Working together for our kids
and for a strong community
We are moms, dads, aunties, litos, babas and more from every part of the world, brought together by a shared commitment to the children in our community. We are fortunate to be able to weave this rich tapestry of cultures, languages and ethnicities to enrich our children's education and experiences at Burr.
Fundraising is a big part of what we do. Through our annual giving program, The Wolf Fund, and various events throughout the year, we raise money to bring cutting-edge technologies and curriculum-aligned programs to Burr School. Every child in every grade benefits from the Burr PTO.
ABOUT OUR PTO
Where does the money go?
The Burr PTO infuses more than $40,000 into our school each year, and these funds help to provide the technology needed in today’s classrooms, as well as the programs, services, and community events that help make Burr the wonderful place that it is. The Wolf Fund campaign is one of two primary source of funds for the PTO’s annual budget, and every penny raised through Burr Wolf Fund goes directly to the school. The remainder of the annual budget is raised through our spring online auction, as well as other events with community building and/or academic support elements, such as the Book Fair, as well as indirect fundraisers like Amazon Smile (see home page).
The PTO fully funds the Creative Arts and Sciences program at Burr, an unfunded mandate from Newton Public Schools, which gives Burr students the opportunity to write and illustrate stories and poems with published authors, design and build mini water distribution systems, dance with Chinese ribbon dancers, hold creatures from the depths of the ocean in their hands, and more. These programs are chosen with the teachers and tie-in with the grade-level curriculum, enhancing and enriching the academic experience.
Meet Our Board
The PTO Board is comprised of Burr parent volunteers, who meet throughout the year to oversee numerous community events and fundraisers, manage the PTO budget and perform other essential PTO functions.
Jon Spack and his wife Hagar Berlin moved to West Newton in August 2018, and their daughter Hana (rhymes with Ghana) will be entering 2nd Grade. They also have a 4 year old, currently at Family Access. Professionally, Jon serves as Chief Growth Officer for Coaching for Change, an non profit education organization that uses a cross-age mentoring model: College students mentor local high school students to run after school programs for middle school students. Just prior, Jon served as Executive Director of Discovering Justice, a nonprofit leader in civic education in Boston. Previously, Jon served in leadership roles at several national education non-profits in Boston and in the Bay Area, including Education Pioneers, Citizen Schools, and Spark. Jon received his B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and his M.S. in Non-Profit/NGO Leadership at the University of Pennsylvania
Jenn Reale is in her second year on the board as co-president and was the former room parent coordinator. Her husband Rich, Burr alum and long time Auburndale resident, their children Richard (entering 4th grade) and Penelope (entering 2nd grade) love being a part of the pack with the Burr Community. Jenn is the Foundation Program Representative at Arbella Insurance. She is also a member of the Corporate Volunteer Council of Greater Boston, Committee Member for Interfaith Social Services – Feed the Hungry Gala and a longtime Big Sister of the Greater Boston chapter. She is a former champion Irish dancer, and now an assistant Irish dance teacher at the Sullivan School of Irish Dance and is in the process of taking exams toward her certification. Along with that she is in her 15th year as a football official for pop warner/youth, high school and flag football with the ANEFO out of Malden. When not dancing or referring, you can often find Jenn giving back by participating in charity events/runs and volunteering along with her husband and kiddos.
Bio Coming Soon!
Pam Rajasekhar (and Craig Bouchard) are parents of Kiki and Sage Rajachard, who are in fifth and second grades this year. Despite a somewhat more arduous commute into Kendall Square, Pam loves working with colleagues around the world to develop innovative therapies at Sanofi Genzyme, where she leads global market insights teams focused on rare diseases. Since moving to Auburndale from Nonantum in 2017 the whole family has really enjoyed being part of Burr's welcoming and dynamic community. Pam is excited by the opportunity to support and enhance Burr's educational programs by serving on the PTO Board.
Spencer is in his first year post presidency. He has previously volunteered for many events at Burr as well as being a room parent. Spencer is currently an Instructional Designer at New Balance Athletics and he co-owns a small tourism company called the Mass Brew Bus with his brother. Prior to that, he worked as a real estate broker in Newton and a pre-school teacher at The Foundation for Children with AIDS. He is the father of Burr students Morgan (3rd grade), Urban (1st grade) and Atlas a 4 year old who will be entering Burr in the fall of 2019 and husband to Molly Scanlon. Spencer has traveled the globe extensively and really enjoys being a part of the diverse Burr community.
Leah is in her second year on the board and is excited to support such important PTO educational initiatives as Creative Arts & Sciences and the STEM Fair. She is a proud mom to David Karp, who is a third-grader at Burr and a kindergartener, Ilana. Leah and her family have lived in Newton since 2005 and moved from West Newton to Auburndale last year.
Since joining the Burr community this past fall, Leah has served as room parent to Ms. Field’s class and has also volunteered at the Burr library. Leah has worked as a marketing and financial analyst for Washington Post, The Boston Globe and Nokia. Leah is a firm believer in the crucial role of the PTO as a partner to faculty, staff & the parent community to ensure that Burr continues to be a great place for our children to grow and learn. She also brews a mean cup of coffee!
Alyssa is in her second year on the board and loves being involved in all things Burr, such as CAS. She is the mom of incoming 2nd Grader, Finn and Zoe, Kindergartner next fall! Alyssa has an art and building background and currently is employed at Slocum Hall Design Group in Watertown where she is a Senior Associate Interior designer. She and her husband, Joe, have lived in Auburndale for 10 years and especially love the morning walk to school and feeling part of such an amazing community.
Lucy Galvan is a proud mom of rising 4th grader Andres, rising 2nd grader Olivia and aspiring Burr student 3 year old Lucas. Along with her husband Alejandro Rodriguez, they have resided in Roslindale for over 15 years and attend Burr through the METCO program. Lucy is very passionate about inclusion and diversity and has served in many boards of non-profit organizations including Roslindale Village Main Streets and The Boston School Fund. Since arriving to Newton Lucy has been very involved in the community as the METCO FORJ Liaison (Families for Organizing Social Justice) and as the METCO Family Council Co-President. Most recently, she was selected as the PTOC METCO Representative for the 2020-2021 school year.
Professionally, she serves in the Federal Government as the District Manager of the Dorchester Social Security Administration. Lucy received her Bachelor’s Degree of Psychology from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.
Interested in taking on a leadership role on the PTO? Please don't hesitate to reach out!