If you have any questions about the information contained in this handbook, please contact the school at (303) 771-3990.
Hours & Calendar
School and Class Hours
Preschool & Jr. Kindergarten 8:30 – 2:30
Kindergarten – 5th Grade 8:30 – 3:00
Middle School 8:30 – 3:30
It is very important that your child arrive on time for the school day, as he or she may miss important instructional work. Extended day services are provided from 7:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
School Calendar and Vacation Periods
BCDS follows a typical school calendar throughout the year. There is no school on parent conference days, in service days, holidays or vacation periods. On half-day In-service days, school is in session until noon. An optional summer enrichment program is provided. Vacations are scheduled according to a typical school calendar. If your family has scheduled a vacation, please alert the teacher in advance, so assignments may be gathered or saved for your child. Vacations can be valuable experiences and provide wonderful learning opportunities. If your child is frequently out, and is experiencing difficulty or falling behind, we will notify you.
Contact Us / Contacting You
Contacting the Office, Adminstrators and Teachers
Please feel free to contact the office whenever you need assistance or have questions at (303) 771-3990; we will be happy to help. The Principal and Vice Principal welcome your calls, questions, comments and concerns. If you need assistance, please feel free to call. Dr. Weber and Dr. Rogers are scheduled mornings, so please make an appointment, or call after 11:00 a.m. If there is a problem, please contact the office so we may assist you immediately.
If you wish to speak to your child’s teacher, please leave a message with the office. The teacher will return your call as soon as possible during his or her lunch or planning periods. Teachers are assigned to a variety of duties throughout the school day, and will wish to speak to you when they are free. Many parents are able to obtain information in passing. We do ask that instructional activities not be interrupted, as this interferes with the learning process.
Current Phone Numbers and Emergency Information
BCDS MUST be kept informed of telephone and address changes at home and work in case of emergency. Please leave current numbers for temporary assignments and numbers where you may be reached if you will be away. A note to the office or teacher with this information is helpful and reduces any anxiety your child may have about a parent’s absence.
Seperated and Divorced Parents
BCDS is happy to accommodate the special needs of children who spend time in two separate homes. This creates special needs for the school as well. Generally, parents work cooperatively together; however, we are happy to schedule separate conferences and provide an extra copy of school information. If there are specific Court guidelines that BCDS needs to be aware of, please provide a copy of the Order. This will eliminate any confusion and will allow us to handle things smoothly for the well being of the child. If a parent wishes us to send the weekly class letter, please provide the teacher with self-addressed, stamped envelopes.
Children and the Telephone
In an emergency, parents may leave messages for a child during the school day with the office, and we will deliver the message. Sometimes children wish to call parents during the day to ask if a friend may spend the night or play after school. Children are encouraged to make these arrangements ahead of time, as it is not fair to surprise parents with these requests.
Absence, Tardiness & Snow Days
Absences and Tardiness
Please notify the office if your child is absent due to illness. Children who arrive after 10:00 need to check in at the office.
Snow Day Policy
In the event that school must be canceled for the day due to weather conditions, the closure will be announced on the following radio and television stations: KHOW, KLZ, 9 KUSA, 7 KMGH, AND 4 KCNC. If the school must close early, parents will be contacted by phone.
Arrival, Pickup & Visitors
Morning Arrival and Entry into School and Picking Up Children
Children ages 6 and above are independent and reliable enough to be dropped off at the base of the safety walk. Please drive around the circle, and stop momentarily at the base of the safety area. Please wait, in your car, until your child is safely out of the car, walks in the safety area to the door, and enters the building. You may then drive away. This will allow you to drop your child off safely, yet eliminate loss of your time. This will simplify your morning routine, and the independence is valuable for your child. Children ages 4 and 5 should be brought into the school and signed in and out daily. If the class is on a field trip upon your arrival, please bring your child to the office.
When you pick your child up, please keep your child under your supervision, even if you stop to talk. Do not allow children to go to the parking lot without you. Faculty assumes parents are supervising their child when the child leaves with the parent.
Release of Children to Authorized Persons
Children will be released only to authorized persons; this includes parents, persons listed as authorized, and persons for whom parents have given express permission in writing. In the event that a parent calls to give permission by telephone, administrative staff must verify the authenticity of the parent. When an unfamiliar person arrives to pick a child up, faculty shall send the person to the office. Administrative staff will ask for identification, and check records to verify that the person is authorized. If an unauthorized person attempts to pick up a child, parents will be notified immediately. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES WILL ANY CHILD BE RELEASED WITHOUT PARENTAL PERMISSION. If parental permission has been given, but the child is hesitant or fearful, we will NOT RELEASE THE CHILD. The police will be called if there is any difficulty.
Parents are welcome to visit their child’s classroom. Please make arrangements with the office, as a courtesy, at least 24 to 48 hours in advance to avoid conflicts with tests and other visitors. We ask that visits be for a reasonable time, as children may find this stressful.
All visitors are asked to check in at the office, and give their name, address, and purpose for the visit. Staff may ask for identification. Visitors shall be escorted throughout the building. We regret any inconvenience which this may cause, but we know you will understand the necessity for this policy, as it is for the protection of the children.
Illness & Emergencies
Procedures for Illness
Children who are ill, have a temperature of 100 degrees, a fresh cold, diarrhea, or ANY contagious illness should be kept home. The following procedures are followed for illness:
- Faculty shall observe each child upon arrival to look for signs of contagious disease.
- If a child appears to be sick upon arrival, the parent will be asked to take the child home.
- Children who become ill during the school day, or have diarrhea, will be isolated and parents will be asked to pick the child up.
- Time periods children will be kept home for specific illness:
- a. strep – 24 hours following an injection, or 48 hours following antibiotics
b. chicken pox – until the majority of scabs are gone
c. pink eye – two days after initiation of antibiotic treatment
d. Impetigo – until sores are healed
- Parents will be notified if children are exposed to communicable diseases such as chicken pox, pink eye, strep, measles, or hepatitis. Please advise us if your child has been exposed to a communicable disease outside the school that may necessitate his or her exclusion for a prescribed time to prevent exposure to others.
- Physical examinations and immunizations must be kept current according to Colorado state law: yearly until the completion of first grade, then every three years thereafter.
Medication procedures have been established to conform with state regulations, and are followed carefully for the protection of your child.
- Prescribed medication must be brought in the prescription bottle, with directions, to the office. No mediation will be given without directions, or from non-prescription containers.
- The parent must write directions in the medication log.
- ALL medication will be kept in a locked area in the office.
- Faculty will dispense medication at the appropriate time, and the log will be initialed.
- Over the counter drugs, like cough syrup, are given only with doctors written directions.
- NO ASPIRIN will be given under any circumstances.
- MEDICATION CAN NOT BE REFRIGERATED; please send only the day’s dose, in the prescription bottle, and place in a thermos. This is required for sanitation, and protection.
- Beacon retains the right to refuse to administer certain medications or care for particular illness. In these instances, the child will need to remain home until well enough to return.
- In the event a child is diagnosed as having a reportable communicable disease, administrative staff shall notify the local health department.
Notes from Home
A written note from the parent is needed in order to change a student’s participation in P.E. or outdoor recess.
If a child is injured, or an accident occurs, emergency first aid procedures will be followed. Parents will be notified so they may obtain treatment. If parents are not available, the emergency contacts will be called. If no one is available, school staff shall proceed to obtain any needed care. In serious emergencies, the Castlewood Paramedics will be called for assistance, and their directions followed. An emergency medical center is within two minutes of the school, and may also be used. The medical release for each child allows emergency care in the absence of parents. Faculty are trained in First Aid and Child and Infant CPR.
Fire Drills are held monthly, and children are trained in fire safety. Children practice leaving their classrooms and exiting from the nearest door in an orderly manner, closing doors, windows, and turning off lights. They move to the far areas of the playgrounds that are fenced, and roll is taken to insure all children are accounted for. Fire drill procedures and evacuation plans are posted.
If a child is lost, the Greenwood Village Police shall be contacted immediately, parents notified, and faculty will begin looking for the child on and off campus.
In the event of a tornado warning, all students will be gathered in a central hallway for protection, windows will be opened slightly, and all classroom doors will be CLOSED. Children will remain inside during lightning storms.
Emergency Response Protocol
We are using the recommended Standard Approach Protocol for emergencies that law enforcement agencies are recommending throughout the area. It is simple, standardized, and provides a common approach. We have practiced and trained the children. It is imperative that parents and caretakers follow any directions that are given. If there is a serious threat, the police will block the driveway and no one will be allowed onto the grounds. In a lock out, parents may enter, however, they may not leave. These procedures are for the protection of everyone. Here are the primary announcements:
FIRE INSIDE: Evacuate to the playground.
FIRE OUTSIDE: Shelter in silence
TORNADO: Evacuate to hallway! Shelter for tornado! Drop, cover and hold.
LOCKOUT: Lockout! Secure the Perimeter.
This is typically used when there is an animal or intruder outside. The doors are secured and school and activities continue inside as normal without restrictions.
LOCKDOWN: Lockdown! Locks, lights, out of sight.
Lockdown is used if there is an intruder, kidnapper, or weapon inside the building. The police will secure the building then go room to room with their keys to release the children from lockdown. If we are on lockdown, no one will be allowed to enter. Parents are not allowed to enter. They will be turned away and not allowed on the grounds at all. Staying calm is mandatory.
OTHER: There are a few additional announcements for things like Hazmat, earthquakes, or bomb threats.
When the police contact us, we follow their directions explicitly. We do generally explain the situation to the children at an appropriate time to reduce any fear they may have. Every faculty member has an Emergency Response Protocol binder with complete directions, assignments for securing the perimeter, lockdown, and assignments should we evacuate to a neighboring area. We have arranged to evacuate to a neighbor’s house that is adjacent to a cul de sac so parents may pick up children when the order is given, and to the Greenwood Community Church at Belleview and Holly.
Student Dress code
Students are encouraged to dress neatly, with good grooming, and appropriately for the weather and for the use of the school grounds. Students go outside except in extreme weather, conditions below 20 degrees, or extreme heat.
- Shoes must be worn at all times, both in and out. No clogs, thongs, or cleats are allowed.
- Children should all be protected daily with water-resistant sun block, even in the winter.
- Hats may be worn outside for sun protection in warm weather, and for warmth in cold weather. Please note, however, that NO HATS OR CAPS may be worn in the building.
- BCDS is a drug free zone, and it is important that students not wear clothing which may contradict this commitment. Tee shirts with inappropriate, drug related symbolism are not allowed.
- Please avoid caps and clothing, and low slung and baggy pants which may be symbolic of gang clothing or colors.
- No provocative attire, bare midriffs, or halter tops. (Parental assistance is crucial).
- Girls in 7th and 8th grades may wear makeup; we ask that it be applied in light colors, and very subtly, so it is not evident.
- PARENTS WILL BE CALLED AND ASKED TO PICK UP THEIR CHILD TO CHANGE CLOTHES IF THE STUDENT ARRIVES DRESSED AS DESCRIBED IN # 4,5, OR 6.
- Tennis shoes are required for physical education activities, and children not wearing tennis shoes will not be allowed to participate in many activities. Please see that your child either wears tennis shoes to school, or has a pair available in his or her locker for physical education.
- Please label all outer clothing, including jackets, hats, sweaters, sweat shirts, boots, and gloves. This benefits all students. Periodically, we donate a large selection of good clothing from Lost and Found because we cannot locate the owners.
- Please listen to morning weather reports, and provide the proper clothing for our varied Colorado weather. Please help protect your child from being unprepared for sudden weather changes. Students play outside every day, unless weather is extreme, or they have a medical excuse. Please send boots, snow suits, or a change of clothing may be needed with snow and mud, or when children sled. Neat, modest shorts may be worn in hot weather.
Behavior and Discipline
Student Behavior Expectations and Discipline Code
BCDS has high expectations for behavior, which are based on kindness, respect for the rights and needs of others, safety, consideration for each others feelings, and pride in the school. Learning occurs most effectively when students are relaxed, happy, and in a safe and orderly environment. The faculty work diligently to ensure that these are provided, and this hidden curriculum is part of the Effective School Characteristics that BCDS practices. Inappropriate behavior, language and safety issues interfere with effective classrooms. Expectations are appropriate for the age and developmental needs of the students, as are the consequences for inappropriate behavior. It is important to remember that none of us is perfect; we all make mistakes, and have times when we might behave differently.
Students are handled kindly, gently, and positively. Most issues are dealt with quickly and simply. Occasionally there is a need for additional work, and parents may be contacted. Students are expected to develop self-control, and treat one another and faculty with respect and consideration. Our students are generally very cooperative and we are proud of the self-control and consideration that they demonstrate.
We teach Transactional Analysis school wide in order to help students understand human behavior and interpersonal interactions. These principles allow the child to be empowered to deal effectively with all kinds of people. We also teach Refusal Skills to the students, and encourage them to make good choices concerning their own behavior. Bullying is a problem that has shown a great increase nationally during the past few years, and can be very upsetting to the victim and destructive to the bully as well. We are committed to making BCDS a BULLY FREE ZONE, and so, teach all children about bullying behaviors and how to handle them. It is important for parents to understand that there are many kinds of bullies; physical, verbal, social, emotional, and intimidators. None are acceptable.
There are instances, however, when it is necessary to take a strong stand for the welfare of all. Basic rules are established, school wide, which keep children safe and protect the integrity of the learning environment for all.
- Aggressive behavior, which includes fighting or hurting other children, or bullying – social, verbal, and behavioral, is not acceptable. Students will be warned about aggressiveness and bullying, and if this continues, a series of consequences will follow. Depending upon the child’s age and the behavior demonstrated, we may place the child on a contract, or remove the child from recess for a period of time. The child may also speak to the Principal, and parents may be contacted. Students who are consistently aggressive, and who do not respond, may be suspended or terminated.
- A Hierarchy for behavioral control is used in middle school. Students who exhibit difficulty with behavior, work completion, etc., may move up levels to encourage better control.
- Disruptive behavior is not acceptable. A series of steps are utilized to help a child eliminate disruptive behavior. If the child does not respond, and the disruptive behavior interferes with the integrity of the learning environment, the child may be terminated.
- All schools must now have a policy regarding sexual harassment, even with very young children. This is for the protection of all children. BCDS enforces a strict policy against sexual harassment, which includes a variety of behaviors. Students who are involved in an incident of sexual harassment will be suspended, and if the behavior continues, will be terminated. Sexual harassment includes such things as calling others derogatory sexual names, and inappropriate touching of body parts or clothing.
- Inappropriate language, swearing, prejudicial statements, or comments with sexual innuendoes are not acceptable. Students who call someone a derogatory sexual name, or other equally offensive term, or create difficulties with this type of behavior will be suspended.
- If a child purposefully destroys or damages school property or the property of another, he or she will be expected to replace the object, or pay for its repair. When this occurs, it is very important that you allow your child to work at home to earn the money, or have the child use his or her own money. This technique is extremely effective in eliminating this kind of behavior, and yet allows the child to maintain dignity.
- Appropriate behavior during before and after school activities is expected. If a child is disruptive or uncooperative, and does not respond to behavioral expectations, he or she may lose extended day privileges.
- Students shall show respect for faculty, adults and other students, and shall respond to adult requests. Defiant or resistant behavior is inappropriate.
- PARTY INVITATIONS SHOULD NOT BE DELIVERED OR DISCUSSED AT SCHOOL UNLESS ALL CLASSMATES ARE INCLUDED.
- BCDS is a drug free zone. No drugs, alcohol, tobacco, guns, toy guns, knives, matches, firecrackers, or ‘weapons’ are allowed. (Squirt guns will be allowed for ‘Squirt gun days’).
- Please, no field hockey sticks, baseball bats, jump ropes, skateboards or roller blades.
- Please, no gum at school.
- Money is not needed at school, unless requested for a specific purpose, by the teacher. Please send requested money in a labeled, sealed envelope for its protection.
- Restrooms are for personal needs, not social activities. Students should use the restrooms quietly, quickly, and return to class.
On very rare occasions, a parent will approach a child with the intent to discipline or scold. It is very appropriate for parents to speak to their own child. However, it is the responsibility of the school and our faculty to handle any problems that arise concerning other children. If you are concerned, or if your child has had a problem, please explain this to the teacher, who will check on the matter and deal with it. Encourage your child to tell the teachers if he or she needs assistance, as all faculty will happily help, and in fact, spend a great deal of time developing interpersonal skills. It is important that faculty handle discipline since they know the children and follow our philosophy of discipline. We know you will understand that this is necessary. It is the teachers’ responsibility to handle discipline. Although BCDS has wonderful families, adults handle things in very different ways, and as a parent, we know you would not want someone else disciplining your child.
Transcripts & Records
Transcripts and Recommendations
Please make transcript and recommendation requests in the office, and allow 1 to 2 weeks for preparation. It is the policy of BCDS to withhold transcripts or other official documents until all financial obligations to the school have been met, or until satisfactory arrangements have been made.
Requests for Records, Information and Forms
Please bring all requests for information and records to the office so we may insure that we have a RELEASE form signed and on file. We will see that teachers receive the forms, and will insure they are sent in a timely manner. This procedure maintains confidentiality.
Parents & Teachers
Communication Between Parents, School and Teachers
The Parent-School relationship is very important if the child’s needs and best interests are to be met. You may wish to speak to the teacher about many things, from very simple to complex. The teacher may also wish to speak with you. Although four conferences are scheduled, you are welcome to call the office and leave a message for the teacher, administrator, or to request a conference if more time is needed: it may be advantageous for the teacher and parents to have a quick five-minute meeting or talk quickly in passing. It is important that the teacher is free to give you her complete attention, and to ensure that confidentiality is protected. Communication can result in positive problem solving and understanding. There are times when it is helpful to include the child, in a non-threatening way, so events may be clarified. Active listening is essential, as are realistic requests and expectations. There are times when requests may not be realistic or feasible within the context of the classroom or school, and alternative solutions will need to be found. BCDS takes a great personal interest in each child and family, in order to provide successful growth and development of the child.
The school communicates with parents in many ways; Back to School Night, the School Picnic, parent-teacher conferences, Lunch with the Principal, the weekly newsletters, and the school calendar. Additional notes will be sent or posted for your information. Parents will be notified of any significant changes in services, policies, or procedures.
When a child does not perform as expected, or is performing above the level anticipated, faculty will observe and some initial testing may be completed to better determine the child’s needs for educational planning. When this occurs, parents will be advised of the results.
Parents are encouraged to take an active part in the life of the school community. We have a large parent-mentoring group that provides additional enrichment, and expertise on a variety of topics. Parents may also contribute as room parents helping with parties, activities, and field trips. Parents also provide staffing for the library by cataloging, re-shelving, and checking out books as library volunteers. If parents wish to observe a particular content area, they are encouraged to contact the office so they will know when to come. We are also happy to have you pick your child up for lunch.
Parents will be notified of any significant changes in services, policies, or procedures. Parent conferences with progress reports are scheduled four times a year. Faculty will discuss the child’s progress, behavior, development, social and emotional growth, and changing needs at conferences. Individual Education Plans will be developed.
Parents are welcome to visit their child’s classroom. Please make arrangements with the office, as a courtesy, at least 24 to 48 hours in advance to avoid conflicts with tests and other visitors. We ask that visits be for a reasonable time, as children may find this stressful.
Homework & Study Skills
The goals for homework at BCDS are to help each child develop the responsibility for bringing homework home, completing it independently, and turning the assignment in on time. These goals also include developing time management and organizational skills, keeping an assignment book later on, and practicing study skills and work completion skills. Study skills
allow for the extension, review, reinforcement, and application of academic content skills. Parents may be asked to help with spelling words, math facts, and test questions. The spelling program gives a process for studying which should be followed. Teachers will develop skills in note taking and outlining, which can be incorporated into study skills. Remember, anything worth doing is worth doing well. Homework is always age and developmentally appropriate. Occasionally a student will not complete homework. It is our policy to teach the student that work must be completed, even if it is late, and the grade drops. Students will be required to complete all assignments, and the teacher will help the student find a way to meet this requirement. Teachers explain directions carefully, and teach the skills needed at school.
Parent awareness and cooperation with homework is vital. Parents can help by providing the time, space, patience, and interest needed by students to meet and complete the expectations so success is experienced. Success and accomplishment provide the motivation to continue doing well. Please remember that children do, periodically, avoid homework. The establishment of good study skills and homework habits are essential to success in high school and college. Some students will complete homework very quickly, while others may require a slightly longer time. If tension arises between you and your child, or takes too much time, please contact the teacher or administrators, so we may help. Daily homework assignments:
- Kindergarten and First Grade – 15 minutes of homework three times per week.
- Second, Third and Fourth Grades – 20 to 30 minutes of homework three times per week.
- Fifth Grade – 45 minutes of homework four times per week.
- Sixth, Seventh and Eighth Grades will have approximately one hour per night. Homework in the Middle School will include daily assignments as well as long term projects that will need to be completed over a period of time. Middle School students will be required to keep a homework assignment notebook or day timer.
- Please refer to the section MANDATORY STUDY HALL FOR 6th, 7th, and 8th Grades. Middle school students, who do not complete homework, will attend mandatory study hall the same day, in order to complete the assignment and stay current. The student will notify parents.
Developing Good Study Skills
Developing good study skills is a process; children need to learn how to learn, how to study, how to memorize, and how to organize and complete work. Different learning styles require different processes. Students need to develop the ability to work for longer periods of time, and to complete a variety of tasks, independently. It is important to structure your child for success so his or her attitudes and responsibility will increase. Remember that 30 minutes is a very long time for some children, and patience is a must. Be careful not to enter power struggles, or be tricked into doing the homework yourself; you already went to school!
- Provide a well-lit, comfortable study area in your Childs room or in an appropriate area where others will not interrupt the student. A desk or table that is appropriate for your Childs size is needed.
- The area should be neat and clutter free. Distractions such as the TV, radio, telephone, windows, toys, etc., should not be in the area.
- The area should be quiet. ALTHOUGH STUDENTS SAY THEY CAN STUDY OR WRITE WITH MUSIC OR THE TV, THEIR WORK PRODUCT WILL BE BETTER IF COMPLETED IN A QUIET SETTING.
- Your child needs a well equipped work area and the right tools for the job. Provide paper, pencils, stapler, dictionary, pens, ruler, and a clock.
- Children need to learn what is needed for good study habits. Upon arrival home, the child should have some free time, and perhaps a snack or dinner. Studying should begin, with a five minute break every half hour or hour, depending upon his or her ability to sit and work. Your child may begin with the ability to work for 10 minutes, and may need to practice to increase this to twenty or thirty minutes. Short breaks are helpful.
- Students should study when they are fresh, well rested and not hungry. A weekly schedule establishes a routine, and is very helpful. Some study more effectively early in the morning.
- A good process to follow begins by setting the goal, allocating time for each task, beginning with the hardest work first, and asking what is needed to learn about the topic or to complete the task. Memorization is a process which can be applied to a variety of work. Oral reports can be prepared, notes made, and practiced in front of a mirror. All writing should be proofread and edited. Parents may be asked to help with spelling words, math facts, and test questions. The spelling program gives a process for studying which should be followed. Teachers will develop skills in note taking and outlining, which can be incorporated into study skills. Remember, anything worth doing is worth doing well.
Study Hall has been scheduled at the children’s request, and is designed to allow students to complete homework with teacher supervision. Children are encouraged to do homework or read for pleasure.
If you arrive home and discover your child has forgotten a spelling list, or homework assignment, have the child call a classmate and ask for the assignment. This helps the child learn how to solve this problem.
Mandatory Study Hall for 6th, 7th and 8th Grades
It is important for middle school students to acquire good work habits, responsibility, study skills, and learn to complete all homework before entering high school. Students this age often forget assignments, or spend time socializing instead of doing work. In order to help students develop good work skills, mandatory study hall will be required whenever a student does not have homework completed at the time it is due. Assignments are due at the time the teacher has assigned and when the teacher collects the work. (It is not a good idea for the student to complete the work while he or she should be doing class work.) Students who have not completed homework will be asked to call their parents to give notice and prevent inconvenience to them, and will be required to stay for the entire 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. study hall the same day.
School Access & School Property
Kitchen and Classroom Access
Students are not allowed in the kitchen without faculty supervision. This rule is for the protection of the children. Children are frequently in the kitchen with faculty during lunch periods, cooking activities, or enrichment activities. Specific practices for safety and sanitation are followed.
The classrooms are closed at the end of the instructional day. Students are encouraged to take any books or materials they require with them when class is dismissed. Please encourage your child to do so. Safety and security require that all students be supervised, thus, it is necessary to close the classrooms. We find that problems often arise when children enter or stay in classrooms unsupervised.
Text Books, Materials and School Equipment
BCDS selects and provides excellent materials, texts, and workbooks that have been selected to meet curricular objectives. Students are assigned textbooks which they may use for the school term. Books must be treated with care, as they are very expensive. In the event a student loses, destroys, or greatly damages a book, it will need to be replaced by the student. Due to book loss, BCDS is no longer able to lend books over the summer. If you wish to purchase a book for summer use, we will give you the publishers telephone number. We know you will understand the necessity for this, as we must maintain adequate materials.
Students are asked to purchase materials that are used individually. This allows students to learn to care for belongings, and develop organizational skills.
Activities and Field Day
Holidays, Celebrations and the Joy of Childhood
Activities that allow children to experience the joy and fun of childhood are included during holidays and celebration seasons. The children look forward to these activities, which are a pervasive part of the culture in the United States. Faculty attempt to provide a variety of cultural experiences and exposures to various belief systems so students will develop awareness, understanding, and respect for everyone’s differing values. Our faculty makes every effort to be careful of their language and references to the holiday periods, but must, give value and consideration to the diverse practices of all our families. It is not possible to control the language and thoughts of the children, as many of them talk about the holidays. The children enjoy having egg hunts as part of Spring, and the winter holiday allows us to center on Santa Claus in the United States, as well as beliefs around the world. Parents are invited to teach about Hanukkah as a cultural component, not as a religious belief. We do this in order to provide children and their classmates with an understanding and appreciation of the various beliefs, values, and differences which occur in human beings. It is very effective, and, we feel, broadens everyone’s attitudes. We do not teach specific religious beliefs. Accommodation will be made for children who do not wish to participate in holiday activities, and parents may keep a child home if they do not wish the child to attend parties. Your values will be respected.
Field Day Activities and Water Play
The children are looking forward to Field Day, this Thursday, and as always, a wide variety of activities have been planned. The morning begins with traditional field day activities and races. One of the favorite activities, which occurs in the afternoon, is the water play. As you all know, the children are allowed to bring water pumpers, water squirters, and bottles with spray tops for this activity. They have a great deal of fun, and of course, get soaking wet. In spite of the increasing problem with guns in schools, we still want the children to have a planned, well-structured opportunity each year to participate in this favorite of childhood play. Each year we revisit this choice. Although most schools do not allow water play activities, we feel well-adjusted children in a safe environment such as BCDS, should be able to enjoy this kind of an activity, and not be deprived of it.
In order to structure this activity in a positive manner, we have established several guidelines. Please help us by reading this letter carefully, and talking with your child.
- Children may bring ONLY pumpers, soakers, and bottles with spray tops.
- DO NOT SEND ANY SQUIRT ‘GUN’ WHICH IS SHAPED LIKE A GUN. Children may NOT bring shaving foam, soap, silly string, or any other substance.
- Please talk with your child about the danger of guns, and why guns are not allowed in school. This is an opportunity to discuss safety, avoidance of guns, and your family values related to this topic. Children need to understand very clearly that water play is not playing with guns.
- If you have strong feelings and would prefer your child not participate in the water play activity, which will last approximately 1/2 hour, he or she may participate in another
Please let the teacher know if this is your choice, so the teacher can make arrangements. We are sensitive to the feelings of our families, and will certainly reinforce your family values.
Please talk with your child about Field Day being a day of fun and sharing of friendship, and not a competition. Everyone wins and can feel the warmth of being a special and appreciated member of our school community.
Please be sure your child has SPF-40 sunscreen on, wears a hat, has sunglasses, and wears safe shoes. More sun sensitive children may need additional protection.
Transportation and Field Trips
Parents are responsible for transportation arrangements for their children. If you wish to car pool, sign the posted car pool list at the west entry, or contact the office for families in your neighborhoods. Children should be signed in and out daily. Occasional field trips are taken. A release for field trips is included in the enrollment forms. If you have not given permission, your child will not be taken on a trip without express written permission for the trip. The school may use the bus for field trips. If parent car pools are utilized for trips, each child must submit a signed release. Parents will be notified of trips in advance. Written permission is required if your child walks, rides a bike, or drives in someone else’s car to or from school.
Suggestions for Parents Who Help with Field Trips
Field trips are wonderful opportunities to enrich and extend learning as well as provide an enjoyable adventure. Without the help and support of parents, teachers would not be able to offer these additional experiences and learning opportunities to the children. Parent volunteers allow smaller group instruction, provide more individual attention, and ensure safety. As a parent, you can help us achieve the educational goals and carry out the teacher expectations of the trip by remembering the following.
- Come 15 minutes prior to the trip so you can hear the general instructions to the children.
- Remember, you are working and we depend on your help.
- When you are in charge of a group, please make sure that all the children you have in your care are with you. Never let a child get behind, or out of your line of vision. Please do not allow children to leave your group to make purchases, or go to the restroom alone. These activities may be done in groups.
- All groups need to be treated equally, so please follow the teacher expectations regarding souvenirs and treats. Children are usually asked not to bring spending money on trips. Please encourage the children to follow the school’s request. It is sometimes tempting for a parent to buy a treat for his or her own child or their friends. This creates a problem if the other children are not having treats. It is important to return to school immediately after the trip; if you stop for a treat, the faculty worries about the safety of the children.
- Children frequently wish to be in the same group, or car pool, that their parent is in charge of. The assignment of children to groups is up to the discretion of the teacher.
- We ask that younger siblings not be included in field trips unless specifically invited.
- Vehicles used for trips must be enclosed. Children should use seat belts, and may not be standing or seated on the floor while the vehicle is in motion. Legs, arms, and heads must be in the vehicle. Children must be loaded and unloaded at curbside, and out of the flow of traffic.
Videos, Television and Other Activities
It is school policy not to show any videos rated PG in the school. Videos are used in late day activities when children are tired and leaving for home, as part of academic enrichment activities, or sometimes just for fun. On occasion, middle school students, with parental permission for the specific video, may watch a PG rated video. BCDS also strongly recommends that you not send violent or aggressive videos to share with your Childs class. Children do enjoy sharing videos, and we are happy to do this at the appropriate time. Please remember that videos may be misplaced or damaged. If you have very strong feelings about not allowing your child to watch videos, please notify the office, and your child will not be included in video activities.
Television activities are used very minimally. Sometimes children arriving very early in the morning wish to watch early morning children’s TV programs. This is permitted, as it allows the child to participate in typical activities. Children may also choose participate in other activities. An occasional television program may be used as part of academic work.
Students are supervised at all times by faculty. If your child is enrolled in piano lessons, or dance lessons, or Scouting activities, the persons in charge of these activities will be in supervision of your child. Upon completion of the activity, your child will immediately return to the supervision of the assigned faculty member.
Toys, Phones, Lunch & Belongings
Personal Belongings, Lockers, Locks, Lunches and Snacks
Children will be assigned a cubby or locker for their use, where belongings such as coats, boots, lunches, and other items may be kept. Spare clothing may also be kept for emergencies or accidents. School supplies will be kept in the classrooms. Money should not be kept in lockers. Please label all belongings. Locks will not be used on lockers. Many problems arise with the use of locks, including lost combinations, lost keys, switching of locks, and parents unable to gain access to their child’s locker. The students at BCDS are honest, and demonstrate a high level of integrity. Our honor system makes the use of locks unnecessary. Students share lockers, so they should be kept clean and orderly. Large amounts of money may be kept in office.
Children bring sack lunches and snacks. If a spoon or fork is needed, please send one from home, as these are not available at school. Milk is provided. Please DO NOT SEND ANY FOOD WHICH REQUIRES REFRIGERATION OR IS PERISHABLE. Please send nutritious food that your child enjoys. If a child forgets his or her lunch, we will provide one and notify parents so they may replace the food items.
Children may bring food which requires heating in a microwave oven. Since we have many children, we ask that microwave foods be limited to 2 per week, with heat up time limited to 1-1/2 minutes or less; label the item with your child’s name. We have several microwave ovens, however, lunch periods are half an hour in length, thus, heating may require most of the lunch period.
Toys, Videos and Electronic Games
We are happy to have the children bring toys or videos that they enjoy playing with. Children often share these items, and on occasion a toy is accidentally broken or lost. Please explain to your child that toys brought to school may be accidentally lost or damaged. This is a risk that your child needs to understand. Please do not send expensive or valuable items to school. If your child wishes to bring a video to share, please have him or her give it to the teacher for safekeeping. We play only videos that are rated G. It is very helpful to label all belongings with your child’s name, as we can have several identical items each day. We strongly recommend that you not send any expensive Game Boys, or electronic cars.
Cell Phones and Geo Pets
Cell phones and Geo Pets disrupt the class as a whole, the child, and interrupt the instructional activity; these do not belong at school. If you need to contact your child, please leave a message in the office, and we will send it to your child. Geo Pets are also quite a distraction: sometimes a child gives the ‘pet’ to another child to baby-sit. Both children are then distracted. In order to preserve optimum instructional time on task, and preserve the integrity of the learning environment, please explain to your child the necessity for these requests.
Students may check books out of the library, which is staffed by parent volunteers. Books need to be well cared for and turned in on time; books lost or damaged will need to be replaced. Parents will be billed for the cost of the book plus $5.00 handling and shipping fees. Encyclopedias may not be taken home, as this prevents access by other students. Public libraries are used for additional library science development. As children grow, they will be asked to use the public library as well as the school library for reference work, to encourage greater development of knowledge in research skills and library use. All books are collected in May of each school year, and books are not checked out the last 3 weeks of school so the collection may be inventoried.
EPA Required Asbestos Management Plan
BCDS is asbestos free. An Asbestos Management Plan is available for review during regular business hours. Please contact us if you wish to review it.
Department of Social Services
If you wish to make complaints concerning the standards or operation of a facility, or report suspected child abuse, contact the county’s social services at 795-4825, or the Colorado Department of Social Services in writing or by telephone at 866 -5958.