Benicia High School Panther Post

October 2020

BHS Vision Statement

Benicia High School will inspire learning with integrity in order to find personal success in an ever-changing world.

Expected Student Learning Results:

  • Communicator and Collaborator
  • Critical Thinker and Problem Solver
  • Creator and Innovator
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Sexual Health Education for Middle School & High School

On May 8, 2019, the California State Board of Education adopted the Health Education Framework which is a guidance document for implementation of the standards. This Framework supports the implementation of the California Healthy Youth Act, which took effect in January 2016, requiring school districts throughout the state to provide students with comprehensive sexual health education, along with information about HIV prevention, at least once in middle school and once in high school.

The law requires instruction and materials to meet a number of guidelines. Among them, they must be age-appropriate, medically accurate and objective, and appropriate for use with pupils of all races, genders, sexual orientations, and ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Instruction and materials must also affirmatively recognize different sexual orientations and be inclusive of same-sex relationships in discussions, teach about gender, gender expression, gender identity, and the harm of negative gender stereotypes, and teach the value of committed relationships such as marriage.

Benicia Unified School District will be piloting a new curriculum to be implemented in 7th and 10th grades that meets all of the requirements and is used by other school districts around California. It is published by Advocates for Youth and is called Rights, Respect, Responsibility (3R’s). This curriculum is aligned with the National Sexuality Education Standards and California Education Code 51938. The links to this curriculum will be provided to families upon request for viewing by emailing Lynn Hannafin at In accordance with California EdCode 51938, parents/guardians will have the ability to opt their child(ren) out of participating in the curriculum. The opt out must be done in writing. Please know that the opt out requirement is for participation in the entire sexual health curriculum. Parents will be notified in writing two weeks prior to lessons beginning.

Benicia Unified School District is pleased to offer Parent Information Sessions for Middle School and High School parents to support their children’s sexual health education and development and to understand the sexual health education curriculum being piloted this year.

The Parent Information Sessions will provide:

  • An overview of the state requirements as defined in the CA Healthy Youth Act

  • A glance into lessons offered in the 3Rs

  • An opportunity to get your questions answered from a 3Rs trainer

  • Basic tips for answering your child’s questions at home

  • Reliable resources for further learning for yourself and your child

High School Parent Info Night: Register in advance for this meeting here

(Postponed from October 14th - New date TBD)

Additional resources you may be interested in:

COVID 19 may be postponing many things… but puberty is still happening!

Did you know that October is national “Let’s Talk Month” to encourage families to have important conversations with their children about puberty, healthy relationships, and sexuality? Are you ready to talk with your own child about these topics? Help is available!

Heidi Winig from Cardea Services (one of our district’s community partners) and Wendy L. Sellers, RN the author of Puberty The Wonder Years, are offering live opportunities for parents and caregivers to get support and resources for talking with your own children about the physical, social, and emotional changes that happen during puberty. Our district has partnered with Cardea Services to select a curriculum and train teachers for this important piece of our children’s education, and we’re pleased that they are offering this learning opportunity for our parents and caregivers.

Join us to:

  • establish yourself as a reliable and trusted adult for your child around these important topics

  • learn how to identify age-appropriate topics that your child needs to hear about from YOU

  • gain tips and skills for initiating conversations and answering sensitive questions

  • find resources to support on-going conversations over time

Please register at one of these links to join:

Sexuality for Children of all ages with Special Needs:

One of Cardea’s partners, Sexuality for All Abilities, has invited our parents and caregivers to join their parent education session on October 20 at 3 pm. Register in advance here.

All of these calls will be recorded and links will be sent to those who register.

Parents who attend and would like additional support will be offered a discounted rate to “Preparing Parents for Puberty,” an online self-paced class offered by Wendy Sellers from Puberty: The Wonder Years. For more information about any of these calls please contact Heidi Winig at

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Class of 2021 - College & Career Readiness

Seniors should now be working on their final Get Focused Stay Focused Follow-Up Module. We want to remind the students and their families of the reason why we are doing this; we care about you and your future, and want to provide you the time and resources to plan and prepare for life after high school.

As we've done the previous two years, students will complete follow-up module chapters online at We realize you have enough going on right now as you consider what to do after graduation, but that is precisely why this module is relevant. For the next six Friday Access periods, Seniors will be given time to think about post-high school goals and resources to create a plan to achieve those goals.

Here’s what Seniors were asked to do last week:

  1. Go to the 20-21 BHS Grade 12 Counseling Google Classroom in their list of Google Classrooms.

  2. Find the post titled “My10yearplan Sign In” and follow the instructions to sign in to their account at

    1. If you don’t remember your username, click “Forgot Username?” under the sign in button to retrieve your username with your school email address.

    2. If you don’t remember your password, click “Forgot Password?” under the sign in button to reset your password with your school email account.

    3. If you don’t receive a retrieval or reset email instantly, then email with “Password Reset, Full name, ID number” in the subject line and a new username and password will be sent to you.

  3. Once the students has signed in to their My10yearplan account, find the post titled “Activate Module 3 Workbook” in the Grade 12 Counseling Google Classroom. Follow the instructions to activate your workbook

  4. Once the Module 3 Workbook is activated, you are ready to go. Be sure to check the same Google Classroom each Friday for resources needed to complete the module.


The GFSF Team

GFSF Module 3 Intro Video

9th Grade Get Focused Class Now Articulated for College Credit

We are excited to announce that our 9th grade students can now earn college credit for their Get Focused, Stay Focused class. Benicia High School has made an articulation agreement with Diablo Valley College that allows for students to earn college credit (1.5 units) from DVC when meeting course requirements. To learn more about this, please talk with your student's Get Focused, Stay Focused teacher!

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Class of 2021 Adopt-A-Senior

Are you a parent or community member looking for a way to participate in a fun school event? Are you interested in "adopting" a 12th grade student to make their year a bit more fun and memorable?

With the move to virtual learning, we students are not able to participate in many of the traditional school events and Seniors are especially feeling this loss. Our Student Leadership class is working hard to keep our school spirit up and to make this school year a memorable experience for our Seniors. One way they are doing this is with a new Adopt-a-Senior program, providing community members the opportunity to "adopt" a 12th grade student at Benicia High and Liberty High Schools and give them a few fun gifts during the school year to help celebrate their last year of high school. We will continue this program until the end of the year, whether or not schools reopen to in-person learning.


Email Activities Director Mary Wheat at and provide your first name, last name, phone number, and number of Seniors you would like to adopt. You will then receive the name of the 12th grade student and information about a few of their favorite things that you can use to provide them with care packages at three times during the school year, nothing extravagant but a fun surprise. Additional information and guidelines will be provided to you.

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TikTok on the Clock Spirit Week - October 19th through 23rd

Panthers! Join Student Leadership for our first Spirit Week of the school year! Although our activities will be online, we still want students to have a blast showing off their spirit.

Let’s face it, many of us spend a little too much time scrolling through TikTok, so why not put that time to good use and participate in Spirit Week! The theme is "TikTok on the Clock" and the only thing you need to participate is a recording device.

Monday, Oct. 19: Manic Monday

Create your best transition video

Tuesday, Oct. 20: Tap-In Tuesday

Show your best TikTok dance

Wednesday, Oct. 21: Whip It Up Wednesday

Replicate your favorite cooking/baking trend

Thursday, Oct. 22: Throw It Back Thursday

Do your favorite summer 2019 trend

Friday. Oct. 23: Fandom Friday

Duet your favorite creator

After you create your video for that day's theme, DM the video to the BHS Student Leadership Instagram, email it to Mrs. Wheat at, or post it on TikTok using #BHStiktokontheclock. Each day, the Student Leadership class will vote on a winner to feature on the Leadership Instagram and TikTok accounts. The daily winners will also receive a prize for their participation and spirit.

Reminders: Due to COVID-19, only one student per video is allowed, unless students are in the same family. Because this is a Spirit Week, we highly encourage students to rock some BHS Blue & Gold spirit wear in their videos. TikTok songs and dances must be school appropriate in order for these to be featured on TikTok and our Instagram page.

eSports Now at BHS!

BHS is proud to announce we will be competing for the first time ever as a school in eSports for the 2020-2021 school year. The competitions will take place through PlayVS in cooperation with CIF, and our students will be divided into teams to compete in League of Legends and Rocket League against other high schools from all across California.

Our new Head Coach, Mr. Rocky Kim, will be working with assistant coaches, administration and our students to develop an exciting and meaningful program. Please stay tuned for future announcements regarding eSports as we will be sure to communicate any opportunities to watch online and cheer on our Panther eSports athletes. The Fall season will begin on October 19th!

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Our Student Leadership/Associated Student Body has been busy creating ideas for virtual students activities and school spirit!

Starting on Friday, October 2nd, Student Leadership will create a Fun Friday video and send it out to the student body. The videos will change each week with themes and activities like Fun Friday Karaoke Edition and Fun Friday Rap Battle Edition. Students can submit videos each week to participate in the Fun Friday. Videos should be between 30 and 45 seconds each and submitted on Thursday by 5:00 pm the day prior to the Friday event. For example, for the first Fun Friday on October 2nd, videos will be due by 5pm on Thursday October 1st. Students can submit videos by sharing/sending to with the event in the subject: Karaoke Video.

Stay tuned for more information and for the Fun Friday activities each week. Check the monthly newsletters, BHS Twitter or Facebook accounts, or the BHS Leadership Instagram account.

New: Leadership Website & weekly Paw'dcast Available Here

New at BHS: Math & Science Team

There’s an exciting new opportunity at BHS called the Math and Science Team! Students founded the Math and Science Team at BHS because they felt students at our school deserve more opportunities to show their academic abilities outside of the classroom. Four of the founders went to the Solano County Math Steeplechase last year and had great success, winning first place, and it was a lot of fun. Throughout the year the team will compete in all sorts of math and science competitions such as Steeplechase, Science Bowl, American Math Competitions, and events such as Mesa Day at UC Berkeley. If you are interested in joining and participating in competitions like these please join the Google Classroom (Google Classroom code: cc3swkv). We hope to see you all there!

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Benicia's Family Resource Center & COVID-19 Citizen Assistance Program

The Benicia Police Department’s Family Resource Center has traditionally assisted families with children struggling to pay their rent, mortgage, utilities or otherwise assist in moments of need. We understand these are challenging times and the City of Benicia realizes the finan

cial impact the COVID-19 may have on our citizens, and we want to help those most vulnerable.

We have expanded the availability of our limited funding to assist those citizens that are temporarily laid off from their jobs; may have lost their jobs due to business closure; or had to take a leave of absence from their jobs to care for children home from school due to the COVID-19 issue (or an ill family member) and are not being paid or have sick leave.

As of April 1, 2020, to qualify for temporary assistance with rent/mortgage, utilities, food, gas, you can fill the application online and email it to, or send it by mail to 200 East L Street, Benicia, CA 94510; or pick up an application and drop it off at the Benicia Police Department. Families and individuals may apply. This assistance will not cover bills that are already past due.


-Proof Benicia resident

-Proof of being laid off or reduced hours from your employer

-Complete the assistance application

-Copy of the bill you are seeking assistance for

Link to Website & Additional Information

Wellness Center Drop In Hours every Friday from 11:00 - Noon

Link to Drop In Hours Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 778 0448 3501

Passcode: Ehd3WL

Tech Support During Virtual Learning

Having trouble with your Chromebook or accessing class resources? Benicia Unified School District offers a Live Tech Support from 7:30 am to 4:00 pm. You can access this live support from the Technology Department web page on the BUSD website: and find the chat icon on the bottom right of the screen.

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BHS Library Available During Virtual Learning

While we are in virtual learning, our BHS Librarian Ms. Segle and all librarians across the district are working together to provide library services to students. Starting on September 4th, students can put library books on hold and pick them up at our curb-side service on Fridays during the lunch hour. Students also have access to eBooks and the Benicia Public Library as their student ID card serves as their library card.

For information on how to reserve and pick up a library book, access to databases, and more, be sure to visit and bookmark the BHS Library Resource page, linked below. Students can also access several library resources through the Clever app, with a single sign in.

Link to Library Page

BHS Library Contact: Ms. Megan Segle

Class of 2021 Senior Pictures

Senior picture sessions have been rescheduled and we want to make sure we have every Senior included! Be sure to check out the information linked below and book your appointment if you have not already done so. You have the option of making an appointment at the photographer's studio now or making an appointment for your portrait at Benicia High School in November.

Link for Senior Picture Information

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Counseling Department

Counselors are available to provide a full range of services to students virtually. This includes academic, college, career, personal, social, and emotional support through email, phone, and Zoom contact, and through small group meetings. If your child could benefit from additional support, please contact your counselor by email.


9th grade - Ms. Smith at

10th grade - Ms. Guenther at

11th grade - Mr. Keppel at

12th grade - Ms. Wallace at

Considering College? Several Important Events Coming Soon!

Cal Apply Webinar with Sonoma State (for Seniors)

Friday, October 2, from 11:00am – 12:00pm

Students can access the Zoom link in the Counseling Google Classroom calendar.

College Application Help for Seniors:

Ms. Wallace and/or Mrs. Marwick will be available every Friday (10/2 through 12/4) to help answer student questions about their college applications. Students can access this help through the Counseling Google Classroom calendar for times and zoom links.

UC San Diego Virtual Visit

Monday, October 12, from 4:00 – 5:00pm

Pre-register with this link:

Seniors - College & Career Planning

Senior Counselor Ms. Wallace will be sharing information with Seniors to help prepare for college applications, graduation, and more. We recommend that Seniors check their school email regularly for these important updates. We also have a Google Classroom dedicated to Seniors so that you can access information and announcements from the Counseling Office and the College & Career Center all year long. This includes application workshops, community college registration workshops, and essay writing for college personal statements.

For students planning to apply to 4-year colleges and universities:

  • Private school applications - Common Application Application dates and deadlines vary by school. If the school you are applying to requires one or more letters of recommendation, you will put your Counselor's name (Kathleen Wallace) and email ( into your application and she will be notified. She will then connect with you before writing your letter so that you can provide her with your resume and/or a "brag sheet".
  • UC Applications - Applications are open now, but cannot be submitted until November 1st. No letters of recommendation required. Application deadline is November 30th at 11:59 pm.

  • CSU Applications - Applications are open now, but cannot be submitted until October 1st. No letters of recommendation required. Application deadline is December 4th at 11:59 pm.

  • Private schools and Public schools outside of California - Some use the Common application or they may have their own application. Go to their website and follow instructions to apply. Due dates vary.

Be sure to request a copy of your transcript before you complete your application. It is very important to be accurate when filling out your applications.

Link to Request Unofficial Transcript for College Applications

Important: Seniors Graduating in January & Attending a 4-Year College

If you are planning to attend a 4 year college in Fall 2021, be sure to check the policies of the college campus you plan to attend before signing up to take any college classes in the spring, after you graduate in January. The University of California campuses and the California State Campuses, as well as other colleges, do consider a freshman applicant to be a student who has graduated from (or is still in) high school and who has not enrolled in a regular (non-summer) term at any college or university following graduation. As long as you are enrolled in high school, you can take college classes and attend a 4 year college as a first time freshman, but once you graduate the rules change. Please contact 12th Grade Counselor, Ms. Wallace, for questions and academic advising.

Tips for College Letters of Recommendations

Reminder - The CSU and UC system do not allow submission of letters of recommendation in their freshman application.

Your counselor and teachers can get overwhelmed by requests for letters of recommendations. Please make sure to ask them in plenty of time before your deadline and well before any school breaks. At least 2 weeks notice is ideal.

Counselor request: Please email Ms. Wallace to confirm receipt of the request and if a letter is required in addition to the school report, she will share with you a senior brag sheet which will give her more information for writing a fantastic letter of recommendation for you.

Teacher request: Please email the teacher you are requesting a letter of recommendation prior to filling in the teacher information on your college application. Please remember to give at least two weeks notice. Once they agree to write your letter, you will then fill in the necessary information and your teacher will be sent a link to upload your letter of recommendation. You can also share the Senior Brag Sheet with your teachers who are writing your letter as well so they have this information which is helpful to write a letter of recommendation. If you are seeking a teacher letter of recommendation without a counselor report, you can also find the Senior Brag Sheet link under the Career Center and then Common Application tab.

Financial Aid Night Hosted by Benicia High School

Financial Aid Night (for all students & families)

Tuesday, October 6 from 6:30 - 7:30pm

Director of Financial Aid from Cal Maritime, Priscilla Muha will be presenting what families and students need to know and be available to answer questions.

Link to Financial Aid Night Online Meeting (Zoom)

Meeting ID: 967 9411 5543
Passcode: UBW9GB

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Amazon Smile - An Easy Way to Donate to Your PTSA!

Shopping on Amazon? Be sure to use Amazon Smile and select "Benicia High PTSA" as the charitable organization of your choice. A small percentage of your purchase will benefit Benicia High School thanks to the PTSA's projects, scholarships, and grants.

Amazon Smile is now available on the Amazon app also!

Parent Volunteers & Representatives Needed!

BHS Parent Representative Needed for Parent Advisory Group

BUSD is developing a Learning Continuity and Attendance Plan to mitigate learning loss, promote engagement and attendance, and to support mental wellness. Surveys went out recently to parents and students as part of stakeholder engagement. Benicia High School is looking for a parent representative to serve on the Parent Advisory Group which will contribute to the Learning Continuity and Attendance Plan process. The Parent Advisory Group reviews and monitors progress, and gives input into the goals and actions listed in the plan. If you are interested in representing Benicia High School, please email Asst. Superintendent Dr. Leslie Beatson at

ELAC: English Language Advisory Committee

BHS invites you to join our English Language Advisory Committee for parents/guardians, staff, and community members working together to support our students who are English Learners. This group will meet five times this year to discuss our current programs and supports, ideas for growth to strengthen our programs, explore ways to better connect with our families, and more. Meetings will be held on Tuesday evenings at 6:00pm, via Zoom during virtual learning. If you are interested in joining ELAC or have questions, please email Vice Principal Dwight Rogers at

BHS Sports Update

Benicia High School will follow the guidelines of the The California Interscholastic Federation (CIF), North Coast Section (NCS), and Diablo Athletic League (DAL) as our local competitive schedule is dictated by our group of schools.

The CIF announced on July 20th that all high school sports are postponed until December (begin practice) and January (begin competition). Sports will change from three seasons (Fall/Winter/Spring) to two seasons (Fall/Spring) with revised dates for practice and competition. Further information will be provided as we receive guidance from our local health officials.

We currently have a tentative schedule for our Fall and Spring sports. We will provide updates and information via email and our monthly newsletter to all of our students and families as soon as that becomes available.

The Paw - Benicia High School's Student Newspaper

Stay in the know with our online newspaper; including student articles about school news, arts & entertainment, sports, opinion pieces, politics and more. You can also access Panther TV, with weekly episodes on all that's happening at Benicia High!

Student Work Permit Information

For students seeking a work permit for after school or weekend employment, Ms. Gladi in the College & Career Center is available to assist you. To start the work permit process, the student must work with their potential employer to first fill out the “Intent to Employ a Minor and Request for Work Permit.” The student can then email the document to Ms. Gladi at for review and completion.

Link to Work Permit Document

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Upcoming Events at Benicia High School

  • Friday, October 2nd: Fun Fridays begin - Student activity every Friday
  • Tuesday, October 6th: Financial Aid Night (online) 6:30-7:30pm
  • Tuesday, October 13th: Site Council Meeting (online) 3:30-4:30pm
  • Thursday, October 15th: End of First Grading Term (S1)
  • Friday, October 16th: No School
  • October 19th - October 23rd: Virtual Spirit Week
  • Friday, October 23rd: Report Cards available via PowerSchool
  • Monday, October 26th: ELAC Meeting (online) 5-6pm; Email
  • Friday, November 6th: School Picture Make-up Day (grades 9-12)
  • Wednesday, November 11th: Holiday - No School
  • November 23-27: Thanksgiving Break - No School
  • December 18-January 3: Winter Break - No School
  • Thursday, January 14th: End of First Semester
  • Friday, January 15th: No School
  • Monday, January 18th: Holiday - No School
  • Friday, January 22nd: First Semester Report Card via PowerSchool
  • Friday, February 12th: Holiday - No School
  • Monday, February 15th: Holiday - No School
  • Friday, March 19th: End of Third Quarter
  • Friday, March 26th: Third Quarter Grade Report via Power School
  • April 2-11: Spring Break
  • May 3-14: AP Exams (date determined by subject)
  • Friday, May 31st: Holiday - No School
  • Friday, June 4th: Last Day of School & End of Second Semester
  • Saturday, June 5th: Class of 2021 Graduation
CLICK HERE for Parent Resources

Helping Your Children Engage in Distance Learning in Healthy and Productive Ways - a gathering of resources geared towards supporting parents in their efforts to support their children.

Apply Now: 2021 Prudential Spirit of Community Awards

Call for Entries: Apply by November 10, 2020

We know there are amazing students at Benicia High School who are leading by example through volunteering in our community. We want to share an opportunity to recognize students and their contributions by encouraging students to apply for the 2021 Prudential Spirit of Community Awards.

This program was established in 1995 and has recognized more than 140,000 youth volunteers. To qualify, students must:

  • Be in grades 5-12
  • Have participated in a volunteer activity after September 1, 2019
  • Complete and submit an online application by November 10, 2020 (applications will be reviewed and certified by school administration)

CLICK HERE to learn more and to apply online

Free Meals for Students through December 31st

Congress has approved the waiver for free meals for children under 18 until December 31st. Any child under 18 will be able to receive breakfast and lunch for free. CLICK HERE for more information.

Please begin by filling out the initial participation form LINKED HERE if you have not already done so. There are three ways to pick up meals for students:

  1. Daily Meal Pickup: You may pick-up meals every day Monday-Friday at any of the school sites. Your child will receive lunch for that day and breakfast for the next morning.
  2. Early Meal Pickup: You may pick up meals early in the morning at Benicia High School at 7:00AM-9:00AM. If you are interested in the early meal pick-up, please SIGN UP USING THIS FORM and pick a pick-up time that is convenient for you. Please note that these meals will have to be reheated/prepared at home. We will provide heating/preparation instructions with those meals.
  3. Multi-Day Meal Packages: Starting Monday September 14th, multi-day meal packages will be available for pick up at Benicia High School on Mondays and Wednesdays. For Mondays, we will provide a two day supply of meals (Meals for Monday & Tuesday). For Wednesdays, we will provide a three-day supply of meals (Meals for Thursday, Friday, & Monday). These meals will be available to pick-up early in the morning and in the afternoon. Early Service Window: 7:00, 7:30, 8:00, 8:30, & 9:00. Midday Service Window: 11:00, 11:30, 12:00, & 1:00. To pick-up these meal packages, you would need to sign up at the link below.

Have questions? Please contact Food & Nutrition Services Director Tania Courtney at (707) 748-2758 or email her at You can also visit the BUSD Food & Nutrition Services website.

District programs, activities, and practices shall be free from unlawful discrimination, including discrimination against an individual or group based on race, color, ancestry, nationality, national origin, immigration status, ethnic group identification, ethnicity, age, religion, marital status, pregnancy, false pregnancy, termination of pregnancy, or related recovery, parental status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, or genetic information; a perception of one or more of such characteristics; or association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics.

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