Genesee Hill PTA News

March 6, 2024

What's new in the PTA

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Happy almost spring PTA community,


We're moving toward the final stretch of the school year. As we welcome the vibrant colors and eventually the warmer weather of Spring, we also celebrate the growth and achievements within our school community.


Here's what's been happening in your PTA.


Advocating through action. On January 15th the Genesee Hill PTA joined families from across Washington in Olympia for the WA PTA Focus on Advocacy Day. Our group of GHE families met with our three District 34 legislators in Olympia, Rep. Emily Alvarado, Senator Joe Nguyen, and Rep Joe Fitzgibbon and spoke specifically to addressing critical gaps in education funding and preventing and reducing gun violence. 


In the News! Your Advocacy Committee organized and hosted the first Public School Funding 101 event in partnership with West Seattle Equity Fund and all our West Seattle elementary schools. We were thrilled to welcome SPS Board President Liza Rankin and Advocacy and Policy Manager at the Seattle Council PTSA, Vivian Van Gelder to help each of us learn about the complexity of public school funding and pathways for advocacy. This exciting event created quite the stir and we were able to increase awareness through KOMO4 News, West Seattle Blog, and Seattle Medium.

Public School Funding 101 event at Genesee Hill.

This year we started the West Seattle PTA Leadership coalition.

Building bridges with the PTAs of our fellow West Seattle elementary schools. This year we started the West Seattle PTA Leadership coalition where we hosted quarterly meetings to support planning community wide advocacy events, share pertinent resources, discuss fundraising and PTA grant practices. You may have met some of our partner school members at the recent Advocacy Public School Funding event! Stay tuned for a West Seattle Elementary end of the year potluck at West Seattle Elementary!


Embarking on budget season. At our next General membership meeting the board will be presenting the 24/25 PTA budget to you for your approval. A Budget Committee has been formed and we are working to gather information and build a balanced budget that serves our mission and addresses the voices of building leadership and all of you.


Soliciting your Voices through family survey. This past year the PTA has focused on building a strong community where each member feels valued, welcomed, and appreciated. With the guidance from our survey results last year we adjusted our budget to fund community priorities, increased advocacy to address critical funding gaps, and worked to foster inclusion. We would love to know how we are doing and what is important to you. Please consider completing our PTA survey by March 22nd. Your feedback is critical to our service.


Finally we want to take a moment to recognize the power of community and collective action. This year, 5th grade parents have coalesced around creating an outdoor educational experience for this year's fifth grade class. Over 20 volunteers have come together to plan and develop an exciting weekend for the 5th grade cohort. This speaks to the power of what we can do when we come together in service to all Genesee Hill students.


As always, we encourage your involvement. Join the PTA. If you haven't already, consider becoming a member of the PTA. Your membership helps support our initiatives and gives you a voice in shaping our school community.


As we embrace the spirit of renewal and growth that spring brings, let us continue to work together to create a nurturing and enriching environment of belonging for all our children. Thank you for your continued support and involvement in the Genesee Hill PTA.



Michael and Lia, co-presidents


Mark your calendars!

March 13 - PTA General Membership Meeting - Join us from 6 to 8 pm in the school cafeteria. Food and childcare provided!

June 13 - PTA General Membership Meeting

April 19 - PTA Spring Auction, 'Saved by the Bid!'


Demystifying the PTA Board Election Process:

How the Nominating Committee Works

Did you know that we’re already starting the process of putting together a PTA Board for next year? As we start this process, I wanted to take some time to explain how it works, and invite questions. I truly believe that this process should be as transparent and inclusive as possible. I’ll try to keep this short, but there’s a lot to cover!

The first step is to confirm a nominating committee. What is the point of the Nominating Committee, you ask? The Nominating Committee does the important work of recruiting and vetting potential candidates for board leadership. The Nom Com (because, Nominating Committee is a mouthful!) is responsible for reaching out to the community for nominations and then reviewing each nomination that they receive. They will also reach out directly to anyone they think would be a good candidate for the board. They will review resumes, conduct interviews, and hold confidential deliberations. Then, at least 15 days before the June General Membership Meeting (when we will hold our election of Board Leadership), they will submit recommendations for the elected board positions (President(s), Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Vice Treasurer, and Fundraising Chair(s)), to the General Membership (that means you! If you’re not a member yet, please sign-up here!). 

In addition to the elected positions, the Nominating Committee can submit recommendations for the other open board positions for the president to approve. This works well because while searching for the leadership positions, the committee will often find folks who have a lot to offer the board but either aren’t ready to commit to taking on one of the leadership roles, or they could benefit from some experience being on the board before they move to one of the elected positions.

Now, I think it is important to note that the recommendations of the Nom Com are just that– recommendations! Anyone in the community is welcome to nominate someone from the floor at the June General Membership Meeting, for any of the elected positions. That said, the Nom Com makes recommendations from a place of real understanding of what it means to be on the Genesee Hill PTA Board, and they have the opportunity to really understand who has the qualifications and energy that we want from our leaders. So, if we choose a Nom Com that we trust, they will do the hard work for us by helping to ensure we are choosing the most qualified candidates, rather than having a popularity contest.

So, who gets to be on the Nominating Committee? You get to decide! We want folks who are thoughtful, inclusive, and able to hold confidential counsel. The general membership is tasked with confirming the Nominating Committee. We need three members for the committee, and if more than three members are interested, the committee will be the three members who receive the most votes. We are holding the vote to approve the committee at the March 13th General Membership Meeting, so mark your calendars and invite your friends! If you are interested in being on the Nom Com or know someone who you think would be a great fit, please reach out to me and I can answer any questions you have. Or just come to the March General Membership Meeting! I want to end by saying that I think this is a great chance to make your voice heard; whether you are helping to confirm the Nom Com, or actually volunteering to be on the committee yourself, this is an opportunity to help set the tone for the next Genesee Hill PTA Board.

If you’ve made it this far, thanks for sticking with me!

Molly Hunt 

Membership Co-Chair

Lunar New Year celebration

Thanks to all who came out to our Lunar New Year celebration! A great time was had by all.


Check out the Volunteer page on our PTA website, where you can find a comprehensive menu of volunteer options.

To volunteer during the school day, whether on campus or on field trips, all volunteers must complete some basic online training, a background check, and be approved by Seattle Public Schools. Get the details.

Not a Book Club

Hosted by Linda Kennedy and Brad Monsma (with support of the Black Families Group, the Family Committee for Equity and Inclusion & the PTA Board)

Wednesday, March 6, 6-7:30

Place: TBD (likely the staff lounge)

Don't have time for a whole book or a whole club? Join us for one evening to talk about "Recitatif," the only short story published by Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison. It's 17 pages of genius. Morrison called it, "an experiment in the removal of all racial codes from a narrative about two characters of different races for whom racial identity is crucial." Roberta and Twyla meet as girls in the boarding school where their mothers have left them. They share a traumatic experience, and when they meet later in life they try to sort through what actually happened and what it means. So many things to talk about: 

  • how we read race
  • how memory works
  • the challenge of having compassion for outsiders and the powerless
  • how kids treat each other at school 

Recommended for AFTER reading the story: Zadie Smith's essay, "The Genius of Toni Morrison's Only Short Story." Smith, an amazing novelist and writer in her own right, gives a brilliant reading of the story, connecting it to the politics of dehumanization and how "Liberation is liberation: the recognition of somebody in everybody."

Join us for an engaging, uplifting conversation and the chance to build community. Please RSVP to Knowing how many people are interested will help us plan how many treats and goodies to prep.


Join Us for A 90s FUNdraiser April 19!

Hall at Fauntleroy

This totally fly evening will include the opportunity to bid on silent and live auction items, contribute to Fox Fund-a-Need, play wicked fundraising games, enter a raffle, dash for desserts and compete in a costume contest!

Funds raised at this event support reading and math intervention as well as a host of other critical programs designed to maximize educational outcomes for every student within the GHE community. Learn more and get your tickets here.

P.S. We’re still looking for “big ticket” auction items (access to sporting venues, connections to vacation homes, interesting community experiences, etc.) as well as volunteers to help during the event (specific roles TBD - more info in the coming weeks). Questions should be directed to Katy Richey at

It's time to think about summer camps

Looking for summer camps or other extracurricular activities? OneStopCamp is a free tool created by fellow Seattle parents to help you find relevant camps in your area. Check it out today:

Genesee Hill Elementary| 5013 SW Dakota St | Seattle, WA 98116| 206.252.9700