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Ross School PTA Auction: Let the Bidding Begin!

by Borderstan.com February 17, 2012 at 10:00 am 0

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Students at Ross Elementary School on the 1700 block of R Street NW. (Lee Granados)

From Maggie Barron. You can reach her at [email protected] or on Twitter @maggiebarron.

As a childless, 20-something city-dweller, I don’t often get a chance to interact with schools in my neighborhood. Fortunately, the 4th Annual Ross Elementary School Auction is on its way, and it’s open to everyone. Online bidding has already begun, culminating in the final, live auction on Saturday, March 10 at the German Marshall Fund.

The past three auctions have cumulatively raised over $75,000 for Ross Elementary, a public school serving 150 kids pre-K through 5th grade, located at 1730 R Street, NW. This year, the organizers aim to raise a total of $65,000, their most ambitious target yet. “We are really pushing the envelope this year,” said Lee Granados, the auction Co-Chair and a parent at the school.

According Granados, the District does not always fund technology updates or professional development for teachers. That’s why the fundraising focus has been on better technology for the classroom (this year laptops and tablets) and on opportunities for teachers to hone their teaching skills.

The funds from the auction also go towards scholarships for afterschool enrichment classes. At up to $300 per term, some of these classes in math, science, languages, drama, and other topics would otherwise be out of reach for low-income students at Ross, says Granados.

Online bidding for the items described here (and many more!) is open until March 8; and they continue to add more items. The live auction takes place on March 10 from 5 to 8 pm at the German Marshall Fund, 1744 R Street, NW. Both auctions are open to the public, so be sure to check them out.

Auction items range from amazing weekend getaways (Chicago or Churchill Downs, anyone?) to field trips and lunches with teachers, to down-home perks in our own backyard, such as:

  • “Five Days, Five Dinners”: a week of dinners at five of DC’s finest; Leopold’s Kafe, Zaytinya, Firefly, Buddha Bar, and Chef Geoff’s
  • Dinner with national political reporter Julie Mason, the host of “The Press Pool” on SiriusXM radio and former White House reporter for two newspapers
  • Several restaurant/theater ticket pairings, including Hank’s Oyster Bar/Keegan Theatre and Bistrot Lepic/Roundhouse Theater
  • Sewing lessons from Bits of Thread in Adams Morgan
  • Cupcake decorating class for you and your friends at Hello Cupcake
  • A photography session with Borderstan’s own Luis Gomez

With a tiny budget (under $3,000 each year), Granados and her team depend on the support of local businesses — including this very blog —  to make the auction a success. “We want to make sure it’s a win-win for both the businesses and the school,” she says.

“We are very small, only one class per grade level, and so we very much look beyond our playground and the four walls of our building. We see ourselves as part of the bigger Dupont community. Our partnerships with businesses in turn drive more of our parents and community members into those businesses. Reciprocity is unique to our school, and it continues to grow year after year.”

Note: Borderstan Media is proud to be among this year’s sponsors of the Ross School PTA Auction, along with Level One restaurant, Modern Classics and VIDA Fitness.

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