Member Schools & Organizations
Current Board Members
- Early Childhood, our 16-page newsletter, was distributed to over 4,500 in October and April. Families in our 19 member and six associate member schools receive the newsletter free of charge through their schools. We also mail copies to a small subscription base of approximately 250. Articles are posted on the website after publication. Starting with the Spring-Summer 2008 issue, the entire issue, in its hard copy form, is available on the website, as well. Thanks to the tireless efforts by V-P Cindy Brady to sell ad space, the newsletter will actually make a profit of over $4,000, despite being given away for free!
- The Alliance website continues to expand, featuring a wealth of information about local resources for parents and teachers of young children, articles from our newsletter, calendar information, and a password-protected board section. This year we added the listing of parenting courses, as compiled by the North Shore Parent Education Consortium. We average between a low of 100 individual visitors per day in December 2007 to a high of 380 visitors in March and April 2008. Visitors come from the U.S. and all over the world, including Europe and Asia.
- The fourth annual Preschool Fair was held on Oct. 10 at the Winnetka Woman’s Club, chaired by Gwen Oelerich. Twenty-one schools participated and over 50 parents attended. The Volunteer Center graciously allowed us to use 10 days of their space on the Winnetka kiosk to advertise the fair.
- The Program Committee, chaired by Val Maniscalco, sponsored three programs this year.
- Tom Bass, of Family Service of Winnetka-Northfield led “Establishing an Effective Parental Partnership” on Nov. 14. Twenty-five attended, including 14 women and 11 men (9 couples and 7 singles) and the Alliance netted a profit of $250. To spark awareness of this program, Tom Bass authored the lead article in the Alliance’s Fall-Winter newsletter.
- On Feb. 20, Dr. Michael Rich, director of the Center on Media and Child Health at Harvard presented “Keeping Children Healthy and Safe in the Information Age” at North Shore Country Day School. Sustainer and former board member Beth Karnes facilitated this program. Over 75 parents attended.
- Again working with Family Service, the Program Committee met several times to structure a new program for mothers and their infants, called “Our First Class,” with Janet Goss of Family Service as the facilitator. Robert Mardirossian of Family Service secured a $1,500 grant from the Rotary for start-up costs. The class was to begin on April 15, housed at the Winnetka Community House. Unfortunately, no one registered for the class. The Program Committee will meet with Family Service to brainstorm ways to make this class succeed, as we feel that there is a real need to provide resources for mothers of infants.
- Michelle Liu, R.N. continues to fill classes for junior high students taking the American Red Cross Babysitting Course. Two sessions were held in January and March.
- On January 31, the 18th Annual Networking Event was held at the Winnetka Woman’s Club, chaired by Kathy Hardy, Anne Kelly, and Sara Sullivan. The speaker was Dr. Diane Levin of Wheelock College, Boston, an internationally recognized expert on children and the media. Her topic was: “Buy, Buy Childhood: How Media and Marketing Affect Children in School.” While over 150 made reservations to attend, a snowstorm affected attendance and about 100 hearty souls eventually showed up. For the fifth year, educators receiving Teacher Tributes were featured in a Power Point presentation before the program. Dr. Levin summarized her talk in the lead article for the Spring-Summer 2008 issue of Early Childhood. We gave out Alliance car magnets as favors to all attendees.
- The 14th Annual TV Tune Out Week was held from Sunday, March 2 to Saturday, March 8. Over 5,500 children in 27 schools in and around Winnetka, Northfield and Kenilworth participated. The theme was “Explore a Whole New World!” The Kick Off Event, Matt Wilhelm’s Stunt Bike Show, was held in the gym of the Winnetka Bible Church, with 380 attending. The winners of the Drawing contest were introduced and presented their prizes and ribbons. The Grand Finale was Magic by Randy, held at Washburne Little Theater, with over 100 attending. We encouraged recycling of Tune Out buttons by holding a raffle at the Grand Finale event. For the second year, the entries to the poster contest were displayed at the Winnetka Library. For the third year, we displayed a bright red TV Tune Out sign in Winnetka’s kiosk. Our seven banners were again hung on Winnetka light posts and a new Tune Out banner was placed on Willow Rd. in Northfield. For the first year, we made the At-A-Glance chart (color-coded by ages) available on the website. Like last year, we divided the chairmanship of Tune Out into three distinct parts. Joni Johnson coordinated the Guide; Melissa Smith coordinated publicity; and Tracy Souder coordinated the events.
- The Alliance provided several networking opportunities for school leaders during the school year. In addition to the Preschool Fair in the fall and the Networking Dinner in January, the Alliance sponsored a summer lunch for preschool directors to meet new superintendent Dr. Mary Herrmann and the Networking Breakfast for principals, heads of school, and preschool directors in September. Preschool directors met in April (and will meet again in June) for an informal Preschool Roundtable, to brainstorm issues such as enrollment, registration, and the Alliance’s salary survey.
- Kindergarten teachers from District 36, Middlefork School, Faith, Hope, Sacred Heart, Christian Heritage, and North Shore Country Day met with District 36 Curriculum Coordinator Julie Pfeffer, Alliance Executive Director Blakely Bundy, and the directors of seven “feeder” preschools to discuss common interests and facilitate communication and sharing of information. The January meeting was held at Sts. Faith, Hope and Charity School and the April meeting met at Hubbard Woods School.
- Parents of incoming kindergarten students and others new to District 36 heard a presentation about the Winnetka Public Schools' educational philosophy and history, given by Superintendent Mary Herrmann. About a dozen parents, several school board members, and Curriculum Coordinator Julie Pfeffer attended the May 12 morning meeting, held in the Community Room at Skokie School.
- We continue to publicize the Alliance through our column in the School Digest section of the Winnetka Talk, with topics ranging from parenting classes to the names of those receiving Teacher Tributes.
- Julie Zimmerman took on the new job of Publicity Coordinator this year. With more and more schools going to online or emailed newsletters–all with different deadlines, requirements, etc.–having it all coordinated by one person made sense and also removed one crucial job from the school reps. The downside is that we have found that many people don’t read to the bottom of their emailed newsletter and often miss our flyers. We are now trying to incorporate a short paragraph about the event that we are publicizing into the body of the newsletter.
- Anne Kelly chaired the Steve Adams Memorial Fund Committee which has been considering ideas to memorialize Steve with funds donated to the Alliance in his honor.
- Summer Book and Toy Fair, chaired by Dale Wyant, was held on Thursday, May 8. Board members signed up to staff our table at The Book Stall throughout the day. Over two dozen books were purchased for the Pat Wroclawski Collection at the library. The Book Stall sent a check for over $576. Unfortunately, only one customer shopped at the Village Toy Shop.
- This is the sixth year of our very successful Teacher Tribute program, as part of the Annual Fund campaign. Between December 2006 and October, 2007, 185 Teacher Tributes were made and 132 different teachers received a tribute. In May 2008, we sent out 3,800 annual appeal letters. Of those, 1,556 contained personal notes, written by 30 board, advisory board, and staff members. Libby Joyce has streamlined the Annual Appeal effort to make it more efficient each year!
- The highlights of the Alliance’s financial results for the past year include:
- The Annual Appeal Campaign for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2007, took in a record $37,477, which accounted for 47% of the Alliance’s annual operating revenues. So far for the year ending September 30, 2008, we have already received Annual Appeal Campaign donations of $19,458, which is comparable to where we were at the same point last year. Hopefully, we are on track to repeat last year’s record-breaking performance again this year.
- For the fiscal year ended September 30, 2007, the Alliance had a net profit of $6,144.79.
- TV Tune Out 2008 is expected to take in revenues of almost $19,000, down slightly from TV Tune Out 2007’s revenues of $20,900. TV Tune Out 2008 should generate a net profit of approximately $10,600, again down slightly from 2007’s profit of $12,600, but still a very strong result.
- Despite distributing the newsletter, Early Childhood, free of charge to the families of our member organizations, we are expecting that the newsletter will again generate a significant profit this year somewhere in excess of $4,000. Thanks to the continued hard work of Cindy Brady, sponsorship income grew again this year, from last year’s record of $8,625 to an expected $10,250 this year. We offered the option of double-sized ads for Fall 2007-Winter 2008 newsletter.
- Given the challenging economic climate, the number of Alliance Partners fell this year to four (Ariel, Hudson, Edward Hines and NSCD Summer Programs) from seven last year.
- The balance in the Alliance’s Endowment Fund at May 1, 2008, was $123,593.57, up about $3,800 from last year.
- The balance in the Pat Wroclawski Memorial Fund at May 15, 2008, was $2,256.59, and the balance in the Steve Adams Memorial Fund at May 15, 2008, was $7,419.
- Current Committees: Communications, Fund Raising/Development, Fund, Executive, Networking, Preschool Fair, Program, Steve Adams Fund, Transition to Kindergarten, TV Tune Out, Pat Wroclawski Fund.
- Member Organization: St. Joseph’s School, Glenview Community Church Nursery School, and Baker Demonstration School joined the Alliance as Associate Members this year. Ronald Knox Montessori resigned as an Associate Member and Hyde Park Day School/Northfield Campus resigned as a regular member. The Alliance currently has 34 member organizations, including 19 schools, and six Associate Member schools.