Volunteer at James Baldwin
Thank you for your interest in volunteering at James Baldwin Elementary. We welcome parent volunteers and community members alike. You can support our school volunteering in classrooms, supporting fundraising, helping at school events, and more.
We have a variety of volunteer opportunities to match your interests with our needs for support. Before volunteering, you must complete the volunteer background check and application.
Visit the SPS Volunteer Information page for more information from the Seattle School District website on volunteering.
Volunteer Application Requirements
Here is a link to the Online Volunteer Application. All community volunteers are required to complete the above volunteer application and an in-person orientation prior to beginning volunteer hours in our school building. If you need assistance with the process, please contact the main office at 206-252-4180. There are a couple things you will need to complete the online application:
- Proof of completing the Adult Sexual Misconduct (ASM) Prevention training video available on the SPS Volunteer Information page.
- Two references, including one personal or family reference.
- Government issued ID
- Your digital photo so staff can identify you when you arrive at the school
- Proof of residency
- Background check
Please join us on one of our committees. If you want to be involved in one of the committees, please email James BaldwinPTO@gmail.com Many hands make light work.
- Teacher Appreciation Committee – helps show our teachers we love them!
- Communication Committee – facilitates communication between parents, between staff and parents and between James Baldwin elementary and the community.
- Newsletter (Open!! – easy to do from home.)
- Website/Social Media
- Videographer – Create videos of events, fun stuff, etc. to post on the PTO YouTube Channel (Open!)
- Assembly (Music shows at school) Coordinator: Work with the Ladies Musical Group of Seattle to schedule and plan musical assemblies at school (usually around 1pm on one Friday each month). – Is on hold due to COVID-19
- Events Committee – helps coordinate the fun events James Baldwin Elementary has for its students. Some of the traditional events are listed here but may be cancelled or different due to Covid-19. Traditional events:
- Literacy night (Oct)
- Art night (Dec)
- Math & Cookie night (Jan)
- Scholastic Book Fair (Jan/Feb)
- Multicultural night (April)
- Teacher appreciation week (May)
- Health and Fitness night (March or May)
- End of year BBQ (June)
- Social Committee – creates engaging community events for parents/students.
- Fund Raising Committee – works on various projects to raise funds to support James Baldwin Elementary
- Fall Giving Campaign (Open!)
- Dining for Dollars (Open!)
- Brown Bear Car Wash Ticket sales (Open!)
- Original Works coordinator (Open)
- Yearbook Committee – coordinates with the printer and after school program to create/distribute the yearbook (Open!)
- Room Parent – helps coordinate communication with parents in each classroom (Open for each classroom!).
- Office Help – helps make and distribute flyers, and any other “office” work that is needed
- PTO Leadership Committee – Secretary, Treasurer, President. (Recruiting for next year)
Fund Raising Committees
Fall Giving Campaign – Direct Ask to Parents, Community
Description of Tasks:
Send out the direct-ask letter to parents. Invite other PTAs and community members to participate. Send thank you notes to donors. Gather and deposit funds. Keep track of donors/donations.
Brown Bear Carwash Fundraiser Coordinator
What does a Coordinator do?
- Coordinate purchasing the tickets from Brown Bear Car wash ($1.50 each). This may include filling out forms, etc.
- Coordinate the sale of the tickets with students, volunteers, etc (for $8 – $10 each)
- Deposit funds into appropriate account.
Dining for Dollars
Description of Tasks: Set-up date with neighborhood restaurants in which parents, neighbors or community members can eat and when James Baldwin Elementary is mentioned, the participating restaurant will donate a certain percentage to James Baldwin Elementary PTO. Some participating restaurants include MOD Pizza, Chipotle, Panda Express, Red Robin, etc.
Original Works Coordinator
Description of Tasks: Work with the Original Works company and Art teacher to organize and coordinate the Original Artworks project. The James Baldwin students each create a piece of original artwork and then parents can order the artwork on various items (cups, shirts, etc.) as a memory. originalworks.com
Description of Tasks: Coordinate the order forms, logowear ordering and distribution of t-shirts or sweatshirts ordered.
How to Apply to Volunteer with Seattle Public Schools
Why Volunteer in Your Child’s School?
- Higher grades, test scores & graduation rates
- Better attendance
- Increased motivation & self-esteem
Checklist for New Volunteers
Visit our volunteer website to:
- Review volunteer handbook
- Complete online training
- Apply securely online
- Background check required
Questions? Contact your school office or visit the SPS Volunteer page to learn more.
Additional Steps for Certain Volunteer Roles
The following volunteer roles require a national background check, regardless of how long the volunteer has resided in Washington:
- Unsupervised volunteers who work with children regularly (including remote/virtual volunteers).
- Volunteers chaperoning overnight field trips longer than three days.
- Volunteers involved in any sports or gym activities coordinated by the school (for Athletics see *).
If situations 2 or 3 apply to you, visit the volunteer website to learn more.
* Important: Athletic coaches must apply via SPS Athletics Department.
All gym and sports volunteers must be current on CPR, First Aid, Sudden Cardiac Arrest and Concussion Courses.
Field trip volunteers supervise students. Once approved to volunteer, request additional forms from the field trip organizer to review and acknowledge your important responsibilities.
Keeping Students Safe
Child Abuse Prevention
Nationally, one in four girls and one in six boys are sexually abused before age 18. Volunteers help to protect children by learning to recognize and report potential abuse.
At SPS, each volunteer completes an online Sexual Misconduct Prevention training before start of their service.
Criminal Background Check
- If you have lived in Washington State for the past three (3) years, SPS will complete your state background check at no cost to you.
- If you came to Washington from another state in the past three years, you will need to purchase a one-time national background check.
New or newly returned to the U.S.?
Why is there a fee for out-of-state background checks?
Unlike our state, the federal government does not provide schools with free screening tools. SPS selected a vendor to offer secure, affordable background checks for the volunteers who need them ($21 in most cases).
Frequently Asked Questions
I completed an online application in 2021. Do I have to reapply this year?
Your online application is on file so please do not create a new application. On your second volunteer anniversary, you will receive an email with log-in instructions to renew your application.
Can I use my smart phone to apply?
Our online volunteer application is smart-phone friendly.
Thank you for helping create safe schools, and for your generous donation of time and talent!