Letters to the Editor

Letter from Debbie Boyle Regarding Middle School PTO

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Dear Editor

Five (5) South Plainfield Board of Education members passed a policy with (4) No votes initiated by three (3) members of the Policy Committee with first reading June 21, 2017 and second reading July 19, 2017,  which states that no Board of Education members could serve on a PTO executive board

PTO Middle School Executive Board met end of April, 2017 to discuss the future of the PTO for 2017/2018
Executive Board approached numerous persons to step up and continue with the Middle School PTO - all requests were received in the negative
All scheduled events for the Middle School students were completed and all bills were paid in June and July 2017
Beginning of July Executive Board discussed the annual donation for South Plainfield Middle School Scholarship for graduating seniors which were always given to the Visions 2001 Education Foundation for numerous years.  These scholarships were initiated by this PTO and wished for the next PTO to be able to continue to do
Middle School Treasurer and President brought this forward to the Treasurer of Visions 2001 Ed Foundation - a 501 c 3 by approval of PTO Executive bd
This Scholarship Program , as in years past, was agreed upon and set in place for 2017/2018 while this Executive Board was still in place
Executive Board Treasurer returned from a week long out of state college visit with her child she turned over the check for Scholarships in the amount of $3,700 to the Treasurer of the Visions 2001 Ed Foundation501 c 3, which was decided upon in the beginning of July and was a past practice
May, 2017, a PTO meeting was hosted for review of the financials - check book, check stubs and bank statements.  Five persons attended and only three wished to review same
No fundraising funds were received after June 30, 2017
Funds were spent as follows:
Multiple seminars costing from $1,500 to $3,500 - Bullying, anti drugs/alcohol
This PTO paid for "Steered Straight" one year after the seminar took place because Student Council had NO funds - cost $1,500
Dances with DeeJay, Police Presence, which incurred costs - 8th grade Dinner Dance - catered - decorations - Dee Jay
7th grade pool parties with lunch for students and staff with DeeJays and Italian Ice from a vendor
Teacher appreciation breakfast

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https://ssl.gstatic.com/ui/v1/icons/mail/images/cleardot.gifIce Cream Social - Yearbook signing for 8th grade paid for by this PTO because Student Council had NO funds
Pizza Party for the Trunk or Treat Winning classes who donated treats
Honor Roll Picnics with lunch and dessert
Paid for students who could not afford the cost of the Washington DC trip for numerous years
Paid for total refurbishing of the center court pond that vandals destroyed by throwing a park bench off the roof of the Middle School into the Pond - after continued repairs by request of the principal - students used the pond for tranquility, science projects and watched the fish and wild life who were born at the pond site
Paid for an Ice Machine that was requested, since 2014, by the Staff, for the students that had no ice for sporting events and school events
Paid for multiple microwaves to replace microwaves that no longer worked by request of the staff
An ELMO overhead projector for use by a teacher for the classroom
Kid Stuff Book fundraiser for the Washington DC trip to benefit those who sold books that went to their personal account
Hosted numerous volleyball tournaments with food donations by Greg Lind and the Police PBA for a student who had brain cancer; teacher from Grant who had colon cancer and a teacher from Kennedy School with cancer
Donated $3,000 to the High School Peer Leaders for professional training so that they would come to the Middle School to work with the students because of all the complaints received by parents about Middle School students who were bullying each other and shunning lifelong friends
The PTO helped to sponsor Trunk or Treat - funds raised by Public Celebrations were donated to the musical art boosters who participated in event
Fundraiser for the students who were going to Cooperstown
Donation requested by the Superintendent for New Teacher Orientations
This PTO asked that a survey be sent out to the Middle School students asking what type of Dance they would like for 2017 - that survey did not go out
This PTO asked that REMINDS be reinstated for parent notification on all events -- that was not reinstated
The PTO posted all events on the PTO website and the PTO facebook - our files were all the press releases, newspaper articles with pictures and flyers
When the former PTO was handed over to this Executive Board PTO, we received no paperwork
We began the PTO from scratch.
Financials are required to be held for 7 years and can be viewed.  This PTO was NOT a 501 c 3, it was a nonprofit and did not have to fill out a Form 990 unless $25,000 was received in a year.
The PTO by-laws were written by an attorney.  Our by-laws stated that in the event of dissolution any funds remaining would be given to the South Plainfield Middle School when dissolved.  There is $14.32 remaining.  The checking account was closed once all checks were cashed. 3 firms were asked by us to Audit our books - 2 prominent firms stated they do not do audits because too time consuming and too expensive; and the 3rd firm who does the State and Local PBA's stated they could do the audit but it would cost $7,500 to $10,000.

The Past PTO Middle School Executive Board were:  Debbie Boyle, President; Nicole Plate, Vice President; Treasurer Eileen Brady; Tree Olano - Public Relations; Suzanne Butrico was the Webmaster and Jenn Falcone was the Facebook Coordinator where meetings and events were posted.

Debbie Boyle

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