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Back-to-School Info 2019-2020

  • Welcome to all our new and returning families! Please see below for important back-to-school information for the 2019-2020 school year.
  • Click here for important 2019-2020 dates.
  • Online registration for Auxiliary Programs available here.

Information for New Families

New Families - Please check each tab in the drop-down list on this back-to-school info page for items pertaining to your child(ren). Also, for new Lower and Middle School families, new parent handbooks will be arriving in your mailboxes in early August!

International Student Placement Tests (Part I)
Tuesday, August 27: 9 am-12:45 pm

International Student Placement Tests (Part II) and Orientation
Wednesday, August 28: 9 am-3 pm; programming for parents from 9 am - 1 pm

Upper School Orientation Day 1 - Thursday, August 29
Students New to Friends' Central in Grades 9-12 - 8:30 am-4:30 pm (subject to change)
All Grade 9 Students - 2-4:30 pm 

Orientation Day - Tuesday, September 3 
Upper School (Required for All Upper School Students)

All grade 9 students: 8:30 am-1:30 pm
All grade 12 students: 8:30 am-1 pm
All grade 10 & 11 students: 10:30 am-1 pm (please arrive by 10:15 am - the program will start promptly at 10:30)

Middle School
All grade 6 students and new students in grades 7 & 8: 1:00-3:00 pm
Parents will have an orientation program during MS student orientation from 1:00-3:00 pm.

Lower School
All Nursery, Pre-K, and Kindergarten students: last names beginning with A-L attend 9-9:30 am; last names beginning with M-Z attend 9:30-10 am 
NEW students in grades 1-4: 9-10 am
NEW
students in grade 5: 1-2 pm in their Lower School classrooms
All grade 5 students - 2 pm Pool Party on the City Ave. campus
(note location change)

Nursery, Pre-K, and K Meet-and-Greets
We are also offering Meet-and-Greets for Nursery, Pre-K, and Kindergarten families on August 29, September 3, and September 4! More info and online sign-ups to come in August. 

First Day of Classes for All Students, Half Day for Nursery-K - Wednesday, September 4

Health Forms
No new student will be permitted to start school without a completed School Physical Examination Form. Please see the Health Forms tab below for details on health requirements and relevant forms.

Veracross Parent Portal
Veracross is the School's password-protected portal where parents can find important information about their child's schedule (available in late August) and progress reports (at the end of each semester), as well as other information like our "nearby families" feature, which allows parents to view which FCS families live in or near your neighborhood. Newly enrolled families will have access to the Veracross parent portal in mid/late July; we will communicate with you when your Veracross parent portal is live and you are able to log in. In the meantime, for more information, please visit our ParentHelp blog.

Technology Needs/Requirements for Middle & Upper School Students
Middle School
Middle School students each use Chromebooks that are owned and managed by FCS and leased to the students for the year. Late in the summer, you will receive a form with further details that will ask you to agree to the terms of your child's use of the Chromebook for the year. The cost to lease the Chromebook for the year is $135, which is spread across families' tuition payments and processed through FACTS. The cost covers the device, management software, and insurance. With the device being insured for accidental damage, families will not have to worry about coordinating replacements or repairs. Students will receive their Chromebooks the first week of school. 

Upper School
Grade 9: Students will be issued Chromebooks for which the leasing cost will be spread across FACTS payments.
Grades 10-12: Families can choose their own device for the 2019-2020 school year - from iPads to Chromebooks and Macs to PCs. The chosen device must have an "instant-on" capability - your child should be able to start working on their device immediately when asked. We ask families and students to limit or eliminate the number of games or other distractions loaded onto any learning device. Students may continue to use iPads if they choose and if their learning needs are being met appropriately. Grade 10-12 students can opt in to the Chromebook leasing program and obtain a managed and insured Chromebook from the School. (More information about this program will be shared later this summer.)

Health Forms

A School Physical Examination Form is required for every student every year. It is due on the month of your child's birthday or on the anniversary of your child's last physical examination. For new students, a Physical Examination Form is required before your child may attend the first day of school. Participation in 6th through 12th grade athletic activities will be denied if a current Physical Form is not on file. For all the details about required medical forms, please visit the Health Services page of our website. Please return completed forms to the attention of the nurse in your child(ren)'s division (Lower School or Middle/Upper School).

Please read the following Medication Procedures and Important Request from the School NursesEmergency Health Care Plan - General, and Emergency Health Care Plan - Allergy documents.

Immunization Alert
All students must present documentation of having met PA Department of School Health immunization requirements by the first day of school. Click here to read the full Immunization Policy. An easy-to-read immunization chart can also be seen here.

An electronic Emergency Consent Form is required annually for all students. It is due on or before June 15. Please complete and submit this online form, which will be emailed directly to parents/guardians via InformedK12. If you have not received the form in an email, you can complete it here.

A School Physical Examination Form is required for every student every year. It is due on the month of your child's birthday or on the anniversary of your child's last physical examination. Participation in 6th through 12th grade athletic activities will be denied if a current Physical Form is not on file.

Medication Request Form and a Physician Order for prescription medication is required for any student who needs to have prescription medication (daily medication, EpiPen, inhaler, insulin, etc.) kept at school. The original pharmacy-labeled container is acceptable in lieu of a written prescription.

Dental Examination Form is required for all students in Kindergarten, grade 3, and grade 7.

Please visit the Health Services page for additional Health Forms and Procedures.

Summer Reading Lists

Important Calendar Dates

Click here for important 2019-2020 calendar dates. 

Supply Lists

Dining Plans

Online registration for 2019-2020 Dining Plans is now available. For details on plans and pricing, click here.

Required Books

Lower School
There are no required books to be purchased for Lower School students.

Middle School
We will ask that families purchase students’ English class novels/plays for the 2019-2020 school year. This will allow students to underline and annotate in their books. Click here for the grade 7 and 8 English required book list for 2019-2020. Grade 6 books will be provided.

Upper School
Click here for the 2019-2020 required book list for Upper School students. 

Transportation

Click here for our various transportation options, including shuttles, public school district and FCS busing, and public transportation. 

Lower School Families: The 2019-2020 Lower School Transportation Form for your child's afternoon dismissal plan will be sent out early August.  Please take the time to fill out the form and submit it so your child(ren's) transportation record can be updated for the start of school on September 4.

US Fall Preseason Athletics

Upper School Fall Preseason Athletics will begin on Monday, August 19 for all fall sports. Please click here for a detailed letter from Michelle Crowley, Director of Athletics and Wellness, with more preseason information, including summer workouts/training info, coaches' letters, and preseason practice times for each sport.

Picture Day Information

Upper School Picture Day - Tuesday, September 3
Middle School Picture Day - Wednesday, September 4
Lower School Picture Day - Wednesday, September 18

Arrival and Departure Times and Procedures by Division

Lower School Arrival and Dismissal Procedures
In early August, parents will be asked to provide the School with your child(ren)'s daily arrival and dismissal plans via an online form. Please take the time to fill out the form and submit it by mid-August so your child(ren's) transportation record can be updated for the start of school on September 5. Changes to your child's transportation plans must be emailed to Pat DeSabato and your child(ren)'s teacher(s) by noon. 
Arrival: Morning Supervision is available from 7:30-8:30 am.
School Begins at 8:30 am.
Late Arrivals: From 8:30-8:45 am, FCS Security Officers will be at the entrance door next to the gym to make sure children get inside the building. They will not be curbside to aid children getting out of the car.
From 8:30-8:45 am, if your child can get out of the car independently, you can drop them off at the curb of the car loop. If your child cannot exit without assistance, please park in the main parking lot and walk your child in.
After 8:45 am, the door next to the gym is locked, so all families must park in the main parking lot, walk their child in through the main LS Office door, and check in with Pat DeSabato in the LS Office. 
Dismissal: The Lower School day ends at 2:50 pm. Parent Pick-up children gather in the gym. Extended Day and bus/shuttle children are escorted to their respective gathering spots. 
Parent Pick-up: From 2:50-3:20 pm, parents can collect children in the gym or through the afternoon car loop. 
Late to Dismissal: PPU Ends at 3:20 pm, and any remaining children are escorted to Extended Day (more info on our Auxiliary Programs page). If you decide you need your child to stay at school longer, please inform the LS Office prior to noon, or bring your child to Extended Day and let an FCS staff member know that plans for your child have changed. 
More details on Lower School Drop-off and Pick-up can be found here

Middle School Arrival and Departure Procedures
Arrival: School begins at 8:25 am
- students should arrive between 8:00 and 8:25 am. Homeroom begins at 8:25 am and ends at 8:30 am. If you plan to drive your child to school, the car line travels around the curve of the City Ave. driveway. Parents/guardians should pull over to let students out and then continue along the driveway.
Late Arrival: If your child will be arriving late, a parent should notify the Middle School Office by calling or emailing Marian Petrarca. Students must sign in at the MS Office upon arrival.
Departure: School ends at 3:10 pm, unless a student is involved with athletics or play practice. If students are awaiting pick-up, they are expected to be in front of Shallcross Hall or in the Library. 
At the end of the day, the parking lot is reserved for buses from 2:45-3:25 pm. Please wait until at least 3:25 pm to arrive for pick-up. If parents arrive before 3:25 pm, a staff member will direct you to form lines in the parking lot until buses are clear. 
Early Dismissal: A parent must call, write a note, or email the MS Office with details regarding early dismissal. Students must sign out at the MS Office before departing.
Late Pick-up: Students who will be picked up after 3:25 pm must go to Extended Day, which is available in the Library Monday-Thursday until 5:30 pm. 

Upper School Arrival and Departure Procedures
Arrival: School begins at 8:25 am - students should arrive between 7:30 and 8:25 am. Homeroom begins at 8:25 am and ends at 8:30 am. If you plan to drive your child to school, the car line travels around the curve of the City Ave. driveway. Parents/guardians should pull over to let students out and then continue along the driveway.
Late Arrival: Students who arrive after 8:30 am must sign in at the Upper School Office with a written excuse from a parent.
Departure: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday: Classes end at 3:10 pm. Friday: Classes end at 2:35 pm. Tuesday from 2:35-3:10 pm: common time for students to meet with teachers, hold club meetings, or various programming takes place. 
At the end of the day, the parking lot is reserved for buses from 2:45-3:25 pm. Please wait until at least 3:25 pm to arrive for pick-up. If parents arrive before 3:25 pm, a staff member will direct you to form lines in the parking lot until buses are clear. 
Early Dismissal: A parent must call the attendance line at 610.645.5136 or email Heather Tomes with details of early dismissal. When it is time to leave, your child must sign out at the US Office. Students may not leave campus early without permission from a parent/guardian.

Lower School Information

Lower School Transportation
In early August, Lower School parents will receive a survey via email to determine how their children are traveling to and from school. Online registration for transportation is now available. Information can be found hereand online registration will be available in June.

Lower School Extended Day
The Friends' Central Lower School Extended Day Program (EDP) seeks to create a settled, supervised environment for Lower School students who need to arrive early or stay on campus beyond the end of the school day. Each day, there are planned activities, as well as time for free play and time for homework. Online registration and more information on Extended Day will be available here in June.

Lower School After-School Clubs
Fall 2019 After-School Clubs take place from 3-4 pm, and students must either be picked up at 4 pm or go to Extended Day. More information and online registration will be available in late August.

Middle School Information

Middle School Extended Day
The Blackburn Library will be open until 5:00 pm from Monday through Thursday and until 4 pm on Friday. The Library is supervised by an adult, and students are welcome to work quietly while awaiting their transportation home.

Middle School Drama Program
The Middle School performs two plays each year. Middle School students sign up for the fall play within the first two weeks of school. The Middle School Drama Director will share information about the auditions and rehearsal schedule for our fall Middle School production. Middle School play rehearsals are typically held on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 3:30-5:00 pm. All students are welcome and encouraged to participate! Participating in the play does not conflict with participation in sports. 

Middle School Fall Athletics Information 
Information about Middle School Athletics will be sent from Michelle Crowley, Director of Athletics & Wellness, in August. All Middle School students are part of the Athletic program. Students sign up for fall athletics during the first week of school. There is no preseason for the Middle School athletic program. Practices are built into the school day (2-3 pm on Mon., Tues, Thurs., Fri.; 2:30-3 pm on Wed.). Game days for interscholastic sports are Mondays and Wednesdays, and games occur after school hours.

The fall athletic offerings are:
Co-ed: Cross Country, Water Polo, Intramural Flag Football
Girls: Soccer, Field Hockey, and Tennis
Boys: Soccer

School Store

Check back for back-to-school hours for our School Store. During the school year, the Store is open Monday through Thursday from 9:30 am to 2 pm. Click here for more info.

Contact Information by Campus

Lower School Administrative Offices
228 Old Gulph Road
Wynnewood, PA 19096-1098
610-642-7575

Middle & Upper School Administrative Offices
1101 City Avenue
Wynnewood, PA 19096-3490
610-649-7440 

Important Links

Orientation Days

International Student Placement Tests & Orientation
Tues., Aug. 27, 9 am-12:45 pm
Wed., Aug. 28, 9 am-3 pm

Upper School Orientation Day 1
Thursday, Aug. 29

NEW students in gr. 9-12: 8:30 am-4:30 pm 
All gr. 9 students: 2-4:30 pm

Orientation Day (All Divisions)
Tuesday, Sept. 3

(Required for All Upper School students)
All gr. 9 students - 8:30 am-1:30 pm
All gr. 12 students - 8:30 am-1 pm
All gr. 10 & 11 students: 10:30 am-1 pm (please arrive by 10:15 am)

Middle School
All gr. 6 students and new students in gr. 7 & 8: 1-3 pm

Lower School
All Nursery, Pre-K, & K students: last names beginning with A-L: 9-9:30 am; last names beginning with M-Z: 9:30-10 am
New students in gr. 1-4: 9-10 am
New students in gr. 5: 1-2 pm in their Lower School classrooms
All students in gr. 5: 2 pm Pool Party on the City Ave. campus