Dear BFIS Parents and Students,
Welcome to the 2015-2016 school year! My team and I would like to welcome our returning families and offer a special welcome to all families new to the BFIS community. Thanks for giving us the opportunity to partner with you in the education of your children. We are really looking forward to getting to know you this year and we hope that you will enjoy your time here in BCN.
While you have been traveling and spending time with family and friends, The Middle and High School teams have been here on campus preparing for your return. Our campus has been busy with activity and improvements, many of which Mr. Knauer highlighted in this year’s welcome letter. We are all looking forward to the new ES building (due to be completed next summer, but now under construction), as it will allow Middle and High School to expand our footprint and give us some much-needed work and play space.
As we do annually, we have also worked to continue to improve our program, making numerous additions and adjustments based upon student, parent, and staff input. A few of these changes include additional elective activities for students, a more comprehensive after school program, and a better documented program (through the course catalogue available soon), as part of our reflection on the last school year. In fact, this entire year will be one of reflection on our educational effectiveness, as we will be conducting both the 5-Year IB Program review, as well as the mid-term Middle States Association (MSA) accreditation review. As the community completes these studies, we will be sharing the findings with you.
You are likely to have questions as we begin the year. This Who to Contact at MS/HS chart can help you find the right person. In the coming weeks, we will be publishing the BFIS MS/HS Course Catalog. Additionally, our MS/HS Student Handbook has been updated and streamlined, once again. We encourage all families to read it together. After reviewing it, students will need to return this packet of Returnable Permission Slips by Friday, September 4, 2015. Parents, please pay particular attention to the revised (and more stringent) attendance and absence policies (Sections 3.1 and 3.2) so that you can support your child(ren) in adhering to them.
The first few weeks of school are busy ones which include our annual October trips from Wednesday 7-Friday 9.. Please take some moments to look at the information here and return the permission slips to your child’s advisors, including authorization for billing. These trips are always very popular and attendance is highly recommended as there are no classes or alternative options at school during this time.
MS Grades 6-8 Trip Information to L’Escala
HS Grades 9-10 Trip Information to Sant Hilari
HS Grades 11-12 CAS Trip Information to Southern France
Please remember that Mr. Preston, the counselors, and I will continue to use two primary forms of communication through which we will keep you informed of all school items. First, our BFIS Weekly email will keep you updated about all things coming and highlight things past. Additionally, I will continue to post weekly, numerous items to the MS/HS Principal Blog. Please check these sources regularly for updates. Any links in this email will also be included there, should you have any trouble accessing them from this letter.
If you are a Middle School parent and would like access to the student management system, PowerSchool via the Parent Portal, please complete our Parent Portal Sign Up and a username and login will be emailed to you by September 30. (First time users only need do this.) This resource will allow you to support your student through assignment updates and regular emails sent directly to you by the PowerSchool system.
Finally, we are happy to be adding several new staff members. Mrs. Deseri Kelley will become a permanent member of our teaching and EAL team. Mr. Javier Pozo will be teaching MS technology. Mr. Bill Huntzinger will be teaching HS English. Mrs. Adrian Aulet will be teaching IB Psychology and working with our Learning Support team. Ms. Stephanie Leahey will be teaching MS Math and History. Lastly, Ms. Pilar Alvarez will be teaching SFL. I will post more information about them on my blog shortly, but if you see any of them, please introduce yourself.
We are looking forward to an excellent school year filled with learning and student success. If you have any questions before then, please contact us via email or through the main office.
See you on September 1!
Paul R Fulce-Ewing
Middle/High School Principal