Academic Guidelines and ProceduresAttendance Policies
Students are expected to be at school every day and to report to their classes on time (8:15 a.m.). Frequent absences and tardiness seriously affect academic progress and is disruptive to the teaching environment. The school requests that parents and students thoughtfully consider the effects of any absence other than one of a medical or family emergency. Families are discouraged from taking students out of school prior to a school break. Absences for vacations will be considered unexcused. Whenever possible, regularly scheduled medical appointments should be made after school hours. Students with excessive absences, excused or unexcused, may be denied re-enrollment or promotion.
When your child is unable to come to school or will arrive after 8:15 a.m., please call the Lower school Office by 9 a.m. at (904) 256-5255. Cooperating with this procedure will save many unnecessary time-consuming calls by the office.
Absences for vacation or travel are strongly discouraged. Should there be such absences, please notify the school principal and classroom teacher at least one week in advance to allow for preparation of homework material.
Students who are ill or who are suspected of having a communicable disease must be removed from the classroom according to school policy. To prevent the spread of infection through direct contamination (coughing, sneezing, talking, sharing articles, etc.), students must be asymptomatic before returning to school. In other words, students must have no fever, vomiting, etc. for 24 hours prior to their return to school, or have a physician's note stating that the student is not contagious and/or is under treatment.
A student who is ill should be checked out through the main office. Teachers will be informed of students dismissed for illness.
To ensure a good start each day for your child, arrange for your child to have a good breakfast and make every effort to have him/her at school no later than 8:15 a.m. Opening exercises will begin promptly at 8:15 a.m. each day. Students who are late to school should be taken directly to the office.
Books and Materials
Textbooks for grades Pre-K - 5 must be purchased online at MBSDirect. In addition, grade level supply lists for each child are also available here. Spirit Day shirts and Bolles sweatshirts may be purchased at the Upper School San Jose Campus Store.
Our character development program is taught weekly to Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 5 and is based on building self-esteem and self-awareness. The program emphasizes feeling good about oneself. The Bolles lower school is proud to be a leader in the community in elementary school drug prevention and body awareness programs.
One of the most important features of The Bolles School is a balanced classroom. We must have the freedom to place students in our choice of classroom based on achieving the necessary balance of boys and girls in each class and academic and developmental needs. Please note that the school puts a great deal of thought and care into this process. Parents are asked not to request individual teachers. Such requests will not be taken into consideration when determining classroom placement. Class placements will be mailed prior to the start of each school year.
The school works very hard to keep parents informed and the lines of communication open. Parent concerns regarding individual students should be directed first to the appropriate teacher and where every effort will be made to solve any issue. A weekly folder including children's work will be sent home each Monday; however, due to our "green" approach to everything we do, we limit paper communication and send email notices every Tuesday. If you find that you are not receiving these notices or would like to change your email, please contact Dawn Pickren PickernD@bolles.org in the Registrar's Office. We do not want you to miss any important information communicated. For regularly updated news and information, including photos and videos of events, visit our Homepage.
Please note that neither parents nor outside interests are permitted to distribute or display any publication, announcement, advertisement, or other written or printed matter on any Bolles campus. This policy is intended to protect our families from receiving unwanted and/or unauthorized materials.
Our curriculum provides the basic intellectual and academic tools necessary for success in our Middle and Upper Schools. Lifelong learning skills are also shared and encouraged with the children.
Dismissal and Daily Schedule
Pre-Kindergarten meets daily from 8:15 a.m. until 12 p.m. Kindergarten children meet daily from 8:15 a.m. until 2 p.m. Grades 1-2 meet daily from 8:15 a.m. until 3 p.m. Grades 3,4 and 5 meet daily from 8:15 a.m. until 3:15 p.m. Children may go directly to their classrooms at 8 a.m. Children not picked up by 12:10 p.m., 2:10 p.m., 3:10 p.m., and 3:20 p.m., respectively, will be sent to the Extended Day Program and appropriate charges will be billed to your school account.
To ensure your children's safe and prompt departure from and arrival to school, please adhere to the following procedure.
- Our roadways and buildings have been designed to accommodate arrival and dismissal at individual grade buildings. As a result, cars should not be parked in front of any buildings and left unattended during peak hours in the morning and afternoon. Visitors to the lower school should park in the designated parking area by the softball field, as other spaces are assigned.
- Children should be dropped in the appropriate areas in the morning and proceed immediately to their classrooms. All children arriving prior to 8 a.m. are required to go to Extended Day, located in the Early Learning Center playground. Students are asked not to exit cars until a member of the arrival team is present on sidewalk.
- Fire Department regulations require parents to remain with their cars at dismissal time and maintain a single line only. Pre-Kindergarten dismissal is in front of the Pre-Kindergarten building. Kindergarten dismissal is at the end of the sidewalk in front of the Kindergarten building. Grades 1, 2, and 5 dismiss at the far end by the Kindergarten building. Grades 3, and 4 dismiss in front of the Grade 3 building.
Please do not use arrival or dismissal time for parent conferences. Your wait may be lengthy the first week of school; however, we appreciate your patience and cooperation in the safe dismissal and arrival of all lower school children. We highly discourage use of cellphones when driving on campus.
Classroom teachers will often ask children to arrive at school promptly at 8 a.m. or earlier for extra help in a specific subject area. We hope that all parents will be able to provide the necessary support and transportation.
Grades reflect the skills a child gradually develops to become a student. These include self discipline, learning to study, responsibility, ability to question and reason, and comprehension. Please do not let your child's grades reflect your ability as a parent. Parents should give support, direction and concern to their young students; however, a "finished-for-them" project or assignment is not productive and frustrates a teacher's attempt to pinpoint specific difficulties a student may have.
Children in Grades 1-5 are graded on the following scale:
92-100 (A), 84-91 (B), 75-83 (C), 65-74 (D).
Homework or assignments that are turned in late will have the grade lowered at least one letter grade at the discretion of the classroom teacher. Homework referrals will be brought home by the children when work is not turned in or not completed or when a child is not prepared for class.
Positive reinforcement and review of papers with the children is a daily exercise in the classroom and is perhaps more important than any letter grade. Children in Grades Pre-K-5 will bring home papers on Monday for parents to review. Please note that not all papers are graded; many are simply checked as complete or incomplete and many are reviewed only with the children.
Homework presents an opportunity for the teacher to reinforce or review material covered during the day. Assessments in the form of tests, quizzes, and projects, are also part of the homework process. Children should be encouraged to do their homework at a regular time and in a place free of distractions. Please assist your child as needed in organizing his/her time to complete assignments and to prepare for periodic tests, quizzes, and projects.
Children in Grade 1 should expect approximately ten minutes of homework on Monday. Thursday night. The amount of the work increases by ten minutes for each grade culminating with fifty minutes nightly in Grade 5. Homework is not assigned on weekends or during vacations; however, reading, journal writing, and academic review are encouraged. Occasionally long term projects will require additional time or appropriate planning.
A daily study period is available for students in Grade 1 - 5 enrolled in the Extended Day Program. As staff has responsibility for a large number of children at extended day, it is suggested that parents review completed assignments with their children. Parents are asked to communicate closely with their child's classroom teacher anytime assigned homework appears excessive or particularly challenging for their child.
Reports and Conferences
Parent conferences are held in the fall. However, faculty are available at any time during the year for additional conferences. Dismissal or arrival time, Open House evenings, and field trips are not appropriate times for an individual conference. Progress Reports are issued in January and June for Pre-Kindergarten. Progress Reports for students in Kindergarten through Grade 5 are issued quarterly.
Student Information Forms
Please make sure to complete all forms through Magnus Health that are requested. A link is provided on www.Bolles.org under the "Parent" section. It is imperative for our records to be as complete as possible on each child. Please include all emergency numbers, as well as cell phone numbers, and remember to notify the Lower School Office immediately if any information changes during the school year.
Group testing of students is designed to assess individual strengths and weaknesses and to evaluate our curriculum and objectives. Students in Grades 3-5 are given the Comprehensive Testing Program 4. These tests are administered in the spring. The school has limited capability to provide individual intellectual assessments. In cases where the classroom teacher and lower school principal feel an outside referral for testing is necessary, parents are expected to make arrangements and pay for these services. The school will be more than willing to assist in finding and recommending qualified diagnosticians and will participate in follow-up conferences once the diagnosis is complete. It is hoped that parents would always share test results with the school.