PTO Statement Regarding the 2017 Harney Carney

A heartfelt thanks goes out to everyone who volunteered their time, as well as to those who showed up to enjoy this year’s Harney Carney! It was our largest Harney Carney yet, with more Harney families and friends showing up than ever before. The tortilla-making station was a huge hit with this year’s Mexican Independence Day theme, as were the ever-favorite fishing booth, water balloon pop, cake walk and food carts. We are so thankful to all the families, students and staff who worked hard to make this such a fun event, all while raising funds for our 5th grade promotion, as well as gathering contributions for our Family Resource Center pantry.

We also heard feedback from Harney families about the appropriateness of the vendors at the Carney.  The PTO is taking the necessary steps to align our practices with the district’s policies and regulations by implementing a thorough vetting process that includes the Harney Administration. Please know that the PTO is well-intentioned, and seeks to ensure that our events always reflect our ultimate goals:

  • to support the education of children

  • to ensure an inclusive and safe learning environment for all of our students

  • to provide resources for our student’s families

  • to support our hard-working teachers and staff

We take these parental concerns seriously, and we are working hard to ensure there will be no cause for future concern.

Thank you for showing up, stepping up - and for your understanding.

 

Outdoor Learning Space Progress

A huge thank you to all the families, staff, and community members who came out on Saturday, February 18th for a good old-fashioned work party. We really couldn't have asked for a better crew or a better day. Although the weather forecast promised rain, rain, and more rain, not a drop fell from the sky. Fueled by doughnuts and bagels, this crew did a phenomenal job spreading and compacting gravel, spreading sand, moving a laying pavers, hammering stakes, and setting some very heavy wooden benches in record time. We were done in a little over 2 hours! You can see photos of the work on Instagram (@harneyPTO). If you haven't taken a peek at the nearly-done Outdoor Learning Space, you must. Surrounded by trees and greenery, it feels like Vancouver's best-kept, not-so-secret secret. We still need to set posts, assemble tables, and place tables and benches before the Outdoor Learning Space is ready for students, but we're almost there! If you'd like to help with the final stages of the project, please send and email to harneyvolunteer@gmail.com.

It's that time of year again...

The PTO is looking for a few good volunteers to help lead the way next year! The end of the school year is quickly approaching, so that means it's time to start looking ahead to the 2016-2017 PTO Board Member roster, and we'd love to hear from YOU! 

We have lots of positions within our board, and we welcome ideas and suggestions for new positions. Where else can you create your own title and job description?! 

Our board members are parents, teachers, grandparents, staff - anyone with a dedication and commitment to making our students' experience at Harney an enriching one, as well as ensuring our Harney families are connected to their school and staff.

Current positions include:

  • President    
  • Vice President    
  • Secretary  
  • Treasurer 
  • Marketing
  • Auction
  • Volunteer Coordinator 
  • Fundraising Coordinator                   
  • Donation Coordinator
  • Event Coordinator
  • Appreciation Coordinator

If you are interested in a position on the board, or would just like some more info about the ins and outs of being a PTO board member, please feel free to reach out at harneypto@live.com. We'll be voting on the board members at our next PTO meeting on May 19th at 3:15.

And help us spread the word!

Thanks!                                                                    

                                               

PTO Fundraising Totals & a great big THANK YOU!

We're feeling extremely grateful over here - the turnout for our fundraisers this school year has been phenomenal! We really appreciate all the willing volunteers who have showed up in full force to make these events happen, and the Harney families who have attended or contributed in support of our school and our kids!

The Payback Book fundraiser raised $4875 - a huge uptick since last year! All funds from those sales go directly to our teachers in the form of $100 classroom-supply stipends, and toward teacher grants.

The Harney Carnival netted $1822 (!), and Burgerville Night netted $373.50 - both of which are earmarked for the PTO General Fund (and both of which were significant increases from last year's earnings!)

Hopefully your kids are taking advantage of our after-school clubs, which continue to be funded by the earnings from the Harney Benefit Auction of 2013! Enough funds remain in that account to continue funding the clubs for the forseeable future. And the funds from the 2014 Auction, which were earmarked for Literacy at Harney, have not only funded the purchase of books in the library and in our classrooms, but they afforded Harney the opportunity to implement a new reading program called The Daily 5. 16 teachers attended a training session this summer to learn how to integrate the program into their classes, and those teachers have passed on their training to other Harney educators, via book studies. At this point 2/3 of our teachers have implented the new program, and the results are astounding! Vicki Moody has offered to lead tours to any parents who are interested in seeing this new transformational program up close and in action. She can be reached at vicki.moody@vansd.org

With our Beaches Halloween fundraiser just around the corner, we hope to keep up the momentum of support and funding for our Harney teachers and students! Thank you so much! 

Full Swing

We're back into the full swing of things again around Harney, and we'd love your help! The Harney Carnival is just around the corner and we could use more volunteers to help man booths, prep, tear down, or to help entertain - dust off those juggling pins and stilts and come on down! And the Fall Book Fair is coming on the week of Conferences in October - our librarian could use a few more hands. Or maybe helping gear up for next year's Harney Benefit Auction is more your style? Plans are already getting underway, so let us know now if you'd like to get in on the ground floor. 

If you can donate some time and energy to any of these, you can sign up here, or send us an email here.  We'd love to have you!

Benefit Auction Results

The 2015 Benefit Auction results have been rolling in, and it's no surprise to anyone who volunteered their time to help put it together, or to anyone who attended, that the night was a resounding success!  Between the Silent Auction, the Live Auction, and the games and treats presented throughout the evening, the Benefit Auction raised over $30,000!

All of the funds raised will be earmarked for our goal of achieving "Healthy Bodies, Healthy Minds" at Harney. The PTO members are super excited about the proposed Walking Path and Nature Play Area plan, designed to get our students actively learning and playing out of doors while at school. We are hoping to make the plan a reality with the help of the Vancouver School District and the Edgewood Park Community.  

Check back here for updates about how our plans are getting implemented, and how you can get involved. 

Fundraising Totals

With the new year off to a start, we thought we'd use this opportunity to list some of the PTO fundraising totals from the fall, as well as from the previous 2 Benefit Auctions, and how we've been allocating and distributing those funds.

  • PTO has approved $4000 of teacher grants this school year - from funding field trips to purchasing PE/recess equipment.  All money raised from Payback Book sales fund teacher grants throughout the year, and this year Harney students raised over $4000!
  • Events - Harney Carney raised $675 for the 5th grade promotion, yearbook, and end-of-year festivities
  • Restaurant Nights - PTO raised $500 at Harney Night at McDonald's; $700 on Halloween at Beaches Restaurant; and $300 at Panda Express. (Additionally, Beaches Restaurant invited Harney to continue our "residency" there, with an annual Halloween Night with Harney fundraiser!)
  • Corporate Giving - PTO has received $500 from Fred Meyer this school year!  Thanks to all the Harney families who have linked their FM Rewards Card to Harney Elementary.  We've also raised over $500 from Box Tops.  Thank you!
  • PTO purchased $600 worth of Scholastic Books to fill Teacher Wish Lists during the Book Fair.
  • 2014 Auction - Parents and friends of Harney generously donated $1600 for Spanish books for the library during the Paddle Raise at last year's auction.  Harney's librarian Ericha Anderson recently used a portion of these funds to purchase 69 new Spanish books for the library. Another portion of the 2014 Auction funds was used to purchase books for the Kindergarten classes, and "Readers Theatre Sets" in both English and Spanish. We will continue to distribute these funds toward literacy-based objectives as we receive grant requests from our teachers. 
  • After-School Clubs will begin Wednesday, Feb 4th. This is the second year of this program made possible thanks to the funds raised at the 2013 Harney Benefit Auction. These funds will continue to support the After-School Clubs in the 2015-16 school year as well, and Harney will be submitting an application in March for an AmeriCorps Volunteer to oversee the program.

We can't say Thank You enough to all the Harney families, volunteers, and staff, for your support!

Phew!

Well that was crazy! I don't think October could have been any busier at Harney! Two Restaurant Nights, Skate Night, the Harney Carney, parent/teacher conferences, the Scholastic Book Fair... did I miss something in the fray?? A huge Thank You goes out to those who helped put it all together. Our community of teachers, students, parents, and volunteers can really make things happen! If you've recovered from it all, November is guaranteed to be a breeze. How can you go wrong with an afternoon Restaurant "Night" at the Vancouver Pizza Company on Sunday the 9th (from 1-3), and a Free Family Movie Night on Friday the 14th (doors open at 6:00). And of course we'll top the month off with a nice long Holiday weekend - not too shabby in my book ;)

Back in business...

Now that we're back in the swing of things, we're already putting together a list of ways you can help. Our new librarian could use volunteers, unpacking boxes of books. Just drop in any morning this week to help get the library chock-full and ready for kids. The Harney Rummage Sale is just around the corner - reserve your spot now to not only raise funds for Harney, but to earn yourself a little cash to boot. And Payback Books are coming! Harney earns 50% of the profit from these much-loved coupon books. Be sure to check those backpacks this Friday (Sept. 12) for the collection envelopes. 

We're up and running! (mostly)

Look at us - we have a website!! And just in time for the new school year!

The Harney PTO intends for this site to be chock full of info about upcoming events, fundraisers, volunteer opportunities - everything you need to know to support Harney, our teachers and staff, and of course our students. 

This "News" page is a blog where you can find musings from PTO members, and any announcements we need to share. The "About" section is where you'll soon find who we are and what we do, with an event section listing what's ahead for the month, and a contact page if you need to reach out to us. We hope the "Take Action" page will help make volunteering with us a bit easier. And of course the "Benefit Auction" page will keep you up to date on the specifics of our yearly Auction, as well as link you to a ticket-sales site. (Stay tuned for upgrades & updates throughout the site.)

With the launch of our new website, we hope to help jump start another great year at Harney!