PTSO Discuss Fundraising for Teacher Appreciation Week, Proposed New Fundraising Options

On Jan. 12, the PTSO reviewed, reworked, and introduced new fundraising ideas as well as prepared for the approaching teacher appreciation week.


Nidhi Manchala

After the PTSO meeting concluded on Jan. 12, all the in person attendees were invited and encouraged to stay for a Crumbl cookie provided by principal John Duellman, and talk together for a short time. Duellman was excited that the backpacks that were needed for giving students food were supplied. “All of the requests [for the backpacks] have been fulfilled, so we can send the backpacks home with students,” Duellman said.

Lucian Tiller and Nidhi Manchala

On Jan. 12, the PTSO held their meeting in the career center where they set up meeting dates, discussed the Special Education Advisory Committee, spoke about the future of fundraising, and brainstormed how to approach Teacher Appreciation Week preparations. 

Meeting Dates

The PTSO motioned unanimously that they would be able to approve of meeting minutes without some of the members actually being present at the meeting, whether they were joining virtually or were not present at all. They again motioned unanimously to approve the meeting minutes for October and November. The PTSO did also mention that there were no new office reports as of this meeting and that they got the December numbers for membership, which totalled just shy of 5000, with 125 families and 27 teachers. 

Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC)

SEAC helps and empowers special education students to reach their goals through highschool and beyond.  A representative from the Special Education Advisory Committee spoke to the PTSO about how they held a meeting the night before and what happened during that meeting. During the SEAC meeting, they decided how they were going to help special needs students achieve their “Secondary Goals” or goals after highschool. The attendees took an assessment and actually started to make plans for the kids, and they asked for input on what kind of classrooms would most benefit special needs students. 

In total during the meeting, they made 11 new policies and revised one. The representative commented on the fact that there was an award for those who work with special education students every year on June 6 and that they were trying to make the tutoring list for the teaching center easier and more manageable for parents to read. The representative also said that there would be an event hosted at Lightidge High School regarding mental health and wellness in the near future.

The next SEAC meeting will be on Feb. 22 in the LCPS administration building, and they will continue to meet monthly along with the PTSO.


The PTSO heavily went over the topic of fundraising at this meeting, discussing how they made around 3,000 dollars in fundraising and how they were going to use this money to provide gifts and thanks to the custodial staff at Rock Ridge along with addressing new funding requests from Duellman. 

One of the requests was to provide support to three students on The Blaze who wanted to go on the CSPA trip to New York but money was a financial issue. The PTSO would not usually help cover expenses like these because it is not a required field trip however, Duellman made mention of how they went through the entire process to the benefit of the PTSO to request for money, so they wanted to help any way they could. They estimated the cost for all three would be around 1,500 dollars.

The PTSO also discussed how they should be going about helping/providing assistance to lower income families. They noted that providing that assistance over the holiday season went very well and was a great success; however, for most low-income families, February-April are very difficult, and the PTSO aims to accommodate for that. They commented on how the St. Teresa Catholic Church  gives out food weekly to families in need, and how families could use a non profit called Green and Beyond that can give fresh meals to the communities that need them with mobile drop offs and online communication. The PTSO also requires several slightly used backpacks to provide kids with food without making them feel embarrassed that they need extra assistance. They do this because most kids don’t have snacks covered with their “take home” meal plan.

The PTSO rehashed old fundraising strategies and possible new ideas. They talked about how the senior celebration and Moby Dick meal did very well last year, but the graduation yard sales didn’t do as well, so they proposed an  idea to pay for the signs and distribute them to every senior regardless. This way, those who wanted one but didn’t get a chance now have one. They also proposed for a new fundraiser that could be lumped in with the Rock Ridge boosters’ two 5k color runs to make a third, and a potential “buy nothing” yard sale for Rock Ridge, which is essentially a bartering system for items of all sorts that students might not want or need anymore.

Teacher Appreciation Week

PTSO also discussed how to begin planning for Teacher Appreciation Week. They are hoping to involve more people to assist them and discuss how money may be a potential roadblock, as the finances were described as a “budget limbo” at the meeting. 

Numerous students are interested in helping bring the teacher appreciation project to life. However, the PTSO still needs to find a viable way for them to help effectively, which will be decided within the next couple of meetings. 

The next PTSO meeting will be held in the library on Feb. 2.