2017 BSCO Listening Session Recap

Last week, members of our BSCO community came together to discuss what we do, how we do it and how we pay for it.  Two sessions were offered in the BSE library.  Here is a brief summary of topics and ideas discussed.

Budget (preview of 2017-18 draft)

  • Technology coming down due to influx of extra devices
  • Scientist in Residence
    • Propose doing coding during technology to not interfere with class time, possibly using same vendor used by Findley in the past
    • Also looking at Scientist in Residence, patterned after school in Lake Oswego
    • Need a chair for the this committee
  • Science Enrichment will move under Teacher Support and allow teachers to control the spending on science related class work
    • No longer have parent chairing & managing vendors
    • Always difficult to find vendors/presentations that align with some grade level’s PYP units
    • Change will allow teachers to purchase vendors and/or classroom materials that better support current PYP units and allow creative teaching
  • IXL – change line item to generic ‘Math Subscription’ in case the program changes
    • Many teachers have been promoting Zearn as their preferred online option
    • New math adoption coming soon to BSD.  No one is sure what online offering will be promoted and/or paid for by BSD.
    • Possibly adding non-math subscription as well, such as coding or world culture-focused
  • Carry Over Funds Reduction
    • Currently have free Monster Mash & Carnival, plus classroom projectors and math subscription
    • Other ideas thrown out include-- ozobots and more tinker science activities in library (possibly before school?)


  • Always a struggle to find the balance between motivating thresholds and participation prizes
  • Each year is a response to the one before, but always some pushback from parents regarding changes


  • Do not have committee chairs
  • Discussion around holding auction every other year
  • Continuing discussion on how to bring in new parents and avoiding cliques

Bridge the Gap

  • Placeholder for years when Jog-a-thon and Auction don’t deliver the annual budget

Outdoor School

  • Will keep ODS at BSE as long as it is not offered for all 6th grade students
  • Included in 2017-18 budget

Bylaws (new draft)

  • Current and proposed are available online
  • Tightening internal controls 
  • New Director of Communications
  • No longer a Member at Large
  • Voting on new version at May Community Meeting


  • Number of volunteers has been decreasing in recent years
  • Need to continue recruiting new volunteers throughout the year
  • Difficult not to burn out volunteers with the continued high expectations of events and community
  • Ideas thrown out include alternating Monster Mash & Carnival to every other year, bulking up new parent reach at Back to School Picnic

Cultural Awareness

  • Idea of a cultural awareness night at the school, owned by staff of BSE
  • Will add a line item to budget

Wednesday Early Release

  • Starting next fall
  • Can BSCO provide anything?
    • Difficult to say-- we already have Student Stop on campus (unlike many other elementaries).  Teachers will also be in the building during this collaboration time.

After School Activities

  • Positive reaction to what’s been offered this year
  • Other ideas include more language and coding, possibly a math class
  • Request for flyers to come out sooner
    • Difficulty comes from approval from BSD, which creates backlog

BSCO’s final Spring Community Meeting will be held on Tuesday, 5/23 at 7pm in the BSE Library.  The agenda includes voting on the 2017-18 Board and budget, as well as a vote to approve the proposed bylaws.