All posts by PrairiePTA

Save the Date for the 2017 Praire 5K

 

 

 

Join us September 23rd at Prairie Elementary for a 5K race or 1 mile Fun Run followed by food, music, and kids’ activities. 

This event is for the entire family!  The Fun Run begins at 8:00am, and the 5K begins at 8:30am.  The 5K is a certified race course complete with a timing chip to record your time.  You can walk or run, and the whole family is invited to participate – strollers are welcome! The fun continues after each race with complimentary food and entertainment.

One of Prairie’s major fundraisers, all proceeds from this event go toward funding our Reading Specialist, School Counselor, and Spanish Program.  Even if you don’t plan on participating in the event, your registration is a donation toward supporting these important Prairie resources.

To register, please visit:  prairie.run

Please contact Sarah Walsh with any questions.

 

Enjoy the Summer!

It’s hard to believe the school year is over. Thank you, parents, for supporting the PTA. Your time, energy and financial contributions have helped make this one of our most successful years.

Interested in becoming more involved next year? We’d love to have you!

Email Regan Barrett anytime to get more information.

Happy Summer!

 

Parents, mark your calendars for Kindergarten Round-up, Tuesday, April 18th from 6:30-8:00 p.m.

We’ll have activities for your incoming kindergartener while we give parents the download of what to expect the first year.

Please print out and complete the following forms, and turn them in to Prairie’s office BEFORE April 18th:

What to Bring to Round-Up:
  • Certified copy of your child’s birth certificate
  • Immunization records
  • Proof of residency (in the form of a utility bill, contract for a home, or a lease)
  • Checkbook (YCare enrollment, Activities Sign-up, School Directory, Spirit Wear, etc.)

Why Prairie’s Auction is so Important

Fundraising has become an essential element of the public school system helping finance key programs and funding student activities. At Prairie, our fundraising dollars have gone toward student support programs like the Reading Specialist and School Counselor as well as enrichment programs like Spanish.

One of several fundraising programs at Prairie, the Auction contributes the greatest percentage of funds to these special programs (close to 80%). Every dollar raised goes directly into the Prairie Fund. There is a silent auction, a live auction, Fund-a-Need and can include anything from a gift basket to a puppy!

Mark your calendar for this year’s auction, Saturday, February 25th. Purchase your tickets here

Unfamiliar with the Auction? Click here to learn more about it.

What is the Read and Ride Program?

The Read and Ride program began last year when a group of 6th graders won an award through KC Healthy Kids.

The students decided to use the money to bring recumbent bikes to Prairie, as a way to stay active while reading.

Students went to businesses to solicit funds to secure more bikes, and were able to raise an extra $530 bringing the total to $1,530. Before these 6th graders moved on, they recruited the incoming 6th graders to keep the project moving.

This group has conducted more fundraising in the school. Their hot chocolate stand raised $250, and they also won an additional contribution through KC Healthy kids, bringing in another $100.

Through their hard work, Prairie has finally purchased 4 bikes which will be placed in the office and library, and potentially one in the old computer lab space.

We’re very proud of our students for their hard work in fundraising for this cause, and are thrilled to provide this movement option to all Prairie students.

Help us continue raising funds for more stationary bikes – bring in package, nut-free candy for our Valentine’s Day promotion (see newsletter for details).

Do you know why the Auction is so important?

After all, it’s public education so isn’t it funded by the state? The answer is yes and no (click here to read further detail on state funding changes).

SMSD receives budget dollars from the state based on number of students enrolled. The district then allots a portion of those dollars to each school for use. These funds are used for supplies, teacher materials, staff development, operating costs, etc. These funds only cover 20% of what Prairie needs to maintain current programming. 

That means our fundraising efforts are responsible for making up the difference between what we need vs. what we get from the district, which in turn amounts to roughly 80% of Prairie’s total budget.

If Prairie were to operate with school funding only it would mean the elimination of:

  • School Counselor
  • Reading Specialist
  • Spanish Program
  • New recess equipment
  • Additional classroom supplies
  • New library books
  • ROAD (KC Ballet) Program
  • 6th Grade Leadership
  • Wildwood

With the ever-changing landscape of state funding, our fundraising efforts may need to cover more in the future than in years past. So the need for fundraising today is more important than it’s ever been.

The Prairie Fund, Prairie PTA and Ms. Shipp continue to work together to develop programs to raise these funds and communicate progress to parents. We encourage your family to continue participating in our fundraisers, volunteering your time and helping us gain support from new families.

The auction is coming up. Even if all you do is purchase tickets, you are helping support these programs for your student.

Thank you for your support!

Important Business for Education

The Kansas Legislature and Congress are both back in session for the new year, and there are new faces and new issues to consider. It is more important than ever that parents get involved. Our children’s educational opportunities and futures depend on our investments today!

Here’s what the Kansas PTA is watching in Topeka. You can follow the Kansas PTA on Twitter @KsPTALeg. Kansas PTA Advocacy Day is Thursday, January 26, 2017 from 9:00 – 4:00. Parents joining the PTA in the state capitol can meet in the NW Quadrant, First Floor Rotunda at the Capitol in Topeka. Information on Kansas PTA policies and issues will be on hand to distribute and meetings with legislators will be scheduled to discuss Kansas PTA policies and concerns.

The Kansas Legislature is charged with developing a new school finance formula this session. This formula will have to address the constitutional imperative to make suitable provision for public education, while also attending to issues of equity among districts around the state and between students with different needs. These questions will likely be influenced, also, by an expected Kansas Supreme Court ruling on a challenge to our current approach to school finance. The PTA also has a stated priority on a formula that will provide districts with budget predictability, to facilitate long-range planning for Kansas kids.

State tax policy will also take center stage during this legislative session. A sufficient funding stream for K-12 public education is a top priority for schools and the PTA.

There are also important educational decisions on the national policy agenda. Hearings began on January 11th for the nomination of Betsy DeVos to serve as Secretary of Education. These hearings and the subsequent debate provide opportunities for parents to reaffirm our steadfast commitment to high-quality public education as a tool of economic development and democratic development. National PTA is also encouraging action to expand access to high-quality early childhood education, strengthen child nutrition programs, ensure safe environments for children’s development, and increase federal investments in education. The National PTA released a news release regarding DeVos’ nomination, and parents are encouraged to take this chance to communicate with our Kansas congressional delegation about the national direction of education policy.

Please contact Melinda Lewis with any questions or to get more information.

It’s Time for the Variety Show!

This year’s Variety Show is scheduled for Thursday, 2/2 at 6:30 with an “Around The World in 80 Days” theme!
All students are welcome to participate! Singing, dancing, instrument-playing, hula-hooping – anything goes!
  • Each act must be under 3 minutes.
  • Please email Meghan Black:
    • The name of your act
    • Type of act it is
    • List of students participating
    • Any music that needs to accompany your act
Mark these key dates on your calendar:
  • 1/20 tryouts
  • 1/27 dress rehearsal

The Father Daughter Dance is Friday!

Get ready dads! The Father-Daughter Dance is January 6 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. Join us for a night of fun at Prairie, including a DJ, photo booth, snacks and lots of dancing!
Tickets are $20 per person when you purchase in advance (cap at $60). Tickets will increase to $25 per person at the door.

If you didn’t purchase the party at last year’s auction you can order online here, drop off your payment in the office, or purchase tickets at the door.