Committee Meeting – Summer 2014

The next committee meeting will be held on Tuesday 29th April at 7.30 in the West Side staff room.

Please note all parents and teachers are welcome to attend and have a say in how Coleridge Families is run and makes decisions.


  1. events planning and refresh meetings
    including possible new things including: 100 club (a sort of lottery), coffee mornings, kids quiz, race night etc
  2. website updating and Facebook
  3. finances update
  4. summer fair
  5. progress on MUGA and VH


Present: Ms Boffey, Mr Choueke, Elizabeth Mackie, Gillian Gray, Amanda Jones, Gigi Ramgoolie, Fabienne Thomson, Jo Holmes, Karolina Matkovitz, Kirk Harrison, Fran Iannaccone, Claire Slater
Apologies: Pete Bacon Darwin, Sam James, Nina Job, Alison Ryan, Lucy Davies, Sam Thiagaraj, Lorraine Gerrard, Nathalie Ginvert, Nikki McNamara
We welcomed Fran and Claire who had both attended the recent events refresh session last term.
MUGA Progress:
Tree works round the MUGA had commenced but were halted when a neighbour objected. The matters raised by him were being dealt with.Kirk is waiting to hear from Sport England Primary Spaces Fund on the £30k application and should know by mid May. We will be assisted by having raised an equivalent amount ourselves.

The application for the Sport England Inspired Facilities Fund is ready to go but the deadline is June for a September decision so we couldn’t get the MUGA done this summer if we don’t get the Primary Spaces money.

These two funds are our best bets. Other applications are all difficult as all lottery funds tend to exclude schools and are primarily community based which is a long shot for us as MUGA is primarily a school facility – likewise the FA and Premier League funds don’t target schools.

We may need to do some MUGA specific  fundraising to enable the project to go ahead this summer – raising the necessary £30k would be difficult but the results would be quick and tangible. We discussed raising awareness amongst the parents about the project eg at parents evening, Sports Day or at the Summer Fair. There was going to be a Sports Curriculum/outdoor learning  evening and again we could have a stand at that. It would be good to make a big splash at that event.

Action: organise MUGA project awareness materials for various events. Ask round for any parents who might have access to a sports stars who might be prepared to launch an event. Consider separate fundraising drive if grant application unsuccessful.

New events:
We had had a successful events refresh session at the end of the Spring term a number of new ideas had come out of the events. These included: race night, 100 club, coffee mornings in school, spelling bees, junior quiz night, cinema clubs etc. Fabienne also mentioned the possibility of being a Abel & Cole drop off point which would be convenient for parents and had fundraising potential (Rokesly do this).

The meeting discussed a number of the events in detail at the meeting and pros and cons of the different ideas. The 100 club concept was explained – essentially it is a raffle. A ticket (“number”) can be purchased each term for eg £10 and then at the end of each term 3 nos are drawn at random for prizes of for eg £250 or £500 etc. These are extremely common in other PTAs, Church groups etc. Nathalie had agreed to look into setting one up and we agreed that we should try it out in the Autumn term.

We also discussed the need for a new parents’ event in the evening given the success of Quiz Night. Race night (betting on pre-recorded horse races) and karaoke were both considered although some felt it might be more difficult to get people to come out for Karaoke on its own.

We also discussed the coffee mornings open to all straight after drop off.

Action: Nathalie to look into setting up the 100 club for launch in September. Committee to look into launching a race night. Coffee mornings to commence this term. Further research on Abel & Cole idea to be done.

Organising events:
Elizabeth set out the proposal received from a parent in relation to a different way of organising events for preliminary discussion by the committee (the parent couldn’t make the meeting). The suggestion is that any difficulty we have with rep recruitment is partly to do with the burdens the reps take on.

Essentially her idea is for each event to have a separate planning committee who would organise the year reps on each event and these committees would run alongside the current coordination structure. The basic points of the proposal are as follows:

  •  Each individual event would have its own dedicated planning team or committee
  •  In order to be effective, each team would need a minimum of  five members; more for larger events.  
  •  These teams would be responsible for organising their specific event with help from the relevant year group class reps, as is currently the case. 
  • The class reps would still be involved with the individual events, and would be invited to the planning team meetings. 
  • The class reps would also continue to be responsible for communications with the parents.
  • Planning team members would be able to stay on a particular team for as long as they liked, maybe several years. Planning teams would become experts in their particular events.
  • Teachers and other staff members would be very welcome to join planning teams.
  • People would be welcome to join as many or as few planning teams as they would like.
  • Some of the people present queried whether there was in fact any difficulty recruiting reps – some classes seemed to have 4 each term without any problems, although others were less successful. The main difficulty was getting volunteers on the day of any event given the no of people who now work particularly on the juniors side. Others wondered whether this type of arrangement would just run into difficulties finding people for each planning committee.

There was general acceptance that any volunteers for any event were welcome and it should be made clearer that anyone from any year group who wanted to get involved would be encouraged particularly where they had done an event before or had particular expertise. This happened already particularly on the Summer Fair – the auction and the Pimms were two examples. We needed to balance the people who loved an event eg Advent Fair  and wanted to keep doing it against the desire of any year group to run their event their own way. We could also encourage the year reps to come to the committee meetings  regularly – perhaps each year could nominate a coordinator who would do this? The Facebook group could be used to get wider contributions from other year groups. Some of the refresh ideas like coffee mornings could help find new people who might only want to do a particular event. The important thing was to encourage participation.

The meeting also discussed the ongoing need to encourage new joiners to the committee- there were plenty of roles available including secretary, newsletter editor, photographer, treasurer – basically anyone who wanted to contribute was welcome.

Action: Have rep event at outset of the Autumn term making clearer that all events open to volunteers from any year group. Encourage participation from other year groups in the big events. Encourage reps to attend committee meetings and encourage anyone who wants to to join committee. Keep organisation of events under review.

Website updating:
Various updates were being made to the CF website to ensure it was up to date. Currently the link to the site was down on the bottom left and was easily missed. Pete had asked Bill if it was possible to create a link on the main tabs at the top of the home page. Leon reported that some reorganisation of these tabs was being done but that a CF entry could be done somewhere more obvious than where it was at the moment.

Action: Shirley confirmed that she was happy for a link to the CF website to go to the top of the page. Pete to liaise with Bill to get it done.

As part of the initiative to increase a sense of community in a large school a CF Facebook group had been set up so that parents could connect with each other and for putting out information about CF events, committee recruitment etc. We would emphasise that it is not the place for complaints about the school. At present it was a closed group and posts needed to be pre-approved by the group administrators.

Fran had kindly agreed to help set up the page and get it going. There were things to be considered such as basic rules along the lines of things like the Mumsnet etc message boards. Initially the link would be sent out by email to all parents to enable them to join if they wish.

Action: Fran and Elizabeth to develop site and email for parents including basic rules.

Finance update:
Jo reported that finances were in a very healthy state and rather better than had been expected after the large amounts promised at the AGM. Excellent takings from the Quiz were a large contributor to this. Progress with Gift Aid was being made but the process was slow.

Action: complete HMRC process to enable Gift Aid donations.

Summer Fair update:
All was progressing well for the Fair on 28th June. Sponsorship from Greene & Co secured and would be paid in one instalment.

Action: Elizabeth will apply to Haringey for the licence.

VH update:
The Victorian House was on track to open for the summer holiday club. There were plans for a grand opening event in July. We discussed how the VH could be used for committee events and also more generally for CF once it was up and running.

Action: Elizabeth to check with VH committee on date for the opening event.

School trip tabards:
The committee had received a couple of requests form Y2 parents to fund 60 extra tabards so that whole year school trips go go ahead with each child easily identifiable as part of the group.

Action: CF will fund the purchase of new tabards once the school had sourced them.

We agreed to have the fireworks on 7 November. No sponsorship has been secured as yet.

Future meetings:
We agreed that would be helpful to try and agree meeting schedules in advance each term. Usually one full committee meeting and one informal meeting per term.

Action: Elizabeth to canvass on best days for Committee members and fix some dates for the Autumn.