The Jonas Clarke Middle School PTO is a non-profit organization which brings together parents, teachers and school staff of Jonas Clarke Middle School to discuss ways to promote quality education, strive to expand the arts, build community involvement and work for a healthy student environment. Our goal is to be a resource for families and the community, to work with and support the administration and staff, and to advocate for the well-being of every child.
The Clarke PTO also sponsors educational and enrichment opportunities, such as guest speakers and performers; back to school and graduation events; scholarship monies; social gatherings and appreciation events for teachers, parents and students; professional development; special educational materials requested by staff through mini-grants; resources and equipment that are unfunded or under-funded – all vital to our school’s success.
The Clarke PTO is self-funded through annual membership dues and various on-going and one-time fundraising events and has the flexibility to respond to the immediate needs of the Clarke teachers and their students. All of the activities are run by PTO volunteers.
Each year, the PTO funds approximately $5,000 of mini grants to Clarke teachers to support innovation and learning across the middle school curriculum. Teachers apply for these grants to attend a workshop or conference, fund a new activity to try in class and get additional materials for students to use in the classroom. These grants empower teachers to broaden the scope of their teaching beyond the school’s budget.
The PTO helps mobilize family volunteers to host staff luncheons, grade-level socials, spirit wear offers and more!
The Clarke PTO Green Team has helped to make an even bigger impact on Clarke’s carbon footprint this year! As in previous years, in partnership with the student Green Team and their advisor, Tracey Herbert, the PTO Green Team helped to put on two Clarke Walk and Roll Events, one in the fall and one in the spring. These before-school gatherings, promote a reduction in fossil fuel burning, an increase in physical activity, and a love for the outdoors. There were snacks, raffles, and games for students who walked, biked, boarded, or bused to school. We even compared the most popular walk/bike routes through Lexington’s many conservation areas.
You may have read about the student Green Team’s implementation of composting food waste at lunch in Principal Monaco’s May newsletter. The PTO Green Team was very excited to be a part of that collaboration with students, custodial staff and administration. Together we were able to reduce lunch waste by over 80%! We look forward to continuing composting food waste and recycling at every lunch in the new school year.
Energized by the students' enthusiasm for the composting of food waste during their lunches, the Green Team has also been working towards making all PTO events ‘zero waste’ (little or nothing going to the incinerator). We had composting/recycling stations at the International Potluck, which lead to a lot of great conversations about reducing waste. The Teacher Appreciation Lunch had composting/recycling stations and the PTO provided compostable plates and utensils. We’ll be doing the same for the end-of-year teacher lunch.
We’d like to thank Clarke’s wonderful teachers, administrators and custodians for working with us to make the Clarke community greener! If you have any questions or would like to be involved next year, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
reducing carbon footprint