Bradley County's Michigan Elementary School PTO has again earned national attention.  For the past 11  years, PTO Today Magazine has conducted a national search for the PTO of the Year.  The magazine shines a spotlight on the great, often under-appreciated, work being done by parent groups at elementary and middle schools across the country.

This year the Michigan Avenue School PTO was again recognized as an Honorable Mention for Parent Group of the Year.  In 2015-2016, the MAS PTO was awarded with a Special Recognition for Excellence.   And in 2014-2015, the MAS PTO also received an Honorable Mention. These awards stressed superior all-around involvement efforts and emphasized a variety of accomplishments and activities, including implementing successful family events.

The MAS PTO consists of a Volunteer Board which includes: President, Becca Brnik; External VP, Amy Eubanks; Internal VP, Angie Myers; Secretary, Amanda Traunero; and Treasurer, Maria Kemp.  Retiring from the board at the end of the 2016-2017 school year were:  Vice-President, Jessica Wolfenden and Secretary, Racheal Swigert.  Their School Liaisons for 2016-2017 were Principal Angela Lawson, Title 1/Family Engagement Sha’ree Morgan, and Teacher Representatives:  Mrs. Stansell and Mrs. Brantley. 

The MAS PTO is a 501©3 and had over 140 family members last year.  The PTO congratulated all members of the PTO for everyone’s hard work, dedication, and supporting MAS in many ways including thousands of volunteer hours.  Michigan Avenue School is TN Reward School and the MAS PTO helps support the high academic standards and school’s vision.  The PTO President, Becca Brnik was named the TSBA Volunteer of the Year for 2016. 

The MAS PTO sponsors over 30+ events at the school including their annual Possum Queen Coin Drive to benefit Teacher’s accounts, Teacher and Staff Appreciation monthly events, an outdoor family movie night, a Family Fun Night with BINGO for Books, a very successful Spring Auction, art opportunities, and grant writing endeavors to support the school’s vision.  The PTO also helps fund needed Reading Interventionist Program which helps to sustain Michigan Avenue School’s academic excellence.  This year, the MAS PTO also sponsored the MAS Strides program in the community with help of UTC Extension Office where members of the community competed in a walking competition.  This year, the PTO and Title 1 Department, co-sponsored their first Daddy/Daughter Dance and Mom/Son Date Night at the Chattanooga Lookouts.

Also, their auction, the Buckaroo Ball raised more than $17,000 for their operating budget while highlighting family fun which included live music, petting zoo, costume completion, and movie night for children. 

Additionally, the MAS PTO also helps support PTOs across Bradley County by hosting an on-line support group and meets with newly elected PTO leaders to help offer ideas and connections.   

PTO president Becca Brnik said, “We are honored to represent MAS and it’s truly our pleasure to work with fabulous teachers, administration and parents.  Receiving recognition for the past three years have just been an added bonus.  We don’t volunteer to get awards.  We help in order to support MAS.  We know it takes a lot of people working together to accomplish our goals.  We are extremely thankful for parents who sincerely are eager to help in any way possible.  We are proud of our school and want our children to have the best opportunity as possible."