are already taken, but there are still many more to go! If you haven’t already, please consider participating in
Hillside Cares Make-A-Wish. This annual Hillside tradition is made possible by your generous support. Let’s make wishes come true!
Follow the link below to the Make-A-Wish Sign Up Genius for instructions on how to select one or multiple items and donate:
Items must be returned to Ms. Best at the Child Study, Pre-K Door, Room 21 no later than Friday, Dec. 18th. Monetary donations are also welcome. Please donate here: Memberhub . Or, checks can be dropped off to Ms. Best or Ms. Mazur (Door K) at Hillside. Please make checks payable to “Hillside PTA” with “Make-A-Wish” in the memo and place in an envelope marked “Make-A Wish”. Volunteers will use this money to purchase items that were not taken on the Sign-up Genius site.
Have questions or want to volunteer to help sort and organize gifts? Please contact: Zoe La Salandra at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Holiday Knitting (or Crochet) for Make-A-Wish
Each year as part of Make-A-Wish, we ask those of you who knit and/or crochet in our community to put your talents toward a good cause and make warm hats for our Hillside/Nishuane students! It’s that time of year again!
Our local yarn store, Yarnia (127 Watchung), is collecting hat donations now through December 18th!
A message from Ms. Scott:
Here are a few strategies for managing the stress and/or sadness you may feel in the coming weeks. Healthy Coping Strategies Remember- make a plan and be purposeful about protecting your and your family’s mental health this season.
If you feel your child is experiencing a social-emotional challenge and would benefit from counseling services, please do not hesitate to reach out. Need to See Ms. Scott Form. It is important that we continue to teach our children how to advocate for themselves and seek help when they need it. Therefore, a form is also available for students to complete in my Google classroom. Here is the link in case you would like to share it with your child(ren). STUDENT- Need to See Ms. Scott Form
Here is the link and code for my Google classroom for anyone who would like to join.Ms. Scott’s Google Classroom. The class code is y5znwsx. There are daily affirmations, mind moments, and meditation activities to help calm some of the angst the children may be experiencing at this time. Signing up for the daily summary email will allow parents to experience some of these activities too. 🙂 Have a wonderful weekend! ~Ms. Scott
Notes from Nurse Boyle:
Hello Hillside Families and Friends,
I hope everyone is doing well! Please remind your children to log into my google classroom at zitgw4b. I asked them another question this week about this cold weather.Anyone that is celebrating Hanukkah this week I wish you a peaceful celebration! NJ Hope and Healing along with The Mental Health Group of NJ are offering free after school chat and craft groups for students in Essex and Morris county. The group meets on Wednesdays for children ages seven to 12 years of age. The group starts at 3:30pm and ends at 4:15pm. If you are interested please reach out to email@example.com or call 973-509-9777 ext 151.Have a wonderful weekend! ~Nurse Boyle
Happy Hanukkah!: 12/10-12/18
Thursday 12/17/20: Early Dismissal/Curriculum Thursday, classes end at 2:06PM
Friday 12/18: 930AM PTA/SATp Meeting
Saturday 12/19: Trivia Night 5pm
Wednesday 12/23: Early Dismissal/Winter Break, classes end at 2:06PM
Thursday 12/24- Monday 1/3: School Closed/Winter Break!!!
Samanthaa Lennon Anglin, Ed.D.
Hillside Elementary School ~ Gifted and Talented Magnet
54 Orange Rd., Montclair, NJ
Phone: (973) 509-4200
Fax: (973) 509-1448
Follow us on Twitter: @Hillside_MPS
Hillside Elementary PTA Meeting
September 25, 2020, 9:30 a.m.
Welcome and Introductions:
- Brian called the meeting to order at 9:35 a.m. and welcomed new families to our school community
- Brian provided an overview of the PTA mission, vision, and commitment to equity
- PTA Board members did a round of introductions
- Participants unanimously approved June 2020 PTA meeting minutes
- Dr. Anglin and Mr. Adamo welcomed participants and introduced themselves, sharing what’s special about the Hillside gifted and talented magnet
- Dr. Anglin acknowledged that Back to School Night was different this year and the energy of coming together in the auditorium was sorely missed
- Even though this year looks and feels very different, feedback from families about remote learning has been positive and supportive so far
- Teachers / admin are working to find the right balance between asynchronous and synchronous instruction
- Working closely with Nishuane to make sure communications feel streamlined and connected
- 100% of classrooms have been cleaned and sterilized. Reviewed square footage to determine how many people can fit in spaces in accordance with CDC guidelines. Removed unnecessary furniture to storage areas to maximize space.
- Adding directional tape on the floors throughout the building to help everyone visualize 6 ft.
- Ventilation continues to be a focus, no update on status yet but the district is working on it
- Curriculum Night will take place on 10/15, following the PTA meeting at 6:30. Will be sending a 2-3 question survey to families to solicit questions and areas on which we should focus.
- Reviewed calendar of activities
- Considering a virtual Halloween, family night, talent show, and book fair
- Winter Showcase will perform on 1 day only. Thinking through the logistics.
- No Explorers programming this Fall. The team will offer Winter classes if there’s interest
- Missing Class Liaisons for 4 classes; working with teachers to recruit. Planning CL intro session.
- Reviewed the overall budget and PTA cash position
- We will fundraise as specific needs arise
- There was an ask to renew PTA memberships
- SATp shared a committee overview, including its charter and 6 areas of focus
- Social justice is a hot topic this year
- We want to make every event is accessible and welcoming
- Anyone interested in joining SATp should reach out to Yvette
- Erica confirmed that Mendi Obadike will be a co-chair this year
PTA Council Update:
- Brian gave an overview of the work of the PTA Council
- There are ample opportunities for families to get involved at the district level (communications, finance, facilities, curriculum, special ed, tech, policy, etc.).
- Some current areas of focus are forming a parent organization at the high school, school start times, screen overload, outdoor learning.
- Still on track to launch on Nov. 1 hybrid model
Questions & Answers:
- Dr. Anglin confirmed that we can and should have drop boxes at Hillside for coat drives, etc.
- There was a question about the district equity department. Dr. Anglin confirmed that this department is alive and active and any open discussion is about the structure of one advisory role. Whatever we do at Hillside will be in lock step with the district. We want to develop strong and lasting goals and objectives.
- We are looking for someone to be part of the SEPAC. Attendees congratulated Allison Silverstein, former SEPAC representative, on her Board of Ed appointment.
- The Tech Awareness group expressed concern on where to focus this year. Dr. Anglin will work with the group to evaluate the right approach. Another suggestion was to leverage resources in Parent University.
- Question on how to help kids who are struggling from the lack of connection. Brian is connecting parents through Facebook. On Sept. 30 we’ll have a way to share parent lists and updates.
- Betty Shvetz
- Brian Fleischer
- Tinu Joseph
- Allison Silverstein
- Arway Boker
- Bonnie Hendrix
- Christina Gillham
- Colleen Dougherty
- Dana Rizzo
- Danielle Greenberg
- Deidre Birmingham
- Diane Noepel Tehranian
- Erica Clark-Mitchell
- Erica Ajayi
- Gina Fortt
- Jennifer Di Lullo
- Jennifer Hand
- Jennifer Herman
- Joby Abragan
- Jodi Holmes
- John Laing
- Leslie Houseworth-Fields
- Linda Kow
- Marlaina Powell
- Mendi Obadike
- Leah Wolchok
- Paul Glader
- Roger Mosier
- Samanthaa Anglin
- Sheila Boyd
- Sonsaray Owens
- Suresh Hathiramani
- Thomas Adamo
- Trish Miller
- Varsha Hathiramani
- Vicki Lockhardt
- Justin Taylor
- Yvette Frazier