By Caitlin Croft

The Ellicottville Parent-Teacher Organization is preparing to kick off the 2015-2016 school year with its first meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 8 at 4 p.m. in the Elementary Art Room.

The ECS PTO provides family friendly, low-cost events for the members of ECS community.  They also donate books to the school libraries as well as school supplies to the ECS faculty and staff.  PTO Secretary Caitlin Keller reported that the PTO has already purchased supplies for the classrooms.

“Everyone who participated had a blast shopping for the kids and teachers,” she said.

The mission of the PTO is to promote open lines of communication and understanding between parents and staff of the Ellicottville Central School District. Their efforts serve to enhance the education of every student while helping them achieve their highest potential.

Their most notable annual functions are the Family Fun Night, Dime Night, Field Day and the Scholastic Book Fairs.  This year’s Fall Book Fair will be held Wednesday, September 23 and Thursday, September 24 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Elementary Multi-Purpose Room.  That Thursday, the Book Fair will also be open during Open House.

ECS PTO also encourages parents to participate in the Box Tops for Education program (  Community members can drop Box Tops off at TOPS Market in Ellicottville or the U.S. Post Office in Great Valley.  Several times a year, the PTO sends in the Box Tops (each is worth 10 cents), which allows them to purchase books and crafts for Family Fun Night, along with prizes and gifts for the Dime Carnival, Field Day and Graduation.

Elementary students are asked to bring in Box Tops they collected over the summer.  The classroom that collects the most by September 8 will earn a muffin/donut party.

The first Box Tops mail-in day is November 1, so start collecting those Box Tops now!

In addition to the PTO Box Tops, Keller says that “Ms. Adams in the Elementary Office collects Labels for Education that allows us to purchase computer software and other items for Art, Physical Education and the Library.”

Also collected by Ms. Adams are “Tabs for Tots” for St. Jude’s Research Hospital.  Last year, the students at ECS won a visit from the Big Pig on their Field Day.

Volunteers for these great functions are always needed.

“It is important for parents to get involved in order to keep the great events that the PTO sponsors going. For years the students at ECS have shown that they truly love and enjoy the events the PTO sponsors.  I believe that it is important, as a teacher, to be involved in the PTO so that these events can continue to take place.” Keller says.

If you want to get involved this year, please contact Diana Olson, PTO President, at (716) 378-6698 or look for the flyer that will be sent home with the students before each event.  Keep a look out for these great community events and remember, even if you don’t have a student at ECS there are always ways to help!