BOARD & COMMITTEES JOB DESCRIPTIONS
Co-Chair* — Two Co-Chairs schedule, organize and preside over DHSPA and Executive Board meetings. The DHSPA Co-Chairs are the primary link between the DHS Administration and parents, meeting regularly with the principal and communicating with parents at DHSPA meetings, in the DPN (parent newsletter), and on the DHSPA website. The Co-Chairs sit on the Appropriations Committee, the Guidance Advisory Council, and the DHSPA Budget Committee. They also serve on the Council of Darien School Parents (CDSP), attending Board of Ed meetings, Board of Finance Public Hearings, and the RTM’s Annual Budget Meeting in this capacity. Additionally, the Co-Chairs attend DHS Parent Class Coffees, and are invited by community organizations to participate in various meetings throughout the school year. During the summer, the DHSPA Co-Chairs compile and edit the DHS Parents Survival Guide. With the Program Chairs, the Co-Chairs help to arrange the DHSPA programs with the Administration. Co-Chairs provide year-round support, and if needed, assistance, to any and all DHSPA Committees and Committee Chairs.
Secretary* — The Secretary takes detailed notes and attendance, and distributes the minutes for all DHSPA, Executive Board, and other special meetings. The Secretary coordinates any email voting as directed by the Executive Board, and resolves any questions relating to points of order and voting procedures for the DHSPA business meetings and Executive Board meetings. The Secretary works with the Co-Chairs to update Bylaws with an Executive Board vote every 3 years, or as necessary.
Treasurer* — The Treasurer keeps financial records using QuickBooks and Excel. The Treasurer is responsible for preparing and dispersing budget letters to committee chairs at the beginning in the school year. During the year, they will pay bills, issue 1099s, reconcile bank accounts, prepare monthly financial statements, assist in any audits and distribute agreed-upon appropriation monies. The Treasurer chairs the Budget Committee and is responsible for proposing, preparing and presenting the annual DHSPA budget for review and approval. Additionally, the Treasurer is on the Fundraising Committee. As such, they record and deposit individual donations to the DHSPA. The Treasurer is also the Chair of the Appropriations Committee. The Treasurer is responsible for accounting for monies received from the DHSPA PayPal account and sending an Excel spreadsheet with donor information and transaction details to the DHSPA Fundraising Chairs so they can send acknowledgement letters and tax receipts. Lastly, the DHSPA Treasurer works with the CDSP Treasurer by providing any requested financial information.
Back to School Luncheon — This committee organizes a luncheon for the faculty to kick off the school year. The date is set with the DHS Administrative Assistant. Responsibilities include arranging food catering, soliciting dessert donations, decorating the room with plants and other festive decorations, and overseeing the event.
Beautification – The Beautification Committee’s job is to enhance the school’s appearance by filling, planting and maintaining the 14 outdoor containers. They also maintain the bushes and plant annuals under the two DHS signs. When possible they try to “tidy up” other areas of the school. The Beautification Committee may work with the Director of Facilities to request assistance with the grounds. This committee is in operation throughout the school year.
CDSP (Council of Darien School Parents) Representatives – Two CDSP Reps attend monthly CDSP meetings throughout the school year and are welcome, but not obligated, to attend DHSPA Executive Board meetings as non-voting members. The budget portion of the CDSP Reps’ job begins in November and concludes in May, with a majority of the work falling in the Jan/Feb timeframe. The CDSP Reps work closely with the DHS Principal and DHSPA Co-Chairs to help prioritize and develop rationale in support of the DHS budget requests to the Board of Education/Board of Finance for the upcoming school year. The CDSP Reps are expected to participate in CDSP planning meetings to discuss overall budget strategy and to help write or give speeches for the Board of Education and Board of Finance Public Hearings.
College and Career Center Volunteers* — The CCC Chairs train and schedule College and Career Center volunteers. There are two CCC Co-Chairs and 50 committee members. They maintain the Center (including water and give-aways for the college reps), publicize the CCC via the DPN, update the bulletin boards/white board, and organize materials in the CCC. When college reps come to DHS, CCC volunteers greet and help them with logistics. There is no personal specific interaction with the college reps. The CCC Chairs work with the Guidance Department on the content, printing and distribution of the Junior Planning Guide, and provide further support to the Guidance Department when requested. The Chairs are also responsible for organizing a spring College Fair for DHS students, which takes place in late March/early April to coincide with regional college fairs. The CCC Chairs, together with the Director of Guidance, review college trends and application numbers to determine a list of colleges (about 50) to invite to the fair. The Chairs invite, track and greet the college reps at the fair, and are responsible for organizing the set up and take down of the fair, lunch, signage, volunteer schedule and publicity. The CCC chairs sit on the Executive Board and Guidance Advisory Council.
Communications Chair* — This chair oversees the DPN (parent newsletter), DHSPA Website, Directory, and DHSPA Social Media. The Communications Chair sits on the Executive Board.
Directory – In the spring, this committee of one or two gathers information on incoming 9th graders and other new students to update the student database, following up with telephone calls as required. In August, they compile directory information for all four grades of students, as well as faculty, and update other text in the directory as needed. The Directory Chairs then arrange for the printing, online publication, and sales of the directory. This committee also has ongoing responsibility for updating the student database and publishing changes as needed.
Website and Social Media –This volunteer serves as the Webmaster of the DHSPA Website and is responsible for updating the site, beginning the summer before the upcoming school year. The website is updated for the current school year in August and September, and posting to the website and social media continues throughout the year. The Webmaster vets the materials forwarded to them and then posts to the website and social media.
DPN Editors – This committee of at least three gathers information and sends out a weekly email newsletter to parents of students. The DPN is created in Constant Contact, and editing duties are shared among the editors. This group is responsible for maintaining and confirming DHS calendar information with the Administrative Assistant, and including DHSPA information provided by the Co-Chairs, Program Chairs, and other DHSPA committee chairs. Editors send a DPN Preview to the DHSPA Co-Chairs to review and confirm that all information, including last-minute date and time changes to DHS and DHSPA events, is updated and accurate. The DPN Editors also work with the DHS Webmaster to have the weekly DPN on the DHSPA Website.
Community Council Liaison/Committee (formerly Student Life)* – This committee supports the DHS Community Council activities which are student incepted and led on an as-needed basis. There are two Co-Chairs who work with committee members representing each grade level. Other parents may be recruited by the committee, as needed, to help with the various events and functions the Community Council plans. The Co-Chairs attend monthly Community Council meetings and also support the Community Council Faculty Advisors on an as-needed basis. The full Community Council Parent Committee meets twice each year. The Co-Chairs sit on the DHSPA Executive Board.
Extracurricular Liaison* – This person works with the Co-Chairs, focusing on parent questions and concerns regarding athletics, extracurricular activities, the student activities fund, and other non-academic areas, promoting transparency, consistency and equity.
Fair Chair* – This chair oversees all DHSPA Fairs and sits on the Executive Board. The Fair Chair acts as a liaison between the co-chairs of fairs, the DHSPA Executive Board and DHS Administration.
Activities and Clubs Fair – This committee, working with the DHS Administration and DHSPA Fair Chair, plans and organizes a DHS Activities Fair in the fall of the school year to introduce students to the many clubs and activities at Darien High School. The event is held during lunch periods. Planning begins in early September, and the event is held in late September or early October.
Volunteer Fair – This committee, working with the DHS Administration and DHSPA Fair Chair, publicizes the many volunteer opportunities offered to students through DHS and community organizations. The committee contacts DHS volunteer clubs and various local organizations at the beginning of the school year, and updates information as needed.
Fitch Liaison – A parent from Fitch will provide input and participate in planning all DHSPA activities and programs.
Freshman Parent Reception (formerly New Parent Reception) – This group of volunteers is responsible for hosting a reception for parents before the Freshman Orientation, including purchasing paper goods, coffee, and fruit, bagels, or muffins. This group coordinates with the DHS Administrative Assistant.
Fundraising Committee* — Their purpose is to implement a fundraising campaign to raise money for the DHSPA. In recent years this event has taken place in the fall, and the job has been completed before the end of the calendar year. Additionally, the Fundraising Chairs coordinate an online raffle for two reserved parking spaces for seniors. The Chairs sit on the Executive Board. This committee consists of two volunteers.
Graduation Reception – This group’s purpose is to plan and arrange food and beverage for the graduation reception, held after the graduation ceremony in June. Two parents of 9th, 10th or 11th graders are in charge of this event.
Holiday Faculty Luncheon – The volunteers’ responsibilities for hosting a mid-December luncheon for the faculty and staff include arranging food catering, soliciting dessert donations from parents, decorating the room with plants and other festive decorations, and overseeing the event. The date is confirmed in October with the Administrative Assistant.
Hospitality – The Hospitality Committee provides refreshments for the DHSPA meetings and works with the administration to organize and set up refreshments for the Parent Open House (September). Hospitality Committee members divide the responsibilities of providing refreshments for the grade-level Class Coffees and 8th-Grade Open House Night (February).
Nominating * — The job of the Nominating Chairs is to fill the slate of the DHSPA and present the slate at the DHSPA meeting in March/April to be voted on at the next meeting. The Chairs sit on the Executive board. Two nominating reps from each grade, when possible, assist the nominating chairs in identifying the DHSPA slate for the next year. Nominating Chairs discuss the proposed slate with the DHSPA Co-Chairs prior to presentation to the Executive Board.
Program Chairs* — Two program coordinators work with the Co-Chairs and the Administration to plan and arrange programs (speakers) for DHSPA meetings. The Program Chairs sit on the Executive Board. They also organize the evening College Admissions Panel events in October.
Public Relations Chair — The PR Chair works with the Co-Chairs to publicize DHSPA events and news as appropriate through local newspapers and other communication channels outside of the DPN and DHSPA’s social media.
Senior Class Picnic — This committee is made up of at least two senior class parents and two junior class parents, and is responsible for coordinating the food, decorations, music, and senior tee shirts for the Senior Class Picnic. The picnic date is pre-set, immediately following graduation rehearsal (usually around noon), and the picnic takes place in the DHS courtyard. The committee may add entertainment, but it is not required. The event is funded so no fundraising is required.
Spiritwear* — The Spiritwear Committee orders and sells DHS spiritwear clothing and novelty items. They are responsible for maintaining the inventory and organizing specific sale days, including Freshman Orientation and Open House. Additionally, the Co-Chairs will plan a few online sales throughout the school year. The Co-Chairs of this committee sit on the Executive Board.
Welcome Committee – This new committee will plan and organize events and opportunities for parents who are new to Darien to meet other parents.
Year End Faculty Luncheon – Beginning in May, this committee organizes a luncheon for the faculty to take place in mid-June. The date is set with the Administrative Assistant. Responsibilities include arranging food catering, soliciting dessert donations from parents, decorating the room with plants and other festive decorations, and overseeing the event.
* denotes Executive Board member