8th Grade Parent Update From Ms. Gemo

Dear Parents and Guardians of 8th grade students -

We are looking forward to celebrating your 8th grader this year - he/she will experience a few great traditions here at St. Benedict - High School Selection, Confirmation, Living Stations, DC Agora, 8th Grade Dinner Dance and more. We look forward to helping support your families this year to make it a great experience. 

There are two main items below: 

Below are notes regarding the 8th grade fundraising initial meeting. Regardless of your interest in supporting fundraising, please read through it so no one is disappointed later on. 

Need for an 8th grade dinner dance committee 

Again, please read carefully. Please reach out to each other to discuss.  I welcome any responses and/or offer to help. 


Rachel Gemo 

8th Grade Fundraising Meeting Notes 

July 25, 2019

Dial-in number: (605) 475-4762    Access code: 136964 PIN   

Present – Francesca Madden, Armando Rivas, Stephanie Trout,

Phone – Dana MacMillan, Tom Ryan, Isabelle Ryan, Megan Owens

Agenda Items Discussed – minutes of discussion 

  • Original spirit of fundraising for DC trip – At trip inception, wanted to make sure all 8th grade students could go; fundraising to support need and extra fundraising spread among 8th grade families who assisted. It is an expectation that families receiving needs-based assistance would play a significant role in fundraising. Families who did not assist with the fundraising would not receive any discount. Some families could donate theirs to a specific family or the general fund.

  • Provide an "estimate" of need vs. desired goal for fundraising

Goal $8000-10,000 - $4000-5000 for specific needs based grants; the rest to spread among families

  • Fundraising calendar/window of opportunity – Can begin after Fun Run (Oct 1) through mid-November. Any final dollars raised needs to be completed by March 1 so that discounts, etc. can be distributed.

  • Fundraising history for 8th grade – Wreath Sale can raise between $5,000-$8,500 depending on efforts to sell. Last year seniors raised a little over $5000 without a big push. Last year – spirit wear & magnets – raised about $5,000. Kids night out raised about $250 each. They had two of them.

  • Parameters around fundraising – no raffles, gambling. Need to fit in the time frame. Needs to be approved. Wreaths seem to be something that school and parish families look for.

  • Members present were going to reach out to fellow 8th grade families to determine interest. The initial feel from this meeting was to do the following:

1) Wreath Sale – Ms. Ryan offered initially to help lead this effort. Would be needing students and families to help promote, as well as process orders on the day they arrive. Families helping need to be available the Saturday and Sunday before Thanksgiving. She can’t do this alone – would need some other adult helpers.

2) Spirit Shirt of the Year – 8th grade students help design shirt – Create the shirt of the year. Create samples. Place orders and fill what is sold.  Don’t try to have inventory. One and done. Need someone to spearhead this if interested.

3) Ms. Gemo will allow one “meatheads – or other franchise” night – need someone to research and coordinate. This could possibly raise what the “kids night out” did

Once school gets up and running, there will be additional communication if there is interest. 

8th Grade Dinner Dance

As in the past, a small group of parents usually help with coordinating the 8th grade dinner dance at LaVilla at Pulaski and Addison. The school liaison is Christa O'Keefe, my admin assistant, who will work directly with LaVilla since it is the school who signs the contract. I have a few other guidelines and suggestions as well to ensure the evening is a nice family celebration. If you are interested in being a part of this committee, please email me. There isn't a lot of work to do at the moment, but I recommend a few folks getting together to brainstorm/initial planning. 

That is it for now. More to come. 

Enjoy your weekend. 


Rachel Gemo