The Roadrunner

Ben Franklin Elementary School


Dear Families,

We have never been happier to say "HAPPY NEW YEAR" to all of our families! 2020 was not as we had planned but we learned more about ourselves than ever before. Our staff and students learned to face new challenges with grit and resiliency. As the pandemic grew within the community, we were forced to make changes to plans put into place. We THANK all of our families for your constant support, flexibility, and understanding.

The district's Covid-19 protocols and procedures implemented in the fall remain intact. Please refer to the GFPS Website to review the plan. Staff and students are required to wear masks at all times (except while eating snack/lunch) and practice social distancing. Please make sure your child has a mask on as they exit your vehicle. To prevent Covid or other illnesses from possibly spreading within the school we will continue to ask families to keep their child(ren) home if symptoms are present. Families are asked to contact the office when they are identified as a close contact or receive a positive result. Our goal is to prevent classrooms from closing due to multiple positive cases. We need everyone to do their part in preventing school spread cases.

In January, we hit the ground running by completing winter assessments. Teachers will complete Running Records to determine current reading levels. The STAR Math & Reading assessment window will be open from Jan.11th-25th. K-2 Grade levels will be piloting a new assessment called Star Early Literacy.

Every child received a recyclable bag for their winter gear. Please be sure to use that bag as winter gear should not be placed in backpacks. If the items are wet, it could ruin their device and learning materials. If you need a new bag, please let the classroom teacher know.

On behalf of the staff at Ben Franklin, we want to thank our families for supporting your child(ren) during Distance Learning. Student attendance was strong and relationships continued to be formed. Participation was crucial in order to continue learning the Trimester 2 Standards. For that, we are grateful!

Mrs. Bjelde


Friendly reminder to wash your child's masks often!

Does your child's mask fit properly? If you have found yourself telling your child to "pull your mask up", chances are it does not. If your child needs a mask, please let the office or classroom teacher know. Teachers have found it helpful for students to have a mask for recess and a mask for the classroom. If you are able to do so, please send two masks to school and tell your child which one is for recess.
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Breakfast Information

During the pandemic, we need to limit the number of students who attend breakfast from 7:40-8:00 to maintain social distancing. A survey was sent out to families earlier this year to help us identify those who needed to be at school from 7:40-8:00. REMINDER: Only families who have a work schedule that requires them to be there at 8:00am should attend breakfast from 7:40am-8:00am. Others who need to eat breakfast at school may arrive after 8:00am. If your child does not eat breakfast at school they should arrive at 8:20am. Students not eating breakfast at school will wait outside until the bell rings at 8:20am.

Classroom Highlights

January 13th ~ 1:30 pm Early Release

January 18th ~ No School

January 27th ~ 1:30 pm Early Release

February 10th ~ 1:30 pm Early Release

February 24th ~ 1:30 pm Early Release

February 26th ~ End of Trimester 2

Look below for PTO dates and Distant Learner Distribution Days

PTO Dates

Please email our PTO president, Casey Norby, at so she can send you the link for the meeting. The meetings will be held at 5:00 pm. We strongly encourage our families to participate. We need your support.

January 11

February 1

March 1

April 6

May 3

Distance Learners Distribution Days

Please go to Door #1 from 9:00am-11:00am on the Distribution days. The materials will be placed on a table near the front door. Please take the materials labeled for your child, there is no need to ring the door unless you need assistance.

Distribution Dates:

January 20

February 3

February 17

March 3

March 24

April 7

April 21

May 28 -Materials Returned

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Covid-19 Resources

Keep up-to-date on COVID-19 guidance by checking the district’s website. Look for the tab on the top toolbar on any of the school websites.

District Information

District Communication/Information

Student Engagement Survey

We want to share with you an important opportunity for your child to impact and improve the school culture and learning environment at Ben Franklin Elementary School. Student engagement is an important predictor of student success. Ben Franklin is committed to understanding, through the voice of students, how we can best support their engagement and success in learning. Students in grades 3-5, will have the opportunity to share information about their educational experiences and perspectives through the statewide Student Engagement Survey between January 18th, 2021-February 19th, 2021. This survey is not a test. There are no correct or incorrect answers.

Participating in the survey provides your student with an opportunity to have a voice in their education. We take student privacy seriously, therefore, the data collected and analyzed will be at the school level. Individual student results will not be reported. We will not identify your child and how they responded to the survey.

Summary feedback across all students will be provided to teachers and school leaders in order to support our efforts of continuous improvement at Ben Franklin. Statewide student survey results will also be used by the state to report school quality as part of the state’s accountability system.

The survey has 20 brief questions. We encourage you to talk with your child about the survey and let them know the importance of answering the questions honestly. The collective responses of all participating students will help schools learn what they do well and what they can do better to help all students succeed.

If you have additional questions, please contact our school office. We look forward to your child participating in the 2020-21 Student Engagement Survey.


Taking care of children isn’t always easy, especially in today’s world. The good news is there are steps you can take to help protect your kids as they grow older. Effectively monitoring your kids through every stage in their lives is one important way to reduce their risk of becoming involved in potentially harmful situations or engaging in risky behaviors. Start monitoring your kids early on, in ways that are age-appropriate. In fact, the earlier you begin monitoring, the easier it will be to continue as your kids gets older and the more they’ll expect it from you. How do I monitor my kids? Visit for information and resources.
School Cancellation and Postponement Procedures

Click here to learn about how school cancellations/postponements are handled.

Student Lunches


Meals will continue to be available at no cost for children 18 and under through the end of this school year.


Meals for face-to-face learners will be available: breakfast before the bell and lunch scheduled within the day. Physical distancing and other safety measures will be followed at meal times.


A hot lunch is available by request for full-time remote learners and high school students due to the hybrid learning model.

Please continue to order meals using this form on a daily basis. The entree will follow the general hot lunch menu which is posted at MealViewer Schools.

A meal will include the entree, a fruit and vegetable, applicable sides, and a milk. Breakfast will also be included.

Extras will not be available

Meal delivery is not available.

Please pick up your meal at the school you designated on your order form.


Meals will be available for pick up 10-10:30 a.m. at elementary schools, 10:15-10:45 a.m. at middle schools, and 10:30-11 a.m. at high schools.

School Meals -- Free and Reduced Application

Even though meals are being offered to our families at no cost this school year it is still important to complete the Free & Reduced application.

An application is available online at, or download the form below, fill it in, and submit it to the Wilder Office. After the application has been reviewed by the Child Nutrition Department, you will be notified by letter of your status. All information is confidential - names are never disclosed. A copy of the application will also be sent home the first day of school.

The My schoolbucks tab is a website for families to pay for their child's school meals or other expenses using a debit or credit card. Select the My Schoolbucks tab to connect to the site.
Our Mental Health Hub now has an additional section related to Covid-19. Please visit the page by going to the Grand Forks Public School website >Mental Health Hub> Covid-19 Mental Health resources. There are many valuable resources we hope you will find helpful during this period of time.

Information from our School Nurse

Ben Franklin Elementary Vision

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