PTO Meeting Minutes

PTO Meeting March 11, 2009
The International School

Welcome/Introductions: Kathy Guilfoyle:
Kathy Guilfoyle, PTP VP, thanked all for attending, and filled in for Paula Prince, PTO President, who is in Mexico with Capstone. Stephen Grasmuck thanked all for attending and help with organizing and coordinating the meeting.

Summer Camp: Pilar Arias
Pilar Arias, Camp Director spoke of the Summer 2009 TIS Camp. Four, two-week sessions will be held from June 15, 2009 to August 7, 2009. There will be half day (8-12) and full day (8-4) sessions. Children will be divided by ages: 3-4, 5, 6-7, and 8-12 years old. The TIS staff will be teaching the three languages currently offered by the school. TIS has an agreement with the YMCA for children 6-12 years old to swim and play in their gym each Tuesday of the session. There is also an ice cream truck the first Friday of the sessions. Before school care is offered from 7:30-8:00 AM starting on the second day of each session and tuition payments can be made at Stearns Hall. On the last day of each session, there will be an assembly program for families to attend.
This summer, there is an advanced immersion course in Spanish, Chinese, and Japanese. It is ‘first come first served’, so sign up early. A maximum of 15 children and a minimum of 5 children will be in each class.
For additional information, go to the TIS website. Registration started 2/1/09.

Scrip Presentation: Joan Francis
Joan Francis presented the Scrip Program, an easy fundraiser for all families. A flier will be placed in your child’s folder weekly. The school receives a certain percentage of money for each Scrip order. TIS has already earned $2500-3000 this year; the money is going to Capstone. If one family bought a $100 Safeway gift card weekly (40 weeks), the school would receive $160. If all TIS families (300) bought a weekly Safeway card, the school would receive $48,000! Paying for Scrip can be with checks or credit cards. If using a credit card there is a $500 minimum order, as there is a 3% fee to process. At one can register used cards (i.e. Safeway, QFC, Fred Meyers); each time your card is swiped the school receives money. Please consider using Scrip!

Alumni Panel
Six TIS Alumni (two from each track) shared their experience transitioning from TIS to various schools (private and public). Most found the transition was easy, especially if they had friends attending the school. The class sizes were much larger, and one student commented this encouraged her to become more independent as the teacher was busy helping all in class. Some classes were small, which were comfortable for most all alumni. It was somewhat of a challenge with academic skills as students were not as familiar with some words in math or sciences (the students had learned math and science at TIS in the immersion language). Students caught up quite easily. The alumni continue to maintain contact with other TIS graduates, and even attend some of the same schools with alumni. In retrospect, alumni wished TIS taught art, P.E., and music with students outside of their immersion track (this is now currently the practice at TIS). Students were happy to have had small classes at TIS as the teacher had an opportunity to know the students’ skills and strengths.
Some students continued in their immersion languages, and two were learning other languages. Parents of the alumni encouraged their children to maintain their language skills, as their brains continue to develop. Other parents thought the immersion foundation was strong enough and encouraged other school opportunities.
Finally, the alumni encouraged parents to ask their children their wishes when choosing a middle school and if they want to stay in language classes. Thank you to the students and parents for attending. Their perspective is interesting and beneficial to the TIS community.

Auction Update
Carrie Banks, co-chair, with Jennifer Farmer and Jennifer Cooperman, encouraged all to look forward to the Fall 2009 auction as the planning has begun. The chairs are looking for ways to make this a ‘greener and cleaner’ auction. First, “Save-the-date” cards will be given to families with the “Welcome Packet” in the fall. Secondly, invitations will be sent through the web on evite.
Families will have an opportunity to sign up a week before the auction for “20 Parties”. They are looking for volunteers to organize a party (i.e. scavenger hunt, dinner for moms, bowling party for dads and daughters). Please contact one of the three chairs to let them know how you can help with the auction.

Wine Event
Cheryl Meloy, co-chair of the wine event, encouraged all to sign up for the wine event May 16, 2009, from 7:00 to 10:00 PM. Martha and Bill Dieter have generously offered their site once again for the event. Tickets cost $35/person or $60/couple. Again this year the Wall-of-Wines (a variety of wines) will be available. A new item, the Wall-of-Wine-Wonders, will offer a variety of wine supplies; (i.e. charms, glasses). Katherine Cole, writer for The Oregonian FoodDay, will run the Blind-Tasting-Station. Last year TIS raised $2500. If you would like more information or have wines or energy to donate, contact Cheryl at

Update on Strategic Planning & Parking


Dr. Grasmuck reminds parents and friends providing transportation to the children to be mindful of the urgent need to drive with greater awareness. PLEASE:

1. Don’t park illegally and facing the wrong direction.
2. Don’t block pedestrian walkways with cars.
3. Don’t back up without looking for children or other cars.
4. Don’t leave your car while blocked illegally
5. Don’t talk on your cell phones when driving near the school.

Overall, please park legally, look astern, remain in vehicle when not in parked areas, and stay off your phone.
It was recommended to repaint the lines and purchase signs, which can be placed on the roads. Dr. Grasmuck stated the roads are public, and signs end up sitting back so far, one cannot see them. Someone suggested crossing guards to work in the morning and afternoon (fifth graders?). Dr. Grasmuck will bring this positive suggestion to the committee this next week.

Dr. Grasmuck stated the Strategic Plan with the Values and Mission Statement is almost completed. The TIS core values (honesty, respect, collaboration, responsibility, diversity, and passion for learning) and the single mission statement have been completed. By 2020, TIS would like to be recognized as a center for excellence in education. The final document will be ready soon for all parents. According to Michelle Kerin, the April 9th School Board meeting will vote to adopt the Strategic Plan. To learn the specifics, go to the website.

Dr. Orsini Update, and other TIS Board information

Michelle Kerin, Board President, stated “In-The-Know” will have a monthly column from the Board. Please read this and learn more about your school.

Michelle reported Dr. Orsini will be in the area March 30-April 3, 2009. A schedule will be posted for those interested in meeting and talking with him. The Transition Team (three board members, two administrative staff, and Stephen Grasmuck) are actively helping with the process.

The next board meeting will be April 9, 2009. At this meeting the Strategic Plan will be adopted. The May 21, 2009, board meeting will be the annual budget meeting and voting for new officers.

The Customs House: the full application was turned in Thursday, the 10th of March, to the Department of Education. It will take between two weeks to one month to hear the results. If you have comments, questions, or suggestions please send emails to

The Capstone travelers are having a great time. To learn more and hear reports, check out the blogs on the TIS website.

The next PTO meeting will be held 4/8/9, at 6:30 to 8:00 PM.

Respectfully Submitted,

Debbie Rink
PTO Secretary