Howe International Magnet School

June 2007

PTO Pages



Thank You to Denise DellaVilla for offering to serve as our new PTO President!

A huge thank you to all PTO volunteers this year!!

It is hard to believe that we are approaching the conclusion of another fruitful year to Howe School. Thank you to our many, many PTO volunteers. None of the fun and educational activities that PTO offers throughout the year would be possible without your generous donation of time, energy and love. Thank you to the school staff, which has supported us, often behind the scenes. Thank you to Joanne Veglia, Brenda Morrow, Jan Smith and Rose Sicilia, faithful faculty members of PTO, and to Barbara Coffey for endless hours of support and encouragement of PTO activities. Finally, thank you for that extra-supportive group of parents who attended regular PTO meetings and volunteered time and time again during events (you know who you are). Your support of the day-to-day management of this organization made it possible for us to offer so many opportunities to the student body of Howe School.

Staff Appreciation Luncheon
PTO sponsored a delicious luncheon on Thursday, May 24 to honor the dedicated staff and faculty of Howe School. Thank you to the many parents who donated food to this event. Everyone ate well and had a very happy time. PTO extends a special thanks to Barbara Bishop-Ward for organizing and managing this successful event.

Gardening Day
The school grounds are looking simply beautiful due to Spring Clean-up Day on Saturday, May 19. Thank you to the Howe families who volunteered to help out in the effort to make our school more attractive. Coming out on a weekend requires special dedication. Special thanks to Kate Britten for chairing the committee and to the Cornell Cooperative Extension for donations.

Look forward to yearbooks arriving the first week of June. There will be a limited number of yearbooks for sale once they arrive. See Brenda Morrow or Barb Metcalfe if you are interested in purchasing a yearbook.

Mothers' Day Plant Sale
Howe students really had fun picking out flowers for their moms again this year. What a terrific way to celebrate Mothers' Day and springtime. The flowers were beautiful and the art room smelled like a garden. Flower choices included several colors of petunias, impatiens and celosia; yellow and purple pansies, white begonias and red salvia (always a favorite).

PTO would like to extend a warm thank you to the many volunteers who helped to make this year's plant Sale successful: Allicia Petraccione and Sabina, Maddie and Calvin Cleworth and Emma an dTimothy Cotter for helping to get the plants into the art room the day before the sale; and to Cora Armstrong, Denise DellaVilla, Janet Hamila, Sabrina Johnson and Robin Ostrander for their care and help with the children as each student selected the flowers they wished to bring home.

In addition, PTO extends our appreciation to the following for your added support: all the classroom teachers and substitutes who brought your classes down on that day, and Mrs.. Coffey for your help with scheduling the sale and locating it in the art room again this year. Finally, a special thanks to Country Gardens (on Consaul Road) for your continued support of Howe Magnet School by providing us with beautiful flowers at a reasonable price! (Country Gardens has been providing flowers to us for many, many years). We hop all you moms enjoyed the flowers as much as we did!

Book Fair
Thank you to Janet Hamila for chairing a most successful Book Fair. This year's fair, with its theme "Catch The Reading Wave," brought fun and lots of books to our children. Thank you also to Sandra Dutcher-Kustyn, Debbie Wilke, Barb Bishop-Ward, Sue Micheli-Glantzis, Emma Ward, Brielle Lazzari, Melissa Hamila, Michael Hamila (who was the Curious George), and Alex Metcalfe for helping throughout the week and during the evening of Math Night. Each and every parent who purchased a book brought joy to a child -- thank you so much for your support.

PTO heartily thanks Barbara Metcalf for her help with this and so many other events and activities this year. Barb has helped with School Banking, with Yearbook, and most especially and most awesomely within her role as PTO Treasurer. The Treasurer's job is very difficult and requires a meticulous mind and a keen sense of business. Barbara has kept all of us on our toes with regard to finances. Thank you for agreeing to serve an additional year in your position, a staggering of terms will make our organization stronger.

A Retirement
Howe's wonderful administrative para, Mariann Gold will be retiring this June. PTO extends thanks to Mrs. Gold for the many ways she helped us serve this school. We wish you happiness and many hours of relaxation as you pursue your own interests with vigor. You deserve it!!

A Final Word from Ways and Means
PTO thanks Tammy James for all of her had work at home and in school to help our organization raise an awful lot of money this year. PTO uses these funds to provide for playground equipment, classroom supplies, class trips, the Fall Festival, books for the Library, a float entry in the Schenectady Holiday Parade, The International Dinner, Children's Theater performances and much more. Tammy has helped us provide fun and educational activities throughout the year, all of which promote healthy and happy living. We are very lucky to have Tammy serving as the PTO Vice-President for another year.

Fund-raising Totals

Fall Catalog $5,064.09
Fall Festival $499.50
Enjoy the City $325.00
Donations in the Fall $181.50
Spirit Wear $138.14
Total Prior to January $6,208.23
Pies and Cookie Dough $2,449.15
Wal-Mart Match $1,000.00
Spirit Wear sold at Int. Dinner $199.00
Spirit Wear sold at Book Fair $27.00
Total since January $3,675.15
Grand Total $9,883.38

Remaining profit possible through t-shirt sales is $273.00. If we can get the word out that there are shirts still available for purchase, we can easily make our $10,000 goal.

Grant from Wal-Mart
PTO thanks Wal-Mart for including Howe School in the $1,000 matching grant program. This grant matched funds raised during our Cookie Dough and Pie Fund-raiser. Thanks to Karen Kirstein for securing this donation.

Painting Howe School
If you enjoy painting, PTO has the service opportunity for you. Barbara Ward and her faithful committee will be painting the Main Office and first floor hallway an attractive and fresh color on Saturday, June 9. The paint will be donated by Sherwin Williams. Howe School could use your help on that day. Please cone with brushes and rollers.

Current Wish List

  • Mrs. Davis wishes for a cover for the piano. The piano was refurbished a few years ago (paid for by PTO) but is now becoming damaged due to exposure.

  • Miss Butler wishes for a portable basketball hoop for the small playground (a hoop by the basketball area that is lower to accommodate smaller people - perhaps attached to the pole of the regular hoop).

  • Rose Sicilia wishes for shades for the small windows at the very top of the library. The sun is blinding in the a.m.

  • Mrs. Coffey wished for some wooden picnic tables so students would be able to eat outdoors during nice weather.

Wish Met
At the last PTO meeting, a parent met Mrs. Lombardo's wish for an electric pencil sharpener. Thank you for this donation.

A Fond Farewell to our Outgoing Presidents and Secretary

Words cannot express PTO's gratitude for the devotion Ruth Cotter and Catherine Canavan put into the position of co-president. They volunteered countless hours of time and poured boundless energy into revamping their office and the workings of PTO, into making the organization run smoothly and efficiently, into helping volunteers feel valuable and happy in their own service, and into forging a strong bond between the administration, the teachers and staff, and parents. You selflessly gave time, talent and treasure. A special thank you to your families for being supportive as you took care of Howe School (Dave, Emma, Timothy Cotter and Matt, Matthew, Julian, Olivia and Elizabeth Canavan).

As for myself, it has been a wild adventure working with you all. I have had the pleasure of serving with wonderfully strong, good people these past two years. Thank you to my family (Darius, Aleda and Miskas) for bearing with me in my own efforts. Don't hesitate to phone or e-mail me in the future if I can ever be of any help at all. Take care and Bon Voyage!

- PTO Pages respectfully submitted by Karen Kirstein, PTO Secretary. Please don't hesitate to call Karen at 393-5509 or e-mail at with any questions or concerns.

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