Echo Info #15

Have a great weekend!

Remember to wear your mask, keep your distance, and wash your hands!

The reopening of our campus has required a meticulous organization to minimize contact between students of the same or different levels. This approach requires educating children about new precautions and behavioral routines that protect them from becoming infected with the virus. It is essential that the same logic applies outside of school: upon arrival in the morning or departure in the afternoon, we ask for the support of each parent with respect to our plan to maintain distance between children. Please do not allow your child to interact with others who are not in their class. Your help and support are critical in allowing the school to continue welcoming all interested students to our campus. We are all in this together. Thank you.

In the Spotlight this Week: Cooperative games in 5th grade

Why is cooperative pedagogy so important?

Cooperative pedagogy focuses on communication, expressing emotions, and helping one another to succeed together in the respect of all. It allows students to improve their relationships with each other. It’s an instrument for producing social harmony.

What is a collaborative game?

A game is considered cooperative when the result of the activity does not distinguish the winners from the losers: either everyone wins or everyone loses. Students work together to tackle a challenge or to break a previous record. The game ends when the goal is achieved.

The game always ends with a phase of reflection and analysis. It is at this moment that the students express their feelings and the choices made. This phase of analysis allows the group to raise awareness of the strategies that are favorable and unfavorable to the success of the group game. 

The Cooperative Pen

This month, the 5th graders tried a new game: the cooperative pen! Students were randomly assigned to groups of 4 or 5. Each member of the group holds the end of a string that is attached to the same pen (see pictures). The goal is to work together, as a team, to reproduce a drawing (heart) with a message (École!). There is no time limit to accomplish the task. The students will repeat the exercise once a month, for three months, with the same teammates. That way, we will be able to see improvement over time. 

Several cooperative games will be done in 5th grade this year. Next challenge: building a pyramid with cups!

Cooperative Pen Google Photo Album

A short video:

We’ve got Spirit – Ugly Sweater Day in 2nd Grade

Ugly Spirit Day in 4th Grade

Google Photo Album

Middle School Movie Night

6th Grade Movie Night Google Photo Album

6th Grade Movie Night Short Video:

7th Grade Movie Night Google Photo Album

Upcoming Events

December Events

Report Cards for Elementary School and Middle School
Friday, December 11th after 4 pm
Accessible in the FACTS Family Portal
Bûche de Noël Virtual Workshop
December, 13th at 2 pm
We will send a Zoom link on Sunday morning with an event reminder.
COVID-19 Screening
Monday, December 14th  and Tuesday, December 15th
See schedule below (same as this week).
Minimum Day
December, 18th
Minimum Day Pick-up times
PK0 Vesna – 12:00 pm
PK1 Gladys/Emilie/ Cindy – 11:45 am
PK2 Gaelle – 11:30 am
PK2 Stephanie and Pauline – 12:00 pm
K – 11:45 am
1st & 2nd grade (main gate) – 12:15 pm
3rd, 4th & 5th grade (dirt parking lot) – 11:45 am
Middle School (dirt parking lot) – 12:15 pm
We encourage you to subscribe to the events calendar, so you can get automatic reminders.

Covid-19 surveillance testing on Monday 12/14 and Tuesday 12/15

Same schedule as last week: Schedule

All testing stations will be located in the PK parking lot.

If you would like SDFAS staff to do the nasal swab on your child(ren), click here to complete the required consent form (only if you have not yet done it before – once submitted, the form is valid for the rest of the school year).

If you plan to perform the nasal swab on your child(ren), please arrive on time.  

From the Development Office

Thank you for your generous outpouring of support to the Annual Fund. Once again our community came together and we exceeded our goal of $400,000. Congratulations to 4th grade B for reaching 100% last week. 

Summary of parent participation per class

PK0 71%
PK1 65.2%
PK2 57%
KG 71.8%
1A 93.8%
1B 80%
2A 62.5%
2B 93%
3A 88.23%
3B 94.1%
4A 83.3%
4B 100%
5A 83.3%
5B 80%
6 82.2%
7 82%
8 85%

For more details or to make a gift, please click here.

“À table” virtual series – A community-building initiative

Thank you to Mendy Hoppel, proud mom of Graham in PK2, for being at the origin of this project and taking the lead in its implementation. 

Learn how to make your own Chocolate Yule Log! Atelier Bûche de Noël au Chocolat
Sunday, December 13th at 2 pm
Don’t miss this opportunity to enjoy an exclusive taste of French cooking! Join your SDFAS family in the kitchen to create a traditional festive Yule Log!
Thank you to Virginie Saget for being the first SDFAS parent to share the recipe of one of her end of the year favorite traditional French dessert with the SDFAS community. We will send you the list of ingredients and required tools ahead of time and you will be able to make your own Bûche de Noël, as Virginie demonstrates all the steps.
Registration Bon appétit!
We will send a Zoom link on Sunday morning with an event reminder.
We are still looking for volunteers to assist with the zoom meeting series. We are starting with a series of cooking courses highlighting traditional French dishes and customs and will add other themes as the project progresses. Volunteers are needed for each individual episode as well as the logistics of the overall project. Let us know if you are interested in the concept and/or if you would like to volunteer: SDFAS Team Connection!

Girard Gourmet

It is time to register for your winter session Girard Gourmet plan! The winter lunch plan starts on January 4th and ends on March 31st. Please follow this link to registerHoliday cookies are also now available at!
Girard Gourmet welcomes feedback. For suggestions and more information, contact Jesus or Diana at Girard Gourmet, (858) 454-3325, or by email at
Contact Ariel Arsac-Ellison for questions related to Girard Gourmet


Check out books with our new Online Library Catalog-includes a new Guide to how to use the online catalog

In order to reserve books for your children, you will need a login and a pin. Send an email including your first and last names as well as your email address to, and Anne Ricart will create them for you.
Once you have made a reservation (click the ‘Reserve’ button under the picture of each book cover), the librarian will be notified. The books will be checked out in your name and you’ll receive an email letting you know when the books will be handed to you (usually at pick up time).
More information on the library webpage.


Here is a new resource to help your students build up their language skills in French, English, Spanish (and more!) while playing fun progressive games:
login: sdfas1
password: ocean

For questions related to the library, please contact Anne Ricart, Librarian,


PK pictures previously scheduled on January 11th-13th are postponed. New dates will be communicated in next week’s Echo Info.

For questions about the preschool, please contact Babeth Esterly,, and Sophie Ricouard,


Elementary School

It has been an incredible first trimester. Thank you for your patience and your support.

How to access the report cards in the FACTS Family Portal?

You will have access to the report cards starting Friday, December 11th after 4:00 p.m. directly on the FACTS Family Portal.

Once you log into the portal,

Go to Student in the use blue menu on the left,

Click on the arrow on the right to open the drop-down menu,

Scroll down and click on Report Cards.

If you do not have your login and/or password, please contact Stéphanie Humbert at

Please, take the time to download and to archive them for future use.

Francis Carlier, Director of the elementary school, remains available if you have any questions.

High School Placement

Please contact Erin Stoller, High School Placement Counselor/SEL Advisor at for questions regarding high school placement.

Message from Erin Stoller, HS Placement Counselor

Meet Erin Stoller here by video.

Updates from Erin Stoller – December 11th

Important dates

SDFAS Apparel

Order Required Red Polo and Navy Blue T-Shirt and other Spirit Wear

There is no school uniform at SDFAS; however, the school does have a Dress Code, as outlined in the Parent-Student Handbook. For the 2020/21 school year, we are excited to partner, again, with Land’s End, a provider of high-quality school clothing and spirit wear.

  • All Preschool students must wear their red polo during field trips and school events.
  • All students from Grade 1 through 5 must wear a red polo during field trips and school events and a navy-blue T-shirt for Physical Education classes.
  • All students Grade 5 through 8 must wear a navy-blue T-shirt for Physical Education classes.

Here is the Land’s End SDFAS webpage (900190869) where you will order:

  • Red polo with the SDFAS logo (required for grades PK0 through 5) 
  • Navy-blue PE t-shirt with the SDFAS logo (required for grades 1 through 8). The school will reimburse one navy-blue PE t-shirt per child if purchased before September 30th.  Your FACTs tuition account will be credited in October.  

More Info here. Please remember to label your child’s clothing and personal belongings.


School Calendar

2020-21 Calendar

From the Financial Aid Office

School Financial Aid, Bourses Scolaires and CCAoA

SDFAS offers tuition assistance to qualified applicants based entirely on demonstrated financial need. Applications are now available for 2021-2022 on SSS. Don’t miss the deadline!

The French government awards scholarships to French nationals, three years and older, who demonstrate financial need. The timeline for 2021-2022 has not been published yet. We will keep you posted. New this year! We are now accredited by Child Care Aware® of America (CCAoA) for Military/DoD Fee Assistance programs.

Contact Isabelle Gilet, for more information.

Digital Citizenship

From Alice Kong, STEAM Coordinator. It is more important than ever to talk to children on a regular basis about online safety and digital citizenship.

Family-friendly activities

Social-Emotional Learning

Parenting Conference by Fusion

Fusion Zoom Webinar recording on Distance Learning Strategies, Learning Differences, School Anxiety, Healthy Relationships in Teenagers, Motivation, Mindful Parenting

Responsive Classroom

Responsive Classroom teachings remind us that in order to be successful in and out of school, students need to learn a set of social and emotional competencies – cooperation, assertiveness, responsibility, empathy, and self-control — and a set of academic competencies – academic mindset, perseverance, learning strategies, and academic behaviors. Overview of the SEL Program at SDFAS

Acknowledgment Form

Return-to-School Documents for Acknowledgement and Signature

All parents with children enrolled at SDFAS for the 2020-2021 school year are required to review and acknowledge with signature the following documents using this ACKNOWLEDGEMENT FORM:

**URGENT Action Needed!**Click here for the ACKNOWLEDGEMENT FORM to print, complete, sign, scan to pdf and return by email to Stephanie Humbert at

Emergency Contact and Pick Up Authorization Update

How to Update Contact Information and Pick-Up Authorization in FACTS?

  • Go to your Family Portal
  • In the menu on the left: Select the “Family” drop-down
  • Click “Family Home”
  • Within the “Contact Info” click the edit pencil to update “Emergency Contacts” and “Transportation (Pick-up) Contacts”.
  • You may add as many “Transportation (Pick-up) Contacts” as necessary.

Drop-off and Pick-up Protocols

Sign in Procedure in Preschool with Procare App Drop-off and Pick-up Protocols Rules for bicycles, pedestrians and vehicles in and around the dirt lot

Elementary School and Middle School Early Pick-Up

We would like to limit the number of visitors in the main office. If you wish to pick up your child earlier than regular dismissal time for a medical appointment or any other purposes, please email Stéphanie Humbert at with the date and time of pick-up. Please also copy the teachers so your child will be ready to go. When you arrive in front of the school, please call the front office and we will escort your child to your car. Thank you for your cooperation!

From the Nurse’s Office

Download Magnus Health Screening App

Consult our Covid-19 webpage at any time to see our most recent updates. Great news from Magnus! They have heard the recommendations from the community and have updated the Magnus application to now include Face ID/ Touch ID. The best way to take advantage of this update is to update the app in the Apple Store (iPhone users) or Google Play Store (Android Users). Once updated, log in, and a pop-up window will appear asking if you’d like to enable the Face ID/Touch ID feature. You may need to delete the app and download it again if you do not get the pop up upon logging in. Flu Season is here. Don’t wait to get the flu vaccine. Video from Anna and Mark

**URGENT Action Needed!**For the parents who have not downloaded the Magnus app yet, please do so as soon as possible and make sure that you are filling out this prescreening for your student(s) every morning before dropping them off at school. See instructions below. This helps us to move more efficiently in the morning and will help our students get to class on time. Your patience is appreciated as we continue to navigate through this pandemic together and keep our students on campus.
If you are having trouble with the app please contact the school nurse, Anna Forester at

Instructions to install Magnus App For the upcoming school year, parents will use the Magnus Health Mobile App to complete a daily COVID-19 screening assessment for each SDFAS student from a smartphone in just a few clicks. This screening will need to be done every morning, at home, no later than 7:30 am, before departure for school. On August 27, 2020, parents will be able to set up a Magnus Health account via FACTS. After activating your Magnus Health account via FACTS you will install the Magnus Health Mobile App on your smartphone.  To log in for the first time please follow the instructions below:

  1. Log into your FACTS account
  2. Go to the Family Portal
  3. Under the “Student Tab” Go to “Medical”
  4. Click on Magnus Login button
  5. Hover over your name within Magnus (top left of screen) and choose Change Credentials
  6. Enter a Username & Password that only you know and will remember. This should be the same username & password you use for FACTS
  7. You will see this phrase daily to remind you to complete your Covid-19 screening.
  8. Download the “Magnus Mobile V2” App from the Apple Store or the Google Play store, and log in using your username & password.

At the completion of this initial process, you will be able to download the Magnus Mobile App for free on your smartphone and log in through the app to complete the screening assessment each morning. If you need additional help, you can always reference the parent tutorial. You will access the screening via the button titled “COVID-19.” We thank you in advance for your cooperation in this daily screening as it will be an imperative function of our safety protocols. Upon completion of the quick survey each morning, you will receive a message for the student’s attendance giving instructions for that day.  If your child arrives at school and the screening has not been completed, we will ask that you complete it before the student exits the vehicle. A parent must be the one to fill this out. Thank you for your cooperation in helping us keep the school operational during this pandemic.  Use of this App will help us create the safest possible environment for your children, our faculty, and staff.  For any technical issues with the mobile app such as login problems, or problems completing the screening please contact customer support at Magnus Health SMR by phone at 877.461.6831 or by email at

Medical Forms

Preschool and K  & Medical Forms

  • PK0 New Student Medical Packet Including Emergency Information Form, Consent for Emergency Medical Treatment, Child’s Pre-admission Health History – Parents Report, Physicians Report, Notification of Parents’ Rights, Acknowledgment of receipt of the Personal Rights, Parent consent for Administration of Medications, and Medication Chart, A copy of the student’s immunizations, SDFAS Emergency Health Card, SDFAS Aggressive Behaviors and Biting Policy, Parent’s Guide to Immunizations (for parents to keep)
  • PK1 Potty Training Policy PK1 and PK2 New Student Medical Packet Including Identification & Emergency information, Consent for Emergency Medical Treatment, Childs pre-admission Health History Parent‘s report, Physician Report, Notification of Parents Rights, Acknowledgement of Receipt of Personal Rights, Parent consent for Administration of Medications And Medication Chart, A copy of the student’s immunizations, SDFAS Emergency Health Card, SDFAS Aggressive Behaviors and Biting Policy, SDFAS Potty Training Policy, Parent’s Guide to Immunizations (for parents to keep)
  • Kindergarten New Student Medical Packet Including A Copy of Student’s Immunizations, Parent consent for Administration of Medications And Medication Chart, Report of medical examination for school entry, SDFAS Emergency Health Card, SDFAS Aggressive Behaviors and Biting Policy, Parent’s Guide to Immunizations (for parent’s to keep)
  • Guide to Immunizations – Physician’s Report – Proof of immunization and vaccines must be on file by the first day of the school year. As required by law, a child will not be allowed to attend school if these records are not on file.
  • Food Allergy Action Plan

K-8  & Medical Forms

  • 1st Grade: A School Entry Health Checkup is required for all incoming 1st graders.
  • 7th Grade: Please be reminded that all incoming 7th graders must have their whooping cough (pertussis) vaccination before school starts.
  • Immunization Records for New Students: Proof of immunization and vaccines must be on file by the first day of the school year. As required by law, a child will not be allowed to attend school if these records are not on file.
  • Food Allergy Action Plan
  • Guide to Immunizations 

Back to School Presentations

Grades Pk0-PK1-PK2

Natalie Thorpe Cindy Sierra PK1/PK2 (Cindy)
Natalie Thorpe Gaelle Deriot PK2 (Gaelle)
Natalie Thorpe Stephanie Pinel PK2 (Stephanie)
Alexandra Lette – Distance Learning

Grades K

Parent Webinars by Mark Rosenblum, Headmaster – SDFAS Reopening Overview

Grades 1-5

Middle School

6th Grade
7th Grade 8th Grade You can find here the general information shared during the Middle School Back to School Night.
MS Parent Webinar by Mark Rosenblum, Headmaster – SDFAS Reopening Overview

School Supplies

School Supplies

SDFAS is happy to partner with School Tool Box, for Grades 1 through 8, a service that allows you to do school supply shopping from home! Students will receive quality, name brand supplies that match their school supply list shipped directly home. Not only that, one meal is donated to Feed My Starving Children for every box ordered. It’s easy, visit School Tool Box, select your child’s grade, remove any items you already have, and purchase the rest. If you order supplies online, consider supporting the school by using Amazon Smile and Mabel’s Labels (San Diego French-American School (La Jolla)) to purchase name tags to label your child’s belongings! 

Individual and Class Pictures

Grades K-8
Individual and Class K-8 Pictures with Lifetouch
Tuesday, January 12th, 2021, and Wednesday, January 13th, 2021
Make-up day: Tuesday, January 19th, 2021 (no retake this year)

Yearbook 2019-2020

The printing and delivery of the 2019 -2020 Yearbook were delayed due to circumstances related to COVID.  Our publishers’ facilities are operating at a greatly reduced capacity which has significantly impacted their production schedule.  We are in regular communication with them.  We anticipate a delivery in late fall and will update the community with specifics as soon as they are available.  Please contact our Yearbook advisor Andrew Ericson,, with any questions.  Thank you for your patience.

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