Home and School Summer Newsletter 2018

Budget Meeting

It is the end of the year, we have worked hard and had fun! As a community, we raised an incredible $44,196 this year! Wow! Our annual operating expenses total $12,900, of which $5000 will be earmarked for the eventual replacement of the friendship. After accepting proposals via an online form during the month of May, we created a survey that allowed for over 160 families to vote on how they saw best to spend our money.  We tallied these answers and they are listed below in order of preference.

Home and School will be funding:

  1. Library Revitalization and STEM $8500
  2. Art Programming $5000
  3. Garden Educator’s Salary $5300
  4. Technology $5000
  5. Robotics $1500
  6. Music Programming (Steelpan Drum) $2700
  7. Lunch Seating $2000
  8. Playground Equipment $1296

Motions were put forward and voted upon unanimously to make two amendments to our Operating Expenses for 2018/19:

  • Change the amount allocated to “Community Dance” to be available for other “Community Building Events” such as a few school movie nights for the year.

  • Reduce the amount allocated by $500 for the “Choir Accompanist” and use this to buy a new upright freezer for the Home & School room.  It is used to store food for many of the HS events such as the Welcome Back BBQ and the Fun Fair and needs replacing.

Meeting Discussion Topics

  • The gardening community has asked that a fulsome discussion on funding for the garden educator take place during the first Home and School meeting of 2018-19.  The garden committee would like Withrow to start to think about setting aside funding in 2019-20 to fund multiple school years.

  • There is no shade in the kindergarten playground. Their proposal for $1500 for tents wasn’t funded, but it is a health and safety issue. Elaine Alexander (Acting Principal in Mr. Parravano’s absence) will follow up on whether this is a TDSB responsibility, as shade was never considered in the plan for the new playground.

  • The Welcome Back BBQ has been a free event since its inauguration and sadly, is becoming more expensive. So, next year we will introduce a pay what you can bucket in which you can throw in a few coins or even 5 dollars to help cover the cost.

  • At this time of year many people ask if we can share some of the monies raised with less fortunate communities or organizations.  Now we don’t have the exact figures but when we think of all we do throughout the year that gives, we not only cover our responsibility, we set a good example for the children.
  • Terry Fox
  • Jump Rope Heart
  • Camp Ooch
  • Books with no Bounds
  • Camp Erin (children suffering from bereavement)
  • Me to We
  • Withrow Cares – food for our communities

Don’t Forget Lost and Found!

Lost and Found is looking pretty pretty full, take a look before the year is out and it all gets shipped away. As well as the usual Lost and Found inside the Bain St entrance, there are items outside the office.

New Co-chair 2018/19

And, finally, we will be looking for a new co-chair for the Home and School Association. If you think this is a roll for you, considerations will take place during the first Home and School meeting of 2018/19.


Have a fantastic summer everyone!


Your Home and School Team




May/June Newsletter 2018

Garden Club Request

The windstorm took out the Withrow Teaching Garden’s shed. The old shed was donated by a parent back in 2013 and we are hoping that someone is looking to do the same this spring. If you have an old storage shed or large deck box/storage box that you are getting rid of, let us know!

Budget Proposals

The proposals for allocation of Home and School funds have been submitted. We will be meeting with the administration of Withrow to review and approve acceptable applications. Then it’s your turn. Proposals that are acceptable will be placed into a survey, where all families of Withrow can have an opportunity to vote. Last year we had over 180 votes. Our best response yet. Have your say and vote! Our review meeting is on May 29th and the vote will start on June 4th and be open for a week.

After we tally the results, we will hold our final Home and School/Budget meeting on June 13th at 7pm. Childcare will be provided.


Our climber installation date is still TBD, though we have reached out to TDSB many times, we await a response. Please stay tuned!


The Withrow School Council

Spring has Sprung in the Withrow Food Garden

An update from our Garden Educator…

I am excited to begin another wonderful gardening season at the Withrow Food Garden! For those that need a re-introduction, my name is Elin Marley and I am Withrow’s Garden Educator. 

As usual, I have returned to head up weekly garden education classes (offered to all classes in both French and English). I am looking forward to a lot of fun learning and exploring this spring! We will plant seeds that we harvested in the fall, learn what should and shouldn’t go in the compost, and get to know worms and the other little critters that turn our food scraps into beautiful compost for our garden, and so much more. As our garden grows, there will be cooking activities and opportunities to taste veggies and herbs straight from the garden! 

Elin Marley garden educator
I also run Withrow’s lunch-time Garden Club (grades 1-6). Our Garden Club will have lots to do in the garden too, including planting, weeding, watering, sifting compost and harvesting. Starting on April 30th, we will meet each Monday during lunch recess in the food garden. New members are welcome!

Thank you to the school and parent council for your continued support of the food garden program, without which my work wouldn’t be possible. I can’t believe I’ve already been working as Withrow’s School Garden Educator for 8 garden seasons!

Elin Marley
School Garden Educator