Media Tips

Media Tips are listed in chronological order.       September 24, 2014

Precious Crabtree, art teacher at Deer Park Elementary, will receive the California Casualty Award for Teaching Excellence on Monday, September 29.  She is being recognized by the insurance company as a result of being selected as the recipient of the 2014 Virginia Education Association Award for Teaching Excellence and a subsequent nomination for the National Education Association Award for Teaching Excellence.  Fairfax Education Association president Kimberly Adams will be on hand for the award presentation, which includes a monetary donation to the school on her behalf.  Crabtree represents her school on the Superintendent’s Teacher Advisory Council and the FEA, where she serves as government relations council chair and a member of the board of directors.  Contact principal Carol Larsen at 703-802-5000 or

On Tuesday, September 30, Falls Church High will host an NCAA information night for students, parents, and coaches who are interested in getting information about playing sports at the college level. Paul Bowden, associate athletic director for compliance at George Mason University, will be the guest speaker. Students will learn about the academic requirements for collegiate sports at all levels (divisions one, two, and three). Freshmen and sophomores are highly encouraged to attend so they may best prepare their academic transcript and be prepared for not only the rigorous schedule that college sports demand, but also the application process so they are aware of the requirements for the various levels. Scholarship opportunities will also be discussed. Contact news liaison Colleen Lally at 703-207-4050 or

Herndon mayor Lisa Merkle will speak to eighth grade students at Herndon Middle on Tuesday, September 30, at 9:30 a.m.  The students, who study civics in eighth grade, will be able to ask the mayor questions about their town and its governance during this special visit.  Contact principal Justine Klena at 703-904-4800 or or event liaison Rachel Halpin at

Seventh grade students at Herndon Middle will head to Lake Fairfax beginning Tuesday, September 30, to complete their meaningful watershed educational experience.  From Tuesday through Friday, students will use lab equipment in the field in real situations while learning how people effect the environment.  Strategies to prevent harmful effects will be incorporated in the lessons by Herndon Middle science teachers.  Contact principal Justine Klena at 703-904-4800 or or event liaison Rachel White at

Edison High will host its sixth annual Writing Center launch party during the four lunch periods on Wednesday, October 1, beginning at 10:30 a.m.  The goal of the launch is to inform, invite, and engage all students to participate in the Edison Writing Center’s individual tutoring sessions, which offer writing help for Standards of Learning (SOL) tests and SAT test essay and college essay workshops.  Tutor leaders have planned the entire launch party and will be on hand to answer questions from students.  Contact principal Pamela Brumfield at 703-924-8000 or or event liaison Amber Jensen at

The Island Creek Elementary physical education department will host a bicycle safety clinic for fifth grade students October 1-3 at 12:50 p.m.  Physical education teachers will work with Sally Smallwood, coordinator of the FCPS Safe Routes to School program, to teach students the proper fitting and care of bicycle helmets; bike care and maintenance; and safe riding practices, including hand signals and road rules.  Safe Routes to School will provide bicycles and helmets for students to share and work with during the clinic, which corresponds to the fifth grade health curriculum on injury prevention.  Contact principal Michael Macrina at 571-642-6300 or or event liaison Val Taguding at

Preschool students at Cherry Run Elementary were recently educated about healthy herbs and vegetables by Girl Scout Troop 2664. The troop of nearly 20 fifth grade girls sang a song they wrote called "T-T-T-Tomatoes!" and read the children an ABC Vegetable Book they also created. The troop spent the summer watering the preschool garden, which yielded a variety of fruits, herbs, and vegetables to enjoy. In addition to learning about vegetables, the preschoolers and their parents got to share a pizza lunch where they used garden ingredients to make the sauce. Contact event liaison Chris Randolph at 703-923-2800 or

For the eighth consecutive year, Daniels Run Elementary has been recognized as a Virginia Naturally School.  Daniels Run is one of four FCPS schools—including Lanier Middle, Churchill Road Elementary, and Belvedere Elementary—to earn the designation that recognizes schools that increase the environmental awareness and stewardship of its students.  At Lanier, students participate in numerous environmental stewardship projects throughout the school year and have received grants to funds some of these projects.  More information about the individual school initiatives is available at the following sites:  Lanier, Belvedere, Churchill Road, and Daniels Run.    The Virginia Naturally School program is the official environmental education school recognition program for the state. Contact Daniels Run principal Adam Erbrecht at 703-279-8400 or or event liaison Lori Huberman Hayes at; Belvedere event liaison Stacey Evers at; or Lanier event liaison Faiza Alam at

The Deer Park Elementary library was transformed over the summer with the addition of a custom mural commissioned by principal Carol Larsen and librarian Lori Shea and paid for with PTA funds earned through book fairs. The mural, created by local artist Rebecca Solow—the daughter of another FCPS librarian—depicts nonfiction and fairytale characters. Shea took the opportunity to teach her students about the process of painting the mural by showing them the artist’s original sketches as well as photographs of each stage of drawing and painting. She explained that the mural painting process was similar to implementing strategies for writing or reading. Shea also asked the students what they thought came first in the process and what would happen next. Contact principal Carol Larsen at 703-802-5000 or or news liaison Becky Hawryluk at

A group of Dogwood Elementary students recently watched a video on robotics and how engineers are developing robotic limbs that inspired one student to do some extra work at home. She gathered an assortment of creative recyclables and made robotic arms that would have the capacity to pick up an object just like the one she saw in the video. The next day, she shared the model with her class. Learning about STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) inspired her to go above and beyond to create something special and unique, and most of all, useful.  Contact principal Mie Devers at 703-262-3100 or or news liaison Linda Martin at

Last year, Eagle View Elementary staff, students and parents worked together to build a monarch way station to teach students about environmental awareness while improving and expanding outdoor learning opportunities. In an effort to help restore the monarch population, students and staff members planted milkweeds in the way station, joining the existing milkweeds planted by second grade students a few years ago. Monarchs and caterpillars have been sighted in different stages of development. Currently, there are five caterpillars and three insects in the chrysalis stage.  The monarchs are in the school library so that all students can watch the transformation. Contact principal Patty Granada at 703-322-3100 or or news liaison Jessica Chinn at

Students from Key Middle’s advanced choir, led by Christina Matula, recently sang the “Star Spangled Banner” to students at Key Center.  During a second performance, Key Center students joined in by singing and using voice output devices to participate.  Key Center students participated in interactive Boardmaker activities leading up to the joint activity in order to learn the history of the National Anthem and its composer.  The performance was planned to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the “Star Spangled Banner” and Francis Scott Key’s role in composing it.  Contact principal Ann Smith at 703-313-4000 or or news liaison Dianne Hardbower at

Riverside Elementary is joining forces with the Bernie L. Bates foundation to implement the Read for Success program during the 2014-15 school year.  Each third grade student will receive a bag of five fiction and non-fiction books at a celebratory kickoff in October.  Once each quarter, foundation members will visit the school to read aloud to students, who will receive their own copy to take home.  Contact principal Lori Morton at 703-799-6000 or or event liaison Lisa Holm at


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Mary Shaw

Last Updated

September 24, 2014