Vol. 7, Iss. 23
August 24, 2017
Dear Parents,
 
One tenet of our vision for Ben Franklin Academy is that we will foster the arts, sports, nature and help build character in our students. Our STEAM addition that opened last spring and our new turf field are helping us realize that vision more fully. The students are thriving in their new art, music, performance and technology spaces, and they LOVE playing on the new turf field!
 
When we added our new, larger gym, the Student Council sponsored a contest to name the gyms, so we could stop referring to the gyms as 'old and new' or 'big and small.' We wanted something more official. I am excited to announce that we have officially named both gyms! 
 
Since the 'little gym' came first, it will now be called the 'Lightning Gym.' The 'big gym' will be called the 'Thunder Gym.'  There were six students who suggested these two names:  Vanessa Watson, Mackenzie Reynolds, Travis Smith, Erin Savoy, Ben Velasco and Brooke Beggins.  Each winner will receive a prize, which they (or their family members, since some have graduated), can pick up in the office. Thanks to all the students and staff who participated in the contest! 
 
We all know that a powerful way to build character in students is to participate in an organized sport. We are proud to offer our middle school students the opportunity to compete against other charter schools in the area in basketball, cross country, soccer and volleyball. Our athletics program has grown significantly since its inception, and we are excited to see that growth continue! 
 
Middle School sports are getting into full swing for the fall with cross country, girls volleyball and boys soccer. Our boys soccer team will be defending their league championship from last year. All of these teams have their first games or competitions in the next couple of weeks.  We'd love to see big, loud sections of BFA community members cheering these teams on to victory! You can find the schedules posted on the BFA website calendar.
 
The school year is off to a great start, and I look forward to seeing you all next week at Back to School Night.
 
Sincerely,

Diana Simpson 

Sunshine
IMPORTANT OFFICE REMINDERS  
 
Please  remember your driver's license the first time you come to the school to volunteer or attend a meeting. For safety reasons, every person who enters the school needs to have their driver's license scanned each school year. Please keep in mind, this is also a requirement for any friends or relatives who would like to enter the school.

In addition, please note that the office hours have changed this school year. T he office will be open from 7:45 a.m. until 4:15 p.m.; and, similar to past years, the office will close from 3 p.m. until 'all call' for carpool.   

FREE BFA APP KEEPS YOU CONNECTED  
 
Stay connected to BFA from your mobile device using the Ben Franklin Academy app! Download the BFA app for instant access to BFA contacts, the latest news, calendars, menus and more! If you enable push notifications, you'll receive important announcements immediately after publication. You also can use the app for attendance reporting, checking the BFA event calendar and making payments. This free app is available on IOS and Android devices--get it NOW on the  App Store or Google Play.

PARENTS - IT'S TIME FOR YOU TO GO BACK TO SCHOOL  
 
As communicated earlier this week, BFA's Back to School Nights will be held Wednesday, Aug. 30, for Kindergarten through fourth grade; and on Thursday, Aug. 31, for fifth through eighth grade. The purpose of Back to School Night is to help the parents become better acquainted with the school, staff and information specific to their child's grade level.
    
Please plan on attending your student's Back to School Night. For a detailed schedule, see our recent news.   

Harvest
DON'T MISS THE 7TH ANNUAL HARVEST FESTIVAL  
 
Join us for a night of family fun from 4 - 7 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 16, at BFA. The Harvest Festival is a tradition at BFA because its fun for kids and adults. Festival activities include: carnival games, face painting, balloon twisting, inflatables, outdoor field games, and of course, THE CAKE WALK!
 
Popcorn, baked goods and refreshments are included with your admission fee. And, we're excited to announce that The Rolling Italian, Mikes 2 Kitchen, and Kona Ice will be on site offering food for sale.
   
Purchase your advance tickets now through Tuesday, Sept. 12, t hrough the BFA Store,  under the 'Events' tab. Tickets are $10 per child or max $25 for a family (siblings only), with advance purchase. Adults and children under three are FREE! Tickets at the door will be $10 per child; the family discount will not be available.   Wristbands for those who prepay will be sent home with the oldest child before the event.
 
Families who have completed their 30 hours (15 hours for single family households) of volunteer service for the current school year, and have logged them by Thursday, Sept. 7, will be given FREE admittance to the event!
 
Volunteers are needed to make this event a success. Please sign up   today if you're interested in volunteering.  And, click here   if you'd like to sign up to bring baked goods for the event and/or cakes for the cake walk. 

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PLAYGROUND ENHANCEMENTS   
 
Are you curious about the playground and what's happened to the tetherballs?
 
The PTO has been upgrading the playground areas using funds raised from the 2016 Fun Run. Thanks to your generous contributions to the PTO, we're happy to announce the following playground improvements are in process:
  • Construction of a paved, 3,500 square foot play area between the preschool parking lot and fenced border along Plaza Drive;
  • Removal of the existing swings and installation of eight new swings and a 4-person disc swing;
  • Relocation of the slide and vertical climber;
  • Installation of five new tetherball sets in the new play area; and
  • Addition of two four square courts.
Now that the new building construction and turf installation are complete, work has started on these playground enhancements. The new playground equipment has been ordered and should be installed early this fall.
 
Thanks again to all the parents who generously supported the PTO by participating in last year's primary PTO fundraiser.

benefit bash
THE BENEFIT BASH NEEDS YOU 
(AND THEY'RE HANDING OUT A PRIZE!)  
 
Please join us for a Benefit Bash planning meeting from 7 - 8 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 7, in the Sanders Science Lab. The Benefit Bash is going to be amazing this year--with a brand new venue and lots of great auction items. But, we need YOU to help make this event successful, which is important as this is the PTO's largest fundraiser of the 2017-18 school year. We'll be holding a drawing for a prize; bring a friend and we'll double your chances to win!

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IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR BASE FAMILIES
 
A note from Mrs. Savoy to all current and prospective BASE families...
 
Hello all!  Welcome back to school.

New Drop Off and Pick Up Procedures 
The procedures for Before/After School Enrichment (BASE) drop off and pick up are now a bit different than in years past. You will need to drop off and pick up your BASE student(s) on the northwest side of the building.

Specifically, go to the double doors for the Lightning (small) gym located in the back (northwest) side of the building. The easiest way for you to get there is to park in the preschool
lot, which has the basketball hoops, walk up to the doors and ring the BASE doorbell.
The doorbell is located on the north side window of the foyer on the silver panel. Ring the bell
and someone will come to the door to let you in. If you have trouble or have questions, please email BASE.
 
On another note...
Once you have completed the necessary paperwork and are registered in the BASE program  
for the 2017-18 school year, you will be able to set up your MyProcare account.
 
Please note, if your registration is not complete, you will be denied access to MyProcare. BASE billing will be processed on a weekly basis. If you are enrolled in Tuition Express, your BASE tuition due will be paid automatically from your account. You can review charges and payments anytime in your MyProcare account.
 
For those families not yet enrolled in Tuition Express, you will receive an email with instructions on how to make payment once billing is complete. Please note, currently it is optional enroll in Tuition Express. As of Jan 1, 2018, we will be moving to mandatory automated payments for all BASE accounts. Please complete your Tuition Express Authorization form today.
 

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CALLING ALL CHEFS AND BAKERS 
 
Do you enjoy cooking or baking? Are you looking to earn volunteer hours at home? Then the Baking Committee is a great volunteer opportunity for you! This committee makes baked goods for various school events (including the Harvest Festival cake walk), provides dinner for our teachers during parent teacher conferences, and occasionally provides meals for families in need. It's an easy way to earn volunteer hours. If you'd like to be included on the committee's email distribution list, please email Mary Vansyoc, the PTO Baking Committee Manager.

PTO Logo
GOT SPIRIT WEAR?  
 
PTO will be selling spirit wear items, including desktop calendars, at the Back to School Nights on  August 30 and 31. Stop by to pick up your sweatshirts, hoodies, car magnets, and calendars. Cash or check only.
 
If you can't find your size, you may order your items from our online store and they will be delivered to your child's classroom. This year, the online store closes on October 31 so remember to get your order in now. Shop early and shop often!

BEN'S BRIGADE MEETING  
 
Ben's Brigade is an organization created especially for BFA Fathers and Grandfathers who want to work together to positively impact our school. Ben's Brigade is focused on helping the school in various ways throughout the year; for example, they complete various projects during Spring and Summer workdays, assist at annual school events and even have their own 'carpool day.' Ben's Brigade also serves as a social outlet for Fathers/Grandfathers to meet other Dads. They schedule time to get together and discuss topics such as professional careers, their children and BFA in general. Ben's Brigade meets monthly to discuss current and ongoing activities and functions. All meetings are held at the Starbucks located inside Target (1265 Sergeant Jon Stiles Dr.)
The next meeting will be held tonight from 8-9 pm.
 
Ben's Brigade Mission Statement
It is the mission of Ben's Brigade to be Extraordinary Men committed to the growth, development, success and safety of Ben Franklin Academy's students, families and staff members. Our supportive and collaborative engagement with before, during and after school activities contributes to a strong school family of continuous relationships and lasting community connections.

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MOVE OVER WALT DISNEY!  
 
Is your student constantly exceeding the storage capacity on your electronics with their home movies? Then, we have the after school club for you!
Sign your fourth - eighth grade student up for Mini Movie Makers, an after school club sponsored by Mrs. Tickle. Kids will learn how to create an animated movie using Frames software. T he club will meet for ten sessions from 4 - 5 p.m. on Wednesdays beginning Sept. 6 through Nov. 15 and the cost is just $125. (No class during fall break!) Be sure to register today! 

Science Fair
SCIENCE LOVERS - STEM CLUB IS BACK  
 
This year Mrs. Lewicki is sponsoring two STEM Club after school sessions for third through fifth graders!

Students will work in teams to perform experiments, discover the principles behind the experiment, innovate a new design with their team, and perform the experiment again. The first session, Phony Physics, begins Sept. 11; and the second session, Chemistry Chaos, begins Oct. 16.

Each session will be held from 4 - 5 p.m. and is only $60. Register today!   

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PRIVATE VOICE, ACTING AND PIANO LESSONS AT BFA  
 
BFA offers private voice, acting lessons and piano on campus. Lessons are after school on Wednesdays and Thursdays beginning September 6 in the Music Room. The pricing is $30 for 30 minutes and $60 for an hour.

The instructor is Sydney Harper a performer and teacher from Denver. She has soloed with esteemed organizations such as the Colorado Symphony and the Denver Philharmonic. She has been directing professional and amateur children's theatre for 11 years and has a private studio of more than 50 students. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Music Theatre. 
 
For more questions email Sydney or contact Ms. Johnson. Click here to register; be sure to select one of the BFA offerings.

BensBrigade
SPREAD THE WORD - PROSPECTIVE PARENTS TOUR BFA 
 
Parents interested in joining the BFA family are welcome to tour the school Wednesdays in September, October and November. Tours begin at 9 a.m. each Wednesday (except Oct. 11 and Nov. 22) and will be lead by Principal Simpson. New families--all adults should bring your driver's license and check in a few minutes before the tour is scheduled to begin.  

DCEF
DOUGLAS COUNTY EDUCATIONAL FOUNDATION EVENTS  
 
Click here for a flier with upcoming DCEF events.
 
Community Night with the Colorado Rapids vs. FC Dallas 
Saturday, Oct. 7 , at 7 p.m.
Dick's Sporting Goods Park
Tickets $24 (reg. $32 - $65); Click here for a flier with more information. 
Students eighth grade and under who purchase tickets will be given the opportunity to participate in the Halftime High 5 Squad and receive a FREE Rapids T-Shirt! 
 
Community Events with the Denver Center for the Performing Arts 
Denver Center for the Performing Arts Complex
Enter promo code: DCSDFUND
The Snowy Day - September 21 through November 18; Tickets $15  
From the joys of a first snowfall and learning how to whistle to thrilling encounters delivering a precious invitation, the delightful moments of childhood are perfectly captured in this medley of simple, sweet stories. The production kicks off the new Theatre for Young Audiences program, which focuses on performances especially tailored for youth audiences. Bring your little ones to their first theatre experience and relive the moments of your childhood through their eyes.
   
Today, Aug. 24
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SCHOOL ACCOUNTABILITY COMMITTEE MEETING 
   
The School Accountability Committee (SAC) will meet from 4:10 - 5:10 p.m. today, Aug. 24, in the BFA Conference Room. All are welcome to attend! 
BEN'S BRIGADE MEETING 
   
BFA Dads, Grandpas and favorite uncles are welcome to attend the Ben's Brigade meeting from 8 - 9 p.m. tonight, Aug. 24, at the Starbucks inside Target ( 1265 Sergeant Jon Stiles Dr.).
Wednesday, Aug. 30
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BACK TO SCHOOL NIGHT (GRADES K-4) 
   
Families with kids in grades K-4, plan to attend the Back to School Night beginning at  6 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 30. The purpose of Back to School Night is to help the parents become better acquainted with the school, staff and information specific to their child's grade level. For a detailed schedule, see our recent news.  
Thursday, Aug. 31
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BACK TO SCHOOL NIGHT (GRADES 5-8) 
   
Families with kids in grades 5-8, plan to attend the Back to School Night beginning at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 31. The purpose of Back to School Night is to help the parents become better acquainted with the school, staff and information specific to their child's grade level.  For a detailed schedule, see our recent news.   
Additional Upcoming Events: BFA Calendar
Middle School:  Athletics 
CONTACT US:
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.