Ben Franklin Elementary School

Empowering Academic Achievers and Lifelong Learners

  • Online Excuse Form


    Thursday August 12, 2021

    Dear Benjamin Franklin Families,


    Welcome Back and Happy New Year to the 2021-2022 school year at Benjamin Franklin Elementary.  We are so excited to meet our new families and students, as well as, welcome back our returning families and students.  As always we are here to serve and support our families and students as everybody transitions into the new school year.  We cannot wait to see the students and hear about all their summer adventures.  The first day of school is right around the corner and we look forward to the upcoming school year and continuing to serve the families, the students, and the Harrisburg community.

    At the end of last school year, we welcomed a new Assistant Principal to our team, Mr. David Portzline.  Mr. Portzline comes to us with over 20 years of being in the education field.  He lives in the Juniata County area with his family and he looks forward to meeting all the families at Benjamin Franklin Elementary.  

    This year, as well as every year, we are dedicated to providing the best education possible that is tailored to each student's needs.  Our goals for the upcoming school year are to improve attendance and work with our  families to ensure that every student is coming to school every day.  Our academic goals are to improve reading and math proficiency, at every grade, by growing and leading our students to academic success.  While the main focus of our program revolves around literacy, math and science, we will also be working on social and emotional skills through daily lessons in the  Second Step program.

    To get this new school year off to a great start, we are having an Open Building Event on Thursday, August 26, 2021 from 9:00AM-11:00AM and 2:00PM-4:00PM.  At this event, families and students are welcome to come into school and have the first glimpse of the building, ready for the first day of school.  Students and families will be able to find their classrooms and tour the building, at their leisure.  We will still be having our Back to School/Meet the Teacher Night on September 14, where families and students can visit their classroom and meet the teacher. 

    Here are a few dates that everyone will want to mark down:

    Open Building Day: Thursday, August 26, 2021 

    First day of school:  Monday, August 30, 2021 8:50am - 3:50pm

    No school for students: Monday, September 6, 2021

    Meet the Teacher/Back to School Night:  Tuesday, September 14, 2021 4:00pm - 6:00pm

    Each year we work hard to strengthen our connections with families and partner with the families that we serve in order to bridge the gap between school and home.  We realize how important unity is in education and we cannot do the work we do without you.  We have monthly parent events, PTA, literacy and math nights, science fair, and volunteer opportunities.  We are very blessed to have a wonderful parent community and your support makes the difference as our students grow and learn.

    Please take time to check out our website and facebook page, to get up to date information and see what is happening at Benjamin Franklin Elementary School and we also ask the following:

    •   Provide updated contact information (e.g. address, phone number, emergency contact)
    •   Email tardy slips and absences to
    •   If you have any questions or concerns, contact the main office at (717) 703-1202




    Ben Franklin Administrative Team – Will Towson, Principal                                                

                                                        Nicole Snook, Assistant Principal

        David Portzline, Assistant Principal                    



Upcoming Events

Headlines & Features

  • Benjamin Franklin Elementary School 4th Grade Promotions will be held on Thursday, May 27, at 6:00 PM.
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  • Dear Parents, Guardians and Students, 


    This letter provides you with relevant information that will assist you as you prepare for this school year:


    Student Start Date:                  Monday, August 31, 2020 (attendance begins for all students)


    Online School Day:                   8:50am – 3:50pm


    Homeroom Period:                   8:50am – 9:15am (Students must attend homeroom to be counted for attendance or otherwise will be considered unexcused) 


    • If your child has not already received a device, distribution and exchange events will be held for students at ALL grade levels during the week of August 24th (student ID number or ID badge are required) – Masks and social distancing are required to receive a device


    • The means of instruction used by the classroom teachers will be Zoom and Google Classroom


    • Students will adhere to their academic on-line schedule


    • Instruction will occur through synchronous (on-line with a live teacher) and asynchronous (on the computer without a live teacher) learning during this remote academic time-period


    • The student day will be 8:50am until 3:50pm


    • Breaks and a lunch period are scheduled within the day


    • Virtual meetings can be requested and scheduled with administration


    • Free Grab & Go Meal Distribution will continue when the official school year begins 


       We are asking for your support with ensuring that your child is logged in on time and prepared to learn.  By doing so, it will make for a smoother academic transition when we return to brick and mortar.  More concrete information will be shared to further your understanding of this remote and virtual learning plan.  


      We also ask the following; 


    • Provide updated contact information (e.g. address, phone number, emergency contact)



    • If you have any questions or concerns, contact the main office at (717)703-1202


    • If you need additional information, it can be accessed through the following;



                       *Harrisburg School District You Tube Channel

                       *Harrisburg School District Facebook Page

                       *Harrisburg School District App – can be downloaded on your phone through the App store.  Select the Harrisburg School District in Pennsylvania. The Cougar icon is in our school colors of black and grey.  Notifications will be sent through this app on a regular basis 

      Again, while remote learning is new to all of us, a great educational opportunity is available by adhering with fidelity to the educational plan that has been put in place. As always, we are here…ready, willing and available to work with and assist as much as possible.  All we ask is that we work together collaboratively for the success of our students! 

      We are resilient, willing to adapt to change, and are looking forward to having a great school year!!! 


      Ben Franklin Administrative Team – Will Towson, Principal

                                                          Nicole Snook, Assistant Principal

                                                          David Portzline, Assistant Principal

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