FAQ's

  1. What supplies do we need to purchase?
  2. Can we request a particular teacher?
  3. What if my child struggles academically?
  4. Do you offer busing to any of your schools?
  5. Do you offer PE/Music/Recess?
  6. Do you need an appointment to observe in a classroom?
  7. What after school activities do you offer?
  8. Do you offer before and/or after school child care?
  9. Is there a dress code?
  10. What are the school hours?
  11. Do you have aides in your classrooms?
  12. What is a typical class size?
  13. How much homework can I expect my child to have?
  14. What is the philosophy of BFCS in regards to standardized testing and the school accountability grades that come along with such testing?
  15. Why does BFHS (JH/HS) have a 7th-12th grade model?
  16. Why does BFHS (JH/HS) require summer assignments?
  17. What is a participation grade (BFHS - JH/HS)
  18. Why does BFHS (JH/HS) require Latin?

 

  1. What supplies do we need to purchase?
    • Our elementary schools provide everything your child needs to attend school. There may be things specific to each class that are suggested, but not mandatory.
    • Our JH/HS does require parents to provide literature books, as they are considered consumable. We consider literature books consumable because in order to accomplish an in-depth study of language, students are required to interact with the text. This means annotating, questioning, highlighting, underlining, etc. When students interact with a text rather than simply reading it, the knowledge becomes their own - the text becomes a part of their fabric, and the lessons learned become more meaningful. As a school that reveres the written word, it seems just plain wrong to ask students to read a book, not make any marks in it, and then give it back in a couple of weeks after we have finished. The question we must ask of this type of “education” is, “to what end?”  What do students really get out of this type interaction with a book?  The answer is, very little. The decision to make literature books a responsibility of students and parents is a pedagogical one.  Our hope is that these books become a part of our student and something they can take with them for the rest of their lives, looking back fondly upon them and the memories, virtues, and lessons these books created.
  2. Can we request a particular teacher?
    • We do not accept teacher requests. This allows us to maintain consistent classrooms, in both size and academic performance levels.
  3. What if my child struggles academically?
    • We are an accelerated school dedicated to helping each child learn and achieve their highest potential. Our program is very structured, which allows students to stay organized. There is before and after school tutoring should the teacher recommend it.
  4. Do you offer busing to any of your schools?
    • We offer limited busing to and from our Crismon Campus. There is also a shuttle that runs between the Crismon Campus and our Jr. High/High School. BFHS also has paid, limited morning busing for junior high and high school students in the San Tan Valley area as well. Enrollment in the school does not guarantee a spot on the bus. To complete an interest form for our Crismon Campus, follow this link: Crismon Campus Busing, or to complete an interest form for the JH/HS, please follow this link: San Tan Valley Busing
  5. Do you offer PE/Music/Recess?
    • Absolutely! We feel these are critical components to the well-rounded education of a child. Yes, all students, Kindergarten through 6th grade, attend both PE and Music twice a week, 30 minutes each time. The students participate in 2 music concerts during the year, a Christmas concert and our Spring Sing. All students participate in the Turkey Trot and Field Day, both school-wide physical fitness events. Additionally, our students have three recess breaks per day (with the exception of our half-day kindergarten, which has one).
  6. Do you need an appointment to observe in a classroom?
    • We love to have parents (and prospective parents) drop in at any time. No appointment is necessary. Our registrars are available to give classroom and campus tours, and there is a parent video that gives detailed information about our program. However, if you would like to set up a time, please fill out our online Schedule a Tour form!
  7. What after school activities do you offer?
    • Elementary Students: We offer beginning and advanced band and orchestra. Band is available for 5th and 6th grade students. Orchestra is available for 4th - 6th grade students. The cost is $1.00 to participate. Students are required to provide their own instrument.
    • JH/HS Students: We offer a full range of athletic team opportunities for students. Please see the Athletics page for a full list of sports. We also offer after school clubs - all clubs are student initiated, sponsored by a teacher, and change each year.
  8. Do you offer before and/or after school child care?
    • We do not currently offer any before or after school child care programs.
  9. Is there a dress code?
    • Yes, our dress code stresses modesty in order to ensure that the learning environment is not interrupted. Elementary students also have the option of purchasing uniform polos from FPAC (Franklin Parent Advisory Council). For specific details please go to the Dress Code Policy.
  10. What are the school hours?
    • The Gilbert Campus school hours are from 8:30am - 3:15pm. - SUMMER HOURS: 9am - 1pm
    • The Power and Crismon Campus school hours are from 8:15am - 3:00pm. - SUMMER HOURS: 9am - 1pm
    • The Jr. High/High School hours are from 7:25am - 2:20pm. (School begins at 6:30am if the student is taking a ‘zero hour’ class. School ends at 3:15pm if a student has a 7th hour class.) 
  11. Do you have aides in your classrooms?
    • Each kindergarten classroom has a full-time aide.
  12. What is a typical class size?
    • Class sizes may vary, however the maximum class size is 32.
  13. How much homework can I expect my child to have?
    • Elementary Students: The elementary campuses have homework on Monday-Thursday to complete the final step of the learning process, which is independent practice. It is never busy work, but is a representation of what was learned that day. This ensures that parents stay connected to classroom learning and students get the individual mastery that is necessary for complete success. There is a maximum time each grade level should be spending on homework, however, students rarely meet that maximum time. Through our homework policy, we are hoping to not only reinforce the day's learning, but to teach important time management skills of using time wisely in class and at home.
    • Jr. High/High School Students: Homework is a vital part of the curriculum and philosophy of BFHS; therefore, students should expect to do homework nightly and on weekends.  At least two “R & R” weekends per semester are calendared as no homework weekends. Teachers will not administer tests and quizzes on the Mondays following “R and R” weekends, although a long-term project may be due several days after an “R and R” weekend.  Students will need to plan ahead to enjoy the time off.  Homework reserves class time for instruction, discussion, dialogue and interaction between teacher and students in the pursuit of clarity and truth.  In turn, homework is a time of quiet concentration in which the student takes ownership over the subject matter and demonstrates the ability to master concepts. Abilities and study habits vary greatly from student to student.  Therefore it is difficult to estimate the amount of homework that each student will have on a given night.  A good deal of success with homework depends on a student’s study strategies, such as planning, goal-setting, time-management, self-monitoring and the like. Students who struggle do not, generally, employ these strategies effectively, even though they may, in fact, spend a significant amount of time studying.
  14. What is the philosophy of BFCS in regards to standardized testing and the school accountability grades that come along with such testing?
    • As a publicly funded charter school, BFCS is mandated to participate in the various standardized tests that are given each year in the state of Arizona. At BFCS, we do not “teach to the test.” We use time-proven methods to educate students rather than focus on the narrow strand of knowledge that is tests. Our schools do very well on these tests, but our students do not spend months prepping for a test in order to artificially inflate our scores in order to improve public perception. Our validation comes from the truly “educated” students that fill our halls and graduate from our program.
  15. Why does BFHS (JH/HS) have a 7th-12th grade model?
    • The 7th – 12th grade model has proven to be the preferred model for college preparatory schools for many reasons. At the start of secondary school, students are asked to do many things that are not required of them at the elementary age. Because of this, it is important that secondary education be as integrated as possible rather than disjointed due to students attending two different schools for junior high and high school. This integration allows for seamless transitions between grades and a curriculum scope and sequence that builds upon prior learning in the previous grade. The various departments work together across the spectrum of grades in order to facilitate cohesion and cooperation which results in superior curriculum and instruction, and thus learning. Additionally, a 7th – 12th grade model allows for a great dynamic between younger and older students and teachers. Older students can have the experience of mentoring younger students, while younger students have great role models, helping them to mature, educationally, at a faster rate.
  16. Why does BFHS (JH/HS) require summer assignments?
    • Educators and parents alike have long commented on how much students forget over long breaks. Studies show that prolonged detachment from academic endeavors will set a young mind back significantly. Unfortunately, a large amount of time is spent in each class at the beginning of each year just getting rid of the academic "rust," if you will, the students accumulate over the summer. A summer assignment attempts to remedy that situation. Not only does a summer assignment keep students thinking throughout the summer, but it also gives their classes a springboard for the beginning of the year and all the new learning they will get to do. Additionally, summer assignments give a chance for students to engage in independent thinking and learning, which is an incredibly valuable process.  Each of the classes in which students had a summer assignment used the first week to discuss the great learning they got to do over the summer, and we have found these discussions are a great way to start our year in history and English. Finally, a summer assignment is common at schools like ours. College-preparatory and classical schools, as a rule, assign homework over the summer. That allows schools like ours to learn at a faster pace and higher level.
  17. What is a participation grade (BFHS - JH/HS)?
    • When teaching Socratically, participation by the student is essential. Students learn through the give and take between teacher and student and exchanges between student and student. We abide by the philosophy that talking does not always equal teaching, and listening does not always equal learning. Students must be incentivized to join the conversation and engage in the learning. Once they are incentivized in this manner, learning will happen.
    • Secondly, class participation is a bit of a misnomer.  The grade consists not only of participating in classroom discussions, but also: coming to class prepared, listening attentively to the teacher and other students when they are speaking, having a good attitude, being on task, asking quality questions, delivering quality and thoughtful answers, etc.  When a student employs these techniques and is incentivized to do so through the use of a participation grade, an amazing thing happens – they learn! 
  18. Why does BFHS (JH/HS) require Latin?
    • There are SO many reasons to study Latin, so in the interests of brevity here are but a few:

  1. Studying Latin serves as an in depth study of the English language. Over 50% of our language can be traced to Latin, and the precise nature of Latin lends to a deeper understanding of English grammar.
  2. Latin is the scholarly language of the sciences, law, history, etc. To understand Latin is to have a very big head start in many academic areas.
  3. Those with a foundation in Latin score significantly higher on the SAT and ACT test. As a college-prep school, this is a fact that cannot be ignored.
  4. Even more than the improvement in vocabulary, which most students experience, the best reason for studying Latin and the Romans is that you will enter a new and different world which can tell you much about your own. Additionally, it will help to educate you, for understanding the past is a major part of being educated. As the famous Roman orator Cicero said, "Not to know what happened before you were born is to be forever a child." By observing Roman values, attitudes, and behavior and by comparing them to our own, you can come to know another way of seeing reality and can broaden your experience.
  • For more information on the importance of Latin please see this page.

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