Joyce Middle School PTO

Meeting Minutes

November 17, 2009


Officers In attendance:  Penny Nichols Cordero, Carolyn LeBlanc, Vicki Drougas, and Marybeth Dixon

Attendees:  5 parents, 2 students (to assist Mrs. McLean)

School Principal:  Mr. Qualey

Faculty Members:  Ms. Ginny McLean


Guest Speaker:    7th grade math teacher, Mrs. McLean, introduced Study Island, an online program that math students are using to supplement their in-class learning.  The program was brought to the Joyce four years ago.  Mrs. McLean believes it helps the students learn their math.  Each term the students are required to earn a certain number of “blue ribbons” on Study Island.  They earn these by getting 80% or more of the questions correct within a topic.  The students can play the games for that topic to build an understanding prior to attempting to earn their blue ribbon.  They also receive hard copy worksheets in class to prepare them.  Mrs. McLean is able to track progress of the students, how often they log in, the lessons completed, and how they have performed on those lessons.  Over the course of the year, the students will earn 25 blue ribbons.  In her class, Mrs. McLean posts the list of students that have achieved blue ribbons, which she finds to be a motivator to the students. 

This year, Study Island Science has been introduced into the 8th grade program.

Principal’s Report:  Mr. Qualey provided an update on the following topics:

Magazine Drive Winners:  36 students will take a limo ride during lunch on November 18t

Report Cards:  Term One report cards going home on November 20th.  Parent Teacher Conferences will be held on December 1st

Winterfest Concert: December 17th at 7pm

Ski/Snowboard Club:  52 students signed up

MCAS Results:  How close we are to proficient is about the same as last year.

School Council:  Will focus on

Approving the handbook

Developing a school improvement plan (2 year plan) based on 6 district goals – target to approve in February

Developing ideas on how to get parents involved

Homework Club:  The homework club is run by Mrs. Daggett and her daughters.  They have received donations to keep it running for 25 weeks and are still awaiting word on other donations.  Mr. Qualey is sending our additional letters.  The Homework Club is available on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons from 2:15 – 3:10 and is geared toward students struggling to finish their homework and/or finishing it correctly.  It is open to everyone but if the numbers get to large, it will be restricted to that in need.  Mrs. Daggett assists the students who need it while some students work independently.

Parent Teacher Conferences:  Quick 3-4 minute update on performance.  If you need more time, you can schedule a team meeting.  The 7th grade teachers will be piloting / experimenting with an online sign up tool –

Assembly – the SRO funded speaker, Jeff Yalden ( ) from MTV, who did a talk titled “Take Time to Think”  The goal of the assembly was to accept everyone for who they are.  This involved discussion about respect, treating students with differences with respect, respecting parents, etc.

Treasurer’s Report:  highlight of income and expenditures to date

Fundraising Report:  Carolyn talked about the kick off to the Holiday Cash Raffle fundraiser which will start on Monday, November 23rd.  We will be promoting via the newspaper.  We will also be doing the Gift Card program again this year for Christmas delivery.

President’s Report: 

Past Activities – on Election Day we had an un-manned bake sale.  There was a reasonable amount of food.  However, the suggested donation confused people.  Best to price everything the same.

Upcoming Events:

Holiday Concert – we will be selling candy, water and 50/50 raffle tickets.  Proceeds from eh 50/50 will benefit the Band and Chorus.  We will also draw the winners of the Holiday Cash Raffle

Lowell Devils:  On Sunday, February 28th.  The Lowell Devils will provide a player or other member to come to the school.  There was some discussion about the best time to have that person come in.  It was suggested that the Wednesday or Thursday prior to the game would be best.  We will also be doing a 50/50 raffle at the game.

Book Fair:  BookEnds will be doing the Book Fair again.  Will be the week of November 30th as this is the week of Parent Teacher Conferences, and we hope that having the fair open to the parents will bring more sales.


Committee/Volunteer Opportunities:  There are a number of events coming up.  We can use assistance.  Information can be found on the website and via our newsletter.

Funding Requests:

6th Grade Field Trip:  December 8th trip to see A Christmas Carol.  Approved $1,000

Parent Seminar:  Parent Deb Ryan would like to bring a parent seminar by Joani Geltman to Woburn.  There was discussion about seeing if the Kennedy would be interested in co-sponsoring.  $500 approved for the seminar, to be split with the Kennedy if they are interested.  Deb will look into possible dates.