Dear Franklin families,
I hope everyone enjoyed a lovely fall break! We head back to school tomorrow with 3 weeks remaining in the 1st semester. The weeks between fall and winter break go quickly – this is an important time to check in with your students and be sure they are on track in their classes. Please reach out to Crew leaders or counselors if you have concerns about whether your student will end the semester successfully.
This week we celebrate Giving Tuesday. It’s an opportunity for us to look back and forward at the same time, reflecting on our growth and looking ahead to an ongoing commitment to our vision and mission. A little over 11 years ago, the idea of Franklin was formed based on personal experiences. Parents and educators worked together to learn what people were looking for in a school. Through hundreds of interviews, focus groups, and informal conversations with students, community members, teachers, and parents – we put together a proposal and in 2014, Franklin opened. Looking back, we have much to celebrate. While public schools across the country are losing enrollment, Franklin has continued to grow and is nearing capacity. At exactly this time last year, we held our first meeting with a company that helped us bring our construction project to the bond market, securing just over $24 million in funding to complete construction of a beautiful permanent building, including a full-size gymnasium. We are on track to move into the building for the coming school year, putting an end to our phase as the “trailer park academy”. There are things we will miss about our crazy little village of buildings, but we are excited and proud to have a building that honors the hard work of our students, staff, and community.
As we have grown, we have never forgotten our vision of providing a school where all students can thrive. Since our start we have worked to make sure that Franklin is accessible to any student who wants to attend. We operate the largest bus transportation program of any charter school in Western North Carolina – a program considered a model for charter schools across the state. We have expanded our free lunch and nutrition program, serving nearly 1,000 lunches a week. Our after school program provides supervision from 7:15 am to 6 pm daily. We provide scholarship funds to ensure that any student can participate in field trips and adventure trips. And our arts and athletics programs create community and opportunities that keep students engaged and connected to school. These programs are costly and are not fully funded with state and local dollars. Our Giving Tuesday Annual Fund helps us fill the gap between public funding and the cost of running these programs.
This Tuesday, November 29, I will be making a gift to The Franklin School of Innovation and I ask you to join me. I give because I believe in our students, our staff, and our community. Together we have created something special. Together we will keep striving toward our vision. Together we can give our students the school they deserve. Let’s meet our goal for this campaign! A $10 monthly gift (just over $100 per year) for each student would put us over our goal. Please consider your family’s financial situation and make a gift that is appropriate and meaningful for you.
Check out this preview video featuring our high school Modern Orchestra – a magically inclusive musical space where every instrument is welcomed! And join us on Tuesday (live concert at NOON) every hour from 8 am to 6 pm to celebrate our school! Find us here on Facebook: FSI Facebook
Here’s the schedule for the day:
8:00 am: Live Kickoff with the Middle School News Crew on our construction site
9:00 am: Bus Transportation & Beyond the Bell Programs
10:00 am: STEM at FSI – you’ll be amazed by how much our kids are doing!
11:00 am: Spotlight on our 11th grade Learning Expedition
12:00 noon: LIVE Concert! Lightening round thank yous for donations
1:00 pm: Theatre at FSI
2:00 pm: Visuals Arts at FSI
3:00 pm: Environmentalism & Science
4:00 pm: Crew!
5:00 pm: LIVE at 5! Learn more about the nuts & bolts of our FSI building!
6;00 pm: Oh Yeah! It’s a gym! Spotlight on athletics & what the gym will mean to our school
Thank you for all you do to Cultivate Community every day.
We are grateful for our school community!
Starting tomorrow! Subway sandwiches for sale during lunch
Beginning this week, we are offering a purchased lunch option every Monday and Thursday. We are kicking this off as a pilot program from now till winter break. If all goes well we plan to continue through the rest of the year. Here are the details!
Mon, Nov 28, 3:15 – 5 pm: MS Musical “Honk Jr” Audition Workshop
Tues, Nov 29
- 8 am – 6 pm: Giving Tuesday! Give here! Join us on Facebook here!
- 3:15 – 5:30 pm: MS Musical Auditions
Thurs, Dec 1
- 3:15 – 5 pm: Cast Read-Through of Honk Jr
- 6:00 pm: Mountain Bike Team Info Session – see more info here!
- 6:30 pm: Info Session for Prospective Families. Sign up here
Sat, Dec 3, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm: Checkmate Challenge! FSI Chess Tournament. See more info below!
Mark your Calendars
Fri, Dec 9, 6 pm: Holiday Music Concert in the Community Room
Tues, Dec 13, 6 pm: Board of Directors Meeting
Fri, Dec 15: Early Release (12:30 high school/1:00 middle school)
Dec 19 – Jan 2: Winter Break (Jan 2 is a Teacher Work Day – no students)
Keep up with all our events on our Community Calendar!
FSI School Store is Open!
Get your FSI & Bolts gear and represent your school in style!
Tees, hoodies, scarves and more – check it out! FSI School Apparel Store
Scholastic Art & Writing Awards – Deadlines this week!
For students grades 7 and up: The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards are the nation’s longest-running, most prestigious recognition program for creative teens. FSI had many student winners last year! The art deadline is December 2nd and the writing deadline is December 6th. Students must create an account – please select Jennifer Lipsey-Edwards as the teacher.Go to www.artandwriting.org to find out more, create your account, and enter artworks! Ms. Lipsey-Edwards will assist students with photographing artworks and completing entries this week.I f the $10 per entry fee is any kind of burden for your family please don’t hesitate to use the fee waiver option.
FSI Checkmate Challenge Chess Tournament! Dec 3
Calling all chess players! FSI is hosting a chess tournament on Saturday, December 3, 2022, in the community room. Sections include K-1, K-3, K-5, K-8, and K-12. You can learn more and register at https://new.uschess.org/fsi-checkmate-challenge-scholastic-chess-tournament. Cost is $15 for advance registration, or $18 for registration that morning, with a $3 discount for siblings. US Chess Membership is required–go to uschess.org to register or renew a registration. We are also looking for parent volunteers to help with set-up, registration, and concessions. Please contact Evelyn Becker at email@example.com if you would like to volunteer.
FSI Food Pantry
The FSI food pantry will provide supplemental nutrition to families experiencing short or long term financial difficulty and food insecurity. Food bags containing non-perishable items will be distributed Friday afternoons. To request supplemental food assistance, please contact your child’s school counselor
High school: Mary Kinsey Hyche at firstname.lastname@example.org
Middle school: Jennifer Negron at email@example.com
You can also complete this google form: Food Pantry Form
Responses to the form are sent to the counselors and all information will be kept confidential.
If you would like to contribute to the food pantry, please contact Matt Speed, Nutrition Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Holiday Assistance Program
Our Holiday Assistance Program is starting back up as we head into the winter season. This program is intended to support families at our school who may need help purchasing gifts for their children for the holidays and who have not accessed other local Holiday Assistance Programs (Eblen, Salvation Army, St. Nicholas Project, etc.). All information in this form will go directly to Jennifer Negron (Middle School Counselor) or Mary Kinsey Hyche (High School Counselor) and will be kept confidential. Once we receive your form we will follow up with an email to collect/provide more information.
Weather Closures/Delays & Remote Learning Days
It’s getting cold out there! We’ve enjoyed a lovely long and warm fall. With the onset of colder weather, we want to remind families about weather closures & delays. FSI is not part of Buncombe County or Asheville City Schools, and we may make decisions about delays and closures differently, based on our student population and transportation. We will announce weather closures and delays in a few ways. Parents will receive phone calls or text messages through our BrightArrow messaging system. We post information on WLOS – on their weather closures and delays section. We also send emails.
Under State guidelines, schools are allowed up to 5 remote instruction days for weather or other emergencies. Please note: If your student would be unable to participate in a remote instruction day, we can assign chromebooks for use at home. Generally, remote instruction days will not be used to introduce new content or ideas – we understand the limits of remote learning. Students may be able to use a home computer or tablet to complete assignments. If your student does not have access to a tablet or computer at home AND you did not already receive one from school, you can check out a chromebook during school hours (7:45 – 4 pm) daily.
Calling all AI enthusiasts! Applied Data Science Winter Program by MIT Alumni
Inspirit AI is a live online 25-hour pre-college AI program that prepares students passionate about the social sciences for an AI-driven future, guiding them to build impactful projects like covid spread detection, exoplanet search and fake news detection! Students learn in small-group classrooms, and cohorts for beginner and advanced coders are available. Apply for winter 2022 programs by Dec. 10th. Please find the high school program application here and middle school application here. Feel free to contact our program coordinator Jared at email@example.com with any questions.
Host an Intern!
All FSI Seniors complete a Senior Project. The project requires 24 hours of career exploration, a journal of reflection, and a presentation to community members in the late spring. Please email JaneAnne Tager (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you are interested in hosting a HS intern!
COVID & Flu Updates: PCR Testing on Monday
As of Friday, we had no reported active COVID cases in school.
PCR Covid Testing will be provided on Monday this week. Testing for high school students will be available from 11:30 – 1 pm in the collaboration space on the first floor of Big Ben. High school students can come on their own during lunch. Testing will then be available in Einstein, Parks, and Johnson for students in grades 5 – 8; nurses will let students know when they are available in each building.If you are new to Franklin or did not provide consent last year, you can sign in to give consent below:
- Parental consent for students under age 18: Click here: https://testcenter.concentricbyginkgo.com/minor-consent
- Student consent – age 18 and up: Click here: https://testcenter.concentricbyginkgo.com/invite-by-code
- Our school access code is FRANKLINSI. You will need this to complete the consent form
- You only need to provide consent once
Connect with Canvas
As a school, we use Canvas as a system to help students and parents keep connected with assignments and grades. This is a schoolwide program, though of course high school students use Canvas differently and more than our youngest students. Parents and guardians can download the Canvas app and connect with their student’s account. Click here to learn how to do this – it only takes a few minutes but you do need your student’s help! Canvas Family App How To.
Middle School News Videos
8th Grade Theatre students are writing, filming, producing, and directing the news Monday and Friday each week. Click on the folder below to see the news each week!
Morning News Videos- 2022-2023–
Habitat for Humanity Student Group
The Habitat for Humanity Student group will no longer meet during SMART period. The group will meet on Tuesdays during lunch in room #226.
New Club – Middle School Creative Writing!
This new club will be hosted by 6th grade ELA teacher Ashley O’Dell and is being started at the request of students. The club will meet 1st and 3rd Mondays of each month from 3:30 – 4:30 pm, and 2nd and 4th Fridays each month from 3:30 – 4:30. Club starts this Friday, November 18, in Ms. O’Dell’s room.
Math Club Returns!
Math club is back! Math club is open for all our students – ALL GRADES – and it is a great opportunity for students to explore the beauty and application of Math outside their classrooms. Math is a subject full of creativity and opportunity that many students enjoy. Besides the academic benefits, math club is also a great way to meet new people and develop teamwork skills. In the past, our students have had a unique opportunity to compete at regional and national levels. This year, we are planning to participate in some of these competitions. Math club will be meeting on Tuesdays right after school from 3:30-5:00 PM in the New Building room #224. Our first session will be on Tuesday, November 8. If your child is interested in participating, please fill out this form. If you have any questions, please contact Mr. Byan at email@example.com.
Middle School Drama Club
Honk Jr Musical! All grades 5th-8th!
Directed by Chris Martin and Music Directed by Sandi Wilson
Choreographed by HS student, Lakai Munleon
- Audition Workshop- Monday, November 28th- 3:15- 5:00pm
- Auditions- Tuesday, November 29th- 3:15pm-5:30pm (Cast List announced by 12/1 at 8am)
- Thursday, December 1st- Cast Read Through of Honk Jr.- 3:15pm- 5pm
How to Audition
You will sing a song from the show after learning it at the Audition Workshop. Stay tuned for songs at the audition workshop. You will also read from the script. Audition scenes at audition workshop for preview. See email. Email Chris Martin at firstname.lastname@example.org if you cannot make the audition on 11/29 and need to submit an audition video.
Register to Audition and Set Crew- Click Here!
Character List- Click Here
Script- Click Here!
Song Tracks- Click Here!
Audition Scenes- Click Here!
Drama Club Newsletter for more info- Click Here!
High School Drama Club
Use this QR code to stay clued in on FSI HS Theatre news with our monthly
FSI High School Theatre Newsletter!
Chess: Do you like to play Chess or do you want to learn?! Join FSI’s Chess Club and learn from our expert instructor, Mr. Bruce Roth. Chess Club meets every Tuesday from 4-5 p.m. starting September 27 and running through December 13. The winter semester will begin January 10, 2023, and end April 25, 2023. Students will meet in the Community Room with Beyond the Bell from dismissal until the class begins! All grades and levels are welcome!! The fee is $50/per semester or $100/per year. All checks must be payable to Bruce Roth. For more information, contact Bruce Roth at 828 230 5139 or by email at email@example.com
BIPOC Student Union (BSU):The BSU offers a safe space for students to share their experiences and to identify ways our school can address specific and systemic racism. Community mentor Bruce Waller is returning to support our BSUs, joining faculty sponsor Keith Knox. BSU is open to all students who identify as People of Color. HS BSU currently meetings Fridays at lunch in Dr. Hawkins classroom. MS BSU starting soon.
Film Club! This club is returning from last year and meets alternating Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:45 – 4:45. Email Michaela Mamone-Peeples for more information.
Girls who Code will meet every other Monday after school from 3:15 – 4:30 in Edison 19. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
MS GSA (Gender & Sexuality Alliance)
Starting 9/16! MS GSA (gender and sexuality alliance): Middle School GSA meets every Friday 3:15-4:30pm. We welcome everyone and work to empower LGBTQ+ lives. Contact email@example.com to join.
HS GSA will begin meeting this Thursday during HS lunch. This will be a kickoff/information gathering meeting. Date/time may be changed based on student schedules and input. For more information, contact MK Hyche, firstname.lastname@example.org, or Justina Powell, email@example.com
High School Studio Art Club
Mondays, Starting September 19, 2022
3:45 – 5:00, Big Ben, first floor Art Room #133
Hosted by Ms. Jen firstname.lastname@example.org
HS Studio Art Club is a place to gather with other creative teens who have a genuine interest in the visual arts. Folks will have a place to chill, work on art, listen to music, have tea, and to inspire and be inspired. The Studio is where friendship, collaboration, feedback, sharing, and support come together to make magic! You do not need to commit to showing up every week. However, advance registration is required to attend as you’re able to. Register here: https://forms.gle/czLbV186Ep7K31gb9
Mountain Bike Club
- Do you want to be a part of the Mountain Bike Team, FSI’s coolest sport?
- Do you want to race your mountain bike against 50+ riders who are your age on a fast xc course?
- Do you want to practice weekly to improve your bike skills and fitness with other riders?
If you answered YES to the three questions above, then please come to our info session Thursday, Dec 1, at 6:00 to learn more about the season, meet the coaches and other riders on the team. Take a look at this info sheet for a summary of what we will discuss, or check out this video giving you a glimpse of what the team is all about. Email email@example.com, for more information.
Science Olympiad Club
Do you geek out on all things science? Are you a competitive person who needs a medal hanging around your neck to prove your science prowess? This is a science competition against other schools in our area with a potential to move on to state and national levels. Science Olympiad will meet in Room 141 from 3:30-4:15 every Friday. Open to MS and HS students! Contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Middle School Robotics
Middle School Robotics team meets Thursdays, 3:15pm to 4:00 pm in the Middle School Tech room (Edison 19).
Who do I go to when….
Whether you are new or returning to Franklin, we know you will have questions, and we want to help you find the best person to answer them, quickly and efficiently. We hope this little guide will help you navigate!
I have a question about my child’s grade, an assignment, or something specific to one class: Start with your child – what do they know? Then, the classroom teacher
I’m worried about my child’s overall progress, or progress in multiple classes: Your child’s Crew advisor can help coordinate a team response or meeting
My child seems anxious, sad, or unhappy: Jennifer Negron is our middle school counselor, and Mary Kinsey Hyche is our high school counselor
I think my child is being bullied, or other behavior/discipline concerns: Tony Freeman, Middle School Principal or Peter Tromba High School Principal
My child will miss school: For short-term absences (illness, doctor’s appointments, etc), send an email to email@example.com, or bring a written note to the front office. Notes must be received within 48 hours of student’s return to school. Longer-term or frequent absences (5 days/quarter) require documentation from a medical care provider.
I’ve contacted a teacher, but the problem isn’t resolved: Your child’s Principal
I think my child may need special education services or accommodations: Paula Dowd, Director of Exceptional Services
My child requires medication during the school day, has a special health need, or has tested positive for COVID: Contact our school nurse, Jessica Perraud
I think we need some support for my child’s challenging behaviors: Jessica Potter-Bowers (JP) or Kara Lacey, Behavior Specialists
I have a question about enrollment, student records or I need a copy of my student’s report card or transcript: Erinn Otten, Director of Student Services
My student needs a chromebook, hotspot, or help with technology: Matt Mikulski, Technology Director
My child has an IEP, and I have questions about the services provided: Your child’s Exceptional Children teacher is your first contact:
- Grade 5: Brittany Davenport
- Grade 6: Tammy Leahy
- Grade 7: Meagan Barnhard
- Grade 8: Donnie Stahlke
- MS Resource Room: Meaghann Denkenberger
- Grade 9: Lindsey Wehrli
- Grade 10: Greg Wingard
- Grade 11: Paul Szumski
- Grade 12: Gretchen Kehrberg
- HS Occupational Course of Study: Kelsey Reid
I have questions about sports: Kim Burke, Athletic Director
I want to know more about after or before-school services: Martha Rutherford, Beyond the Bell Coordinator
I want to know more about your music program: Sandi Wilson, Director of Instrumental and Vocal Ensembles
I am interested in your theatre programs! Chris Martin, MS Theatre teacher/director and Julia Wharton, HS Theatre teacher/director
I have questions about your school bus or student parking: Deeana Bennett, Director of Operations
I am interested in carpooling/ride-sharing: Check out our carpool facebook group (you need to request to join):
I want to know more about college planning, including advanced courses like AP and Dual Enrollment, financial aid, or the college application process: JaneAnne Tager, College & Career Counselor
I have high level concerns or questions about the school, such as a problem that hasn’t been resolved through my principal, an immediate school safety concern, or more general questions about the school’s philosophy, approach, or plans for the future: Michelle Vruwink, Executive Director
Our Teaching Teams for 2022-2023!
Brandie Dallara, ELA & Social Studies: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jennifer Ryan, Science & Social Studies: email@example.com
Chris Pauley, Math & Social Studies: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ashley O’Dell, ELA: email@example.com
Charlie Keller, Math: firstname.lastname@example.org
Samuel “Latt” Berry Foster:, Science: email@example.com
Evan Baptista, Social Studies: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jared Gallow, ELA: email@example.com
Zoe Wallce, Math: firstname.lastname@example.org
Nick Liu, Science: email@example.com
Grace Nyanga, Social Studies: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kyle Wilson, ELA: email@example.com
AJ Jones, Math lead: firstname.lastname@example.org
Rhneea Riddle, Math Specialist: email@example.com
Keith Knox, Social Studies: firstname.lastname@example.org
Makesha Gordon, Science: email@example.com
Lora Hawkins, English I: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jerry Lubos, World History: email@example.com
Liz Baron: Math 1 & 2: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jessica Bragdon, Earth Science/ AP Earth: email@example.com
Matt Reynolds, Civics: firstname.lastname@example.org
Justina Powell, English 2: email@example.com
Marcel Duhaime, Math 2: firstname.lastname@example.org
Julia Adams, Biology: email@example.com
Bryan Head, English III/AP Lang: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tess Barnes Dunn, American History, AP Research: email@example.com
Teshale Byan, Math 3 & AP Calculus: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mary Smith, Chemistry, Forensics: email@example.com
Alex Humphrey, English IV & AP Lit:: firstname.lastname@example.org
Lexi Johnson, World History: email@example.com
Teshale Byan, AP Calculus: firstname.lastname@example.org
Elizabeth Joslin, NC Wildlife (Science) & EcoWarriors: email@example.com
Jessica Fine: Pre Calc, Math 4: firstname.lastname@example.org
MS PE: Anne Gillis: email@example.com
HS PE & Athletic Director: Kimberly Burke, firstname.lastname@example.org
MS Art: Jennifer Lipsey Edwards: email@example.com
HS Art: Kati Robbins, firstname.lastname@example.org
MS Tech & Computer Science: Adrienne Fortune, email@example.com
MS Counselor: Jennifer-Raé Negron, firstname.lastname@example.org
HS Theatre, Art of Argument: Julia Wharton, email@example.com
MS Theatre: Chris Martin, firstname.lastname@example.org
MS/HS Music and Orchestra: Sandi Wilson, email@example.com,
French 1: Mackenzie Arnold: firstname.lastname@example.org
French2 & 3 and HS, PE: Chad Gerber, email@example.com
HS Spanish: Hanna Walden, firstname.lastname@example.org
MS & HS Spanish: Heather Kabat, email@example.com
Adventure Ed: Jessica Potter-Bowers, firstname.lastname@example.org