Echo Info #17

Upcoming Events

January/February Events

COVID-19 Screening
Monday, January 11th and Tuesday, January 12th
La Galette des Rois Workshop (virtual event)
Saturday, January, 9th at 2 pm
Individual and Class K-8 Pictures with Lifetouch
Elementary School: Tuesday, January 12th
Kindergarten and Middle School: Wednesday, January 13th
Make-up day and distance learners: Tuesday, January 19th 
Please note that there will be no retake this year.
School Council #2 (virtual event)
Tuesday, January 26th at 4:15 pm
Share your feedback (before January 20th)
Room Parents Meeting (virtual event)
Thursday, January 28th at 12:00 pm
Bilingualism, A presentation by Ellen Bialystok (virtual event)
Canadian psychologist and professor
Thursday, January 28th at 5:30 pm
Why boost your immune system and why? (virtual event)
Sunday, January 31st at 2 pm
PK0-PK1-PK2 Pictures by Alexandra Borbolla
February 3, 4 & 5th starting at 8:30 am
Friday, February 19th (Minimum Day)
February Break
Monday, February 22nd – Friday, February 26th
Camp for PK and Kindergarten
HALF DAYS ONLY (until 12:15 pm)
More details below.
Reminder: 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
Kindergarten – 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.

A few words about this week’s events in the nation’s capital

Message from Mark Rosenblum

January 7, 2020

Yesterday brought unprecedented civil unrest to the very seat of our nation’s government, as a mob of protesters stormed and occupied the U.S Capitol. These events interrupted the peaceful, democratic close to the 2020 election. A day of solemn ceremony quickly became one in which chaos, fear and hate took hold of institutions we hold sacred in this country. Many lives were endangered. Four people were killed.

Still in shock from yesterday, we are today left in a state of questioning and disbelief.  It will take time within our community and around the nation to fully process what has taken place. As always here at SDFAS when addressing difficult events of this nature, we will above all else prioritize reassurance, empathy, and education.  We are committed to nurturing knowledgeable, open-minded world citizens who seek understanding, know how to think critically, and act with compassion.

Our students need to know that what happened yesterday is not normal. They need to review and understand the basic functioning of our electoral process, our democracy’s fundamental constitutional principles, the reason for a separation of governmental powers, and the importance of the First Amendment. They need to learn how to think and talk about what is right and what is wrong. They need us to model for them at school and at home what respectful civil discourse looks and sounds like. 

While much remains in flux, the situation thankfully appears to have stabilized to a degree: the election was certified and the Capitol is back under Federal control. Tomorrow and over the course of the coming week, administrators and teachers here at school and on-screen will continue conversations about the events, about effective ways to go about making sense of them, and about how best to engage our students in appropriate grade level activities.

There is little doubt conversations will be ongoing for some time. Below are some resources you might find useful at home in our collective effort to educate our kids.


Talking to Children about Violence: Tips for Parents and Teachers (NASP)

The organization Teaching Tolerance recommends a three-step process for teachers to follow called “Listen, Protect, Model.” Families may find this useful as well:

  • Listen: Ask good questions and listen to kids, try to understand their concerns.

  • Protect: Work to make students feel safe and protected by establishing norms and guidelines for conversation, and by requiring facts and legitimate sources of information.

  • Model: Demonstrate a calm demeanor and reasoned approach to conversation and disagreements. Encourage civil discourse and a sense of calm.

Resources for Talking about the Attack on the Capitol from WeAreTeachers (Teaching resource that might also interest families, from )

Helping Kids During Crisis (ASCA)

Spotlight on distance learning in Maternelle 

After a month and a half of hard work from our students, Alexandra Lette is very proud to present a video of the distance learning preschool class. Even at home, our students continue to progress.
Targeted skills in PK1: Make a simple sentence
Targeted skills in PK2: Tell a story using pictures and characters

Covid-19 surveillance testing on January 11th and January 12th

To register for the screening test program on campus with the Excite lab, please submit the following forms. Once signed, these forms will be valid for all future screening tests. Please note that the new students’ information is submitted to the Excite lab to be registered every Friday. Newly registered students will not be eligible for testing until the NEXT Monday, 10 days later.
(1) Link here to register
(2) Link here for the Excite Lab consent form to download, complete and return by email to Marilyn Rakow, our school nurse
(3) Link here to give your consent via a separate Google form if you would like SDFAS staff to do the nasal swab on your child(ren) (instead of you each week). This form is not mandatory. If this form is not submitted, parents need to come each week at the designated date and time and swab their children for the test sample.

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

Tomorrow, January 9th at 2 pm

Join SDFAS families in the kitchen to bake your own Galette des Rois! Don’t miss this opportunity to enjoy an exclusive taste of French cooking!
Thank you to Gregory Rivalan for accepting to share his recipe for this traditional French dessert with the SDFAS community. We will send you the list of ingredients and required tools upon registration and you will be able to make your own galette, as Gregory demonstrates all the steps.
Registration Bon appétit!

“En bonne santé” virtual series

Our community outreach program is expanding to include another series related to health! En Bonne Santé (in Good Health) will consist of a series of zoom events and potential outdoor meet-ups (pending  COVID restrictions) to get our parents and students thinking about and actively pursuing a healthier lifestyle.

The first episode of this new series will take place on January 31st at 2 pm and will be dedicated to Why boost your immune system and how? Marie Svet (Elsie Svet, 1st grade) will share her knowledge of essentials oils and their benefits. Register here.
1- Overview of the immune system and its defense mechanism
2- Importance of taking care of the immune system in general and especially during this pandemic
3- How to boost your immune system naturally
4- Naturopathy: definition, lifestyle philosophy, and alternative medicines
5- Essential oils: information and misinformation, and safety
6- How to boost your children’s immune system
7- Natural remedies and home remedies that actually work

Let’s Go Hiking (we will confirm as soon as the county lighten the restrictions)!
Tired of the pandemic?  Looking to connect with other SDFAS families while enjoying the outdoors and respecting social distance guidelines? Take the family hiking. SDFAS mom, Mony Liquard, is organizing an informal monthly hiking activity as a way to safely get to know other families while leisurely hiking. Each hike will be roughly an hour, and appropriate for all levels.
Tentative date: Jan. 30th at 9 am at the iconic Torrey Pines State Park.
Register here if you’re interested in joining.
We hope to see you on the trails!
We are still looking for volunteers to assist with the community building series. 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!

February Camp for PK and Kindergarten

Monday, February 22nd – Friday, February 26th – Half-days only (until 12:15 pm)
Registration for kindergarten and preschool February vacation camp is now open.
Deadline to register: February 5th.
Students will remain with their current pods and will arrive at school at their regular drop-off time. Limited space available. A minimum of 3 participants are required for a class to be open during the break.
Half-day price $225 for the first child, and $220 for any additional child.
Register here.
Please contact Ariel Arsac-Ellison at, if you have any questions about the vacation camps, daycare, or after school activities.

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.
Register here.
Please contact Ariel Arsac-Ellison for questions related to Girard Gourmet

From the Financial Aid Office (deadlines coming soon)

School Financial Aid, Bourses Scolaires and CCAoA

1) Financial Aid Allocated by SDFAS (deadline February 1st) SDFAS offers tuition assistance to qualified applicants based entirely on demonstrated financial need. Make sure to submit your application before February 1st, 2021. You will be able to upload your tax return or other supporting documents later. More Information: Financial Aid.

2 ) Bourses scolaires françaises (deadline February 19th) The French government awards scholarships to French nationals, three years and older, who demonstrate financial need. The timeline for 2021-2022 has now been published on the consulate website. More Information: Financial Aid.

3) Child Care Aware® of America (CCAoA) for Military/DoD Fee Assistance programs. New! We are now accredited by Child Care Aware® of America (CCAoA) for Military/DoD Fee Assistance programs. More Information: Financial Aid.

Contact Isabelle Gilet, for more information.


My French Film Festival 2021 – 11th edition
From January 15 through February 15, 2021

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.

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


The PK0-PK1-PK2 pictures with Alexandra Borbolla are postponed to February 3, 4 & 5th starting at 8:30 am.

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

Elementary School

For questions about the elementary school, please contact Francis Carlier,

Middle School

As we returned from the break, a number of students remained on Distance Learning for understandable reasons. If you plan to keep your child on DL for the coming weeks, please inform us if you have not already done so. Thank you!

Academic Newsletters

6th Grade

7th Grade

8th Grade

For all questions relative to the middle school, please contact Tom Faure, Director of the middle school,

High School Placement

Updates from Erin Stoller – January 8th

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

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 to 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, login, 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! 

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 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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