Don't let this blurry selfie fool you... these parents and Principal Demster have been working hard already!
from left/right then back left/right: Principal Demster, Shelley Thomas, Krista Willford, Michelle McGowan, Felisa Jackson, Amy Balentine, Tara Burton, Kristi Wong
front left to right: Principal Demster, Shelley Thomas, Krista Wilford, Michelle McGowan, and back left to right: Felisa Jackson, Amy Balentine, Tara Burton, Kristi Wong.

NO SELLING wrapping paper, coupon books, cookies or anything else!!

The PTO runs a SUPPORT DRIVE to raise funds for just 6 weeks at the beginning of the school year (2019/2020: Aug. 20-Oct. 1). During this time, we ask all STEAM families to donate or pledge whatever amount they're most comfortable with (pledged donations are due by 3/15/20).


Last year (2018/2019), about 250 STEAM families donated, collectively raising over $26,000 (that's an average of $104 per family). While some families gave over $500, many gave under $100. With enrollment at STEAM continuing to climb, this school year over 350 students are expected. If every family gives, we can easily reach last year's goal, and even exceed that!!

This year's PTO volunteers committed to 10% of the goal ($2,700) so we got off to a great start.

As of 10/01, at 4pm... $24,718 of the $27,000 goal has been raised. We're just $2,282 short and have until midnight 10/01 (our deadline).

The goal this year is to continue to update classrooms, get needed supplies for the enhancements that's been invested in, and more!

Want to dive in and donate now? You may... Options are: 
  • donate via PayPal (you do NOT have to have a PayPal account)
  • donate via CashApp
  • donate via a check (made out to MSSA PTO) or cash in a sealed envelope with "MSSA PTO" and drop it off at the MSSA office or in the collection bucket which will be available at drop off on Fridays during the support drive
Want to donate but don't have available funds yet? Options are: 
  • donate via filling out and turning in a pledge card by Oct. 1 and paying your full pledged amount by March 15, 2020.
  • donate by signing up for a monthly recurring payment... if you have a PayPal account, click to donate, check the checkbox below the amount field that says "Make this a monthly payment" (this will create payments monthly until you stop them) OR let the PTO know how much you plan to donate total for our records and that you'd like to pay monthly (check or cash).
Wait... there's more! Are you passionate about a specific area and want to donate specifically to it? Option: indicate one of these areas along with your donation and we will allocate accordingly:
  • Fine Arts
  • Teacher Professional Development
  • Athletics
  • Teacher and Staff Support
  • Technology
<donations made with no designation will go to the overall goal>


You can support MSSA, through the PTO throughout the year. Options are: 
  • Collect box tops (look at your weekly STEAM email when it's time to turn them in)
  • Link your shopping to donate to MSSA (Kroger, Superlo Foods, and/or Amazon; see below).
Kroger cardInstructions for supporting MSSA through Kroger
  • enroll in their "Community Rewards" program
  • even if you have been enrolled, each year you have to click “Re-Enroll Now” at the bottom of the page
  • when searching for the school, type in "Maxine Smith" or just enter RD355 
Instructions for supporting MSSA through SuperloFoodsSuperlo Foods card
  • enroll in their Community card
  • with this one... you can even sign up for 2 other schools on the same account
Amazon SmilesInstructions for supporting MSSA through Amazon
  • enroll in their "Amazon Smiles" program (you have to make purchases from that site)
  • when searching for the school, type in "Maxine Smith STEAM Academy PTO"
PTO Mission is to foster a sense of community at MSSA by:
  • Providing community building events and services for the students
  • Promoting parental involvement
  • Providing information and serving as liaison to parents and students
  • Raising funds to facilitate the operation and enhancement of Maxine Smith STEAM Academy

PTO Officers 2019-2020:

  • MSSA Principal - - Andy Demster
  • MSSA Assistant Principal - - Netarsha Rone
  • MSSA School Counselor - - Yureka Pirtle
  • MSSA PTO President - - Krista Wilford
  • MSSA PTO Co-President - - Amy Balentine
  • MSSA PTO Vice President - - Michelle McGowan
  • MSSA PTO Treasurer - - Tara Burton
  • MSSA PTO Secretary & Communications - - April Emerson
  • MSSA PTO Past Treasurer - - Kristi Wong
  • MSSA PTO Past President - - Julie Nanney

PTO Committees 2019-2020:

  • Fundraising/Support Drive - - Shelley Thomas and Felisa Jackson
  • Staff Support/Teacher Appreciation - - 
  • Volunteer Coordinator - -
  • Social Media - - 
  • Green STEAM/School Beautification - - 
  • Community Service/Extracurricular - - 
  • Academic Advocacy - - 
  • Community Partnerships/Adopters - - 
  • School Culture - - 

The MSSA PTO supports the students, staff, and teachers of the Maxine Smith STEAM Academy in Memphis, TN.


We will have many opportunities available for any parent, grandparent, or guardian to participate to support our mission of helping provide a better educational opportunity to the students of MSSA.


As per Shelby County Schools guidelines, our organization works to support the school, but is organizationally separate from the school, and set up as a 501(c)3.

If we reach our $27,000 goal, all students get out of uniform (10/07-10/11) the week before Fall break!