A message from Bill Castor, president, BFA Board of Directors…
On behalf of your Board of Directors, I would like to thank you for another very successful year at Ben Franklin Academy and welcome you as we begin another terrific school year. The Board continues to make steady progress toward both our short and long-term goals, while maintaining our focus and commitment to the BFA mission and vision. We attribute our success to the continuing dedication of our leadership, staff and parent community.
Due to our reputation as The Core Knowledge STEAM School of Choice, BFA continues to be one of the most desirable schools in the area. We’ve enrolled more than 920 students for the upcoming school year and have a very healthy wait list. Although we have done a great deal to position our school for a successful future, we have much to accomplish as we begin our eighth year. Along with the fundamental elements that we concentrate on every year, my focus will be on the following two priorities:
- Charter Renewal – BFA is a K-8 public charter school that is authorized to operate by its charter contract with the Douglas County School District. We also operate a Core Knowledge, tuition-based preschool. Although it is semi-autonomous and has flexibility in its operations due to the waivers it received, BFA is held accountable for meeting the objectives set forth in its original charter contract. We are currently working hard to finalize the application to renew our charter contract. In fact, our highest priority continues to be the renewal of this agreement with the Douglas County School District by June 30, 2019. The renewal application process has been underway since last spring and we will submit it to the District in September. Thank you to all of the Board members, parents and staff that have worked so hard to pull the required information together. The charter renewal is critical to our ability to continue as one of the premier schools in this area.
- Volunteerism – The commitment of our BFA administration, staff and parent community is the foundation upon which our school has been built. Last year we logged more than 21,500 volunteer hours, which is on par with the best we have ever done. Thank you to all the families who contributed toward that amazing total! However, what has become more pronounced is the concentration of our volunteer hours among a smaller group of our committed parents. This isn’t just a parochial concern about a smaller number of families carrying the majority of the load, it also impacts the number and quality of events we can have. Even more importantly, when it comes to carpool, it can become a safety concern. I am very proud of the volunteers who consistently assist with the key operations of our school, but I urge everyone not to become complacent in this regard. We all count on each other to maintain the high quality of our school and we can’t do it without everyone upholding their volunteer commitment. Thanks again to all of you who have volunteered your valuable time to help make our school such a success; and to those who have struggled to meet their commitment, I encourage you to seek out ways to help. There are many ways to volunteer (including projects that can be done from home, in the evening, or on weekends) and help BFA continue to be successful for our children. Please do your best to contribute in some small way.
As we look forward to the 2018-19 school year, I am once again humbled to be a part of such a great community. The administration, teachers and staff have worked hard to prepare for the start of school and look forward to welcoming our children back for another rewarding school year. The ability to choose the school that provides the type of education we all want for our children is not something we can take for granted. On behalf of the Board of Directors, we’re honored you have chosen BFA. We have a lot more to accomplish and I look forward to the great things this year has in store for all of us.