Media Tips

Media Tips are listed in chronological order.       September 17, 2014

This year, Washington Mill Elementary is focusing on building understanding, diversity, and respect through a simple smile. School staff members are capturing the smiles of each and every student and displaying the photos in the halls, with a goal of completing the project by back to school night on Tuesday, September 23.  The hope is that the student smiles will be passed on to everyone in the school and surrounding community in an effort to begin a chain reaction of respect, diversity, individualism, and positivity.  Contact principal Brad Bennink at 703-619-2500 or or event liaison Kristin Bower at

Oakton High will host the 29th annual Oakton Classic Invitational Marching Band competition on Saturday, September 27, beginning at 9:30 a.m.  Ten FCPS high school bands—including Falls Church High, Robinson Secondary, West Potomac High, Madison High, Edison High, McLean High, Mount Vernon High, Annandale High, Lee High, and South Lakes High—will compete in the classic, which will also include a performance by the Old Dominion University marching band.  There is an admission charge.  Visit the competition website for details.  Contact event liaison Todd Morgan at

Students at Olde Creek Elementary will participate in the Laps for Learning 5K on Saturday, September 27, beginning at 7:30 a.m.  Students participate in a 5K run and walk around the neighborhood and can earn pledge money for their efforts, although pledges are not required to participate.  All participating students receive a backpack key ring.  The goal of the event is to earn $15,000, which will be donated to the school PTA.  If the goal is reached, students will be able to cover their teachers in Silly String.  Contact principal Twila Mack at 703-426-3100 or or news liaison Patricia Smalley at

Belvedere Elementary has been awarded a $750 grant in the recycling category of the Keep Virginia Beautiful 30 Grants in 30 Days program.  The school plans to expand its school recycling program by adding outdoor bins near the playground, outdoor classroom, and fields, which are used by the community as well as the school.   Signage will be posted near the new bins to encourage people to recycle items and be environmentally responsible.  Contact principal Cecilia Vanderhye at 703-916-6800 or or event liaison Stacey Evers at

Fifth grade students in Tom Gaito and Jeri Thomas’ classes at Deer Park Elementary recently took their science experiments on temperature outdoors. Students hypothesized whether temperature readings would be the same or different on manmade versus natural surfaces. Students broke up into groups and put thermometers in two different cups of water, placing one on the sidewalk and one in the woods, and took readings. They left their experiments out until the end of the school day and took readings again. Students plan to present their findings as a group to the classes. This activity will help the students work in groups, formulate a hypothesis, and use experimental procedures to form a conclusion. The fifth grade teachers believe that learning hands-on is vital to their students. Contact principal Carol Larsen at 703-802-5000 or or news liaison Becky Hawryluk at

For back to school night, the art teachers at Dogwood Elementary have established a tradition of inviting each student and staff member to contribute to a huge mural by creating one element of the mural that contributes to the overall picture.This year, the mural was the dogwood flower. One of the main hallways was decorated with a river of flowing blossoms and each one represented the interests and personality of the artist.  Last year, the mural was a huge dragon—the school mascot—that covered two of the cafeteria walls. Each person contributed a scale on the dragonthat represented themselves. Art teachers Michelle Riddle, Lauren Preti, and teacher intern Sarah Florjancic organized the creation ofthe murals. Contact principal Mie Devers at 703-262-3100 or or news liaison Linda Martin at

Two Edison High students have been selected as recipients of grants from the National Conference for Peer Tutoring in Writing (NCPTW).  Daniel Herrera and Monty Westendorff are seniors at Edison and have worked as tutors in the Edison writing center for three years.  Herrera received a $300 Burkean Parlor Grant, one of only seven total recipients and the only high school tutor to receive the award.  Westendorff received one of 18 Registration and Grub Grants of $150, one of only two high school tutors to receive this award.  Both students will be presenting their original research at the NCPTW conference in Orlando in October.  Contact principal Pamela Brumfield at 703-924-8000 or or news liaison Iris Rivera at

Frost Middle has been selected as a recipient of the Dominion K-12 Educational Partnership Grant in the Environmental Education category for its Solar Stream Courtyard:  Solar Powered Re-circulating Stream and Pond Wetland Habitat Project through a partnership with Lands and Waters.  The grant is designed to support projects that develop math and science skills through the study of the environment.  A representative from Dominion will present the grant check to the school on October 2.  Contact principal Eric McCann at 703-426-5700 or or news liaison Amy Smith at

At Lake Anne Elementary, students in grades K-3 recently saw a performance by Teatro De La Luna in English and Spanish that stressed healthy habits.  Sweet Miss Lettuce and her uncle, Mr. Cucumber, taught the students to fight the evil Mrs. Laziness, all while discovering a world of good nutrition that, along with exercise, contributes to a happy and healthy life.  The message of eating right, getting adequate sleep, and daily exercise was stressed to the students.  Contact principal Brendan Menuey at 703-326-3500 or or news liaison Sue Garrison at


Get Connected

facebook iconflickr iconrss icontwitter iconyoutube icon

Webpage Curator

Mary Shaw

Last Updated

September 17, 2014