Laurel School Home Page
PTO Committees 2015-2016

To learn more about or volunteer for a committee, please click on the committee in the right hand menu or scroll down.


Campus & Classroom Enrichment

Curriculum & Classroom

Art Enrichment Committee, includes:

Art in Action: Manages Art in Action program.

Chair: Cathy Tokic, Bernice van der Meer, Shelley Winters

Art Studio Volunteer CoordinatorManage Art Volunteer list. Check in with Monique once per week to see what the need is. Then, email parents who are on the volunteer list to see if anyone can help with various tasks, such as making black glue, refilling glue bottles, paint pallets, etc
(Monique will manage the classroom volunteer schedule on her own.)
At certain times of the year, Monique and the Art Studio Coordinator will solicit volunteers for projects that require more adult assistance (paper mache, for example).

Chair: Amy Travers

Art Show: Works with Laurel's art teacher to manage logistics of this popular springtime event where students' artwork is displayed for the Laurel community to enjoy. Event coincides with Laurel School's Open House.  Volunteers are needed to select and display student artwork and get ready for event with set-up and take-down responsibilities.

Chair: Cathy Tokic

Library Volunteer Committee: 

Coordinates Laurel Library volunteer master schedule, communicates the librarian's policies and procedures, and recruits and trains Classroom Library Liaisons to manage schedule conflicts. Volunteers needed to staff their child’s library time (30 minutes) – help check-in and check-out books and return books to shelves. This is a great way to see your child in a learning environment!

Chair: Jessica Meeks


STEAM (Science, Technology, Art, and Math) Fair Committee: 

The date is set – April 4, 2014. Ask for THE MORNING off from work or get your sitter soon. You’ll remember this day for a long time (AND so will your child!). This committee creates, organizes and manages this school-wide, volunteer-intensive event that is one of our most popular each year. More than 150 parent volunteers are needed to help conduct art and science workshops for grades K-3. Not an artist? Not a scientist? Not a problem! Workshop folders contain detailed instructions, supply lists and more.

Chair: Amanda Bower, Jill Baker, and Christine Chan


After School Programs Committee, includes:

After School Programs: Manages, schedules and contracts for all after school programs; ensures program compliance with school safety and protocol requirements. Volunteers needed to check in on programs to ensure they are successful.

Chair: Kelly Blythe

After School Sports: Manages after school sports programs for third and fourth graders; collaborates with Encinal.

Chair: Bernice van der Meer

Student Safety & Welfare Committee, includes:

Disaster Safety: Works with the school and district to assess emergency supply needs. Helps create Emergency ID tags and organizes storage and access to supplies.

Chair: Desiree Vogt & Kevin Dew

Hot LunchCoordinates the hot lunch program that is available to all grades five times per week. Works closely with “Choice Lunch” vendor. Four volunteers are needed daily to serve lunch to students (11:45 am to 12:45 pm). Hot lunch credits are offered to volunteers--let your child eat hot lunch at no cost when you donate your time. Email for more information. Brief training is required prior to volunteering.

Chair: Pauline Irvine & Desiree Vogt

Life SkillsCoordinates Life Skills program needs with Ashley Guilliot.

Chair: Renee Pyle

Lost & FoundHelp the lost and found stay organized. Take a few minutes to hang up clothing and check for items that have been tagged with names and help return them. Once every three months, help wash remaining clothing and take it to a shelter to donate. 

Chair: Jeannie Wynn

Walk & Bike Week/SafetySupports the practice of safely biking and walking to school, thus reducing traffic and creating healthy life habits. Plan and run Walk & Bike Week in April, where you staff an information table, help at the bike inspection station with Menlo Velo Bikes, and manage class competitions, giving stickers as prizes. 

Chair: OPEN

Transportation Committee, includes:

ASIST (After-School/Intra-School Transportation): Help organize, coordinate with principals, and conduct lottery for the Encinal to Laurel shuttle. A time commitment of about 20 hours, most just before the start of school. The bonus? Your child is guaranteed a seat on the shuttle! For details, click here.

Chair: Lea Redmond & Mireya Jimenez

Car Line: Organizes and manages the car line system at Laurel, including sign distribution.

Chair: Vicki Eckert

Yearbook & Pictures Committee, includes:

Picture DayManages the professional photography company for school pictures. Volunteers are needed for photo days to help with managing the students.

Chair: Jessica Meeks & Fiona Walker

**NEW** YearbookJoin the yearbook team to work with our new yearbook provider, (affiliated with iClick Smiles, our school pictures provider), who will start our yearbook by populating with class photos and student portraits. Manage the yearbook process, take pictures at all-school events to use in creating school pages, and coordinate with HRPs who will make class candid picture spreads. Advertise the yearbook for sales at the end of the year (via newsletter, through HRPs, etc.)..

Chair & Photographer (does NOT need to be professional): Megan Stone as Chair, Misie Deitchman (Photographer)


Community Building

Caring & Sharing Committee, includes:

Early Bird Breakfast: Coordinates the providing of healthy, homemade breakfasts for needed students. Make the food at home and drop it off before school in the office in individual brown bags for about 12-20 students. So easy, so rewarding! Volunteers needed to provide the breakfasts.

Chair: Robyn Miller, Renee Pyle, & Julie Meyer

Holiday Drives: This important committee runs the Thanksgiving Holiday Drive in November and and the Giving Tree in December to collect gift cards and gifts for Laurel School families in need. Spend just a couple of hours to sort the gifts, and help bring a smile to students’ faces at the holidays. Coordinates student-participation fundraising events with an emphasis on local, national, or international giving. Volunteers are needed to participate actively in the drives.

Co-Chairs: Robyn Miller, Renee Pyle, & Julie Meyer

Ongoing Needs: Provides ongoing needs as they arise for families in need. Coordinates student-participation fundraising events with an emphasis on local, national, or international giving. Volunteers are needed to participate actively in the drives.

Co-Chairs: Robyn Miller, Renee Pyle, & Julie Meyer

Fall Family Picnic Committee:

Organizes the first community event of the year, coordinates food trucks and activities, featuring entertainment from local face painters, hair bling experts, the Menlo Park Fire Department, and more. Volunteers needed for set up, manning activities, and clean up. Prior to the event and outside of school hours, you can help by purchasing items needed for the event.

Chair: Shu Rosenthal

Hospitality Committee:

Provides coffee and refreshments for community events, such as the Back-to-School Coffee and the Fall and Spring General PTO Meetings. Volunteers are needed to help donate or bake food items, pick up donated items, and set-up/take down responsibilities.

Chair: OPEN

Kinder & New Family Welcome Committee: 

Provides coffee and refreshments for community events, such as the Back-to-School Coffee and the Fall and Spring General PTO Meetings. Volunteers are needed to help donate or bake food items, pick up donated items, and set-up/take down responsibilities.

Chair: Caryn Wasserstein 

Spirit Wear Committee: 

Design the year’s Spirit Wear and set up our online store with our provider, Advertise Spirit Wear at school events, such as the Back-to-School Coffee and Fall Family Picnic. Deliver Spirit Wear through teachers’ boxes.

Chair: Misie Deitchman

Spring Fling Picnic Committee:

Coordinates the final all-school event of the year, where we say farewell to those students moving on and hear students sing! Volunteers needed to arrange food trucks, help set up, clean up, and coordinate with Mrs. Beckstrom and Art Enrichment Committee (which handles the Art Show portion of the evening).

Chair: Sandra Ewers

Volunteer Appreciation Committee: 

Collaborate on providing the Volunteer Appreciation Brunch and Award Ceremony toward the end of the year, as well as any other volunteer appreciation efforts. 

Chair: President, Co-Vice Presidents, Exec Board, & Hospitality Committee



Campus Communications Committee, includes:

Banners: Coordinate with Board Communications Coordinator Committee Chairs to hang needed banners to advertise for Laurel events, including updating dates and times on the banners. Manage Banner file/calendar.

Co-chairs: Beth Chopra

Campus Calendars: Prepare and hang monthly English and Spanish calendars in display cases at carpool and the stage/arbor.

Co-chairs: Caryn Wasserstein 

School Directory: Creates and coordinates district wide school directory.

Chair: Vicki Eckert

Graphics Committee: 

Help design and produce logos/designs and update needed Laurel collateral (e.g., forms, flyers, handouts, website, newsletter, posters, etc.). Need back up volunteers to help Chair.

Co-chairs: Todd Rosenthal and OPEN (co-chair)

Newsletter Committee: 

Creates, edits, and distributes the weekly Laurel Newsletter and occasional Mid Week Updates, providing parents important school announcements.

Co-Chairs: Anneliese Abdella (editor), Ana Susi (preparer)

Spanish Translation Committee: 

Help translate any needed Laurel collateral for distribution to our Spanish-speaking parents and immersion students.

Chair: Belinda Borgo

Web Management Committee: 

Help maintain and update the Laurel School website, as directed by the Board Communications Coordinator.

Chair: Alexandra Norcross



PTO Membership Committee: 

Coordinates PTO membership activities, including the late summer/early fall membership drives. 
Please join the PTO!

Co-Chairs: Fiona Walker, Caryn Wasserstein, and Julie Borra 


Box Tops: Organize the collection of Box Tops, one of the oldest fundraising traditions at Laurel. Help prepare newsletter content to promote the twice yearly collections and mail in the clipped box tops by the fall and spring due dates. Lastly, promote the e-Box Tops program, a program that allows us to collect Box Tops when parents shop online. 

Co-Chairs: Misie Deitchman


Book Fair Committee:

Organizes, manages, sets-up, and works at the week-long Banana Seed book sale in the Fall. Volunteers also needed to help advertise, schedule class visits, and organize volunteers. 

Co-Chairs: Jessica Meeks, Renee Pyle

Pop! Pop! Read a Lot! Challenge Committee: 

Helps put on the annual literary event and fundraiser by planning, organizing, and facilitating the reading challenge, tracking, advertising, and collecting donations from reading sponsors, as well as planning the lemonade and popcorn celebration at the close of the challenge. 

Co-Chairs: Kara Galbraith & Michael Aaron

Sweetheart Bake Sale Committee:

A sweet fundraiser perfectly timed for Valentine’s Day. This delicious community event/fundraiser raises money for our school and puts sweet smiles on faces! You can help arrange an auction of items donated from Laurel parents; bake; package baked goods; serve behind the counter on the big day; and/or clean up after. Families are asked to bake a sweet or savory treat and bring to school to be wrapped. 

Volunteer opportunities at the event:
- Help package all the treats the day prior and day of event
- Help set up and decorate
- Staff the event by selling treats to families
- Clean-up

Volunteer opportunities outside of the event and school hours:
- Bake all sorts of homemade treats (suggested list available)
- Donate funds toward compostable packaging materials
- Donate any red or pink ribbon
- Create bows for packages. Ribbon will be provided

Co-chairs:  OPEN


Teacher/Staff Support

Front Office Support: Helps our office staff with required registration materials in the Fall; sorts and alphabetizes the forms; makes photocopies and collates mailings; and generally helps out when needed during the first few busy weeks of school. Throughout the year periodically answers the phone during staff meetings or parties. Volunteers needed to staff front office periodically for short durations.

Co-Chairs: Stacy Bissell 

Head Room Parents: Organizes and communicates volunteer activities and parent-involved events of the classroom. Acts as liaison among the teachers, the parents, and the PTO. Volunteers needed in each classroom to serve as headroom parent (HRP) and support the Board HRP Coordinator.

Chair: Beth Chopra

Staff Appreciation Committee:

Hosts various events and provides gifts of appreciation throughout the year to help honor Laurel teachers, aides and administration staff for all that they do to educate and nurture our children. Volunteers needed to help donate homemade and store bought food items for events and support activities associated with Staff Appreciation Week.

Co-Chairs: Jen Shoup, Natalee Maynes, & Shelly Winters

Please feel free to contact Wendy Horton, the PTO President, at with any questions you may have!


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