September 25, 2013 - Minutes of the Home and School Meeting

Prince Street Elementary School

Home and School Meeting
Wednesday, September 25, 2013


Home and School president Shelley Muzika called the meeting to order and invited all the people present to introduce themselves. She described the way the meetings usually go. Minutes are posted on the website.

Funding Updates

Shelley shared a recent bank statement. We have about $4,500 we raised last year to support our activities this year. We will aim to raise a similar amount for activities next year.

Heather MacEwen is the new treasurer. Our main fundraiser is the Spring Fling, a school and community fun time. Fundraising is not the focus, but we do try to bring in some money through bake sales, ticket sales on a basket of donated items, and similar evnts.

Some of the uses of Home and School funds include Grade 6 closing and some awards, staff-teacher appreciation, recognitions of retiring staff, and sometimes help for families that have special fundraising needs.

Provincial Home and School

Provincial Home and School has leadership training sessions in the fall. These are free and open to help people build skills and confidence to be able to take part in their local home and schools.

The provincial Home and School semi-annual meeting will take place October 15th. We can send up to 5 people from Prince Street School as voting members, and the Prince Street home and School will cover the costs for anyone interested. The website is a good resource to see what other schools do about similar challenges. There are sub-committees doing work on some issues, and you don't have to be involved in your local home and school to be part of a sub-committee.

The provincial Home and School offers annual Parent Leadership Grants. We have benefitted from these in the past. There will be more information about grant programs later in the year.

There will be an Annual General Meeting for the Provincial home and school in April, and there will be resolutions discussed and voted on. Resolutions can be on any topic related to policy that is of interest to parents. Resolutions go to the Minister of Education or to the English School Board, and these officials are required to respond. Home and School is an important voice on questions of policy.

Principal's Report
Erin Johnston

Erin shared a written report, including the up-to-date staff list. There's one change since the Handbook: Kerri Lee Mallard is hired as the A+ teacher. Jaynie MacLean, the Youth Service Worker for this program will be going on a sick leave and someone will replace her.

There are children from Charlottetown Rural and Colonel Gray who take part in the A+ program, which serves kids with some particular needs such as behavioural needs, but it is housed here at Prince Street.

The English Additional Language teacher is Lori Johnston. The number of EAL students is lower this year: just over 30 students.

Data from assessments are in but are still confidential. In October there will be a writing prompt on explanatory writing. The school will do this kind of exercise at least twice, perhaps three times. Exercises will be appropriate to grade level.

Supervised homework support: Anyone can go as long as they get picked up at the end of the session. Last year, there were up to ten people in the Homework Club.

Breakfast Program: Amazing volunteers come in regularly and consistently to support the breakfast program. The need for volunteers usually comes about when Holland College and UPEI students aren't available -- December, May, and June.

Milk: Tomorrow is free milk day, on the Terry Fox Run. Anyone who wants it gets a free milk. The milk supplier gives one free day every year.

Feedback about Meet the Teacher Night: This year's meet the teacher was less structured and formal, and feedback was generally good. There was time to look around and chat. Cupcakes were well received (rather than blueberries and ice cream).

HPV needles were received without a lot of drama.

Our Public Health Nurse in the past was Michelle Miller, and she has been reassigned. We will have a new person assigned soon.

Volunteers: It is hard to keep up with all the volunteers!

"Donna's Den" Library Project: There was an update on "Donna's Den": A former student of Prince Street died of cancer, and her family and friends took up a collection and wanted to do something in her memory, so they created a "nook" in the library. She had worked for M&M furniture who donated washable furniture. The mural is painted by Warren Reeson -- and he added to the mural and included Donna's name. Colleen Mullen-Doyle, Liz Pendergast, and Philip Brown coordinated the project, and there was a good community gathering to unveil the space. There will be a news release.

Grant application last year for PEI 2014 -- Liz Pendergast and Warren Reeson applied. He's going to create a mural along the top of the bookshelves in the library, depicting evolution through time. Work can't start until January 2014, according to the terms of the grant. There will be an unveiling and opening for that in June 2014.

Professional Development Day, September 20: There were options for teachers to choose among, and the educators reported an excellent day.

Coupon book fundraiser: There was concern from one parent about the cash-only fundraiser and children carrying larger amounts of money on the bus on a day when people know they might be carrying a lot of money. It is really hard to deal with cheques that don't work out, and that led to the decision to deal with cash only. Some parents drop the cash off at the office rather than send it with their kids. This saves work and embarrassment. However, the safety challenge was acknowledged.

Terry Fox Run: This is a schoolwide event, scheduled for tomorrow if the weather is fine. Otherwise, it will be rescheduled until the next day.

Puppy Project: This continues. Kids take big responsibilities with the puppies. Eileen Higginbotham runs this program. She gave a session about the project at the provincial Home and School last year, and it was really amazing. She talked about the way that the dogs respond to the kids really sensitively and help them calm down and settle.

Snack Cupboard: There is a snack cupboard for kids who need something to eat, and donations are always welcome. It must be completely peanut free. Any of those peanut imitation products are also not allowed. It is too hard to distinguish them from real nut products.

ID Tags: It is an advantage that Erin doesn't know anyone, so she chases everyone down the hall and asks them to wear a tag, even if they think they are known to the school. It is very important for the safety of all the children in the school that all visitors check in at the office. 

Field Trips: There was an update on upcoming firled trips. Field trips will be combined with curriculum outcomes.

Math assessments: There's a result back in November. Assessments are based on 2 intense days, and during these days, educators learn a lot about the kids. The assessments give info to the Province about what they need to provide support for teachers on -- and also provide good school-based information as a group and as individual students to help bring students along. Sometimes our scores are not necessarily a true reflection of students' marks. EAL students are not on modifications or IEPs -- so it is not allowed to give them any extra support. This is not really fair. It's a snapshot -- one test on one day. It may be a bad day for lots of students for lots of reasons, but it provides valuable information. It is not the be-all end-all.

Welcome to Kindergarten: The school is in the process of applying for a Welcome to Kindergarten grant for $1,000 in support of last year's Welcome to Kindergarten events and process.

Christmas concerts: The regular music teacher is on parental leave and her replacement is here until 2 weeks before Christmas concert. The administration is working through a plan with the music teachers. There are two tentative dates planned (submitted last year), but we're looking at all kinds of different options. Also looking at other venues to hold the concert(s) in the future, but we probably won't go that route this year with so many other transitions. Good discussions are happening.

Joint Occupational Health and Safety is underway and does need a parent rep. Erin will check with Dana Doyle who was on the committee last year.

Wireless Pilot Project

Shelley and Peter filled in Erin on the wireless pilot project when she started as principal. Bell Aliant paid for the year. The year is up. The school asked for it to be donated again. However, this has not yet happened and disconnection could be imminent. The 1st six months came out of Bell's marketing budget, and the next 6 months out of the sales rep's marketing budget. Any first 6 months of services is at a discount ($48) and then goes up to the regular price of $75. Bell Aliant has extended us by another month so we can make a decision. Deadline: October 23rd to switch over if we're going to do so. We would get it under a new name and so would get another 6 months at the discounted rate. A parent suggested looking into the office of a free iPad if you are a new customer. This could be used in a classroom.

Without the wifi, staff accessing the main wired Internet is very cumbersome. It is slow and the network often is not working properly. They can only access computers that are hard-wired here and can't use own devices. TeacherNet is a workaround. Free internet from Bell, Peter Rukavina and a provincial Home and School rep Ken Williams donated time to install 7 modems (which are all ours) throughout the school. There is wifi in most areas it would be needed. Home & School paid about $200. This is permitted as long as there's not interconnection between Dept of Ed system and TeacherNet -- as long as there is a firewall. Teachers must have an access code to log in. This set-up is quicker. Teachers can link up information in the smartboards and LCD projectors. Some staff are using this a lot. Others not so much so.

There was a letter sent to the helpful and supportive sales rep Paul Murray, describing the need for more time to engage more staff. That is still ongoing. Students on laptops could access information on the TeacherNet, supervised by a teacher.

Benefits are tremendous. It would be a real shame not to have it for another year. We need another year to evaluate the effectiveness, including the cost effectiveness.

Service group Telephone Pioneers: Have they been approached for a donation?
Could be a fit.

Is there a lower cost through Eastlink? Do we own modems or routers or both? This needs to be confirmed. Maybe Eastlink would give us a year of free trial.

Wireless is coming, probably within 5 years, to all the schools.

Home and School would decide what we could contribute for the year. This might be done through an executive meeting, since the executive is responsible for doing a budget for the year.

Wish List and Fundraising Decisions

Is there a wish list for items for the school and for classrooms? This would also be on the agenda for the executive.

There is a family in the school in which a parent has a terminal illness. We have had a few situations like this and it has been our tradition to make a donation of between $100 and $125 to families in need. Staff did a very successful potluck fundraiser for the family today.

We need to get bank signing switched over and will then provide a cheque.

In the past, there have been a lot of needs in the school for a lot of different things. The idea with Home and School fundraising is not to buy regular things that should be provided in the classroom by the Department of Education or the school district. Last year, our fund was depleted at the beginning of the year because of a major contribution to playground equipment repairs.

Erin was asked to ask staff to compile a list of items they have on their wish list and how much they cost. Newer staff especially often don't have "stuff" accumulated. Give them 2 weeks to make a list (within reason). Rank their list, please.

Home & School executive will meet with the principal to vet the list.

Government services warehouse: A parent said that there may be equipment that is in storage and that the school could have access to at no cost. You can make appointment and go out and get material. Tressa Peters will get the information for Erin.

PEITF convention is 3 weeks away. Some people might want a budget to buy stuff at the convention. Receipts to Barb. Executive will try to meet soon.

EAs did not participate in the "wish list" in the past, but resource were included. 

Home and School has given out between $2,000 and $4,000 through this fundraising money.

It was suggested we work on annual playground fundraiser to create a slush fund for the next time playground equipment needs work and replacing, because it is too hard to raise the funds within one year. School boards and Dept of Education do not contribute to equipment or repairs. 

Next Meeting: November 6th, 6:30 p.m.

Your feedback is welcome on minutes! What do you need more information about? Contact with comments or questions. 

Minutes of May 7, 2013 Meeting

Prince Street received $800 from the PEI Home and School Federation for 2 workshops and Young Author's Night. For the two workshops, snacks will be provided and on Young Author's Night, we will cover the cost of pictures of the students and their family. In the Math Workshop, twenty people (parents and teachers) attended.

Principal's Report

The Provincial Heritage Fair will take place at the Confederation Centre on May 16th. The grade 5 and 6 winners from Prince Street will attend.

On May 15th, there will be a Healthy Eating Workshop through the Healthy Eating Alliance. Registration will go home.

On April 21st, the IsleAward was presented by Peter Rukavina to Eileen Higginbotham in Summerside.

On April 24th, Terry MacIsaac and three students went to Disney in Florida for the day. They left Halifax at 6:30 am, arrived at Disney at 10:30 am, left Disney at 8:30 pm, and arrived back in Halifax at 12:30 am. The trip was through Dreams Take Flight.

On April 26th, there was a P.D. Day. Teachers prepared lesson plans, revisited yearly time lines in writing, and planned writing assessments to pass on to next years teachers.

The school received $2500 for FM systems in the KC classroom.

May 14th is Young Author's Night.

May 14th, the school will attend Colonel Gray's production of Peter Pan. at the Confederation Centre. The cost is $5.

May 15th, there is a Healthy Eating Workshop.

May 16th is Provincial Heritage Fair.

May 21 is the Kindergarten Parent Meeting.

May 22nd is the International Dinner.

May 28th is Welcome to Kindergarten for the parents and kids at 6:30.

May 31st is the Spring Fling from 5:30 to 7:30.

June 3rd is for the incoming Kindergarten kids. they come for the morning and the present kindergarten kids have the day off. 46 kids are registered for next year ands 40 of them are assessed.

June 11th kindergarten, grade 2 and grade 3 go to Camp Seggie.

June 20th Grade 1 goes to Rustico Beach.

June 20th Grade 4 and 5 go to Shining Waters.

June 20th Grade 6 goes to Sandspit.

June 25th is the Grade 6 closing. The Home and School will provide snacks.

June 25th is the last day of school.

Election of 2013-2014 Executive

There were Home and School elections for the executive positions for the 2013-2014 school year. They are as follows:

  • President: Shelley Muzika
  • Vice President: Dana Doyle
  • Secretary: Jane Ledwell
  • Tresurer: Heather MacEwen

Minutes of April 9, 2013 Meeting

The fourth meeting of the 2012-2013 school year was held on April 9, 2013.

Vice-Principal's Report

On Wednesday April 17th, there will be a numeracy workshop for parents of kindergarten to grade 2 from 6:30 to 8:00 pm. It deals with how math is being taught to these grades.

Prince Street is doing some fundraising for Easter Seals. There was a school dance for grades 4-6. $72 had been collected at the door and there was a canteen that provided pop, chips, and ice cream bars. There is also a penny drop going on and a raffle for a 5 pound chocolate bar. Tickets are 25 cents. Paxton Cole, the Easter Seals Ambassador, will be at Prince Street on Wednesday April 17 at 10 am.

There will be an Early Years Assesment for kids coming into kindergarten next year. This will show where the kids are and where they need to improve for the up coming year.

The grade 6 girls have had the HPV vaccination on April 9th.

The school has had a assessment done by the school board. This helps to show the needs for kids who have special needs for academics, social, etc. This is done for the English School Board to have the correct staff in place for the following school year.

The school has been given a new FM system as a model to show how it works.

The school Heritage Fair is on April 18th for grades 4-6. It will be open to the public from 1-2 pm. The provincial Heritage Fair is May 16th at the Confederation Centre.

There was a refugee experience for students at Trinity United Church on Wednesday, April 3rd. They learned what it was like for refugees and the how the camps work. Grades 4 and 5 took place in this activity.

French Week is from April 8th-12th.

There will be a Skate-A-Thon on Tuesday April 23. The money collected goes back into the classes for next year. 200 dollarsis alloted each teacher and 50 dollars is alloted to each E.A.

Friday, April 26 is a P.D. Day so there will be no school on that day.

Saturday April 27, there is an Awards night in Summerside. Eileen Higginbotham's two dogs, Kannon and Kaboom, are recipants of this year's ISLAWARD.

On May 14th, the school will go to the Confederation Centre to watch Colonel Gray perform Peter Pan. Tickets will be roughly 10 dollars.

The Coupon fundraiser raised 877 dollars for the school.

The capital budget for the school includes: shelving for two classes, over hang above the doors near the parking lot, 2 new sets of blinds, 3 new chairs for the office, a vacuum cleaner, a wet vac, and a touch-up to the paint and a new gym for the school.

In May, there will be Young Author's Night, meeting s for the new kindergarten kids that will be coming to the school in September and one for the parents and a book inventory going on.

President's Report

There will be the Annual General Meeting for the provincial association will be Saturday April 13th. There are resolutions that will be voted on at the AGM. The resolutions are: Parent Representations on School Committees, equal representations for each of the family of schools, drug and alcohol abuse, a survey on student health survey and schools have representation on Health P.E.I. Board and vice versa.

Next Meeting

The next meeting will be held Tuesday, May 7th at 6:30 p.m.

Minutes of February 22, 2013 Meeting

President's Report

On Friday February 22nd, there will be a movie night at the school. The movie will be Journey 2: The Mysterious Island, and it's intended for older students, which was highlighted on the notice that went home.

Eileen Higginbotham has started a blog about the puppies that are in the school ( Also, the dogs have been awarded the IslwAward. It will be given out in Summerside in April.

At the corners of Euston and Prince Street, the audio and buttons don't work. The audio had been turned off for the time being as it was too loud during the night and disturbing the residents in the area. The parts have been sent to Toronto to be adjusted.

Staff Appreciation Week was February 11-15. Parents brought in snacks from Monday to Thursday and some parents made the staff lunch on Friday. There was gift bags also given out to staff. There was also gift cards given out to the bus drivers and the crossing guards.

Terry MacIsaac will be in Toronto the week of February 25 to March 1st. He will be attending a conference and receive an awarded as he is one of 30 principals form across Canada to be picked as one of the best principals in Canada.

There was a survey done about health which was done about grades 5-6. The results can be found on the Home and School website.

Principal's Report

Parent Teacher Interviews will be on Thursday March 7th in the evening and all day on Friday March 8th. Report cards will be going out on Tuesday March 5th.

There will be another fundraiser done starting on Tuesday February 26th and the money and orders will be due back on Tuesday March 12.

The Dental Clinic will be starting on February 25th. There will no cost to families. Permission slips will be sent hone concerning fluoride and cleaning.

On Friday, March 1st, there be an Art Blitz in the afternoon.

On Thursday, March 7th, there will an assembly at 1pm.

Anti- Bullying is on February 27. The kids can wear a pink shirt if they have one.

Trinity United Church will be holding their annual pancake breakfast on Saturday March 9th. The proceeds will go to Prince Street's Breakfast Program.

There will be a baseball clinic put on by the Blue Jays Fund. The cost is free and will be on Tuesdays from 5:30 to 6:30 at the school gym. It will be for grade 4-6 students.

There will be no school on Friday March 29th (Good Friday) and Monday April 1st (Easter Monday) due to it being the Easter weekend.

There was a skate held at Simmons Arena on February 13th (Kindergarten to grade 2) and February 14th (grades 3-6).

The date for the Spring Fling has been set for Friday May 31st.

There is a Parent Engagement Grant of up to $1000. We will be doing a Young Author's Night later in the year.

Date for Next Meeting

The next Home School meeting will be Tuesday April 9th at 6:30 pm.


Terry MacIsaac: One of Canada's Outstanding Principals

We're proud to learn that our school's principal, Terry MacIsaac, has been named one of Canada's Outstanding Principals.  Here's a CBC Compass piece about this award that aired on February 6, 2013:

Minutes of January 16, 2013 Meeting

The third Home and School meeting of the 2012-2013 school year was held on Wednesday, January 16, 2013 in the A+ room at the school. Approximately 12 parents were in attendance, along with Principal Terry MacIsaac, Vice-Principal Colleen Mullen-Doyle and Nepali translator Narayan Dahal.

Principal's Report

Report cards went out on December 3rd. The next set of report cards to go out is on Tuesday, March 5th. There will be Parent-Teacher interviews on the Thursday night and all day Friday.

There was an Art Blitz on December 6th in the afternoon. Some of the art is on display around the school on the walls by each class. There is also framed pictures of authors by each class.

On Wednesday December 19th, Trinity United Church made a full turkey dinner for the entire school of students and staff. They also put on the play Scrooged that evening. $700 dollars was raised which went to the Breakfast Program.

The Junior Choir went to the Delta on December 20th to sing. They also had lunch at the Delta.

The PLIP program ran until mid December, with four students involved. This program is awarded for a second session. The students that are involved are grade 2 students. The program deals with reading and writing. The teacher involved is Sue Lee-Manning.

There will be a movie night on January 18th. The doors opened at 6:15 and the movie started at 6:30.

Ron Tweel is the new director for the school. He will be in the school on January 24th spending time with different classes to get an idea of what goes on in the school.

On January 25th, Natalie Fraser will be leaving. Althea Coady will be filling in Reading Recovery. Joe Burgess will be half time.

On February 1st, is a school development day.

February 25th the Dental Clinic will be at the school for about the next two weeks or so. Parents can opt out of this service. Permission slips will be sent home before hand.

The next fundraiser is Coupon Books. It will start on February 26th and all money and information is due March 12th.

National Literacy Day is on January 27th. There will be activites done in the school to observe this day.

On February 13th kindergarten to grade 2 students will go skating and on February 14th the grade 3-6 students will go skating. The skate will be at Simmons Arena.

President's Report

Staff Appreciation week is February 11-15th. The staff is given snacks during the week and lunch is provided for them on the Friday. On the Friday, parents do yard duty so that the staff can enjoy lunch.

There is a Parent Engagement Fund set up to involve more parents in school life. We can apply for and receive a grant up to $1100 dollars to do activites. For example Young Authors Night. This year Young Authors night will be May 14th.  Last year 5 elementary schools did a joint project at U.P.E.I.

There is a parent survey put out by the Provincial Home and School Association. Parents can find the survey at:

There is a draw every week for 5 weeks.

Prince Street Home and School Association has sent out a letter to City Hall about the signal button not working at Euston Street and Prince Street.

Next Meeting

The next Home and School Meeting is February 19th.


SHAPES Report on Prince Street School

SHAPES stands for "School Health Action, Planning and Evaluation System" and is a provincial survey of students from grades 5 to 12. The results of the 2010-2011 SHAPES survey are available for the province as a whole and school-level results for Prince Street Elementary are also available:

If you have questions about the Prince Street School SHAPES survey results, you can ask Principal Terry MacIssac or bring them up at a Home and School meeting.

Minutes of November 19, 2012 Meeting

A meeting of the Prince Street Home and School was held at the school on November 19, 2012 at 6:30 p.m. in the A+ Room. Approximately 12 parents were in attendance, along with Principal Terry MacIsaac and Vice-Principal Colleen Mullen-Doyle.

Principal's Report

There have been staff changes since the school year has started. Christa Raeburg and Jill MacNeil are both out on maternity leave. Garth McKay is in for Christa Raeburg and Denise MacDonald-Vail is in for Jill MacNeil.

On October 25th (evening) and October 26th (all day) were parent-teacher interviews. There was a good turn out for these interviews.

Susan Lee Manning is in doing the PLIP Program. There are four students that do the  program during the morning. The program helps the students with reading and writing. The program runs until December.

Novemeber 8th, there were two assemblies. The first one was for Remembrance Day. The second one dealt with Bullying. Noella Klawitter was the guest speaker. Noella is visually impaired and a paralympian. She talked about being bullied and being different.

The wireless project that has been set up near the end of last year's school year has been extended for an extra six months. Originally the project was to be six months long. Now it will be until the end of the current school year. The cost is covered by the Home School Association.

Report cards go out December 4th.

The school switched companies for the school pictures. Provincial Studios had been the previous company and has been switched to Light Touch.

On November 9th, there will be a P.D. Day. The topic that will dealt with is Literacy Marks. The literacy marks are down provincially and in the school. The teachers will be looking at ways to improve marks in transactional writing. For ex: How to make a recipe.

The next Art Blitz is Dec 6.

The Christmas Concerts dates are as follows:

  •      December 10th Kindergarten to Grade 3
  •      December 12th Grade 4 to Grade 6

The storm dates for the Christmas Concerts are December 11th for Kindergarten to Grade 3 and December 13th for Grades 4 to Grade 6.
There will be a bake sale table and a Basket Raffle on both nights of the concerts.

Trinity United Church will again be making Christmas Dinner for the students on December 19th. There will a full turkey dinner and juice and treats. In the evening of December 19th, Trinity United Church will be putting on Scrooge at the church. The church will be selling tickets.

The last of school before the Christmas Holidays is Friday December 21st and the first day back after the Holidays is thursday, January 3rd.

On December 7th, is the first movie night held at the school. The movie will start at 6:30 with the doors opening at 6:15p.m. Admission is by donation and there will be a canteen set up with popcorn, juice, and other snacks set up for sale during the movie.

Next Meeting

The next Home and School meeting is Wednesday, January 16th at 6:30 p.m.

Upcoming Events

Some upcoming events on the Home and School calendar:

  • Friday, December 7 is Movie Night at the school. Stay tuned for details.
  • Christmas Concerts at the school are December 10 (Kindergarten to Grade 3) and December 12 (Grades 4 to 6). The Home and School will be selling raffle tickets and baked goods.
  • Trinity United Church will be proving a Christmas Dinner at lunch for the entire school on December 19. Our thanks to the church for this generous project.
  • The next Home and School Meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, January 16 at 6:30 p.m. at the school.

Financial Update, October 4, 2012

Treasurer Shelley Muzika presented the following financial summary at our meeting of October 4, 2012:

Syndicate content