Alexander Hamilton Elementary School HSA General Meeting, September 2020


September 23, 2020   7:00pm, Virtual via Zoom – Jenelle Wise and Valerie Merlin, Presiding

HSA Attendance:    Jenelle Wise, Valerie Merlin, Heather Olenick, Jyoti Israni, Anne Castro, Christina Chatlos, Jee Kelly, Jyoti Israni, Nancy Chapman, Kathy Scala 

Opening Remarks:

Jenelle welcomed everyone, mentioned the HSA goal this year to keep the Hamilton Community together.  Motion to approve prior minutes from May 2020 (Anne and Jyoti)


Principal's report:

  • Mrs. Pierides thanked the HSA for the recent teacher lunch
  • Back to School night will be October 1st - all virtual, 6:30-8:30.  
  • Hybrid and virtual classes are both going very well.  
  • Right now the playground is not being used.  Exploring the possibility of having the swings be available to the children during the day, but sanitized after each use.  
  • Picture Day is October 1st - all pictures will need to be scheduled online in advance.  Using Image Art this year.  All sign ups will be done online as well as ordering.  They will be doing a Composite picture for the whole class as no full class picture this year.    
  • There was a class parent meeting 9/22 and she appreciated the positive attitude and spirit of community.  
  • She confirmed that she is available for questions so do not hesitate to reach out to her.  
  • Quick update on the Outdoor Classroom project:  the goal would be to renovate the picnic table area as well as the space around it for school use.  A colleague in Ramsey is using Learning Landscapes to design the project.    


Treasurer’s report – Jyoti Israni and Jee Kelly 

  • For the 2020-2021 budget - Goal is to present conservative and realistic numbers.  Used 2018-19 for reference as 2019-20 was cut short
  • The budget allows for some fundraising as well as some events.  
  • Large portion of the reserve is planned to be used towards the outdoor classroom project.  There will still be funds available for the teachers to use (i.e. new rugs, benches).  
  • Clarification that as of right now, no extra fundraising will be done for the outdoor classroom project.  This will be done in phases and the budget will not be completely depleted.  
  • Mrs. Pieriedes confirmed that the indoors of the school is all being used, outdoor renovation is what is needed.  

Vote to approve the Budget Proposal (majority needed)-   

Approved by: 

Liz Sonzogni, Anne Castro, Mara Trager, Jami Hahn, Joyti Israni, Nancy Chapman, Anna Movesisan, Matt Chapman,  Cathy Courtney Fintzy, Sarah Stevenson, Deirdre Healy , Tara Kagel, Laura Atalay, Andrea Ceres, Samatha Hiskey, David Nuckley, Zankhana Shah, Valerie Merlin, Jee Kelly 


Communications update – Nancy Chapman

  • Website is up and running and let her know if you have any questions/suggestions. 


Class parent update - Kathy Scala

  • Class Parent Orientation on Tuesday 9/22.  
  • We hope that both Virtual and Hybrid representatives for each class will bring the classes together.  Overall the orientation was very positive and lots of great ideas.  


Fundraising update - Anne Castro and Christina Chatlos

  • They are working out how to have events with the new requirements for events such as a health and wellness questionnaire and allowing for one way walking traffic.  
  • Hoping to do as many of our usual events as possible but exploring new ideas for this year as well, especially virtual ones. 
  • New event this year: A Pumpkin Patch with each class to bring in carved pumpkins.  Timed arrivals so that each grade would go at a designated time.  


Federated update/Book Fair – Heather Olenick

  • At the District level the schools are coming together to share ideas, discussing how the HSAs can fundraise safely. 
  • Book Fair will be Virtual - start 10/12 and run for one week.  We’ll be looking to drum up interest with the teachers the week before. 


Upcoming/Ongoing events

  • Spiritwear - on sale through 10/2, using a new vendor this year
  • Virtual Bookfair - 10/12-10/16
  • Movie Night - 10/26 - Drive in Movie at Demarest Farms, $35/car and includes popcorn, movie is Hocus Pocus, tickets on the HSA Website
  • Picture Day 10/1 - register online
  • Back to School Night 10/1 - Virtual 6:30-8:30pm


Final Vote to Approve the Learning Landscape Proposal:  (Need Majority) 

Approved by: 

Anne Castro, Christina Chatos, Anna Movsesian, Tara Kagel, David Nuckley, Liz Sonzogni, Stephanie Carosella, Cathy Courtney Fintzy, Samantha Hiskey, Heather Olenick, Laura Atalay, Jyoti Israni, Valerie Merlin, Andrea Ceres, Sarah Stevenson, Matt and Nancy Chapman, Zankhana Shah, Jenelle Wise, Mara Trager 



Motion to close - Anne & Jyoti 


Respectfully Submitted,

Kathleen Scala 

Hamilton HSA Secretary