LS Summer & Back to School Info

We look forward to having your child join us for the 2017-18 academic year! Below please find some general information about health forms, academic resources, upcoming dates, technology information, and more as you prepare for the upcoming school year. If you have questions about specific programs in the Lower School, please contact one of the staff below.

Lower School Office:

Pam Gilmer, Lower School Administrative Assistant
301-774-7455 ext. 112
Tim Croft, Assistant Head of Lower School and Counselor
301-774-7455 ext. 118
Beverley DiTusa, LS Learning Specialist
301-774-7455 ext. 176

Welcome and Orientation Events

Monday, August 28:

  • Lower School Family Orientation: 8:30-9:15 am. All Lower School parents, guardians and students are invited to attend this info-session, which will include important information about our school year and an opportunity to meet co-curricular teachers and members of the Student Resource Team.
  • Lower School Classroom Visits (and rain boot exchange!): 9:15–10:30 am. Come by and visit your child’s classroom, meet the teacher and schoolmates! Our Boot Exchange is a free service for families who wish to participate. Bring a pair of outgrown boots and leave with a pair that fits. (You do not need to bring a pair to leave with a pair!) Every Lower School student needs a raincoat and a pair of rubber boots.
  • PA Welcome Back Brunch: 10:00 am - 12:30 pm, outside the Performing Arts Center (weather permitting - inside the PAC if raining). Drop by when you can to have a snack, visit with fellow SSFS parents, find out about volunteer opportunities throughout the year, and sign up for the PA Community Connections website!
  • Get Acquainted Conferences: 10:30 am -2:30 pm (conference child care available; an email will be sent in the summer with a link to schedule your conference time). These 15-minute conferences are designed to allow you time to share specific information about your child with the teacher.

Tuesday, August 29:

  • FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL: Full Day with 3:15 pm dismissal. Students in Grades 1-5 will need to bring a snack for mid-morning.
  • Lower School Aftercare begins

Wednesday, August 30 (Don't forget: Wednesdays are early dismissal days!)

  • Get Acquainted Conferences: 2:30 – 5:00 pm (conference child care available; an email will be sent in the summer with a link to schedule your conference time).
  • PK3-Grade 5 dismissal at 2:15 pm

Thursday, September 14:

  • Lower School Back to School Night: 6:30 – 8:15 pm (parents only)
Please visit the calendar web page for more detailed event information, and see a calendar card listing all dates that SSFS will not be in session for 2017-18 here.

Aftercare and Bus Services

Information about bus routes can be found online here. Families can enroll in Bus Transportation and Before Care services via MyBackPack > Program Registration. So that we can ensure our bus routes will serve our student population, please enroll for bus services by June 1, 2017.

For aftercare, please register through the Kids After Hours website (details below). For before care, please register via your MyBackPack account. For questions about Lower School extended care, please contact Pam Gilmer at or 301-774-7455 x112. For bus/transportation questions, please contact Cathryn Carnevale at or 301-774-7455 x177.

(SSFS faculty and staff: please note that LS Aftercare sign-up and payment procedures are different for you; the information below is for non-SSFS employees only.)

Below are instructions for how to register for aftercare services via Kids After Hours. Please note that before school care registration is available via MyBackpack.

  • Go to
  • Click on School Year > Before and After Care
  • Click on Locations (at bottom of page)
  • Click on Sandy Spring Friends School
  • Click on Register Now

Bob Sickels (240-687-6201) is the owner of the Kids After Hours program and is available to answer KAH specific questions. You can reach the KAH Main Office at 301-933-6888. Pam Gilmer, in the Lower School, is the SSFS point person for the KAH program and she can be reached at 301-774-7455 x112.

Required Health and Permission Forms

Most of the health and permission forms that you will need to fill out for your child are submitted using Magnus Health. See information about how to sign-in to your Magnus Health account and upload your health forms for 2017-2018.


After enrolling, each family gets a dedicated MyBackPack account with a unique username and password. If you have not received login information for (or need assistance accessing) your MyBackPack account, please contact the Technology department at or 301-774-7455 x111. (Click here for a document with details on how to log in to the website.) Your MyBackPack account will give you access to a number of services including:

  • Billing and student accounts
  • Student class schedules and grades/comments
  • School directory
  • Family contact information
  • Enrollment contracts

Please ensure that your contact information in your MyBackPack account is accurate. As a part of our continuing efforts to act in environmentally sustainable ways, SSFS rarely sends information by paper mail. All communications about events, grades, billing account status, re-enrollment, and other information are sent electronically through My BackPack using the email addresses you have provided. An emergency notification service is also available via text message, so please also provide a cell phone number where you may reached.

iPad, Technology, and Website Information

  • Grades PK3 - 5: SSFS provides all the needed school technology like iPads and Chromebooks. All apps and other technology is provided by the School.

Website login information for families is emailed in mid-July, when we roll the student class lists over to the 2017-18 academic year. The website login gives families single-sign-on access to MyBackPack and online classrooms from the website, but you do not need a website login to access your MyBackPack account; you can simply login directly to MyBackPack.

Technology questions may be directed to the Technology Office at

Class Placement

Class placements are mailed out to all Lower School families by August 4. Families also receive a note from your child's new teacher and other back-to-school information prior to the first week of school. Please contact Pam Gilmer if you have questions.

Summer Reading and Academic Resources

For More Information/Questions

Lower School Administrative Assistant Pam Gilmer is available to field questions or direct you to the appropriate contact. Pam's email is and her phone number is 301-774-7455 x112.

Back to School Mailing

All domestic SSFS families were mailed a back-to-school folder with information and resources. Electronic versions of this information are also available below.

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