PTA Minutes

Note:  PTA Minutes are draft only until approved at the next PTA meeting.


Harvest Collegiate High School
PTA Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, April 4th, 2017
5:30pm – 7:00pm

The meeting began at 5:40pm.

  1. The PTA voted to waive the reading of the minutes.
  2. The PTA voted to approve two bus trips for junior students to visit colleges, one visit to New Paltz and another to Princeton & Stevens ($1675 and $1045 respectively).
  3. SLT Report:
    1. The GSX (Gay-Straight Alliance) sponsored a lunch, the LGBT+ Solidarity Forum, yesterday (with break-out discussion sessions) went well, and many students stayed.
    2. SLT discussed the Comprehensive Education Plan, particularly, school leadership (the direction of the school): there is a need for more administrative/leadership help. A plan is developing to have teachers take over some of the responsibilities that might more traditionally fall to an Assistant Principal.
    3. The recent bake sale raised roughly $500. Also, we have an active fundraising drive, and a few hundred dollars have come in. On Monday, the PTA donated $160 in food for the GSX (Gay-Straight Alliance)-sponsored event. We also donated to the Solidarity Forum for Immigrant and Muslim Students.
    4. After many years, we are now, officially, a 5019(c)3.
  4. Principal’s Report:
    1. College: Students are being accepted by many impressive colleges, many by their first-choice: Brandeis, Cornell U, FIT, Oberlin, Goucher, and many SUNYs and CUNYs.
    2. Special Events: LGBT+ Solidarity Forum; Holocaust survivor speaker; part-time filmmaking teacher (Esther de Rothschild), who is also a professional filmmaker, offered a special screening for students (featuring Harvest students); on Friday, Barbara (our co-secretary and a textile designer, along with a Parsons professor and one of her current students)kicked off the Career Luncheon Series; also on Friday, the school hosted a Coffee House event. Upper house students once again have morning meeting together in the main room.
    3. Capstones and Gateways: Kate presented examples of Capstone and Gateway assignments (and student work) in the social sciences. She offered to share work and assignments done in other disciplines. Parents were invited to look over the materials and bring questions/comments to the next meeting.
    4. Drug Prevention: Kate informed the PTA of a recent increase in problems at the school relating to student drug addiction and abuse. The school has been working with affected families.
  5. Courtney Okeke, an Adolescent Health Educator with Be Better Brooklyn, gave a presentation about a new, free, five-week“OASAS- (Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services) approved alcohol and substance use prevention program,”called Refuse, Remove, Reasons (RRR), which takes place during school for upper-house students. Students attend, once-per-week, for five weeks, during PE. Students can choose between this program and a leadership course.

The meeting ended at 6:59pm.

Respectfully submitted by Todd Barnes, PTA Co-Secretary


Harvest Collegiate High School
PTA Meeting Minutes
Wednesday, March 8th, 2017
5:30pm – 7:00pm

The meeting began at 5:30

  1. Minutes were approved.
  2. Voting item: The PTA approved a $100 honorarium for a Broadway actor (Les Miserables, which the students are reading), doing work at the school in David Sherrin’s class.
  3. Voting item: The PTA approvedtwo $50 stipends for two alums to attend the trip to visit SUNY New Paltz ($100 total).
  4. Susan Avery and Tara Williams then took over to host Harvest’s College Meeting for Families. Parents were given a presentation, a packet of information, and answers to their questions about the college application process.
  5. Kate’s Principal’s Report:
    1. Class of 2021 was admitted today, a very diverse class, speaking many languages. b. International Women’s Day:Students, faculty, staff organized activities during lunch today around International Women’s Day.
    2. Kate spoke about colleges becoming more competitive. She reminded us that the core skills and habits of mind emphasized at Harvest—reading, extra-curricular activities, taking care of their well being—are preparation for college and life in general.

The meeting ended at 7:00pm.

Minutes respectfully submitted by Todd Barnes, PTA Co-Secretary


Harvest Collegiate High School
PTA Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, February 7th, 2017
5:30pm – 7:00pm

PTA meeting commenced at 5:55pm. Joan Brothers welcomed everybody present and waived review of January’s minutes; they were approved, seconded and passed unanimously.

    1. 501c3 Update: Joan reported that Alex had filed a 2 page short form 2 weeks ago that should be processed within 2 months (the long form is 23 pages long and takes 18-24 months to process). The short form self-certified status only allows for up to $50,000 annual funding but the aim is to get the short form for now and also apply for a long form for future. Due diligence has to be reviewed with the previous filing and during the first week of March a meeting will take place to review documents and confirm they were filed correctly, or see if additional information is required. There are issues of liability if filing is incorrect, including a possible audit. The budget runs a calendar year, and the disadvantage of a short form (which is valid for 3 years) is that with a cap of $50,000 there may be opportunities missed to receive a bigger outside donation. However, if more funds are offered, a request to the IRS can expedite the process so that they can be accepted. The PTA budget is not the responsibility of the principal and government stipulation does not allow a PTA member to receive any payment other than reimbursement for legitimate expenses.
    2. Fundraising: it was suggested that an e-blast be sent to families to request that they or their extended family and friends donate through the website (the school has no official request for annual dues). The number of donors is more important than the amount of money, as it indicates how much participation families exercise in the school community. Another suggestion was to request that people pay for certificates that would cover a specific item, for example “$X = 1 hour of internal tutoring” etc.
    3. Event that requires funding: Kate cited a number of academically adept juniors and would like to organize an overnight college trip tour of 4-5 schools around April 11/12th (during Spring break) for 20 students whose GPA would be a factor in selection. It will cost approximately $7,000 in total cost, but the PTA will need to contribute funds.
    4. Alternate funding to the school can be made outside of the PTA in 2 ways, if funneled through the DOE, and allocated specifically to the school, they receive 100% of the money. Alternatively, the Fund for Public Schools is a non-profit organization that can receive funds supporting public schools (either in general or a specific school) but they take a 7% administrative fee that ironically causes more paperwork on the part of the school.
    5. A meeting with Susan and Tara, school college counsellors, for “Collegiate Futures” is slated for March 8thand was requested as a separate meeting to the PTA, but it was decided that to avoid meeting overload on families, it would be incorporated and be the theme of the PTA meeting with extra time allocated. Also it was decided that  each month a specific topic pertinent to HCHS be featured to attract more participation and a wider audience at PTA meetings. Kate suggested that the topic for the April meeting be Gateways and Capstoneswith a reading of discussion on understanding expectations with rubrics to families, and also habits of mind.
    6. Parent representatives have not yet been able to contact families as Margie has not yet received enough confirmations for sharing contact info, but their help would be good in advocating for donations and getting better attendance at community building and fund raising events.
    7. Elena discussed a fundraising opportunity called Groupraise (https://www.groupraise.com which is a website that lists many affordable restaurants in Manhattan that participate; the school gets 15% of any bill, and it was suggested that maybe even a group of parents might want to book a table together to raise money and also socialize. Chris would like to organize a “Dad’s Dinner” (a gender-focused gathering in a social setting) because traditionally mothers tend to be more involved in school activities.
    8. Event to fund raise; Wine and Cheese Party, which is a social event but the hope is that it could also be a vehicle for fund raising with a donation or ticket cost, and maybe also a silent auction. Venue is yet to be advised as an affordable option needs to be researched, but it will take place in April.
    9. Principal’s Report: Kate announcedmore exciting news regarding the school:
      1. Juniors took the English Regents and 92% of 11th graders are qualified as college ready.
      2. Quality Review: took place on February 2nd and 3rd and involved students, staff and parents, and the school scored the highest possible score.  It was described as having a joyous school culture where students felt safe, there is mutual trust between students and teachers, there is a high rate of diversity and habits of heart and mind and meaningful acts are engaged. It also had the highest resource allocation and a rigorous curriculum where the humanities team was described as “knocking it out of the park”, and had the highest score on collegiate expectations. (Most students have the luxury of not having to count credits as 44 are required, but most HCHS students have over 60 by the time they graduate). Minor areas for improvement were in math and science where until now the lesson plan was not the focus, and there is a need to use more text books. All AP courses have some IEP students and the school is on track to meet the goals of seniors expected to graduate
      3. Student Protest March against Immigration Policy. Many students marched and although not officially sanctioned by the DOE and noted as an absence from school, the idea of advocacy and standing up for beliefs is encouraged and Kate contacted parents of students for permission to participate. There will be a Celebration of Muslims and Immigrants (commitment to diversity and peace)   in school on Monday February 13th at 12:45 involving a Potluck; parents are welcome to attend and the PTA called a vote (approved) for a budget of $200 towards refreshments.

Upcoming important dates:

        1. 2/20-24 school closed for Midwinter Recess
        2. 3/8 PTA meeting featuring Collegiate futures for Families

Adjournment was at 6:55pm


Harvest Collegiate High School
PTA Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, January 10th, 2017
5:30pm – 7:00pm

5:30-6:00pm Parents were invited to view Museum Night (Social Studies Gateway exhibitions)

The official PTA meeting commenced at 5:58pm. Joan Brothers welcomed everybody present and waived review of December’s minutes; they were approved, seconded and passed unanimously.

A vote was called to approve an honorarium (about $100 for a gift) for a Broadway actress who visited the school and talked to students.

      1. SLT Report: Ron reported; right now the subject is budget and CEP, and each month one goal out of 6 will be discussed. This month the schools supportive environment was addressed and with feedback from the SLT, some changes were proposed. Also the current status of Gateways  and Capstones, streamlining student assessments and teacher evaluations. The senior trip was also discussed; a day trip to a dude ranch in upstate New York was proposed, and logistics from actual date to possible financial help need to be appraised. It was also suggested that monetary gifts, funded by the PTA, be distributed to students at graduation for outstanding achievements. The 501c3 process is taking longer than anticipated and there was a 1/13/17 deadline; possibly a financial incentive could be given to get a volunteer to help push this through; a lawyer is not necessary, but the work involved is onerous. The 501c3 status has been discussed since the inception of the school and would help the school get much-needed donations and corporate matching funds. Also a fundraising team needs to be formed with a volunteer to head it so the PTA can organize future events, either for fundraising or community-building (or both); thus far events have not been planned very far ahead and request for help has been ad hoc and sent out prior to each occasion.
      2. Principal’s Report: Kate cited a few encouraging items regarding the school:
        1.  Museum Night; students did deep research and wrote 5 page papers on a revolution (French, Haitian or Iranian). This invited authentic conversation and was accompanied by original artwork by students.
        2. Math Round Table; Chris and other parents have organized this for 10th grade students to present their projects to peers, staff and parents and invite challenging questions  that can be discussed as a group.
        3. First HCHS Alumni Day was a huge success: over 40 alumni from as far away as University of Hawaii ( plus Swarthmore, Columbia, Perdue and many SUNY and CUNY schools) came to give feedback on how their high school experience had led them to be very well-prepared, especially in Humanities. In Science and Math they felt less prepared, so Kate feels that the school may need to offer more text book teaching and not be so experiential in approach. Alumni felt that they had the necessary time management skills, that their interpersonal exchanges with professors were easier because they already addressed their high school teachers by first name, they had a good grounding in critical-thinking and that essays were easy because of all the preparation they already had. The students who moved away from home seemed to generally happier than those who stayed in New York (possibly living at home for budgetary reasons) but most seemed very happy with their colleges. One shock for them though was that they felt in general that in college “nobody cared” because they had had, and were accustomed to, such a nurturing environment at HCHS.
        4. Intensives: started this Thursday 1/12 and will continue for 6 full days through the following week (Monday is Martin Luther King Day).  Families should have been given packets that include permission slips where relevant. Parents are invited to see exhibitions on January 23rd at 11:00am. January 24-27 are Capstone and Gateway presentations.
        5. Due to the success of Alumni Day, it was suggested to collect all alumni info and start a Google Group; this could be useful in 5-10 years. Kate said that alumni are allowed to retain HCHS e-mail addresses and encouraged to forward any message onto their new e-mail addresses. There is already an alumni Facebook page established.
        6. 32 current seniors have already been given early decision placements into colleges that include Oberlin, Clark, Emerson, Hofstra, Vermont, Goucher New Paltz and Westbury. Students do not need to have completed all Capstones for acceptance into colleges, but do need to finish them in order to graduate.
        7. Million Woman March January 21; Adam and Sally have organized a trip for about 20 students to take a roundtrip bus to DC costing about $40. There will also be a rally in NYC near Trump Tower on the same day.
      1. Upcoming important dates:
        1. 1/16 Martin Luther King Day; school closed
        2. 1/12-20 Winter Intensives
        3. 1/23 @ 11:00am Intensives exhibitions; parents invited to attend
        4. 1/23 Lower House End-Term Ceremony; students only
        5. 1/24-1/27 Capstone and Gateway presentations
        6. 1/30 Chancellor’s Day; school closed to students
        7. 2/27 next PTA meeting.

Adjournment was at 6:55pm


Harvest Collegiate High School
PTA Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, December 6th, 2016
5:30pm – 7:00pm

Meeting commenced at 5:40pm. Joan Brothers and Elena Gonzalez welcomed everybody present and waived review of October’s minutes for the sake of expediency.

          1. Election s were held for co-vice president, co- secretary and co-treasurer. New members were elected; co vice-president Chris Hayes , co-secretary Barbara Lakin and co-treasurer Manju Chatterjee. In addition, class/grade representatives volunteered; 9th grade Barbara Lakinand Martin Fleisher , 10th grade Bryn Bowenand 12th grade Ina Pannell- St. Surin. Several parents including Vanessa Palmer, Bryn Bowen and Gloria Arrigada, volunteered to be members-at-large to help with school events, etc.
          2. Treasurer’s report; nothing has changed much since last month, with an account balance of around $6,000. However there are some upcoming expenses such as pizza for the Potluck dinner, the Teacher Appreciation  Breakfast  etc. Although Kate managed to achieve promised funding of an extra $50,000 for next year, many expenses need to be covered; $90,000 for after school activities, $7,000 for the graduation venue and upper  house college visits. Fundraising ideas were discussed, from suggesting year-end donations to the PTA using Paypal (we cannot get matching grants from employers yet as we still do not have 501c3 certification, which most businesses need for tax purposes, but we are in the final process of getting this completed). However, a letter will be written to parents and families and e-mailed, and also distributed at the Potluck dinner, and families will be encouraged to also pass this on to extended family and friends.
          3. Principal’s Report:
            1. Kate discussed expenses and also community-building events from and ice skating trip at Bryant Park on Monday December 19th (leaving school at 1:15pm), Winter Solstice and Pot Luck Dinner (with musical presentation), and a Peace Sing morning meeting on December 23rd where students will have a sing along and be offered hot chocolate to drink.
            2. Kate had many wonderful things to share, from students working on rigorous projects, discussing literature, challenging math and helping each other to learn. There has been a Restorative Justice training to repair the recent troubling events in the lower house community, and extra-curricular activities are at a 64% participation, although ideally it should be 85% or more, with 30 clubs and tutoring available.
            3. HCHS has had 3 very complimentary reports on the school; a November 14th article  by Michael Mulgrew, president of The United Federation of Teachers about HCHS and how diversity drives excellence, one in NY Metro last week and an upcoming one in Chalk Beat, for which 2-3 hour interviews were conducted. Attendance for the 2 Open Houses was around 2,300 and 16 middle schools conducted tours of the school. The school is becoming a model for diversity in a city that has extremely segregated school districts.
            4. Progress Reports will be sent out next week; this is the final grade that will not appear on the transcript, so if grades are not up to standard, this is the time to buckle up, especially since this is a short term ending January 31st. Winter Intensives start in January with a large choice of 7 days of learning in one specific area; choices are to be submitted by Friday December 9th and on the final day, each group will do a presentation (around 11:30am on Monday January 23rd).
            5. Kate requested a vote on a calendar change; Tuesday January 3rd is the first day back to school after the midwinter recess, so she wanted to ask if they could apply a Monday schedule (with early dismissal at around 11:45am) to allow for staff development. Votes were cast and approval was unanimous.
          4. SLT Report:    Elena and Kate discussed the topics that included the use of electronic devices in school; officially there is an “off and away” policy in school, but some students use their cell phones between classes and also have to use them to complete certain studies, so a hardline crackdown is not implemented as it could cause conflict. The school will be receiving additional resources by having a DOE SAPIS (Substance Abuse and Prevention Specialist worker (most likely a licensed social worker)  to help with safety and drug/alcohol abuse, which is more of a problem in the Upper House but will also be offered to Lower House as a cautionary guide.                                                                                                                                                  The library will be open at lunchtime with a faculty member present and it is used by all students, especially upper house college and Capstone applications.                                                                                                                                                                The Comprehensive Educational Plan (CEP), implemented by the DOE, will comprise of a 50 page document that measures assessments, goals and action  plan, rigorousness of instruction and strong family-school communities; it is a framework for the school to work upon, and is a compact between faculty, students and guardians.
          5. A parent brought up the issue of an Instagram account that was set up just before Thanksgiving, called “Harvest Exposed” and he was concerned about cyber bullying within the school. Kate responded that the account was quickly shut down and was not discussed with the general student body as this would possibly inflame the situation further.
          6. Upcoming important dates
            1. 12/21 Midwinter Solstice Potluck Dinner 5:30-7:15pm including musical performance.
            2. 12/23 –Last day of school 2016
          • Adjournment was at 7:15pm.

 PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, September 20, 2016
5:30-7:00 PM

The meeting began at 5:35pm.  The two PTA chairs Joan Brothers and Elena Gonzalez introduced themselves and started the meeting.The minutes of June 2016 were approved.

Principal’s Report

          1. Students should be participating in extracurricular activities, either Harvest activities or other activities.
          2. There was a fight outside of school involving a Harvest student.  The school will be addressing the issue in discussions with all students.
          3. Shirlene Blake has been named state dance teacher of the year.

Treasurer’s Report

The June end of year balance sheet was handed out at the meeting.  More budget details will be discussed at the next meeting

College Counselors

The college Counselors Tara Williams (tara@harvestcollegiate.org) and Susan Avery (Susan@harvestcollegiate.org) were invited to the meeting and told parents about the college process at Harvest.

          1. In Lower House (9th and 10th grade) the college process is discussed in Advisory class.
          2. In Upper House (11th and 12th grade) the college counselors meet students in Advisory class and individual meeting.
          3. For financial aid the counselors help parents prepare FASA forms (federal financial aid form) and families can look for individual scholarships on FastWeb.com.
          4. There is a College Intensive option in January
          5. Starting in 9th grade students visit at least one college a year
          6. Tara and Susan have reached out to colleges sending out 500 letters with a profile of Harvest and followed up with emails.  As a result a number of schools are visiting Harvest such as FIT, Perdue, Swarthmore, Oberlin, and SUNY Purchase.
          7. The school has a SAT math prep class.
          8. About 70% of Harvest students apply to 4 year colleges.  For SUNY schools students need a B average or better so this is important for students to know early in high school.

SLT Election

          1. Two new parent representatives were elected to the SLT Maura Bairley and Catherine Jacobs
          1. The first SLT meeting will be on Tuesday, September 27 from 4:30-5:30pm

The meeting ended at 7:00pm.


PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, June 7, 2016
5:30-7:00 PM

1. The group voted to approve the minutes of the 5/10 meeting.

2. Election: The group voted to approve the panel of candidates for executive
offices: President (Elena and Joan); Vice President (Robin); Treasurer (Tamara); and Secretary (Todd).

3. SLT Election: Danielle, Mark, and Ron ran for SLT. Danielle and Ron were elected (in a very close election) to serve next year. Two more at-large members will be elected in the fall (to allow first-year student parents to join).

4. Principal’s Report: Kate urged parents to look at the “Enhanced learning” section on the website lists an amazing host of college acceptances (98% going to college; ~60% of those going will go to 4-year colleges and ~40% will go to 2-year colleges).

Link: http://harvestcollegiate.org/college-acceptances-2015-2016/

Kate reported on capstone progress. The faculty has decided to create a process like the “capstones” for teachers; they have set goals and will participate on the City-wide Chancellor’s Day. Faculty transitions: Two faculty members are moving on (Beth Krone will go to Ohio to pursue a PhD in English literature; Pam Hallson is moving home to Wisconsin); Lucas Johnson will be our new English teacher (graduate of Brooklyn Tech; Brown University) with interests in Afrofuturism, magical realism, and popular culture; we have two strong candidates for the science position. Our college counselors will continue to provide services (both full time). Armand, who teaches French, ASL, and ELL, will be joining Harvest full-time. We will also continue working with Brittany, a part-time counselor, who inaugurated BASE (Brother and Sister support) and will be taking over our internship program. We had a nice event for upper-house students, called Chocolates and Choosing, where students worked toward thinking about their majors. Kate presented information about how College Now and AP courses have better prepared students for work in college. Course selection will be on June 28th. Kate passed around a form, though which students (for rising 11th and 12th graders) can register their interest in College Now (a partnership with Hunter College). Kate announced next year’s (potential) AP courses: AP history; AP macroeconomics; perhaps AP science; AP environmental biology; AP English; there will be a College Now statistics course at Harvest for advanced students in statistics; the school is considering AP calculus; perhaps AP computer science. On Tuesday June 21st there will be another college preparation workshop for parents. This session will include information about financial aid.
5. Treasurer’s Report:
a. Alex will meet with the examiner next week to finalize our 501(c)3 status.
b. See the attached chart for a funding update.
c. The group discussed the Wine and Cheese event (publicity).
d. 1) Kate suggested that we host an informal welcome event early in September next year (perhaps at a park).
2) Kate discussed the rising costs of cap, gown, yearbook, prom, photos, and the senior luncheon. The school ends up without discretionary funds to help individual students who cannot afford these costs. Kate asked the group if they would be willing to contribute in this capacity.
e. The group made a motion to allocate $1000 to the school for “senior activities.” The school can allocate this money based on individuals’ needs. The motion passed. An additional motion decided that the PTA executive committee has the authorization to add an additional $500 if needed.
f. The group made a motion to approve our estimated budget. The motion passed.

6. SLT Report:

Ron reported: the group discussed security issues (security of lockers, bags,
phones/electronics, etc.); the group discussed course selection options for
students with IEPs (24% of students have IEPs); the group discussed
extending opportunities in sports and athletics (SSAL vs PSAL; Harvest
students will be competing in the PSAL championship this Saturday); the
group discussed upkeep of facilities—there is a new facilities group which
will make maintenance more efficient; the group discussed a grant to expand
outreach for admissions. Dr. D discussed restorative justice.

The meeting was adjourned at 7pm.

Submitted by Todd Barnes, PTA Secretary


PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, May 10, 2016
5:30-7:00 PM

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

The meeting began at 6:00pm and was adjourned at 6:45pm.

1. Minutes: Vote to approve April 2016 minutes: the minutes were approved.

2. Elections: Nominations for Co-president, Co-Vice President, Co-Secretary, and Co-Treasurer for election in June: We have two people nominated for Co-President (Joan and Elena); one nomination for treasurer (Tamara); one nominations for Secretary (Todd), and one nominations for Vice President (Robin)

3. SLT Report: Kate announced recent awards. Harvest was one of six schools nominated as a Model in Mastery of Learning school. The school also won the UFT excellence in education award. Mock elections were held here over the last few weeks (Trump and Sanders won in both upper and lower house). The Coffee House Night was a great success. There will be elections for two spots on the SLT committee at the June meeting. The group discussed the budget of the college office—there are two staff members, one of whom, this year, ran out of hours. The group discussed how to deal with this next year. Senior parents will be surveyed about their satisfaction with the college application process. Graduation was discussed (100 capstones are still not complete; 98% of students have enough credits to graduate). Lower house is having a glow party, complete with a rap battle, an Xbox battle, a Yu-Gi-Oh! battle, music, and more.

4. President’s Report: Teacher Appreciation Day was a success. The PTA Board approved giving money ($885) to pay for the bus for juniors to make college visits. The PTA (retroactively) approved this expenditure. Pam expressed that she was very impressed by our school’s college counselors.

5. Wine and Cheese: The group discussed the date of the venue Paula’s suggested (a photo studio in Chelsea) for our Wine and Cheese Event. The venue is $600, and we’re estimating that 60 people will attend. The group discussed how much to charge each person attending (teachers get in for free)—either $20 or $25, or $20 in advance or $25 at the door. The group decided on June 9th. Pam will check this date with Kate. She will also discuss the time of the event.

6. Remind: Margarita Rodriguez spoke to the group about “Remind,” a texting
service for school announcements. This is a program for parents and students. Students, for example, can request texts to wake them up for school. Parents can request texts to track attendance. PTA meeting announcements are also possible.


PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, April 5, 2016
5:30-7:00 PM

Meeting began at 5:45 pm.
Announcements
–Teacher Appreciation Day is Tuesday, May 3. The PTA will again buy bagels this year and parents will be asked to contribute baked or store-bought items
–Two student films created for the January intensive will be at the Tribeca Film Festival
–Harvest won a UFT (United Federation of Teachers) Team High School Award
–Junior students will have the opportunity to visit high schools on April 21 and April 22 if they do not have capstone presentations. The schools are Drew University or SUNY Sullivan Community College on Thursday and Wesleyan or SUNY Farmingdale on Friday

College Presentation by Harvest college advisors Susan and Tara
–Senior college acceptances are listed on the bulletin board outside the college office
–Seniors talked to juniors about their college application experience
–By the numbers:
Our college counselors completed 215 recommendations, 112 calls to colleges, FASA (financial aid application), college board
Good Debt vs Bad Debt
The counselors talk to seniors about Good debt vs Bad debt for college. It is important not to have too much debt but it may be necessary to borrow some to get a college education
–SAT
Students taking the SAT need to prep. Although there are some SAT optional schools, that will limit student’s choice of schools.
Hudson Guild has free and low cost tutoring
Harvest has a free SAT review program for juniors on Monday afternoons
Fee waivers are available for SAT reading and math
— What are Colleges Considering?
In order of importance:
1.GPA in College prep classes
2. Overall GPA
3. SATs (most 2 year colleges do not require SATs
4. Recommendations, Personal Statement, Essays, Extracurriculars
— Community College
2 year colleges can be a great place to start and then transfer to a 4 year college.

The meeting ended at 7 pm.


 

PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, March 1, 2016
5:30-7:00 PM

Meeting began at 5:45 pm.

1 The group voted on the election of a new co-president and Joan Brothers was elected.
Two parents running unopposed were elected to open spots on the PTA Executive Board as Members-at-Large–Manjulika Chatterjee-Bowen and Elena Gonzalez. There are still open positions available for members at large as there can be up to 8.

2 The SLT discussed:
– a first dance for the lower house
– the seniors’ graduation that will take place at the Academy of Medicine
– ongoing work on curriculum.

3 Margarita Rodriguez introduced herself as the new Parent Coordinator. She has 7 years of experience at a public school in Brooklyn and is excited to Join Harvest Collegiate. She can be reached at Margie@harvestcollegiate.org

4 Ekene ( goes by E) introduced herself as the new theater teacher. She is trying to bring guest artists, choreographers or costumes designers to talk to the students. The Parent Association voted and approved to provide up to $200 for an honorarium for a workshop at school for the Drama Club and other interested students.

5 The group discussed the choice of names for the 501 (c)3. The result is: Friends of Harvest Learning Incorporated. Alex Hartnett will be putting in the paperwork for the 501(c)3. We hope to have it in place by the beginning of next school year.

6 The location for a wine and cheese party in May was discussed again. Ideally we need a free or cheap space and any suggestion is welcome.

7 The principal informed us that the visit of the school by the Superintendent went well. She also told us that the college advisory for juniors is now starting intensively.

The meeting ended at 7 pm.
Submitted by Paula Moureaux-Nery, PTA co-secretary.


 

PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, February 9, 2016
5:30-7:00 PM

Meeting began at 5:45.
1. The minutes from the previous meeting were approved.

2. The group discussed the election of a new co-president. This will be an expedited election. This was announced, also, at the last meeting. Nominations can be made via email. At the last executive meeting, fundraising was discussed. Should the PTA do another wine and cheese event like last time, or would the group like to do a Barnes and Noble event? The group discussed getting 501(c)3 status.

3. Principal’s Update (Kate):

a. The winter intensives were wildly successful. She reported on various intensives: Master Chef, Filmmaking club, Pi Performance, DIY club, Stairway to Harvest, Art Museum travel to Philadelphia, college immersion at Swarthmore, “Awake” (which combines philosophy and physical education), “Urban Male” (which looks at African-American and Latino masculinity, social justice and institutionalized racism), Band Camp, Model UN at Yale, “War in Syria” (with a Model UN simulation), Capstone Intensives, and more. She discussed the murals and affirmations painted in the stairwell.

b. The culture and humanity of the school is developing well. Academically we are doing well. There are yet some challenges. The students did well on the English Regents. Of all 11th and 12th, 60% have met the CUNY college readiness standard; 23% passed the standard to graduate, but haven’t yet made the CUNY standard. Of seniors, all but 4 students have passed. 161 students are in AP courses; 18 in fall and 18 in spring enrolled in College Now (at Hunter and John Jay).

c. On Friday there was a formal staff satisfaction survey, which was a testament to the quality of the students, staff, teachers, and administration. Kate read the enthusiastic responses, which were very, very positive. The staff looks to improve by a) integrating programs, b) helping teachers work collaboratively, c) helping to support students who struggle, d) strengthening relationship between teachers, staff, and students, and e) deepening and strengthening the culture of the school.

d. New Hire: World languages teacher for American Sign Language and French

e. New Hire: Margarita Rodriguez, the newly hired Parent Coordinator

f. New Hire: A community associate to run the Student Life Office

4. SLT Report (Ron):

a. Discussion of a new hire—there is a new guidance counselor for upper house.

b. There is a new Student Life Center, a space for students to come for assistance.

5. The group introduced themselves to new members. The group spoke about their reasons for choosing Harvest.

6. The group discussed ways of building school-parent relationships: potlucks, back to school nights, open school day, gateways, roundtables, extracurricular presentations, etc.
The meeting ended at 6:53
Submitted by Todd Barnes, PTA Secretary


 

PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, January 12, 2016
5:30-7:00 PM

The meeting was called to order at 5:45pm. Adjourned at 6:45pm.
1. Treasurer’s Report:
a) The school did meet the requirement for Title 1 funding however some outside grants will cover costs of trips and other extracurricular activities.
b) PTA received over $400 in donations in December.

2. Kim resigned as co-president of PTA. This opens one Executive Board spot which will be determined at next Executive Board Meeting

3. SLT Report:
a) CEP objective: Creating a supportive, safe environment for students
b) SLT student members asked for more challenging work
c) Students asked for Lower House Social

4. Principal’s Report:
a) Interviews are being conducted for new full-time parent coordinator
b) In addition to parent coordinator 4 positions will be added: Community Associate, School Aide, World Languages Teacher, part-time Guidance Counselor/Yoga Teacher
c) Kate discussed CARA: College, Access, Research, Action
d) Sheila will bring to Harvest a College Counseling Bridge program
e) Winter Solstice was a big success as was the a new tradition of a Peace Sing
f) Revolutionary War Museum will take place on 1/20 from 4:00-5:30 pm
g) Kate discussed Lower House Geometry Roundtables to discuss how to make math relevant and meaningful
h) Kate will distribute special and Winter Intensives schedule and Spring Course catalogue
i) Kate announced the publishing of David Sherrin’s book, The Classes They Remember, Congratulations David!

5. Miscellaneous:
a) Gateways and Capstones will be presented starting week of 1/25
b) The group discussed forming standing committees vs. committees based on need/project
c) Clara asked about more structure for volunteering
d) The group discussed the need for more fundraising ideas/opportunities
f) Next Executive Board Meeting will be Tuesday 1/19 at 5:30 pm


 

PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, December 8, 2015
5:30-7:00 PM

1. Treasurer’s Report: The budget is the same. Nothing has been spent or raised this month.

2. SLT Report:

a. 60 families have still not returned lunch forms. These families are receiving daily, automated telephone reminders.

b. The school is still figuring out its budget, trying to determine how much administrative support is needed.

c. Trip to Budapest: Laura gave a report on the trip. It was a great experience for the students and the chaperones. The students were able to see what life is like outside NYC, outside the States.

d. The group reviewed the Chancellor’s new CEP objectives, which involve working with the community. One objective involves a program called “Strong Families.”

d. Update from Dr. D on the Discipline Ladder (Restorative Justice) is in conflict with the Chancellor’s new disciplinary code. Some consequences were removed from the schools’ prerogative. The threshold for one-day suspensions was lowered.

e. Emergency preparedness and evacuation plans were discussed.

3. Winter Solstice Party, Concert, and Potluck:

a. The group discussed decorations/organizing for the Solstice event on December 22nd. Geneva is working with Tamika Watson, who does very impressive balloon decorations. The group also discussed other logistics: time, food, entertainment, etc.

b. The group also solicited volunteers to help with the event.

4. Principal’s Report:

One student earned a Posse Scholarship, several were accepted to SUNY, and another student was accepted to Aldelphi (her first choice).

On Friday, over 50 students performed as a part of Guitar Fest.

The Deputy Director came and toured last week and wrote a glowing report to Kate (see the attached Principal’s Report).

The school also won a Blackboard Award (see more in the attached Principal’s Report).

5. Misc:

1. Alex asked about the Book Fair to be held at Barnes & Noble. We now know how to do this, but it seems like it won’t be possible to organize one this semester.

2. The group returned to a discussion of the Winter Solstice Party, Concert, and Potluck. The group will craft an email announcing the event, details, suggestions for food, and a PayPal link for parents to donate in lieu of bringing food.

3. The group discussed finalizing the 501(c)3 designation.

The meeting ended at roughly 7pm.

PTA Minutes submitted by Todd Barnes, PTA Secretary


 

PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, November 17, 2015
5:30-7:00 PM

Meeting was called to order at 5:38

President’s Report: We held our first Executive meeting last week. At this meeting, Lauren volunteered to do research to solicit local business to donate food for our Solstice event. Alex has also done research on how to finalize our designation as a 501(C)3 (nonprofit) organization. We need a Statement of Purpose. The group was solicited for ideas to inform the Statement of Purpose. The group also discussed Geneva’s suggestion that we register through the Amazon Smile program, which would allow the Harvest PTA to receive a small portion of what customers spend on the website. The group also discussed a Chipotle day, a day on which students and parents (esp. seniors during lunch) eat at Chipotle and receive a money back on every purchase made in support of Harvest. We also discussed planning a book fair at the local Barnes & Noble, a similar program. Notably, we are also allowed to hold performances in the store space. The group discussed the plan to hold a performances on that day, potentially December 3rd and 4th. Kim also reported that Harvest teachers have noticed that the main foyer of the school is sterile and lacking in decorations. Dr. D has received approval to paint in the area. We also discussed building benches top place near the windows (to prevent students from leaning on the windows). Kim requested that, if anyone knows an available carpenter, this might be a great volunteer opportunity. Kim explained a “fund a wish” idea, wherein we solicit parents for money for the benches. Kim told the group that the best way to approach funding would be to spend PTA money on the benches and then raise it back later. A recently closed church has raised the possibility of donating a few pews. Kim suggested that students may cover the pews with stickers. The group also discussed potential mural projects. Dr. D explained the custodial issues involved (canvas vs. directly on the walls). Kim also discussed creating Harvest sweatshirts, t-shirts, and water bottles which we can sell at various Harvest events.

Principal’s Report (Dr. Michael Dunson Reporting for Kate Burch): Dr. D announced that Harvest recently won the prestigious “Blackboard Award.” The school is a “Rising Star Honoree.” Wednesday, Dec. 2nd is the awards ceremony. We have 25 tickets for staff, faculty, students, and parents. The group was solicited to attend.

Student-led parent teacher conferences are this week (Thursday 5-8/Friday 1:30-3:30). The school is still trying to get lunch forms returned. There will be a computer set up where parents can go online and fill out the form. If we still lack the required number of forms, the PTA will be solicited to help.

Upper house begins its new quarter today. Their schedules will largely change as a result.

This week Harvest held a college application “lockdown.” Students couldn’t leave until they filled out college applications.

We have a new theater teacher, Ekene Okobi, “E.” Susan Avery will also return as our part time College Counselor to support our 118 seniors.

Additional announcements from SLT meeting: Pam reported: Queen’s Terrace on the Park is a potential location for the Prom. The New School also has a potential space for graduation.

501(c)3 Nonprofit Mission Statement: The group brainstormed ideas for a mission statement. The group decided to keep it simple: to support Harvest teachers and students and to provide educational enrichment.

The meeting was adjourned at 6:40.

Submitted by Todd Barnes, PTA Secretary


 

PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, October 20, 2015
5:30-7:00 PM

The meeting was called to order at 5:44, when Kate Burch introduced students from the senior catering internship, “Harvest Catering.” Brian, a senior, talked about the group and notified all that they are gathering donations. Sally Abdelghafar, who coordinates Harvest internships, shared with the group that nearly every senior is now interning. Some students are even creating their own nonprofits.

Kate then introduced two new mathematics teachers: Julia Shube and Danny Ramos.

Kim announced that the upcoming open houses will be Oct. 22nd and November 10th. Volunteers are needed.

1. Principal’s Report (Kate):

a. Spotlights on Harvest: Harvest was chosen as a “hidden gem” in the New York Post.
NY1 came to film at the school, where they observed students in classes discussing literature and dancing. NY1 came to review our participation in the innovative Progressive Redesign for Schools of Excellence (PROSE) program. City council members will come to the school tomorrow, 10/21.

b. Harvest by the Numbers: Kate distributed “Harvest by the Numbers,” a list of statistics about the school in the style of the Harper’s Index. The numbers highlight the school demographics (e.g. languages spoken, number of National Board Certified Teachers, teacher retention rates), academic indicators (e.g. essays written and books read per week, percentage of students who have passed the regents, etc.), and cultural indicators (e.g. number of clubs, attendance rates, etc.). (See attached handout)

c. Updates/Upcoming Events: 1) Now is the time to make sure that student who wish are enrolled in open honors. 2) The short schedule on Mondays is meant to accommodate departmental meetings for faculty. There will be less “experiential trips” (though there will be some, along with advisory activities). Students in lower house (9th or 10th grade) are required to do 25 hours by the end of 10th grade; the short schedule on Mondays can also accommodate this requirement. 3) Parent-Teacher-Student led conferences will be November 19th-20th. Please make sure to attend. 4) Kate reminded the PTA of the “restorative justice” fairness panels. 5) College night will be Oct. 28th from 5:30-6:30—for juniors and seniors. 6) Thanks were extended to Kim Colon Cullen, Ina Pannell, and Pam Mancini for volunteering for the citywide high school fair. 7) Oct. 22nd, we will be hosting over 700 people for our Open House at Harvest 5:00-7:30. Please email harvestcollegiatePTA@gmail.com if interested. 8) Kate reviewed the “out lunch” policy change for upper house students and reported its success. 9) The group discussed making handouts (like “Harvest by the Numbers” available at Open Houses)

Kim discussed the PTA calendar and Giving Fund. She also promoted the Winter Solstice event, encouraging more parents to attend. She also solicited the group for ideas for raising funds/support for such events.

2. Treasurer’s Report: Since there hasn’t yet been an executive meeting, there is no formal treasurer’s report. Pam informed the group that the PTA’s current balance is $7260 (including a recent, generous donation of $400 via PayPal).

3. Misc. Notes:

Pam reminded the group that the SLT committee will be meeting before PTA meetings from 4:30-5:30.

Kate announced that, as Tyree will be moving on to Hunter College, we will be hiring a new Parent Coordinator. Please let Kate know if you’d like to serve on the hiring committee. The search will begin in January.

Kate reminded the group of the importance of parents turning in lunch forms. We need these forms filled out in order to be eligible for Title I funds (over $150,000!).

The group discussed fundraising ideas: auctions, painting events, community building, etc.

Ina let the group know that Random House has made a donation of free books to Harvest. The donation included a signed and dedicated copy of Rachel Swaby’s Headstrong.

The meeting was called to a close at 6:48pm.

–Submitted by Todd Barnes, PTA Secretary

Harvest Index
Fall 2015

Harvest Collegiate by the Numbers
Number of students: 473 including 9 fully included D75 students
Home languages spoken: Albanian, Arabic, Bahas Indonesian, Bambara, Bangla, Bhutanese, Brazilian Portuguese, Cantonese, Dutch, French, Fulani, Hebrew, Irish, Japanese, Kreyol, Mandingo, Mandarin, Mongolian, Polish, Serbian, Spanish, Tagalog, Tuvaluan, Twi.
Faculty: 35 full-time, 2 part-time, 2 social workers + 2 college counselors, 4 interns
Number of National Board Certified Teachers: + official “Master Teachers” + Teachers
qualified to be School Building Leaders: 4 +1+4
Positive response on official NYC survey on School Commitment, focus on learning, parent-teacher-principal trust, teacher-principal trust, teacher-teacher trust: 97-100%
Teacher retention: 95% Teacher attendance: 96%
Number of applicants for 2015: 2,461

Academic Indicators
Average number of books read in one year of Lower House: 41
Percentage of 12th graders on track for four-year graduation: 98%-96% Regents passing!
Percentage of all students on track for four-year graduation: 96%
Argumentative essays written each semester: 8-16 (most students)
Labs performed and analyzed each semester: 5-15 (most students)
Upper House student meeting our own internally high Common Core college ready standards in English/science/math/history: 73%
Percentage of students taking one or more classes for “Open Honors”: 28% (last year)

Cultural Indicators
Average number of students per Advisory for personalized guidance: 16
Extracurricular Clubs (in addition to sports): 25 this year
Student participation in extracurricular commitments: 82% last year
Number of student-led affirmative Morning Meetings: every day, four days a week in LH
Percentage of sophomores doing community service in New York City: 68% last year
Families attending parent-teacher conferences: 61-86% last year
Fairness Panels for restorative justice: 3 so far Suspensions: 4 so far
Number of teen pregnancies over four years: 0
Percentage of freshmen on overnight ropes course & teambuilding trip: 81%

FAQs about Harvest Collegiate

What is the theme of Harvest Collegiate? You are. The purpose of Harvest is for all of our students to learn to think—deeply and well.

How do you do that? All of the learning goals in our courses are aligned to key habits of mind and heart: Curiosity, Evidence, Perspective, Connection, Voice, Responsibility and Creative Contribution. Students must present projects they are proud of—a complex math problem, historical research paper, a literary analysis, or science lab—to panel by the end of 10th grade (their Gateway) and by the end of 12th grade (their Capstone) in order to graduate.

What is your curriculum? Students at Harvest take 57 credits, more than the 44 required by the state for graduation. In addition to four years of English, Math, Science, Social Studies (plus Advisory and PE every term), students in the Lower House additionally have independent reading and music every day, so that every student learns a musical instrument, and becomes an avid reader! In the Upper House (11th and 12th grade), students have a vast array of advanced electives including Filmmaking, Economics, Dextar and Dostoevsky, Entomology, French Spanish or Japanese, Theater, Internship, Studio Art, Hot or Not: Thermodynamics, advanced music or an Advanced Placement class (offered in Calculus, English, Econ, US History, Environmental Science).

What extracurriculars are offered? Robotics, Jazz, GSX, Sailing and Boatbuildling, Model United Nations, Math Team, Outdoor Adventure, Ambassadors, Chess, Cooking, Salsa, Art Club,

How do you promote your commitments to: Peace, Diversity, Growth? We organize the school for teachers to know students—through their small group Advisory and by keeping the school experience more intimate through the two Houses. If a core value is broken, we have a Fairness committee (of students and teachers) for restorative justice. We challenge all students through Open Honors and support them with caring teacher and after school academic programs.

What is a typical day’s schedule?
Breakfast starts at 8:00am and we ask you to be here by 8:20 at the latest for a prompt start to 8:30 Morning Meeting or Advisory. As our theater director says, on time means 10 minutes early!

What are you facilities like? We have three science labs, a library as well as five additional classroom libraries, five laptop carts for all classroom use, a class set of Ipads, a dance studio and a fitness room.

Uniforms and lockers? No uniform, please dress overall appropriately. Yes, you will get a locker.


PTA General Meeting Minutes
Wednesday, September  16, 2015
5:30-7:00 PM

The meeting was called to order at 5:36pm.  The minutes from June 2, 2015 were approved.

–Welcome (PTA Co-President Kim Colon-Cullen)
Kim welcomed everyone and spoke about the PTA plans for the year.  The main focus of PTA fundraising this year will be funding extracurricular activities.  The balance at the end of last year was about $7,500.  The executive board will meet to make plans for the year.  These meetings are open to all parents.

The next PTA meeting will be on October 20, possibly with a meet and greet at the Whitney Museum (adults only),

–Principal’s Report (Kate Burch)
Class Schedule
There is a new upper house (11th and 12th grades) schedule this year with four long classes each day.  The schedule of classes will change in mid-November. The schedule change allows for more credits–7 credits plus advisory and physical education.

Calendar Vote
Kate reviewed the calendar for the school year.  (This had been sent home with students last week.)  The parents voted on the change listed on the calendar for 1/19, 2/2, and 2/3 which will be used for Gateway Presentations.  (These are Regents Testing dates on the DOE calendar).  Parents voted by ballot to approve the change for those 3 dates in 2015-2016 as listed.

–Elections (PTA Co-President Pam Mancini)
Each position and the election process was described before the election.  Parents may serve more than one position.

SLT
The SLT has 5 parent representatives–2 are elected in June, 2 are elected in September and 1 is the PTA Chair or a PTA Co-Chair.  The SLT meets monthly and meetings are open to all parents to attend.  SLT is mandated by state law and includes parents, teachers, students and the principal.  The SLT is charged with ensuring parents’ participation in the goasl of improving student performance and ensuring a well-functioning community and drafting a Comprehensive Education Plan.

At the meeting, elections were held by ballot for (2) SLT Parent Representatives. Elected to the 2 remaining positions for parent representatives were Mark Schwartz and Danielle Williams.

Members-at-large
The PTA positions of president, vice-president, treasurer and secretary were filled at the June election.  The positions were filled with co-positions for each.  At the September election up to (8) members-at-large are elected to the PTA Executive Board.  This allows all families (including new families) to serve on the Executive Board.  The role of a members-at-large is to attend monthly Executive Board Meetings and to serve as chair of a committee.  Committees are determined by the PTA Co-Presidents after the election.

Class Representatives
Class representatives keep parents informed about issues particular to their grade and plan social activities for their grade.  It is a voluntary position that can have more than one rep.

PTA Positions 2015-2016*

Co-President Kim Colon-Cullen Pam Mancini
Co-Vice President Clara Mosquers Geneva Musgrave
Co-Secretary Todd Barnes Paula Moureaux-Nery
Co-Treasurer Tamara Carroll Jennifer Goodman
Member-at-Large Joan Brothers
Member-at-Large Lauren D’Isselt-Knowles
Member-at-Large Alex Hartnett
Member-at-Large Tamika Watson
Class Reps 9th Joan Brothers Tamika Watson
Class Reps 10th Milagros Rios
Class Reps 11th Paula Moureaux-Neary
Class Reps 12th Bridget Rivera

SLT  2015-2016

5 Parent Representatives Ron Diorio Jennifer Goodman
Pam Mancini Mark Schwartz Danielle Williams

*There are still positions open for members-at-large and class representatives.  Please email HarvestCollegiatePTA@gmail.com if you are interested in serving.

The meeting adjourned at 6:50pm.


PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, June 2, 2015
5:30-7:00 PM

The meeting was called to order at 5:40pm and the May minutes were approved.

— PTA President’s Report (Pam Mancini)

●  Updates: Teacher Appreciation Breakfast, Friday May 8; Wine & Cheese Reception, May 15 were both very successful PTA sponsored events.
● Change to PTA Bylaws: The following amendment to the PTA bylaws election section for Co-Treasurer and Members-at-Large were approved:
Changed: The election of PTA Treasurer is changed to Treasurer or Co-Treasurer
Added: The PTA will elect up to (8) Members-at-large to the PTA Board at the first PTA meeting of the year. A member-at-large must agree to serve as a committee chair. The committees will be determined after the election by the PTA President or Co-Presidents.
It was clarified that these are additional positions available and neither a Co-Treasurer nor all 8 member-at-large positions are required to be filled

–ELECTIONS
PTA Nominees from May meeting were approved in an uncontested election since only 2 people were nominated in each co-position. The election of 2 SLT reps were approved in an uncontested election since there were only 2 nominees. (A parent may serve on both the ● PTA and SLT)

PTA Officers Elected for 2015-2016
● Co-Presidents: Kim Colon-Cullen and Pam Mancini
● Co-Vice-President: Clara Mosquers and Geneva Musgrave
● Co-Secretaries: Todd Barnes and Paula Moureaux-Nery
● Co-Treasurers: Tamara Carroll and Jennifer Goodman

SLT Parent Representatives for 2015-2016
● Elected Parent Representatives: Ron Diorio and Jennifer Goodman.
● PTA Co-President Representative on the SLT: Pam Mancini
(The two remaining SLT Parent Representatives will be elected at the September PTA meeting.)
— Treasurer’s Report (Alex)
● PTA approve expenditures voted by the PTA Board since the last meeting for $122 for pizza for the Harvest Spring concert on 5/28 and $200 for the Harvest Student Block Party 5/29
● Harvest Spring Reception Totals, Projected Finances for the year, Proposed Budget for next year as presented at the PTA meeting are at the end of the minutes
— School Leadership Team (SLT) (Ron)
June 15 is the last day of classes and the last day of school is June 26. Students do not attend for the days between unless they are presenting or attending a gateway/capstone presentation or working with a teacher preparing their project. Any parents may attend the presentations and there will be a schedule.
SLT works on goals to ensure the budget reinforces the CEP goals
— Principal’s Report (Mike Dunstan–Dr. D)

● Title I Funding
The school budget will be reduced next year by $100,000 directly from the loss of Title 1 Receiving any Title I Funding depends on documenting the number of students eligible for free lunch so it is important for the school to receive these forms. This year even if the remaining forms had been returned, the school did not make the percentage for Title I. This could change in future years.

● Schedule Changes for Next Year
9th and 10th grade are the lower house and 11th and 12th will be the upper house. The upper house will change to a different class time schedule with 1.5 hour blocks for some classes and a quarter system for classes. Most parents were in favor of this change. The advisory groups will be either lower house or upper house rather than all grades. There will be 3 lunch periods next year–2 for the lower house and one for the upper house. Outlunch will be available for the upper house lunch period since there is not space for everyone. Outlunch is being piloted now.

● Building Issues Update
Although the drinking fountains have been fixed there are still 2 outstanding issues–roof leaks and a gate in one of the stairways that is not alarmed.
There is a yearly building safety meeting on June 11 at 10:00am that parents may attend. Meeting will take place at Legacy.
●Senior Class Events–Prom, Senior, Trip, Graduation
A group of parents is needed to help plan/fundraise for these events next year. (Send an email to the PTA if you wish to help. HarvestCollegiatePTA@gmail.com)
— Planting for Harvest Fundraiser for Fall Enrichment (Pam Mancini)
The PTA will begin a fundraising appeal for Fall Enrichment to help fund.
The meeting adjourned at 7:00 pm


PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, May 5, 2015
5:30-7:00 PM

After a review of the April meeting, including discussion of the role of the PTA in fundraising and community-building, the April minutes were approved.

President’s Report (Pam Mancini)

          • Friday the 8th is Teacher Appreciation Day. The PTA had previously voted to provide breakfast for the teachers; this was reiterated.
          • There was discussion of a gap in communication this year between the PTA and the classes. It was agreed that the Parent Coordinator will send out important notices.
          • Janice has arranged for the piano tuner, Adam Michelman, to be in contact with Colin to arrange to tune the piano.
          • The Spring reception will be on May 15th at Alex’s office.

Election Committee

The Election Committee opened the floor to nominations for next year’s officers, with the following nominees resulting:

          • President: Kim Colon-Cullen and Pam Mancini and as co-presidents
          • Vice-President: Clara Mosquers and Geneva Musgrave as co-vice-presidents
          • Secretary: Todd Barnes and Paula Moureaux-Nery as co-secretaries
          • Treasurer: Tamara Carroll

Pam suggested that the class reps be open positions, to be filled by as many parents as want to volunteer. She also suggested having “members at large,” who can, for example, head committees.

SLT/Principal’s Report (Kate) and PTA Discussion:

          • The primary business was the budget. Main thing was updates on the budget. Most of the money is spent.
          • Mike has officially been appointed Vice Principal.
          • There was also discussion of the transition from Legacy, both of the positives and the negatives.
          • Roof: This is leaking. Pressure needs to be put on the right people. The building is leased; the lease is until 2024.
          • Out lunch: Students have requested this. Next year, with a full school, there will not be enough space for all the students to eat inside. The sense of the PTA was to try this with the Upper House first. A suggestion was made to have bag lunches available for purchase in the cafeteria so that students do not need to buy lunch outside.

The meeting adjourned at 7:00 pm.


PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, April 14, 2015
5:30-7:00 PM

The meeting was called to order at 5:40pm.
Reading of the minutes for the March meeting was waived and the minutes were approved.

President’s Report (Pam):

          • We need to select a new date for Spring Reception to use the same space in Times Square
          • Upcoming elections June 2 for PTA Board all positions: PTA president (co-presidents), vice-president (co-vice-presidents), secretary (co-secretaries), treasurer. Janice Kamrin will head the nominating committee. Parents can email the PTA to nominate themselves or someone else at HarvestCollegiatePTA@gmail.com
          • (5) Parent/Guardian representatives on the SLT–Election for (2) SLT positions in June and (2) SLT positions will be elected in September. Final parent rep is PTA chair or a co-chair. Nominations for the June SLT election will be taken until the voting on June 2.

SLT Report (Ron):

          • The SLT discussed an update on building issues (listed below)
          • Admission statistics for Fall. (About 145 students accepted and 3 declines.) There will be a date in the spring for some 7th grade students to visit

Harvest Principal’s Report (Dr. D):

          • Building issues
            The water in the drinking fountains is working again but there are still issues with water leaking from the roof, especialy during the snowy winter and the security gate in one of the stairways is not alarmed.
          • Parents need to return the DOE school surveys handed out at the parent conferences or sent home with students by Friday, April 17.

General Discussion (Pam):

          • The spring reception date was moved Friday May 15 from 6:00-8:30pm. The new date will be sent out by the class reps with a link to reply and pay at the door by cash or check. The reception will be a social event and not a fundraiser and the teacher reservations will be complimentary. We will therefore try to keep the costs down and use the ticket revenue.
          • There was discussion about the role of the PTA as a fundraising group and other goals, such as community building.
          • There will be an increased need for funds next year since there will not be Title 1 funds.

The meeting adjourned at 6:45pm


PTA General Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
5:30-7:00 PM

The meeting was called to order at 5:40.
Reading of the minutes for the February meeting was waived and the minutes were approved.

President’s Report (Pam):

          • Reminder that the spring fundraiser will be on May 1st.
          • The student-led parent-teacher conferences are at the end of the month.

SLT Report (Ron):

          • Review of the budget process
          • How the school will operate while Kate is on maternity leave (which reiterates the information from Kate’s March newsletter: Dr. Dunson, our Vice Principal, will be in charge, supported by mentor principal Mr. Ken Cuthbert, an experienced former principal, and by Arleen Liquori, the principal of Legacy in our building.

Discussion of the discipline ladder (Dr. D):

            • The most helpful part of this is that its a common language with which to discuss common concerns, and is aligned with the DOE code (which was just revised). The school is implementing interventions for the students that have the most behavioral issues.

General Discussion (Pam):

          • Alex spoke about the recent passing of Dr. Sarah Blos, one of the school’s founders and also the mother of junior Lucas Brooks. This led to a general discussion of how the school community can be sensitive to other students who have lost parents.
            • It was agreed that whether or not the loss should be public should be up to the student and his or her family.
            • There was discussion of possible ways for students to share their feelings, such as a tribute day, or something attached to the Mexican Day of the Dead. The school staff will continue to discuss this issue and ask the PTA for input and assistance as needed
          • The school cannot pay for upkeep for the piano in the lobby, since it was a donation. The PTA voted to pay for a piano tuner to come and service the instrument; the PTA will assume responsibility going forward for keeping the piano in working order. Pam will ask the class reps to send out a request in case there is a parent who does this or knows someone who would be willing to donate their time and expertise.

Staff Report (Laura):

          • Winter Intensive: Laura spoke about the Winter Intensives in general, then Gina and Katya made presentations on specific intensives:
            There were 15 intensives, each servicing 16-18 students (except for stop-motion animation, which had more).
            Six overnight trips were planned; one had to be cancelled because of the weather.
            Gina and Sally led a French immersion trip to Montreal.
            Katya led an intensive that combined dance and math.
          • Laura reported on the recent visit to the school by Reuben Blades, which was attended by the students in the principal student leadership groups. The next visitor will be Stephanie Andujar, who plays young Rose on Orange is the New Black, and who is the daughter of one of the building’s security guards. She asked that parents pass on the names of people they think might be good additions to this program.
          • Laura also announced a tentative trip to Washington DC, which is planned for Friday, May 15, to Sunday, May 17 (the weekend after the History AP). The current cost is $200, but this may go up. This includes lodging and transportation, but the students should bring money for food (breakfast is included).
            • No student can be failing more than one academic subject.
            • There can be no major behavioral concerns.
            • Students with allergies are discouraged from going.
            • There will be space for about 30 students; it will be first come-first served.
            • There may be space for two PTA members.

Kate has had her baby: his name is Jones David Belkin


 

PTA General Meeting Minutes
Thursday, February 5, 2015
5:30-7:00 PM

The meeting was called to order at 5:40

The minutes were approved for January 13, 2015

President’s report (Pam Mancini)

          • The revised Harvest Collegiate website is online.  The address remains the same harvestcollegiate.org.  There is a now a Harvest Family Page (under the “News” section) with information for current families, including a link to the PTA Minutes.  More information will be added.
          • Save the Date:  Spring Fundraiser on Friday, May 1st.

Principal’s Report (Kate Burch)

The Winter Intensive is under way and Kate thanked the PTA for the donation.

Special Guest Speaker Sean Grover, LCSW

Author of the new book WHEN KIDS CALL THE SHOTS:  How to Seize Control from Your Darling Bully and Enjoy Being a Parent Again  (Mr. Grover’s website: http://www.seangrover.com/)

Mr Grover spoke to the PTA on “Five Things Every Teenager Needs”.  You can read more details on the five things here: htttp://www.seangrover.com/five-things-every-teenager-needs/

The meeting was adjourned at 6:40pm

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