Bryant Blast – Save the Date!

The Bryant Blast will be held on Saturday, May 4th from noon to 4 pm.  Plan for pony rides, fun games and activities, sno-cones, tasty food and much, much more! 

Wanna help plan the Blast? We’ll be sending a sign-up for volunteer shifts right after Spring Break.  If you have a favorite job at the Blast, you can sign up early! Contact the Blast Committee if you’re interested in helping.

Bryant PTSA Board Meeting Minutes – Feb 2019

Welcome and Introductions Kim Love & Whitney Griesbach

Approve January Board Meeting Minutes

Officer/Standing Committee Reports

Treasurer’s Recap Report Brita Willis & Lorraine Sawicki

  • Collected 158k so far from Annual Campaign
  • Closed Home Street Bank Account
  • PTSA has collected 6,200 for instruments, goal is 10k
  • Bank fees = 5600 so far
  • Artists in Residences approved for $700, not used yet
  • Unallocated balance = 10,800
  • Reserve = 82k
  • Surplus = 11k
  • Have discussed meeting with Committee Leads at the beginning f the year to discuss process of collecting cash

Legislative Chairs Report Jean Charette, Yvonne  Roberts & Diana Fryc    

  • Levies passed!
  • Gerry Poulett does localized meetings, idea to show up with Bryant Spirit Wear on and bring specific issues to discuss
  • Focus Day cancelled due to weather, so above meetings are thought to take the place of Focus Day
  • Jean and Sam will work together to come up with scripts and meeting times with Gerry Poulett and Rep. Valdez to discuss various issues around special ed, etc.
  • Personal stories can make a huge difference in swaying Reps.         

Bryant Leadership Team Kim Love

  • Continuing to work on smart goals for next two academic years: SEL and Reading as well as Math scores
  • Starting to focus on and refine action plan, making goals more specific for grade levels

Principal’s Report Charmaine Marshall

  • BLM learning has been very exciting
  • Adjusting schedules due to snow days

New Business

Bryant Directory App for 2019-2020      Ann Sonnen

  • App to download for free, you put in your own info (as much as you want)
  • Still offer soft cover directory
  • Can update your own info if it changes in the year
  • Free App, but there are ads within app
  • Interface is easy
  • Info is locked down so that not all people can see info
  • Discussion about centralizing all info for school: directory, sign-up, fundraising, etc. Not affordable at this time.
  • Roll out app within the Board to see if it is tenable- suggested and tabled

Yearbook Editor Report Loree Melens

  • Proposal to get a book for $14.50 for a bigger book and in color/hardback
  • Currently books are 12.50 and we charge 15, proposal to go with 14.50 book and charging 20
  • Sales to start Tuesday @ $20 per book
  • No free books for 5th grade, but there will be extras delivered to each classroom (to be returned if not needed)

PTSA community outreach/ social media presence Kim Love

  • Best Practices for passwords
  • Discussed LastPass as option for passwords
  • Facebook/social media/newsletter Best Practices and guidelines
  • Recommendation to form Committee to figure out expectations and roles and responsibilities
  • Communication Chair for Board suggested


The Bryant online auction is now OPEN!

Our 2019 auction will be open all week and close at 10 p.m. on Monday, March 11. That gives you plenty of time to check out all of our offerings and bid, bid, bid. Remember, it’s all in support of Bryant’s PTSA.

So get in there and have some fun! You can also share this link with your friends and family, even if they’re not Bryant families. Everyone is welcome to participate!

Bryant PTSA Board Meeting Minutes – Jan 2019

Welcome and Introductions                                                          Kim Love & Whitney Griesbach

Approve December Board Meeting Minutes

  •  Approved

Officer/Standing Committee Reports

Treasurer’s Recap Report Brita Willis & Lorraine Sawicki

  • Continue to collect Annual Campaign
  • Collecting funds for instruments- have 5300 out of 10k needed
  • Read-a-Thon donation $2700    
  • Remaining unallocated= 9k as of 12/31
  • Reminder: Read-a- Thon is not a PTSA event. Want to clarify we are fiscal sponsors, not our fundraiser
  • Billing receipts and reimbursements need to be submitted in a timely manner or otherwise will be considered donations
  • 43k in cash reserve at this time

Fundraising Chair Report

Volunteer Coordinator Janie Booth & Tammy Shorr

  • Uptick in volunteer asks due to increased activities coming up
  • Please reach out to your network for volunteer interest and need for leadership roles         

Legislative Chairs Report Jean Charette, Yvonne Roberts &Diana Fryc    

  • Updates on next month:  get the vote out for the levy
  • Looking for volunteers for phone banks- teachers have been asked and parents can help as well.
  • Washington’s Paramount Call put out to ask people to testify tomorrow regarding increasing money for school. Hearing at 3:30 in Olympia on Wednesday Jan 16. If interested, contact Sam Fogg.

Bryant Leadership Team Kim Love

  • Discussed Testing Data and Survey Data- a lot of fluctuation in testing data, waning- trying to figure out how to course correct. Math is data is lower than Reading by about 10 points, which is unusual. Theory is social emotional/anxiety
  • Interim survey about student/staff connections/safety at school to solidify this theory.
    • Reading scores have been maintained.
    • How can we effectively look at data as an entire staff?
    • How to align educational goals                                                

Principal’s Report Melissa Samosa

  • SPS is in second year of Black Lives Matter week in Feb. Taking a look at school teaching teams to put out grade appropriate material. Historical perspective, empathy, institutional racism. Materials about BLM education will be sent home to continue the conversation

LASER Report Eric Noble

  • ED back from Maternity Leave
  • Some staff raises
  • Some promotions from within
  • New people on LASER Board
  • Things are looking good!                                                      

New Business

Playground Steering Committee Updates Mary Strazer

  • Meeting with Principal/LASER to re-form a Steering Committee, reevaluate those who have expressed interest in the past
  • Dept. of Neighborhoods is potentially reducing grant to 25k
  • Dates for submission re beginning of March or beginning of June
  • School can’t be applicant, has to be a community group. PTSA serves as fiscal sponsor.
  • Landscape plans commissioned 20 years ago are still in hand and will be helpful

Artists in Residents:  Julianna and Kristen Zweirs

Ask for increase in supply budget

  • Dollar amount per classroom teaching hour – $5.75 currently. Supplies are not as great quality as a result.
  • Ask for $7.00 per classroom teaching hour, which totals roughly $500/year increase
  • Supply Drives suggested as an alternative approach
  • Potential to order some of art supplies at Office Depot as part of overall school supply purchase
  • Tammy Shorr motioned to increase supply funds of $500, motion approved

Bryant Library Read-a-Thon Update     Anne Aliverti

  • Read- a thon collected 28k (way beyond the expectation)             
  • (Compared to last year’s book fair that raised $1500)!!!
  • Able to update history section, replacing old books, replacing books that are taken from library
  • Heard a lot of positive things about momentum to read over break brought on by Read-A-Thon
  • Missed social aspect of Book Fair, so thinking about having an end of the year Book Fair to raise money for a school that needs it
  • Very aware fundraiser fatigue and will keep that in consideration
  • Will continue planning and meeting and present to PTSA again in the future with additional ideas
  • Pledge Star was a great online platform for the read a thon
  • Will advertise to kids how much we are able to do with the money raised
  • Idea for a book stamp for books bought with Read A Thon money

Garden Shed Budget Brita Willis

  • $2500 allocated to Garden Shed, some give by Boy Scouts. Garden Shed not going to happen. Brita requesting change to unallocated funds. Boy Scouts are aware.
  • Motion to move funds by Brita. Seconded by Sam Fogg. Motion Approved.

Change in Budgeting Process for Fiscal Yr ’19-’20  Brita Willis

  • Proposing that 32k of the current 41k surplus to cover Auction and Blast income for this year, and going forward use surplus in current year for Auction and Blast for that year. (See email) This is NOT reserve funding it is surplus money.
  • Brita made motion (above), Motion seconded by Samantha Fogg, motion passed.

Speakers for Meetings Kim Love

  • Screen time speaker Emily Cherkin on 4/23
  • Working on 3rd speaker, focus on literacy- May or early June

Community Engagement Grants Kim Love

  • Each grade level will receive $500 grant to put on a community event for their families. Must be free, must involve all families in grade level. Parents to sponsor the event with whole grade level. Last year every grade level participated.

Max (counselor) grateful for SEL books for his office and sensory baskets. Sent pictures in an email as a thank you.

More positive feedback about school supplies from teachers as well.

Welcome and Introductions

Approve November Meeting Minutes
Provisionally approved

Officer/Standing Committee Reports

  1. Brita Willis & Lorraine Sawicki: Treasurer’s Report
    • Continuing to collect campaign money, have collected 147k of the 180k pledged
    • Bank fees = $4100
    • Acting as a fiscal sponsor for the Read-A-Thon$5/per student that submit forms for Read-A-Thon
    • Asking teachers to encourage kids to fill out the form and turning it in regardless of sponsors
    • See Treasurer’s Report for approved funds for the year
    • Doing fine on cash
  2. Tammy Shorr & Janie Booth: Volunteer Coordinators Report Volunteers are reaching volunteer burn-out, mid-year social is in order    
  3. Leeann Huntington, Sara Fenz and Allison Broadgate: Fundraising Chair Report
    1. No report
  4. Jean Charette, Yvonne Roberts & Diane Frye:  Legislative Chairs
  5. Next month will have motions to support Schools First, a campaign body that can campaign for levys
    • Will determine the amount needed/when it can be allocated to Schools First
    • Money that will be requested is already earmarked
    • Looking at campaign work beyond Bryant- PCC, etc.
    • January is a big month due to votes in Feb
    • One page description of levys will be included with minutes and also through the Bryant Weekly
    • Legislature will be discussing adjusting the levy cap this coming legislative session
    • Climate change/homelessness, etc. is taking precedence over school funding at the moment

 Special Committee Reports                                                         

  1. Bryant Leadership Team report: Kim Love
    • Reaching out to district to find right time to conduct another assessment (prior to testing)
    • Looking at data around bullying and social-emotional wellness
      • PBIS works with RULER (positive behavior intervention support), does not replace RULER (mood charts, etc.  will still be used)
      • Discipline Matrix used for consequences when expectations are not met
    • Request for parent night about SEL and Discipline Matrix explanation/roll-out
  2. Principal Report: Charmaine Marshall
    • Power Point for proposed budget shown at last week’s Principal Meeting, see Budget Work session handout
      • 2/28 is date of allocation of budget
      • Summary of growing deficit (pg. 6) $42mil 2019-20 deficit, proposal to cut 53million from budget
      • Proposals include cutting librarians to ½ time, no elementary counselors (Bryant counselor acquired through a waiver), losing VP, or teacher cuts.
      • These cuts are WITH levy passing
      • Sam Fogg volunteered to discuss ways to testify in Olympia: politicians trade in stories and testimonies might be the most powerful way to sway legislatures. In the absence of being able to go to Olympia, sending an email with your story is impactful.
      • Focus Day in Olympia is Feb 11th. (day before Levy vote)
      • Javier Valdez is our State Senator and may need additional pressure to pass levy as well as education around why levy is important “We cannot function if levy does not pass”
      • McCleary decision was not really written with Seattle in mind
      • Seattle is a more expensive district and property taxes here went up but money is going to schools in Eastern Washington in order to promote equity
      • Support for education funding plummets outside of Seattle, even on eastside
    • Proposal to put Congressmen’s names/contact info in Bryant Weekly to keep parents informed and promote advocacy for levy passage. Kim Love to implement.
  3. Brycentennial:
    • 1:15 School Wide Assembly/5:30-7pm Open House
    • Bryant Gear for Thursday!
    • 100 year Celebration picture will be part of slide show
    • K classes distributed flyers around the neighborhood

7:45-8:25 New Business

  1. Professional Development Funding (Charmaine Marshall)
    • Ask for choir stipend for $750 for program assemblies         
    • Ask for $750 stipend for four 3 hour sessions of mentoring and supporting teachers in the building
    • Ask for Race and Equity Team support stipends of an additional $1500 stipend for teachers for attendance at Saturday workshops and Black Lives Matter curriculum/professional development
  2. ELL Funding Request: Ask for $2679 for following: (Charmaine Marshall)
    • Supplemental curriculum to extend SIPPS to grades 3-5 for extra literacy support (Mackenzie, has 20+ kids)
    • Special Ed teachers
    • Pauline Pfohl, our ELL teacher, 20+ kids
    • Motion made and passed to approve funding for EEL Funding and purchase of CCC SIPPS
      1. Discussion around whether or not state of WA needs to be funding this, however PTSA will fund for now. Federal obligation put into question, as well as the state obligation.
  3. Board to refocus goals and revisit stipend funding, no vote held today
    • Bryant Read-a-Thon Vote (skipped)
  4. Garden Buddies and Bryant Comm. Garden (Tammy Shorr)
    • Monthly work parties starting with 5th grade and going down to K, working on general maintenance in garden
    • This is in place of Garden Maintenance Chair previously run by Samantha Fogg. (no longer able to fulfill this role)
    • Working with district to coordinate efforts
    • Idea to look to Master Gardeners or neighborhood gardeners for volunteer help
    • Discussion around whether or not to keep garden space open due to safety concerns. Ultimately the space is owned by district
    • Shed has been funded but it is on hold because district has put it on hold- next meeting will discuss what to do with allocated funds
  5. General Meeting Speakers Input- ideas include: (Whitney Griesbach)
    • How to talk to kids about politics
    • Literacy and goals of school – how can parents help support literacy in the home?
      • Resources are available for literacy that district has and parents don’t know about.
      • Speaker on how to access those resources- offered for free by tech ed
      • Math Night (resources for parents to support kids in math at home)
      • PBIS Education night-facilitating communication and language at home that supports PBIS (once teachers and staff feel more familiar with the PBIS curriculum)
      • Sex Ed
      • Race and Equity/Hate Speech (UW professors)
      • School Safety
      • Empowerment and Resiliency/Mindfulness with Youth
      • Screen Time education
  6. Closing Home Street Bank Account
    1. Move funds to Bank of America, Home Street holds reserves but can be held in Savings at B of A account
    2. Motion to close Home Street account, Brita Willis and Lorraine S. have permission to close account and transfer to B of A. Motion seconded and approved.

Build community and have fun!

We’re bringing back the grade-level grants!

The Bryant PTSA is offering grants for you to hold an event for families in your grade level. Bryant PTSA will grant up to $500 to each grade level to build engagement among its families. The money is intended to help fund events for families to meet and form connections with each other, in the hopes that stronger social relationships will translate to a stronger school community for our children.

Some ideas for FUN ways to spend your grant:

  • Hold a potluck cookout at a local park where you provide the burgers/hot dogs
  • Host a game night at a community center or at school
  • Host a movie night with free concessions (the PTSA has movie licenses that would cover this!)
  • Put on a talent show
  • Host a summer-time event to get families together outside of the school-year

Download the grade-level grant info sheet, or email for info today.