A Q&A With Melissa Biderman
Mother of: I have a son, age 7.5, who is entering the 2nd Grade at Stanbridge Academy. I also have a daughter, age 5.5 going on 32, starting kindergarten in the fall.
Stanbridge connection: We have been at Stanbridge since my son started Kindergarten two years ago.
Lives in: San Jose, CA
Occupation: Currently, I'm "just" a mom. I am the worst paid chauffeur on the planet. In my previous life, I was an IT Project Manager.
Why did you decide to be President of the Stanbridge Parent Association(SPA)?
First, I want to thank Amy Bergstrom for doing such a great job over the past two years. I decided to take the role of SPA President, because I knew Amy was stepping down and thought my skills from my IT experience could be useful for communication and event planning. I may not come up with all the ideas, but I'm someone who can execute on a plan.
I also wanted to become SPA President because I'd like to see more attention going to the lower levels. I think there's a little more fluidity and fewer students in elementary so it's tougher for parents to coalesce. I'll be looking for input from parents of all students, though. Most students and parents come to Stanbridge after having gone to other schools. This gives them exposure to different parent associations and school events that may be new Stanbridge. Having had only one child in school for the last two years, my exposure to these types of activities is limited so all input is appreciated.
Each SPA President does things a little differently. What new ideas will you bring to the organization?
The biggest change that we are making is the way we communicate. We will be using a new SPA Shutterfly site I created for many things including SPA communication, the events calendar, and sign-up sheets. The biggest benefit of this change is that communication will be passive, meaning the information comes to you. We will be sending out more information about the website when we get closer to the start of the school year.
The other area I'd like to address is that Stanbridge has some wonderful, heavily involved parents "graduating." I'd like to be proactive and try to pair those parents who will no longer have students at Stanbridge next year with returning parents so that, once they leave, these great programs don't come to an end.
How can parents get involved in SPA?
Parents are automatically members in SPA when your child starts at Stanbridge. Participation is not mandatory, however, it is always welcomed. We are always looking for volunteers. Typically, each event has a chairperson and then additional volunteers to help or contribute to the event. We will have sign-up sheets at the back-to-school picnic and coffee (Aug 23rd and 24th, respectively) as well as posted on the SPA website. We will also have all the event information on the SPA site including what the event entails, the schedule, and what is expected of volunteers. We're trying to make it really easy to know what is needed so it’s as convenient as possible for you to participate.
PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE feel free to contact me if you have any interest in participating in scheduled events or developing new events!