Blackfoot Valley Dispatch - The Blackfoot Valley's News Source Since 1980

By Tammy Jordan

Lincoln PTSO discusses change from PTSA, Halloween festivities for kids


October 23, 2019

The Lincoln Parent Teacher Student Organization held their monthly meeting Monday, Oct. 7 in the school library with 17 people in attendance.

A major topic of discussion was the explanation of the conversion from the Lincoln Parent Teacher Student Association into the Lincoln PTSO.

President Melody McDonough explained they went through the process of changing their affiliation from a PTSA to a PTSO, as well as the reason for the change and how it affects the school and the organization. As a PTSO, then organization is no longer a member of the Montana PTA. As a result, dues collected will now stay in-house. Prior to the change, they collected $7 in dues and sent $6 of those to the Montana PTA. Dues are now $5, and all the money stays in Lincoln. As of the meeting, all their filings had been completed and the dissolution paperwork was sent to the Montana PTA.

Because the Lincoln PTSO obtained their own 501c3 filing status and now have their own by-laws, they no longer need to work under the state and those guidelines.

“By doing it this way, we’re not putting any money towards any lobbyists or any legislative enforcement and the money can be used right here in Lincoln,” said member Wendi Dietz. The downside to the change is that the PTSO no longer has access to state resources and grants. One of those programs is the Reflections program, which the kids in the school really enjoy. The board is looking into other options for similar programming which may be another national type of program, or the creation of something on their own.

With the dues they collect the PTSO funds events they host. such as the Back to School BBQ, the Halloween Carnival, Ski Trips, Field Trips, Spectrum, Missoula Children’s Theater, Movie Night, books for the library, Read it Night, Chromebooks for the classrooms and Teacher and Teen Appreciation Weeks.

In addition to the organization’s status change, discussions also delved into the upcoming Halloween Carnival, Halloween Walk and talk of a Christmas program to be put on by the teachers. Attendee Emilee Rivera also spoke about the “Trunk or Treat” idea that had been floating around town. Trunk or Treat would serve as an alternative to door-to door trick or treating by having people decorate their cars and park in a centrally located lot to hand out Halloween candy for the kids. The board considered the idea of holding it in conjunction with the Halloween Carnival, but ultimately decided against it because they are stretched too thin with volunteers. They suggested instead that people who want to set up a for a Trunk or Treat could do so during the school’s annual Halloween Walk down Main Street.

For anyone interested in getting involved with the PTSO, the board invites you to attend meetings or volunteer at an upcoming event. In addition, if you’d like to support the PTSO and the programming they provide, you can become a booster member for $5. Meetings are held the first Monday of each month in the school library at 5:30 p.m. and the next meeting is scheduled for Nov. 4.

If you would like more information, contact McDonough at 406-461-5001.


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