Vol. 10, Iss. 20
Aug. 20, 2020

Dear Parents,
Welcome to the 2020-21 school year!
Thank you to all the parents who listened to the carpool video and followed instructions about dropping off your kiddos on time via the carpool lanes with their masks on and their backpacks ready! Morning drop off for our A group went very well. There was never a long line for temperature checks, Ben's Brigade did a great job with traffic flow, and staff were on hand to escort kids to their classroom or point them in the right direction. And, our teachers were thrilled to welcome their first group of kids. 
We've put many protocols in place to keep our kids and staff safe this school year, as I'm sure you'll hear about; but staying safe at school has a lot to do with what happens at home. It bears repeating that we need your help in assessing your child(ren)'s health before they get in the car to come to school. (Click here for assessment worksheet.) In addition, if your child is sick, it is important that you let us know their symptoms and/or diagnosis, as well as if they are being tested for COVID-19 or are quarantining because they have been exposed to someone with COVID-19. Our goal is to get students back in the building five days a week, but that will only happen if you keep sick kids at home and are forthcoming about COVID-related concerns. Please see the newsletter article below for specific instructions about reporting an illness.
It's been wonderful to have kids back in the building. We look forward to seeing our B group tomorrow and connecting with our remote learners next week! As always, you can reach me via email if you have any questions.   
Diana Simpson 

Our school motto for the year is: "Adjust Your Sails." This phrase is taken from the quote, "When you can't control the direction of the wind, adjust your sails." This year there are many things that we can't control, but our attitude and how we choose to react to what is going on around us are things we can control. We are about to embark on an exciting voyage. Any new journey causes both anxiety and excitement. As a crew working together, we can adjust our sails to go with the wind instead of fighting against it. Your attitude towards this school year and the different things that it entails will determine how the year goes for your child(ren). We know it is sometimes hard to be positive when things are so chaotic, but we need everyone to tackle these challenges with a smile and determination to make Ben Franklin Academy's 10th year the best one yet. The staff is on board, ready to sail, and we are excited to have you join us! 

This year, ALL families will need to report attendance for each student by 9:30 a.m. each day that they are learning remotely. Fully remote and remote support students need to fill out the attendance form every day. A day students, will need to fill out the form on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. B day students, will need to fill out the form on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. The form is linked in the BFA app under 'Attendance' and is on the website under the 'Parents' tab. We soon hope to have a direct link on the main page of the BFA website as well.

We also ask that you let us know if your child will be absent from in person or remote learning. Absences can be communicated by emailing attendance@bfacademy.org or by calling 720-432-9239. It's especially important this year that we're able to track reasons students are absent due to illness. When reporting your student's absence, please provide details regarding the reason for the absence, including the symptoms or diagnosis. For example, you can indicate: cough, sore throat, fever, strep throat, or exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19. Direct links to report an absence are available through the website Quicklinks (under Absence) or via the BFA app (click 'Attendance' then 'Absence').

meal bag

Students can bring a lunch or purchase their lunch at school on the days they are here. Douglas County Nutrition Services (DCNS) provides lunch and strives to offer healthy options. You can view the lunch choices for the week on the Nutrition Services website, and set up a payment account through MySchoolBucks
Please make sure your child knows when they should order hot lunch and what their choice is for that day (including whether they'll be purchasing doubles). Teachers are asked to give a count of how many students will be ordering lunch and what choice they would like each morning. To find out more, see the BFA website.

In addition, Nutrition Services is now offering pre-order Weekly Meal Bags for eLearners and Hybrid learners for days when they are learning at home. There are options with breakfast and lunch, as well as choices for full remote and hybrid learners. These meals are FREE for students on the free/reduced meal program. Click here for details, costs and to place an order. 

BFA uses multiple communication tools to ensure that parents keep track of all the exciting things happening at BFA. Check out the list below for more details about all the ways to stay connected:
  • Principal Simpson's weekly newsletter is sent out via email every Thursday. 
  • The BFA website is the central hub for news, calendars, policies, teacher webpages, committee webpages and essential quicklinks for absence/attendance reporting, lunch, payments and volunteer management.
  • BFA has a public Facebook page and posts various announcements and pictures throughout the day. 
  • Teacher websites, newsletters and blogs ensure you stay abreast of all the happenings inside your student's classroom.
  • The BFA app offers quick access to all the information you need from your mobile device, and if you enable notifications, you'll also receive helpful reminders throughout the year. The app is available on IOS and Android devices - get it now on the App Store or Google Play!
  • Be sure to follow our Instagram account, BFAmazing, to see what is happening every day. You never know who might pop up on the 'gram!
  • Additional communications will be sent routinely to Middle School and Preschool families.
If you are not receiving communications from Ben Franklin Academy, please contact Carrie Keen.

Cross Country

We're excited to announce that Ben Franklin Academy will have a middle school Cross Country (XC) team this fall season. Mrs. Johnson and Mrs. Gautier are the co-head coaches this year. XC will look a little different this year due to COVID-19 and CHSAA restrictions. 
Tryouts are from 4 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. on Friday, August 21, on the turf field. (Students who attend school on A day should meet on the turf at 4 p.m. for temperature checks and sign in.) Due to the amount of runners we can have run at the same time, we need to split into several groups with 15 runners in each group. You will need to register your student for the tryouts in MySchoolBucks by 10 p.m. tonight, Aug. 20, and fill out a COVID-19 waiver that is posted on the athletics webpage.
Once tryouts are completed we will place runners in three separate teams. A team, B team, and possibly C team (practice team). We have to divide the runners into teams due to the amount of kids we can send to the meets. Some meets will only allow five male runners and five female runners from each school to participate. Our goal is to get everyone at least one meet to run in. Once the teams are decided you will need to register your runner on the specific team you made (A, B or C) after tryouts. 
Practices will be Tuesday and Thursday from 4 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. starting the week of Monday, August 24, on the turf. Bring water, shoes, and a change of clothes to run in.
This will be a great year for middle school XC and we're excited to see you out there!

BASE logo
A message from Mrs. Savoy, BASE director...
The Before/After School Enrichment (BASE) program has moved to a new childcare system called Early Learning Ventures (ELV) for account maintenance and payments. It is replacing the ProCare program that we used in previous years. Now all of the registration process is online, no paperwork is involved. We've found this offers efficiencies for parents and administration alike. 
Your child must be enrolled in advance to use the BASE program. Therefore, any child not enrolled prior to the first day BASE is needed, will not be able to attend BASE. If you think that you may need BASE services at any time during the school year, please register now. For the link to register please email BASE at base@bfacademy.org.

The PTO is looking for elementary Room Parents for this school year! Being a Room Parent for your kindergarten through fifth grade student is a great way to get your hours in, develop a great relationship with your child's teacher and get involved in the school. Additionally, being a Room Parent is an incredible way to support your child's teacher. The majority of your work will be done outside of the classroom. If you're interested, please send an email to Amanda Trenck and Lauren Flint, room parent coordinators. 

Harper Arts has been a part of the BFA community for the last four school years, and this year Mrs. Harper is expanding Harper Arts lessons and coaching for our students. For the 2020-21 school year, students will have the option to have piano, guitar, ukulele, voice, acting and audition coaching during the school day!
Students are approved to participate in this opportunity during DEAR, recess, specials, electives (middle school) and advisory (middle school). There also will still be a number of spaces available before and after school. Along with the hybrid schedule, lessons will occur on A/B Tuesdays and Thursdays and can be tailored to fit in person learning or virtual! Mrs. Harper will also be offering lessons on Wednesdays at her Highlands Ranch studio with space for in person and virtual students.
Space for this program is EXTREMELY LIMITED! Click here to register now! Priority shall be given on a first come, first served basis!

The PTO's store for spirit wear and spirit items is now open and will remain open through the first trimester. Shop now for all your BFA gear including logoed t-shirts, hoodies, baseball caps, MASKS and GAITERS in youth and adult sizes, desktop calendars, and more! Make sure your kids have sweatshirts for chilly classrooms and fleece jackets or vests for recess. Find all your items at MySchoolBucks. 

There will be no in-person sales this fall. All orders must be placed online at MySchoolBucks. Orders will be delivered to and sent home through your child's classroom. Masks and gaiters are not returnable. If you are a remote-learning family, please contact Rachael Hamburger, PTO spirit wear chair, to coordinate delivery.

We are excited to announce that the first four weeks of school are now open on the BFA Rocks SignUpGenius. However, with the current uncertainty of what this year will look like, we will be opening up additional dates to paint it as we proceed through this year instead of all at once. The first four weeks of school are open on the SignUpGenius. We will add/announce new dates as we know more. Please do not pay in MySchoolBucks until you have secured your date in SignUpGenius, as we cannot offer refunds.
Friday, Aug. 21

We're looking forward to seeing all our students who are group B hybrid learners tomorrow, Aug. 21. Please remember to wear Formal Uniform which is a navy polo shirt with the BFA logo and tan pants, shorts, shirt or a skort.
Tuesday, Aug. 25

The BFA Board of Directors will be meeting virtually at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 25. The agenda with the details will be available 24 hours in advance of the meeting on the BFA website. All are welcome to listen in on the meeting.
Additional Upcoming Events: BFA Calendar
Middle School:  Athletics 
Ben Franklin Academy
2270 Plaza Drive
Highlands Ranch, CO 80129
Main Office: (720) 383-4519 info@bfacademy.org 
Attendance: (720) 432-9239 attendance@bfacademy.org 
Fax: (303) 974-1738
Our mission is to create young adults with character like America's founding Renaissance man, Benjamin Franklin: well-read, scientifically curious, and civically engaged.
Our students will excel academically through a challenging, sequenced curriculum that emphasizes math, science, and literacy. We will be a data driven institution, focusing on individual students. Our students, teachers, parents, staff, and leaders will be held accountable for the success of our school. Finally, we recognize that an education is incomplete without fostering the arts, sports, nature, and character.
Temperance, Silence, Order, Resolution, Frugality, Industry, Sincerity, Justice, Moderation, Cleanliness, Tranquility, Purity and Humility.