Family involvement is critical to student achievement. As a large school, it can be difficult to figure out all the opportunities for becoming active in the community.
Here is a list of some volunteer options ORGANIZED BY THE AMOUNT OF TIME typically required:
BECOME A ROOM PARENT
Talk with your child’s teacher about becoming a room parent. The job of room parent varies by classroom; most often you’re organizing parents to assist the teachers with class events, field trips, clean up days, etc. You also serve as a crucial communication link between the larger school and families in your child’s class. Email Washington’s Room Parent Coordinator, Rachel Eisner, at email@example.com.
HELP WITH A COMMUNITY EVENT
To help with any of these PTA-run family events, contact vicepresident@Washington.BerkeleyPTA.org.
- Fall Fair and Welcome BBQ: Help is needed organizing food and drinks, setting up, monitoring carnival games, selling t-shirts, painting faces, and cleaning up.
- Washington’s Night at the Movies: Come to the movies at Washington! Help is needed setting up the cafetorium, running the popcorn machine, and cleaning up.
- Winter Party: Help is needed organizing the event, managing volunteers, setting up and decorating, serving food, helping with the photo booth, and cleaning up.
JOIN AN ADVOCACY OR AFFINITY GROUP
African American Unity Group (AAUG): The African American Unity Group (AAUG) is an association of parents who come together to advocate and work towards improving the academic achievement of Black students at Washington. Contact Simone Gikanga at AAUG@Washington.BerkeleyPTA.org.
Arts Advocacy Committee: Are you interested in seeing more fine arts at Washington? We don’t currently have a lead for this committee. For information on how to restart the program, contact Amanda Sabin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Standing Committee on Communications: Parents are working to streamline ways we share information at Washington and how best to use technology to improve communication between parents, teachers and administration. Contact Nikki Pin-Mazza at NikkiPin@gmail.com
English Learner Advisory Committee (ELAC): The English Language Advisory Committee (ELAC) are parents of students classified as English Language Learners (ELL). This group meets monthly to learn about and discuss support for ELL students and advises school staff on services for their children. Contact Carol Perez at email@example.com.
Standing Committee on the Environment ("The Green Team"): In past years, the Green Team started the schools recycling/composting program, put on environmentally themed assemblies, and compiled sustainability-related lesson plans and resources. We don’t currently have a lead for this committee. For information on how to restart the program, contact Amanda Sabin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Standing Committee on Equity: Meet with other Washington families who have interests in creating a climate of equity at Washington. We don’t currently have a lead for this committee. To help out, contact Amanda Sabin at email@example.com.
Standing Committee on Teacher and Staff Appreciation: The Standing Committee on Teacher and Staff Appreciation seeks to support teachers throughout the year, not just during Teacher Appreciation Week. Contact Amanda Sabin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
LGBTQ Family Group: The Washington School LGBTQ community works with our LGBTQ families, students, teachers, and staff to make all our families feel supported and welcome. We don’t currently have a lead for this committee. To help out, contact Amanda Sabin at email@example.com.
XSpecial Families: XSpecial Families is a place to share experiences, identify resources, and provide peer support related to the challenges (and joys) of raising a child with a "diffability". Contact Emily Fox at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Standing Committee on Traffic and Safety: Parents have come together to make Washington as safe as it can be for our children, addressing the morning drop-off routine, earthquake readiness, and site security. We don’t currently have a lead for this committee. For information on how to restart the program, contact Amanda Sabin at email@example.com.
Walk and Roll to School: In conjunction with Safe Routes to School, plan events to encourage Washington students to walk or bike to school, host a yearly bike repair and skills event, and improve safety in our drop-off zone on McKinley. Contact Chris Hammond at firstname.lastname@example.org.
DIRECTLY SUPPORT WASHINGTON’S STAFF AND LEARNING ENVIRONMENT
- Library Support: Suzy Mead, our librarian, always welcomes library volunteers to shelve books. Shelving is therapeutic and interacting with Ms. Mead is marvelous. Be the first one to know about the next great book and earn points with all your readers at home. Contact Suzy Mead at email@example.com.
Quick Reads and Tutoring: Get paired to read with students in need of reading support. You’ll be fully trained and will love this relationship. Contact Liz Scarboro at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Classroom and Campus Cleanup Days: Did you know that our amazing school janitors Albert and Gustavo only have about 10 minutes per day to clean each classroom? Join other Washington families to spruce up your child’s classroom as well as help with school-wide beautification projects. Dates can be found in LivingTree.
- School Governance Council (SGC): Work with elected parents, teachers and the principal to review school priorities and write the school’s overall site plan. This is a great way to learn about all of the efforts taking place to serve children and families at Washington and in our district. Elections for new officers will be held at the beginning of the school year. Contact Linda Carr at email@example.com.
HELP WITH A FUNDRAISER
To pay for important programs not covered by public school funding, the PTA raises money throughout the year with four large fundraisers. This year we need to raise $169,685 to support programs we love and cherish at Washington. Come help us!
The Washington Fund: The Washington Fund is our annual campaign to support PTA-funded programs. This begins on the first day of school and runs through Oct. 5th. Help is needed with publicity, creating posters, generating excitement and handing out ice-cream when we meet our goals! Contact Heather Flett at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Walkathon: Students collect sponsors and then walk, skip or run around the blacktop during the Walkathon event on Oct. 27. Help is needed organizing and distributing pledge materials; collecting money and materials; organizing the event (music, water stations); helping on the day of the event (stamping lap cards, first aide, photos). We don’t currently have a lead for this event. If you are interested in helping out, contact Stephanie Upp at email@example.com.
- The Washington Auction: This yearly adults-only event will be held at the Ed Roberts Campus on March 17, 2018. The PTA provides offsite childcare while adults enjoy great food and drinks and bid on auction items. The silent auction is a perfect volunteer opportunity for people available after-hours. Tasks include general planning; procuring items for the auction; publicity; organizing food and music; working the night of the event to manage the auction items. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Read-a-thon: Much like the Walkathon, kids collect sponsors and then read, read, read! This year’s Read-a-thon takes place April 21-29. Help is needed organizing and distributing pledge materials; publicity; collecting money and materials. Contact Sabrina Eyal at email@example.com.
See a need not being met? Fill it!
Have questions about services for your family?
All Berkeley Public Schools have a family engagement coordinator on staff to support families. Washington’s Family Engagement Coordinator is Carol Perez, and she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have other questions about getting involved?
Contact PTA President, Liz Schultz, at President@Washington.BerkeleyPTA.org.