Family involvement is one of the things that makes DeSoto Trail Elementary School (DTES) such a special place. You will find getting involved is very rewarding to both you and your Trailblazer(s). If you wish to volunteer on campus or attend a field trip, please review the following information:

  1. District Volunteer Application. Every volunteer must have a district volunteer application on file. This includes parents, guardians, youth volunteers and employees of the school who are volunteering. Even if you only want to chaperone a field trip, make sure to get this from submitted. This application must be completed yearly at the link here.  We review the volunteer sign-up genius to check each volunteer has submitted this application and do our best to contact you if you need to have one completed before the event. If we cannot contact you before the event and you do not have the from on file, the office will inform you when you check in that you will not be permitted to volunteer. The form cannot be submitted the day of the event. The district requires at least 48 business hours for processing. 
  2. Tracking Volunteer Hours. Tracking hours helps our school secure grants. We also use this information to put a dollar value to service hours given to the school and to recognize volunteers during Volunteer Appreciation Week. This year, one volunteer hour is worth $31.80!
    • If you are volunteering on campus, sign-in through the computers in the front office. Select Visitor, type your name, and for your destination, select “*Volunteering”. This helps us to separate visitors from volunteers when we review the log. Don’t forget to log-out when you leave to capture an accurate time of volunteer hours. 
    • If you are volunteering from home, we will send out a google survey each month via email, facebook and the website. Here you can input the hours your volunteered for that month. 
  3. How do we advertise needs?  Through Facebook, our website, emails and for bigger events, we will ask the school to send out the sign-up genius link. We first email volunteer opportunities to the people who have selected an interest in that field through the district volunteer application or signed up directly on our very official paper lists. You may also email us directly to be put on a specific committee list, more on that later.  (For example, if you selected Field Day on the district application, you will get an email for Field Day, Trailblazer Fitness Adventure and Mile Club since those are all athletic interests). After emailing the committee email list, we will post the link to sign-up on facebook and our website for those who do not use social media. 
  4. How can you sign-up for events? Currently, PTO uses Sign-Up Genius to fill our volunteer needs. Each committee chair typically oversees the sign-up genius for their specific committee. Some sign-ups show each month’s needs, like media center and mile club, some are seasonal like the butterfly garden, but most are event specific like field day, grandparents day, and book fair.
  5. Volunteer Opportunities and Time Commitments:  We divide up our Volunteer Opportunities into committees. Below is a current list of our committees with a brief description. Signing up to be on a committee is not a commitment to volunteer, but just a way for you to receive information. We only ask that you volunteer when it works for your schedule. 

6. Important School & District Policies and Guidelines.

  1. All volunteers must sign in at the school office before proceeding to their volunteer assignment.
  2. Volunteers may not dispense any medications (prescription or over-the-counter) to students.
  3. Volunteers may not administer any form of corporal (physical) punishment to students.
  4. Volunteers may not bring children (i.e. siblings, non-school aged children) to volunteer assignments.
  5. Volunteers must respect a student’s right to confidentiality (Florida Statute 1002.22) including the following areas: standardized test scores, grades, attendance records, health information, academic work completed, family background information, reports of serious behavior patterns and written teacher observations. 
  6. Children (i.e. siblings, non school age children, etc) may not accompany volunteers on volunteer assignments.

    I understand that according to state law (Florida Statue 1002.22) I must protect the confidentiality of my student at all times except when:
    • I feel he/she is showing signs of depression and possible suicide;He/she indicates a desire to do harm to another individual; I see/hear signs of possible neglect or abuse; I see/observe signs of drug abuse, orI see or a student reveals that they are seriously ill.
    In all of the examples above, the proper course of action to take is to notify school staff immediately, and in the case of suspected child abuse, I am expected to call the Florida Child Abuse Hotline (1-800-96-ABUSE).
  7. School Board Policy 2430.01 – Volunteer Program, requires that a National Sexual Offender/Predator Check be processed on all school volunteers.

Our committees:

Homeroom Parent: Please sign up through your child’s teacher. Work with the teacher to organize classroom parties, plan teacher appreciation, door decorations and birthday surprises, and other classroom activities per the teacher’s request.

All Pro Dad Breakfast: Volunteers welcome dads and students and pass out breakfast items at this monthly event. Volunteers arrive at 7am and are finished before the School day begins.

Baking & Hospitality: This committee gets lots of love when it delivers baked goods and other food and drinks for various school events such as Teacher Appreciation Week, book fairs, and the cast parties following musical productions. 

Book Fair: The Media Center hosts two book fairs each year. Volunteers help set up these popular events, guide children in finding books and work the register. 

Butterfly Garden: DTES has its own certified butterfly garden! Volunteers help maintain the space, weed as necessary, and ensure the garden remains beautiful all on your own schedule.

DTES Longest Table: Our school’s newest tradition!  Volunteers set up and decorate the table for students and then prepare and serve a Thanksgiving dessert. This is a one-day event!

Field Day: A one-day commitment and it’s a day full of fun! Volunteers set up and man the activity centers and cheer children on as they rotate through the various events. 

Grandparents Day: Committee members promote and host this special day for grandparents. Responsibilities include collecting lunch orders, decorating for the event, and greeting grandparents as they arrive on campus. 

Holiday Shoppe: This week-long event allows students to select and purchase holiday gifts for their families. Volunteers decorate for the event, stock the merchandise and assist students with selecting gifts.

Laminating: This team takes turns collecting items from teachers and taking them to the district media office to laminate. Items are picked up once every other week from campus and returned by the end of the same day. They also assist in cutting out laminated items.

Media Center: Volunteers help with shelving, checking in and out books, and assisting students as needed. Any amount of time volunteered is welcome!

Mentoring: Trained volunteers assist an identified student one-on-one. Mentoring takes place on school grounds during the school day on a regularly scheduled basis. 

Mile Club: This club meets on the track each morning before school. Volunteers are needed for only 20 minutes starting at 8:00am to hand out student cards and tally the laps with a scanner.

Musical Production: Members of this committee ensure the stage is decorated and props, costumes and related materials are prepared for each performance. Volunteers also help set up the art displays throughout the school.

Picture Days: In the fall and the spring, volunteers help coordinate the flow of students from the classroom and through the picture-taking process.  

Popcorn Wednesdays: This team makes Wednesdays fun! Volunteers assist the Guidance Office with making and selling popcorn to students on Wednesday mornings before school.

Teacher Appreciation Week: This committee hosts several luncheons and makes teacher appreciation week special by delivering gifts and working with homeroom moms to provide surprises for teachers, including door decorating. This event usually falls in the first week of May. 

Yearbook: This committee is responsible for the development, sales, and collection of orders for yearbook purchases. Members also assist with photography and design needs. 

If you have any questions, or would like to be on the email list for a specific committee, send us an email:

You can also join our ‘DTES PTO’ Facebook page to be sure you find out about all our events throughout the year!