Franklin e-Newsletter

Monday, November 2, 2020

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Principal's Message

We hope this e-Newsletter finds our families doing well. It's certainly been a busy time in our community as we continue to clean up after August 10's storm and adjust to the new learning environments for your students. We know this has shifted roles and responsibilities in the family. We appreciate the collaboration and support you have offered as nearly 600 Franklin students are learning remotely. This has not been an easy task for students, staff, or families, but I'm proud of the work that's been accomplished in the first 6 weeks of the school year. We are light years ahead where we were last spring, but still recognize it's not an ideal environment.

We can't wait for our return to in-person instruction. On Monday, November 16 we continue our next transition when we welcome 300+ students back into the building. As we prepare for this transition, we want to make sure families know of the building procedures that will go into effect when we return.

In-person Building Procedures

Monday, November 9 (No School for In-person Learners)

To prepare our building for students returning, all classes have been canceled for in-person learners on Monday, November 9. Classes for CRCSD Remote Learners and CRVA will continue as scheduled.

Updated Supply List

As we come back in-person, we want to provide an update on what students should bring with them. Please refrain from going out and spending a lot of money on supplies. If you're unable to get certain items, we will assist.

All School/Classroom Supplies (Optional)

If you wish to bring the all school supplies before November 13, we will have a drop off table available outside of the front doors on Monday, November 9 from 8:00AM-3:00PM.

  • 1-2 reams of white paper
  • 1 box of Kleenex
  • 1 package of disinfectant wipes

Student School Supplies

  • Backpack
  • Charged student device w/ their charger.
  • Headphones or earbuds
  • Sharpened #2 pencils
  • Markers
  • Colored Pencils
  • Calculator
  • Highlighters
  • 1-3 spiral notebooks
  • 1-3 folders

At this time, please do not bring 3-ring binders or trappers due to space limitations in the classroom and in a student's backpack.

Health & Safety Guidelines

Students and families are encouraged to notify staff if they're exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms. See the list of possible symptoms. If students inform their teacher of possible symptoms they will immediately be sent to our Clinic.

Safety is the driving factor in all we do when we return. We want to create an environment, through our procedures, that ensure students can learn and teachers can teach. See the notes below for items concerning health and safety. We encourage you to review our district's COVID-19 Health & Safety website.


Once students arrive on campus (by bus, car, bike, or walking) they must have their mask on. When students arrive on Monday, November 16 they will receive a new Franklin-designed mask and lanyard. Staff are also required to wear masks at all times. When interacting with students, and within 6', they will also be required to wear a face shield. Staff will offer mask breaks during the day for students.


New sanitizer pumps have been installed in every classroom and at each entrance. Students will be asked to sanitize each morning when they enter the building and when they enter their classroom.

Clinic & Procedures

If your child is displaying symptoms and you plan to take them to the doctor, please follow these guidelines from the CDC:

  • Monitor your child's symptoms.

  • Stay home, except for medical care.

  • Call ahead before visiting your child's doctor.

  • Avoid going near others when outside your home.

If your child displays symptoms, please follow Cedar Rapids Community School District Health Service’s guidelines to determine if they should stay home from school and school activities. Click here for the District document for Student Illness Guidelines.


When we return students will be in cohorts. Students will remain in these cohorts the entire day. This is done with our number one objective of student and staff safety to limit exposure. This is the same information that was shared with families earlier in the summer when you made selections for your Return to Learn plan. These cohorts are largely determine by music. As a staff, we wanted to create balance of students between the cohorts.

At each grade level, students will be divided into 6 cohorts. This may or may not be the same teacher your student currently has for their Advisory class. In many cases, this teacher will be different. Students will learn of their new cohort teacher the week of November 10. During that week, we'll have opportunities during their Advisory time to meet their new cohort teacher and the students they'll be in class with.

Entrance & Exiting Procedures

We will use the following procedures for students upon entering and exiting the building.

Entering Procedures

  • Student should not be on campus earlier than 7:30.
  • When students arrive on campus, they are required to wear their mask.
  • Beginning at 7:30, staff will begin supervising outside and inside. Students will use one of three entrances to come in the building. These include the 20th Street (main door entrance) as well as the B Ave. entrance. Bus riders will use our main parking lot door, labeled as Door #7.
  • To allow room for buses, and to limit congestion, families SHOULD NOT use the main parking lot, north of our building, for drop off or pick up.
  • When entering the building, students will sanitize their hands using the provided touch free stations.
  • Students will report directly to their cohort rooms with their belongings-backpacket, coats/jackets, and lunch-if bringing their own. Students WILL NOT use lockers this year or gather in the hallways.

Exiting Procedures

  • We will continue with our regular building dismissal times of 2:50 Monday-Thursday and 1:20 on Fridays.
  • We'll begin our dismissal procedures at 2:40 each afternoon. We will first dismiss bus riders. Next will be those students who are being picked up by family/friends, and lastly students walking or riding bikes.
  • Students will sanitize their hands upon exiting the building.
  • If you're planning to pick up your students, make a plan on where to pick up prior to the school day. Our 20th Street entrance is a busy area. Vehicles SHOULD NOT be double parked. Areas that are less congested include 21st Street or the lower area by the tennis courts.
  • All students should be picked up, or walking home, no later than 3:00PM.

Breakfast & Lunch

Students will eat breakfast and lunch in their classroom with their cohorts. Students can choose to bring their own breakfast/lunch or order from the school. We will have both a cold and hot choice for breakfast and the main or alternate option for lunch. We are a Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) school so that means all students eat breakfast and lunch daily at no charge. Part of the morning procedure for students and staff is to put an order in for breakfast for the following school day and their choice of main or alternate for lunch. This will provide our food and nutrition staff an approximate number of meals to prepare.

Breakfast will be delivered by Franklin Staff members to the classrooms based on the previous day's orders. If a student did not place an order, we have options to ensure any student that wants to eat, has the choice.

For lunch, all students in a cohort will walk down to the cafeteria to get their meal. We have a staggering schedule that will ensure students have limited exposure to other cohorts. Students will follow all social distancing guidelines and will sanitize their hands prior to entering the lines. This will be a contact free ordering process. Our food and nutrition staff will pack the student's lunch based on their preference for certain items. After all students in their cohort have gone through the line, students will walk back up to their classroom to eat. There will be cleanup guidelines our staff will follow to ensure a clean space is available for students to learn from the rest of the day.

Classroom Instruction

The past couple weeks, our staff have been working to customize a schedule for each grade level. Students will remain in their cohorts for the entire day, but specific time periods will be designated for each of their classes: ELA, Math, Science, Social Studies, and their Quarter Exploratories (Art, Computer Science, Engineering Technology, and Wellness-see rotation below). Staff members will use a combination of synchronous (live) and asynchronous (recorded) instruction. Cohort teachers will be used to provide support throughout each of the classes and will be a direct link to other teachers to provide support as needed throughout the day.

Time during the day will also be designated for iReady lessons in Reading and Math and Extended Learning (EL). EL is a time where teachers can virtually "pull" small groups of students for additional support or where students can go to a staff member for virtual "office hours" for enrichment or interventions.

Quarter Exploratory Rotations (All students at the grade level, with the exception of 6th)

  • 6th Grade: Computer Science & Engineering Technology
  • 7th Grade: Art
  • 8th Grade: Wellness

Continuing Information

Updated District Calendar

After the derecho, our district calendar was updated from the one that went out in our back to school mailing. Click on the link below to view the updated calendar.

Virtual Counseling Services

While we're not in the building, our Counselors are here to help your students. Ms. Letteney and Ms. Thomas understand the many things our students are going through and they're ready to assist students and families. Please follow the link to access the Franklin Counseling Department.

  • Ms. Letteney: Last names A-L
  • Ms. Thomas: Last names M-Z

Virtual IMC

The Franklin Library will be doing curbside pick up for any student that would like to check out a book beginning October 5. There are two ways a student can place books on hold:

  1. Calling the library at 558-4426, or
  2. Making a reservation online. Follow the directions in this video:

Once a hold is placed, Ms. Cornell will email the student to let them know their book is ready for pickup. Pickup will be at the main entrance from 8:30-2:00.

School Fees

Just a reminder that you can pay for your student's Book Fees thru the Parent Portal in Infinite Campus! The Book Fee is charged to every student to cover electronic textbooks, general textbooks, instructional and consumable materials. The Full Pay Book Fee is $57.00 and the Reduced Fee (if you qualified for Free/Reduced lunch benefit) is $36.00. You may pay with a credit card in the Parent Portal or you may mail a check to Franklin. Checks should be made out to Franklin Middle School.

If you have any questions regarding the Book Fee, please call the Main Office at 558-2452.


Attendance remains one of our top priorities and is key to a student’s success. Attendance will be taken each day and monitored throughout live instruction. We will have proactive collaboration between home and school if attendance and engagement becomes a concern.

For in-person and remote learners, if your student has a pre-arranged absence or is unable to attend their scheduled classes, please call our Attendance Office at (319) 558-2162 to have it documented.