FCPS Cares - July/August 2019

By Department of Human Resources
FCPS Cares
July 10, 2019

To recognize an employee with an FCPS Cares, please visit our submission page.

To view past submissions, please visit our previous submissions page

Renee Kendley, West Springfield HS

"Showing gratitude for Renee’s colleagueship, willingness to lead and share materials, and time (on a non-school day) spent planning using a student centered, language-rich framework and POS Pilot."

- Christianna Carreño, Chantilly HS

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Elaine Gonzalez, Chantilly HS

"Showing gratitude for Elaine’s colleagueship and time (on a non-school day) spent planning using a student-centered, language-rich framework and POS Pilot."

- Christianna Carreño, Chantilly HS

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Judy Daines, Stonecroft Transportation Center

"My name is Jay Corwin. I am a bus driver for FCPS and I would like to recognize my supervisor, Judy Daines for outstanding management skills. I have been employed by Fairfax County for 33 years. First as a firefighter for 28 years and now as a bus driver for 5 years. In that time, I have worked for many outstanding supervisors. In the last month, three separate situations have occurred that need immediate action. One situation was a safety issue. In all three instances, Judy responded immediately and within 1 hour, I received emails stating that the issues were resolved. Her communication skills are outstanding with not only myself but in speaking with other drivers I hear nothing but praise for her. There was an issue on August 28 that was of a personal matter and Judy took the time to come and speak with me. To me, that spoke volumes of not only her skills as a manager but of her character as well. It is people like Judy that you hope to have the opportunity to work with at some point in your career. It is also people like Judy that need to be recognized for their outstanding service to not only our organization but to our community that we serve."

- Jay Corwin, Stonecroft Transportation Center

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Sara Strohl, Greenbriar West ES

"This first week back at school has not just been a new experience for my students, but also for myself. As a new FCPS employee, I have been adjusting to the 'FCPS Way' as well as the 'GBW Way' of doing things. Although many people have gone above and beyond to make me feel prepared, Sara has already set herself apart as a colleague who seeks opportunities to make things easier for me. Daily, she walks by my classroom to check in and make sure things are going ok and to ask me if I've got questions or to show me how to do find things on eCart and other FCPS sites. Although she is neither my grade-level teammate nor my mentor, Sara has made it clear that she is absolutely a team player and that she cares about my success here. It is the simple acts of selflessness and kindness that make others feel valued. I am so grateful for her support and friendship."

- Rebecca Anderson, Greenbriar West ES

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Paul Liverman, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Paul Liverman had previously repaired some roofing issues for us. He discovered today that the leak was worse than before and it was really a plumbing issue. Paul immediately got in touch with the plumber at Sideburn and they are now in the process of repairing the plumbing. I just wanted to give kudos to Paul Liverman for going above and beyond and figuring out the real culprit for the leaking issue. Thanks, Paul!"

- Janet Montgomery, Woodson - IT

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Tzeitel Barcus, McLean HS

"The Early Childhood Team would like Tzeitel Barcus, Asst. Director of Student Activities at McLean HS for helping us get everything we needed for our August 21st all count PD.  From technology to room set up, she was with us all the way with whatever we needed. Thank you, Tzeitel!"

- Peggy Maurizi, Maura Burke, Erin Blake, Katy Spalding, Meghan Themak, Leis Center

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Karen Hertel, Veronica Gonzales, Mike Hardy, Dr. John Holloway, and Felicia Kougblenou, Bryant AHS

"On August 21, over 200 Career and Transition Services (CTS) staff swarmed Bryant Alternative High School for a back-to-school in-service. Karen Hertel and Veronica Gonzales graciously opened the school for us, Bryant teachers generously shared their classrooms, Mike Hardy went above and beyond to make sure technology ran smoothly, Dr. John Holloway oriented us to the building and stored materials for CTS, and Felicia Kougblenou prepped the school for us. CTS cares about Bryant Alternative High School and thanks the entire staff!"

- Sarah Blake, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Mimi Marquet, Lisa Koch, and Lourdes Salas, Lee HS

"The library team at Lee HS always places advocating for students in their highest priority. This is evident as they work to streamline processes to ensure students have access to resources and in the friendly and welcoming environment they create. No matter the obstacle, it can be overcome when students are at the center and these three are working together."

- Margaret Sisler and Summer Johnson, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Kaylin Daniels, Poplar Tree ES

"Ms. Daniels called us to invite us to Back to School Night! We were blown away by this thoughtful gesture. Our daughter had a great first week at school and we know it is because of Ms. Daniels and her ability to build relationships with her students and families. Thank you, Ms. Daniels!"

- a Poplar Tree ES parent 

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Carolina Roca Del Valle, Stonecroft Transportation Center

"I had wonderful experience working with Ms. Carolina on changing bus stop for my son who is attending Rocky Run MS. Since the fax number was not working to send my documents, she took the initiative on working through emails without any hesitation and in a very friendly manner, in no time. I really appreciated her help and immediate assistance."

- a Rocky Run MS parent 

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Yvonne Milan, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Today at 4:01 p.m. on Thursday before Labor Day, the long weekend, I called HR to get some help. I dialed the wrong number. Yvonne Milan answered the phone. AND she helped me! She was pleasant and attentive. She was knowledgeable and supportive. She was funny and patient. So picture this… an elementary school cafeteria with parent volunteers and administrators for the first week of school anxiously awaiting the hiring of a dining room assistant….so imagine our desperation… Yvonne understands the need to hire the right people, for the right position, in an expeditious manner. She is a rock star."

- Lora Adams, Oak View ES

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Corri Shusterman, Kings Park ES 

"I would like to express my heartfelt appreciation to school counselor, Corri Shusterman, for her support and guidance with my nervous kindergartener during the first week at school.  I know how busy counselors are at the start of the school year; however, Corri took the time to meet with my son and provided the support he needed in a calm and caring manner.  Corri also contacted me to discuss some strategies and options that are available to make his morning routine easier.  Her advice and guidance provided a level of comfort, hope, and encouragement in knowing that our son would get through this difficult transitional period.  My son excitedly reported that he was looking forward to seeing Ms. Shusterman at school.  My husband and I are grateful that Ms. Shusterman is a part of the King’s Park ES community and humbly appreciate her work in supporting the students and families at Kings Park ES."

- a Kings Park ES parent

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Jean Demas, Stonecroft Transportation Center

"Yesterday afternoon, I was driving through Clifton to start my long trek home. I was on Henderson Road and we were bumper-to-tailgate for over a mile. I came around a corner to discover a bus that had broken down and I wondered if I could stop to help. Unfortunately, there was nowhere to pull over. I quickly discovered that the bus driver had already removed the students and had them safely tucked away from the traffic. The bus driver appeared to be playing games with the students, entertaining them, and offering encouraging conversation. Although temporarily stranded on the side of the road, the students seemed happy and taking it all in stride. I am not sure what elementary school route this is but I wanted to reach out with hopes you could pass this along. This bus driver deserves accolades for keeping these students safe and making the best out of an unfortunate situation."

- Lora Adams, Oak View ES

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John Lord and Justin Moss, Sideburn Support Center

"Mr. Lord and Mr. Moss came to Woodson to review the issues we have been having around air quality and resulting issues. Their customer service and problem-solving were second to none! Both are clearly competent in their area and knowledgeable of the resources available to help eradicate our problem. They put a plan in place and have even been following up on progress. Positive and workable responses, much appreciated!"

- Carlyn Floyd, Woodson HS

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Jan Napoliello, Falls Church HS

"Where to begin? On the first day of school, we distributed laptops to ALL students in the school. Jan Napoliello scheduled National Honor Society students throughout the summer to assist with assigning and preparing laptops. Jan is CONSTANTLY providing extra assistance to the entire school community. She heads up the NHS school tutoring program and is diligent in scheduling, following up, and adjust students' commitments so that others may improve their skills. There is a long-term sub in the English Dept. and Jan has assisted her with guidance and lessons to begin the school year. What doesn't Jan do? I'm not sure but I can ALWAYS ask her for assistance and she offers it freely. What dedication and commitment to our FCHS and FCPS community!"

- Heike Harrup, Falls Church HS

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James Chianetta, Dunn Loring Center

"James is a caring, kind, and professional. As a new member of the Assessment Team, he has gone above and beyond his duties to make everyone feel welcomed. In addition, he goes out of his way to help at work in any way he can. For example, he makes sure that every desk is stocked with assessments in the mornings. Not only is this helpful, but it also ensures that the day's work runs efficiently and smoothly. James is an example of someone who is a team player! He truly makes everyone feels part of the 'famiglia.' Thank you, James!"

- Manuel Gomez Portillo, Leis Center

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Nicole Bracken, Key Center

"Ms. Bracken is AMAZING! She has made it so easy for us to open our school year. She has an incredible format where we can review all our Back to School information and complete our much-needed information and reading material in a digital format. It' a digital opening and it includes every bit of information we all need to know. And, for teachers, they can do it anywhere while paraprofessionals can easily complete the tasks in small batches until it's finished. Her preparation is wonderful, she even has tutorials for examples and directions.  She thought of every bit of information we need as staff, and it's so easy to complete. It's great to have this, as we can focus on our preparing for our classroom of students. Thank you, Nicole, for all your hard work to make starting a school year - easy and fun!"

- an FCPS colleague

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Todd LeFort,  Chuck Wilford, Paul Zender, Wilton Woods Center

"We were having problems with RequestIT sending email and needed assistance. Todd, Chuck, and Paul helped us find the solution and we were able to start school without the issue we had been experiencing. I truly appreciate their help and the great customer service they provided. Thank you!"

- Thomas Canody, Sprague Technology Center

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Kevin McDonnell, Paul OkoOdoi, and Nii Oko-Odoi, Sprague Technology Center

"Kevin McDonnell and his team members, Paul OkoOdoi and Nii Oko-Odoi, were wonderfully responsive and supportive to our needs for the August Staff Development Day. They made sure we had a screen, speakers and microphone to support our professional development, even with very short notice. A big thank you from the Early Childhood team for helping our day run smoothly! We could not have shared our content as effectively without their help."

- Erin Blake, Leis Center

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Adam Bowen, Sprague Technology Center

"We scheduled a training session at Sprague using laptops. Since I am not a Sprague full-time, I emailed Adam asking for access to the laptop. Adam not only had the laptops ready for us, he set them up and did some additional troubleshooting. The employees and I appreciate his efforts on this."

- Mary Ann Smith, Sprague Technology Center

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Griffin Payne, Lane ES

"Griffin Payne is an amazing Technology Support Specialist, and we are so lucky to have him at Lane! He goes above and beyond to help teachers get the resources and supports they need, even if it requires him to get creative or think outside the box. Sometimes Griffin has to break the news to us that something isn’t possible or can’t be done, and yet the very next day he’s figured out a workaround to solve the problem. He frequently stays late at school and is always cheerful, smiling and patient, no matter what we throw at him or how many times we forget to submit something to RequestIT. One example that epitomizes how Griffin goes above and beyond: I’m a resource teacher split between two schools. I was at my other school when a colleague had a last-minute technology problem that she needed resolved to be able to participate in an online webinar. It was after 5:00 p.m., and although we emailed the SBTS and TSSpec for the school we were at, we knew they had left for the day and probably wouldn’t check email until the next morning. I emailed Griffin and he responded almost immediately, walking us through the potential solution and telling me that if she still had trouble, my colleague could call him the next day and he would walk her through what she needed to do. All that for a teacher he had never met at a school he wasn’t even assigned! That’s just one of the many ways that Griffin goes over and above his job responsibilities, exemplifying FCPS’s caring culture and premiere workforce."

- Linda Simon, Lane ES

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Joan Lee, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"Joan has been a great support to Lorton Station as we have worked on hiring counselors this summer. She went above and beyond to respond quickly and support us through the process since she knew how important our counselors are to our school community. She also came out to support us Monday on the 1st day of school! We're so lucky to have her supporting our school and can't say enough good things!"

- Christopher Latham, Lorton Station ES

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Francisco Quintanilla, James Smith, Dien Le, Jose Martinez Callejas, Ana Delgado, Ngoc Huynh, Juong Lee, Ki Lee, Belky Mejia, Sandra Mejia, Adela Mendez, Jose Portillo, Francisco Ramos Hernandez, Jung W Suh, Cuc Tran, and Ana Yanes, McLean HS

"The entire Early Childhood Team at Leis would like to send our heart felt thanks to every member of the custodial team at McLean HS. Each went above and beyond to set up the cafeteria and rooms to accommodate well over 200 people at our Focus on Early Learning all county day last week. We are so grateful to each of you. Thank you!"

- Peggy Maurizi, Maura Burke, Erin Blake, Katy Spalding, and Meghan Themak, Leis Center

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Christina Nunez, Gatehouse Administration Center

"As a newly hired employee, there is always so much to learn. Christina has been amazingly helpful throughout my transition! The organization and documents that she has created provided so many important resources for me, it was hard to believe that she was new to the Compensation and Classification Department as well. She is dedicated and professional, and I greatly appreciate all of the help that she has provided to me during my first month!"

- Denise Coniglio, Gatehouse Administration Center

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Robin Borean, Sprague Technology Center

"Robin spent probably about an hour on the phone with me regarding the new Mass Change in SIS.  She was wonderful - incredibly helpful.  She listened to what I was saying, understood my issues and found a way to make things work for me!"

- Leslee Little, Woodson HS

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Rebecca Edmondson, Key Center

"Not just today, but every day, teacher Becky Edmondson goes above and beyond to demonstrate the deep passion she has for educating students with severe disabilities. Over the course of the last few months, knowing how much our students respond to rhythm, she purchased a djembe drum, took (is taking!) lessons, and has created a morning routine with her students in mind. Becky has created a specific drum sequence for each feeling they discuss, varying the rhythm, volume, tone, and speed to match different feelings - happy, sad, tired, excited, etc. Each morning, as they talk about how they are feeling, Becky plays the different sequences and works with her students to help them express how they are feeling. The students invariably respond to her energy, enthusiasm and her strong confidence in their abilities. Becky is a perfect example of Caring Culture within FCPS."

- Nicole Bracken, Key Center

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Deb Storck, Hollin Meadows ES

"The pictures from this evening's Welcome Walk tell the story! Mrs. Storck is school counselor extraordinaire! She has touched the lives of countless students and families at Hollin Meadows Elementary School. She is truly a special educator who makes a difference every single day for students, parents, families, and everyone she supports at our school. Thank you, Mrs. Storck, for reminding us tonight why HMES Cares!"

- Hollin Meadows ES PTA

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Andrew Reinoso, Sideburn Support Center

"A special thanks to Andrew and his team for a quick response to support our school! A couple of pieces of lawn equipment are non-operable at the time. When I reached out for support, Andrew responded immediately and sent a crew out the next morning to ensure our grounds were taken care of! Talk about customer service! A huge thank you for your hard work and dedication to our students, Andrew!"

- Anthony Harris, Frost MS

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Eileen Hoppock, Lake Braddock SS

"Eileen did a fantastic job of presenting to the faculty regarding a topic that has historically been met with push-back and negative energy. She embraced this process and identified that while it has been a difficult subject, that the school will benefit from these conversations and that the admin staff is here to support them. It is not always easy to stand in front of an energetic faculty and take the ire of groups, but Eileen did it with grace and resolve in a productive manner that pushed the faculty in a positive direction. Lake Braddock is lucky to have Eileen!"

- Tony DiBari, Lake Braddock SS

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Jodi Marshall, Halley ES

"Jodi demonstrated great compassion and positive student relationship by donating a backpack full of school supplies and books for a student she had in 6th-grade. When I delivered the backpack to my new 7th-grade student, he was shocked and said, "for real!?" I could tell he was extremely appreciative by the way he quickly looked through the backpack and said, "wow I actually needed this already! Tell Ms. Marshall I say thank you!" I really admire and appreciate Jodi reaching out to the middle school and providing this student the supplies he needed to start a successful 7th-grade year! This interaction was also a great opportunity for the student to meet his new school counselor and know who to go to his in new school. Thanks for this very sweet gesture, Jodi!"

- Daisy Gomes, Key MS

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Matt Watson, Sprague Technology Center

"We set up computers for a training session and several of the computers were not being recognized by the network and not allowing logins. I went to the call center to ask and all the agents were busy on phones and Matt was kind enough to interrupt his work and address the issue and get the machines back on the network. I and the employees in the training appreciate his helpfulness, making it possible for us to conduct the class."

- Mary Ann Smith, Sprague Technology Center

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Mary deKanter, South County HS

"Mary goes above and beyond to support the Great Beginnings Summer Institute each year with a smile on her face and a collaborative, responsive attitude. She accepts deliveries prior to the event on behalf of HR and IT, She communicates with the custodial staff and other South County HS team members to be sure they are aware of schedules and time frames so that there is minimal interruption to sports and custodial staff who are busy getting ready for the beginning of the school year. She is an amazing, positive employee. It is a pleasure to work with her year after year. Thank you, Mary, for all you do and the support you give. We wouldn't be has organized and successful without you."

- Shelli Wayland, Gatehouse Administration Center

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Steve Upthegrove, South County HS

"Steve is an amazing employee who can obviously juggle multiple projects at one time. He was an excellent resource when we were setting up the vendor hall for Great Beginnings. He had the power cords their and ready for us to run. He set up laptops in the library for HR to use on Tuesday for Onboarding, UConnect & MyPLT access for the new employees who needed assistance. He provided a printer which allowed the new teachers to print documents if necessary and was always available when we needed him. This was in addition to his regular duties at the school. With the 1:1 initiative in the high schools and disbursement of computers to students. Steve still made time to check on us to be sure that we had everything we needed to make the Great Beginnings Summer Institute a huge success. Teachers appreciated the one-stop-shopping approach. Thank you, Steve, for your support and commitment."

- Shelli Wayland, Gatehouse Administration Center

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Danny Mikhail, Thoreau MS

"Danny goes above and beyond when helping teachers and students with any technology issues that arise at Thoreau Middle School. He is positive and attentive, doing whatever he can to make sure the technology needs are met at Thoreau MS."

- Robyne Davis, Thoreau MS

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Brian Spector, Susan Heironimus, Leah Mitchell, Mojdeh Nejad, Connie Gray, and Kelly Stiehl, South Lakes HS

"I would like to appreciate all of the AA’s who assist me with any and all tasks for the entire school. Dedication and Team Work is what you all display each and every time I need your assistance. I appreciate you all very much. I had to select a date, but it’s been several dates. Thanks for always being flexible."

- Angel Scott, South Lakes HS

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Michael Dobbs, AmyBeth Kramer, and Jaime Bousman-Stanczak, South Lakes HS

"I would like to appreciate the hard work that our tech team has put in getting our school onboard with FCPSOn. In addition to meeting our many other technical requests, this team never misses a beat. We appreciate you here at South Lakes HS."

- Angel Scott, South Lakes HS

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Beth Boivin and Bryan Buser, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Beth and Bryan did an awesome job coordinating our Secondary New Teacher of the Year celebration. I called them the 'Sunshine Team' because that’s what they do when they visit schools to celebrate our great FCPS employees. We appreciate you at South Lakes HS."

- Angel Scott, South Lakes HS

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Kim Retzer, South Lakes HS

"With concerns about school safety blanketing the headlines every morning, I realize that I take the outstanding security at my school for granted.  I appreciate the work of our principal, Kim Retzer, at South Lakes High School, who creates a safe, secure learning environment.  We know that when we come to school each day, the safety of students and teachers is a priority.  This security is not only a function of the carefully executed emergency drills we practice each year, but also the commitment to addressing our concerns efficiently and to our satisfaction, and truly exemplifying that FCPS Cares."

- Marie Turner, South Lakes HS

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Tara Petrovic, Lake Braddock SS

"Tara Petrovic at Lake Braddock Secondary School is a true gem. Her help with ensuring the accuracy and timely MyTime entries for a large group of participants in an FCPSOn activity this summer went a long way in easing an often tedious process. Tara reached out regularly to make sure I had what I needed and also kept me updated on any changes. Her initiative and diligence are to be applauded."

- Jennifer Sharp, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Johanna Meadows and CeCe Lowry, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Many thanks to Johanna Meadows and CeCe Lowry in Time and Attendance for their awesomeness in answering the many MyTime queries sent their way from me this summer. The explanations were easy to follow and delivered with kindness and understanding. Also, the prompt feedback during an especially hectic time was much appreciated."

- Jennifer Sharp, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Cathleen Vonada, Stratford Landing ES

"As a new principal, it's been a very exciting two weeks on the job. AND ... a very stressful, confusing one. Cathleen has been so helpful supporting my transition and has already proven herself to be a terrific Administrative Assistant. I KNOW I'm in good hands and looking forward to our partnership. She is knowledgeable and organized, just what I need. Thank you, Cathleen."

- Kevin Morris, Stratford Landing ES

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Blanca Flores, Stratford Landing ES

"Blanca Flores has been a wonderful addition to our staff here at Stratford Landing. She is helpful, friendly and has already started building terrific relationships with our staff and families. I'm looking forward to a great year together. Thanks for making our opening week with teachers a successful one!"

- Kevin Morris, Stratford Landing ES

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Pearl Graham, Stratford Landing ES

"Pearl Graham has done tremendous work during our first week back with teachers. She has been supportive and efficient, friendly and thorough! She has been responsive to both staff and families and has really helped get our school off to a great start. I'm thankful for her positive attitude and energy. Looking forward to a great year together."

- Kevin Morris, Stratford Landing ES

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Gary Baird, Centreville HS

"Gary is an outstanding teacher and co-worker. He goes out of his way to help those around him. He shares his time and supplies to make sure others are ready for the school year. He is positive and his sense of humor creates a great work environment."

- Heidi Brown, Centreville HS

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Heather Sullivan, West Springfield HS

"I was lucky enough to work with Heather Sullivan on the new Gourmet Foods and Hospitality curriculum this summer. After working on the summer curriculum project, she continued to help me by answering questions and doing tasks so that it would be available in eCART for teachers BEFORE the year started. She also prepared and delivered an engaging in-service session for her colleagues to explore their new unit guides and lessons. I appreciate her dedication to helping her peers and students learn with authentic and engaging activities. Thank you, Heather!"

- Neva Apsche, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Carolina Roca Del Valle, Stonecroft Transportation Center

"I was panicked when I discovered my child didn't have a bus stop. I spoke with different staff and was eventually transferred to Carolina. She immediately had a calming voice, was extremely polite and professional. She went out of her way to offer a solution to my challenge, walk me through the process, and look up information I needed. After we hung up I had all the confidence that our situation would be handled appropriately, regardless of the outcome. Forty-eight hours later, I was notified of the resolution and couldn't be more thrilled. I know it was because I was fortunate enough to have Carolina processing our request. Thank you!"

- a Rocky Run MS parent 

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Jimmy Bowden, Kameron Stone, and Mark Gallup, Forte Center

"There are many wonderful FCPS staff members that work hard behind the scenes and are not often recognized.  Some of their work involves tasks that many don't even realize are a part of FCPS. One of those areas is public auctions of surplus equipment. Below is an email from one of our auction customers. Great job Jimmy, Mark, and Kameron for leaving this customer with a great impression of FCPS. "I recently purchased a rig full of student desks for your district.  It's not the first time I dealt with Jimmy and what can I say, he's the best! He and his team were pleasant, professional and most important - friendly! Also, a shout out to Mark and Kameron. Thanks for running such a good department and creating an overall atmosphere that speaks for itself. "

- Karen Cogan, Forte Center

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Lauren Arthur-Compton, Twain MS

"As lead mentor, Lauren is expected to help our new staff get their year started. What many people don't see is Lauren coming to school a week early so her classroom is set up and ready to go. This allows her to be free to devote herself to our new staff during the teacher week back. She is in their classrooms, finding materials and furniture and in general, making Twain a warm and welcoming home for our new staff. I wanted to acknowledge her hard work and dedication."

- Christine Arocho, Twain MS

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Janene Pack, Lake Braddock SS

"Tremendously impressed by the personalized and time-intensive approach of School Counselor Janene Pack to help prepare rising seniors for life after high school. Especially notable is her active assistance to provide them with the best possible letters of recommendation for applications to college or other pursuits. She takes personal ownership of each of her many students, soliciting input from both students and their parents at the end of their junior year. She follows up with a personal interview when possible, which is pretty amazing considering the number of students she supports. Assuring to know that our students receive such meaningful and personalized support within one of the largest school populations in Virginia."

- a Lake Braddock SS community member

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Kris Rakes, Stratford Landing ES

"WOW! Kris Rakes, our SIA specialist, has been an absolute rock star this week (and of course, weeks prior). She has demonstrated excellent organization and went above and beyond to ensure effective communication with our families prior to our Open House. We are so thankful for her time, energy and efforts!"

- Kevin Morris, Stratford Landing ES

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Daniel Purkey, Lorton Transportation Center

"I have two kids, attending two different schools this coming year. Daniel helped me figure out their bus schedule and did a little searching to see if an alternate stop would make dropping my kids off easier for us as a family. He called me back to give me a few options. I cannot imagine how busy Daniel and his transportation colleagues are the week before school starts. I appreciate Daniel giving me individualized attention and his professionalism. Thank you, Daniel! You are the best!"

- a Bailey's Upper ES parent 

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Angela Dorrzapf, Centreville HS

"Angela Dorrzapf and her staff went above and beyond to assist us with setup for our Area 3 Transportation in-service meeting. Angela’s positive attitude and awesome energy assisted us by making sure our meeting went smoothly. Always a pleasure working with Angela."

- Kristi Broady, Stonecroft Transportation Center

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Kristen Coyne and Christopher Flores, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Kristen Coyne and Christopher Flores have been an incredible help to me as I've begun a new position at Lake Braddock Secondary School.  As an assistant principal that is new to the hiring/staffing question, and the sheer volume at Lake Braddock, I have had frequent and numerous questions.  Kristen and Christopher have fielded them all with timely and valuable feedback, never once getting frustrated by the deluge of e-mails and phone calls. When a question should've been directed elsewhere, they were quick to put me in touch with the appropriate resource. They are always friendly and never too busy to work with me on any issues. HR is fortunate to have such an awesome team that puts relationship building and 'getting it right' above all other priorities!"

- Tony DiBari, Lake Braddock SS

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Courtney Klein, Lake Braddock SS

"Courtney is a new edition to our Lake Braddock family as an instructional coach. She has hit the ground running and, with the help of one of her colleagues, put together some great resources. Most recently, she led 4 great sessions on Learning Targets, a big instructional focus for us this year. She addressed difficult questions with well thought out answers that applied directly to the group and kept the energy in the room high. We are certainly lucky to have Ms. Klein here at Lake Braddock!"

- Tony DiBari, Lake Braddock SS

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Eileen Hoppock, Lake Braddock SS

"As our staff is returning to school this week, our administrative team has put together a rotation schedule for our faculty to attend informational and professional development sessions with their department cohorts on both Monday and Tuesday. Assistant Principal, Eileen Hoppock, designed and graciously took the lead on the SIIP PD session and absolutely ROCKED it! She seamlessly, succinctly and accurately connected the Theory of Action, the work of CT and Portrait of a Graduate in such a way that allowed our teachers the time to create and draft their yearly goals, while the rest of the team circulated and offered expertise/help. Learning targets and outcomes were clearly identified, thus allowing our teams to engage in relevant and meaningful work. Each CT was able to make connections and draw from data based on earlier Faculty exercise/activity. With the overwhelming feelings associated with the beginning of school and teachers needing (wanting) to get classrooms ready, CTs felt extremely relieved to have been afforded the opportunity to collaborate in this structured environment."

- Amy Soos, Lake Braddock SS

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Paula Clark, Lorton Transportation Center

"We would like to thank and recognize Paula Clark for her professionalism and kind demeanor with the students on her bus. Our son was very apprehensive about riding the bus and starting high school his freshman year, but thanks to Ms. Clark's calm and friendly way, he overcame his fear and enjoyed both the bus and school and has so for the last three years. We look forward to another great year with her again."

- Lee HS parents 

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Jessica Hernandez, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Jessica Hernandez visited Bailey's Upper and was so supportive of the staff's understanding of data in EDSL and how to best utilize that data to drive instructional planning."

- Elizabeth Convey, Bailey's Upper ES

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Laura Reed, Frost MS

"Laura worked tirelessly to help our school opening go off without any hiccups!  We could not have done it without her and are extremely grateful for her time and efforts."

- Joe Berret, Frost MS

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Cherrie Maples, Gatehouse Administration Center

"As a retirement counselor, I meet with employees to explain their retirement benefits. On this day we had a somewhat complicated health insurance question, so I dialed in the Benefits office on the speaker phone to clarify for the employee. Cherrie has a great phone voice and a friendly and authoritative demeanor. She was able to answer the question for the employee and put her mind at ease. Cherrie is able to convey to members, without being in the room, that the Benefits Office and the Retirement Office are a team to help employees as they prepare to retire."

- Susan Stager, Forbes Place

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Mark Hyer, Sprague Technology Center

"BIG SHOUT OUT TO MARK! I've been working with him for years and let me just say, you can really rely on him. You can definitely count on him when you need a hand. He always comes to my rescue when I need help. Mark will definitely stop what he is doing just to give you a hand. Thank you for everything, Mr. Hyer."

- Melanie Odria, Sprague Technology Center - TMPC

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Nii OkoOdoi, Sprague Technology Center - TMPC

"Nii is so wonderful and such a delight to work with. He has such a great attitude and always emphasizes on the word "teamwork". Nii always says, 'Teamwork is the only way we can do this'. It is wonderful to hear him say these things as he has been helping the TMPC get through our back to school rush. Thank you, Nii!"

- Melanie Odria, Sprague Technology Center - TMPC

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Cathie Eames, Haycock ES

"Cathie Eames is the administrative assistant at Haycock ES. She has been assisting Franklin Sherman ES for several months as we recruited our new AA. Cathie is now serving as a mentor to our administrative assistant. She always has time to provide support with a smile and patiently answers all of our questions. She is kind and gracious and we so appreciate her the many hours of help she has freely given to our staff and our school!"

- Kathleen Quigley, Franklin Sherman ES

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Candace Bosch, Mount Vernon Woods ES

"Candace Bosch was one of my amazing teachers during our Young Scholars Program (Lower) this year. Our school has had the pleasure of being a joint site with Riverside Elementary during our construction for the past 2 summers. Ms. Bosch, along with the rest of my wonderful staff, did not look at our location as a challenge but was able to truly "shine" despite the logistics! Ms. Bosch had an excitement that was contagious about her class. Each time I walked into her classroom, I was greeted with exuberance from our brilliant and creative students and a smile and "can-do" attitude from Ms. Bosch. I NEVER wanted to leave!  Her students were eager to speak about and demonstrate their learning and were always so enthusiastic about their STEAM challenges. Ms. Bosch was an excellent addition to our summer school team and I hope to work with her again in 2020!"

- Dorothy Wright, Mount Vernon Woods ES

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Marta Kritselis, Stonecroft Transportation

"Ms. Marta Kritselis, a regular Fairview ES driver, met our school staff on Friday with a huge smile as we embarked on a community tour. In advance, Ms. Marta carefully planned a route that would allow us to see most of our community. During our trip, a staff member experienced a medical emergency. Ms. Marta quickly maneuvered the bus to a safe location and communicated our location to emergency personnel. She helped our staff safely evacuate the bus to allow emergency crew access to the patient. We received the all-clear, and Ms. Marta welcomed everyone back on board with a warm smile. We sincerely appreciate Ms. Marta’s quick action and response to our needs. She was calm, caring, and responsive. She is a wonderful example of a caring FCPS employee who went above and beyond for our community."

- Sara Van Aalst, Fairview ES

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Matt Watson, Sher Nasir, and Tom DeBoeser, Sprague Technology Center and Wilton Woods Technology Center

"I was attempting to remove a few out of date intranet pages and inadvertently deleted those that were still linked to current intranet pages. You can't undo that in Dreamweaver!  In a panic, I contacted my colleague, Matt Watson, who proceeded to reach out to various staff that could assist in reinstating the missing pages. Thanks to his endeavors that evening, the deleted pages were back the next morning.  He knew who to contact and didn't hesitate to assist me at the end of the day. I also commend Sher Nasir and Tom DeBoeser for their assistance and quick turnaround time. I appreciate your assistance."

- Esther Schlobach, Sprague Technology Center

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Bhumika Saxena, Kimberly Gadson, Jenna Heath, Erin Murtagh, Kimberly Yeo, Lisa McGarry, Khaled Noori, Lisa Schwartz, and Ruth Goetz, Twain MS

"During the last precious week before teachers are back on contract, some colleagues of mine volunteered their time to help at Twain. They came in to help assemble the many carts and technology resources Twain received from the high schools this summer. Because of their sacrifice, some of their summer students will have those resources on day 1 of the new school year. Without the help of our volunteer staff, it may have been a few weeks before all the resources were available. Thank you for exemplifying the Team Twain spirit!"

- Christine Arocho, Twain MS

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Richard Barker, Merrifield Support Center

"We are continually impressed with Mr. Barker's attention to detail. He carefully examines issues related to our heating and air conditioning units and works very hard to address them. We appreciate his persistence!"

- Jennifer Niccolls, Churchill Road ES

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Mark Hyer, Sprague Technology Center

"Mark Hyer went above and beyond to assist me with setup and breakdown for the vendors at the 2019 Great Beginnings Summer Institute that took place at South County HS this week. Mark reached out to me a week before the event and asked if I needed help setting up this year. We met early Friday morning (August 9) and began the processes of transforming South County HS into a "one-stop-shop" for new teachers. Mark helped me move tables, place chairs, lay tablecloths, and hang signs. There was an issue with the signs and he went back to TMPC to pick-up the corrected signs so that we could complete our Friday setup. On both Monday and Tuesday, Mark (TMPC was a vendor) would check-in with me periodically to see if I needed anything and was sometimes even a step ahead of me. On Tuesday late afternoon, as this successful event was concluding for the day, Mark and I were able to work strategically so that clean-up would be efficient and go quick. He then assisted me with the entire breakdown process (removing tablecloths, tables, chairs, signs, trash and more). We placed the items in a location that was easy to access for both the warehouse and rental company pickup. Mark stayed late with me to be sure all hallways were clean, signs were removed, cars were loaded, and doors were locked. Mark Hyer represents everything FCPS wants in an employee. He collaborates and builds relationships with everyone he meets (students, staff & vendors). He is respectful, upbeat, caring and always goes above and beyond to make any situation or event like Great Beginnings - Summer Institute a total success. This program has multiple layers of logistics and Mark was attentive, responsive and always available with a smile on his face asking, “how can I help?”. This too showcased his responsiveness to a situation, and the quality collaboration between multiple offices and schools, and the superior work happening in FCPS. The Great Beginnings Summer Institute was an enriching, engaging experience for new teachers and reinforced that ordinary things create extraordinary results! Thank you, Mark, for making my role in the process so much easier."

- Shelli Wayland, Gatehouse Administration Center

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Michele Cross, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Michele Cross was a huge help for the HR portion of the Great Beginnings Summer Institute. She helped pack bags prior to the event and arrived early on Monday to coordinate the bag distribution. Once the teachers were in their morning program, she helped take down the bag station, reset the table for the next day, and haul the trash. Michele then assisted me with the setup of the library so that the different HR offices were set and ready for staff on Tuesday morning. On Tuesday, she greeted the new teachers as they entered the library for their 'HR time'. She asked questions and steered them towards the different offices that could assist them with their questions. She was responsive to their individual situations and needs. At the end of the day, she stayed late to help with cleanup of the library and loading of the cars. She is a colleague who knows how to create a caring culture while building positive relationships. Thank you, Michele, for working with me and helping to make this event a success."

- Shelli Wayland, Gatehouse Administration Center

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Beth Boivin, Michele Cross, and Amanda Purvis, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Beth Boivin, Michele Cross, and Amanda Purvis are colleagues who Care! I had 1,200 bags to stuff for distribution at Great Beginnings Summer Institute. They each took time out of their day to help make the packets that were then stuffed into the new teacher bags. Working together made the process much easier and allowed me to finish the bags in half the time. Thank you for your help!"

- Shelli Wayland, Gatehouse Administration Center

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Tricia Wayland and Mark Hyer, Key MS and Sprague Technology Center

"On Friday, August 9, Tricia Wayland went above and beyond to assist with a setup situation she encountered when checking to see if her mom, and others wanted Dunkin before she left her training. Tricia was at South County HS for Great Beginnings training and came down to tell her mom, who was setting up the school for the vendors, that she was leaving for the day and wanted to know if she needed anything. Her mom and Mark were in the process of opening the new vendor signs for Great Beginnings when they noticed the signs were missing the holes needed to hang them. Mark quickly called over to TMPC and coordinated with his team. Tricia overheard the exchange and offered to take the signs to TMPC on her way home. They loaded the signs in her car and off she went. TMPC corrected the problem and a couple hours later when I walked back by, the signs were back and being hung. This positive and collaborative effort between departments and a teacher (not assigned to our school) was enriching to watch. The responsiveness to the situation and the way that it was handled, reminded me of how much I enjoy working for FCPS and South County HS. It was an inspiring situation to observe and reminded me that summer is almost over."

- an FCPS colleague

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Eileen Mazzone, Willow Oaks Aministrative Center

"Kudos to Eileen for being an excellent facilitator during the Great Beginnings Institute. She brought enthusiasm, humor, and expertise to our cohort which set the tone for an excellent start to the school year! Thank you for your time and dedication in working with first-year special education teachers. I look forward to our continued work together!"

- Kelly Petty, Willow Oaks Aministrative Center

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Christal Mitchell, Lorton Transportation Center

"Kudos to Christal Mitchell for being such a positive and friendly face for FCPS. After a long day of presenting at Great Beginnings Institute, I was so happy to encounter Christal! She made sure that new hires arrived at their cars safely and with a smile. She stopped along the route to invite additional employees on the bus. She brought humor and enthusiasm to the end of a long day for our newest employees.  Thank you for being such a welcoming presence for our newest staff members!"

- Kelly Petty, Willow Oaks Aministrative Center

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Ana Ruiz, Reina Mejia-deHernandez, Edwin Chiquillo, Maria Cruz, Leonard Roberts, and Elda Cazanga, Liberty MS 

"Our principal, Adam Erbrecht, would like to give kudos to our 6 custodians who not only cleaned our building in amazing time but more importantly, as he put it, they worked as a team. He noted in his years as a principal, he has never seen a group of custodians work so effectively together as a team. We are all super proud of them and hope that can be recognized."

- Sherryl Salzman, Liberty MS

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Scott Wohlfahrt, Merrifield Support Center

"The water fountain in our hallway has a bottle dispenser however it had been broken for several weeks, so seeing Scott working on the repair was a huge relief. He told me that it might not be possible to fix it, but he would try. He stopped by my office to let me know that it was back up and running! It was so thoughtful that he let me know and I am so grateful that he had the skills to repair the bottle-filler which so many of us use on a daily basis. The fact that this adaptor has such a positive impact on our environment is just one more reason to celebrate that Scott came out and fixed our water fountain returning it to its full potential! Thank you, Scott!"

- Cindy Blakeley, Marshall HS 

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Mark Hyer, Sprague Technology Center

"Mark came through to support the FAESP Welcome Luncheon when other tech options were unavailable. His support allowed us to integrate technology to share our message with membership in a meaningful way and enhanced the experience of all attendees. His knowledge and positive attitude were key to making the event a success."

- Marie Lemmon, Baileys Upper ES

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Steve Upthegrove, South County HS

"Even amidst a stressful time of going one-to-one and hosting Great Beginnings, Steve continues to be the modicum of professionalism and goes out of his way to make each individual a priority!  He is flexible and a joy to work with, even when unexpected situations arise! We are the luckiest school in FCPS!"

- Marci Norem, South County HS

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Lea Skurpski, Gatehouse Administration Center

"My supervisor, Lea Skurpski, exemplifies what a caring culture is all about. I recently survived a completely unexpected, life-threatening emergency requiring an extended stay in the ICU at my local hospital. I also required ten days of inpatient rehabilitation and extended time off from work to recover. Lea's warmth and consistent support to my wife and to me during such a stressful time was invaluable. She set my wife at ease regarding accessing the short-term disability process and was in regular communication with her regarding my progress. She was the central point of contact between my household and my colleagues and offered many words of encouragement throughout my recovery. She is truly a kind, thoughtful person and I am fortunate to have her as my 'boss'. In a word, she CARES."

- Dave Anderson, Gatehouse Administration Center

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Whitney Kiper, Sunrise Valley ES

"I am writing to recognize Whitney Kiper for her tremendous performance and dedication to the education of children with special needs. It is my most sincere wish that my son continue his education and socialization under the direct tutelage of Ms. Kiper. My son, an 8-year-old with autism spectrum disorder and ADHD, will start the 2nd-grade at SVES at the end of the month. Last year, my son spent the majority of the day in a special education curriculum under the direction of Ms. Kiper, implementing an IEP. He also spent a few hours in general education for Morning Meeting in addition to Science and Social Studies classes, due to Ms. Kiper’s recognition of his advanced aptitude and precocious scholarly interest in dinosaurs. I could not help but notice both steady progress and remarkable leaps in the domains of social and general adaptive functioning. Ms. Kiper demonstrated an uncommon ability to develop a rapport which led to a reciprocal relationship with our son. I cannot overstate the significance of this connection, which functions as a cradle of sorts for the development of foundational social, moral, and intellectual skills. No education or socialization can be attained without my son’s attention and trust. Ms. Kiper possesses a unique blend of attributes that include tolerance, compassion and genuine interest in her work and teaching philosophy. I am concerned that if my son were required to begin anew with another teacher, particularly one who lacks these extraordinary qualities, that his growth and maturation would suffer a setback."

- a Sunrise Valley ES parent

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Dr. Daniel Smith, Lindsey Kearns, Tony Dibari, Kristen McNamara, Teri Hampton, Eileen Hoppock, Josephine Rodriguez-Walhout, Lance Jackson, Elizabeth Eby, Jim Patrick, Anne Polino, Alka Howard, Scott Darwin, Jennifer Bury, Niki Holmes, Courtney Klein, Carin Frank, and Charles Brewer, Lake Braddock SS

"This is the most excited we have been about the unity and cohesiveness of the admin team in several years, due to the awesome energy at the IC Retreat! Great energy around instruction, inclusion, and creating an amazingly positive environment at LB. Thanks to the combined efforts of our Instructional Coaches, SOSA’s and SBTS, along with our collaborative administrative team, this summer’s IC retreat was phenomenal! We now have a clear picture of the growth that has taken place, our schools purpose, areas of focus for this year and the tools available to support continued progress. Thanks for making this such a valuable experience. What we enjoyed most of all was how intentionally it was designed. Everything we covered felt meaningful and authentic. We are super excited and honored to Set Sail at Lake Braddock SS this upcoming school year."

- Kristin Girardin, Jacquie Naughton, Sarah Pevner, Amy Soos, Lake Braddock SS

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Elisa King, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Ms. Elisa King, provided interpretation services throughout the summer at the Edison Summer Clinic site. I wanted to take a moment to thank Ms. King for your help at Edison Summer Clinic. She not only made our jobs easier, she made them possible. I really appreciate Ms. King calling families to introduce herself prior to meetings, confirming appointments and then welcoming families when they arrived at summer clinic. I know her warm welcome helped make a stressful time for them much easier. Ms. King helped during testing sessions and for many of our meetings. Her help ensured that parents understood the process and were able to have their questions and concerns addressed. She also enabled staff to be able to explain special education procedures and how FCPS could help students to the families at summer clinic. It was a pleasure working with her this summer."

- Susan Kannengiesser, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Inez Gianella, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Ms. Ines Gianella supported Edison Summer Clinic from June 20 through August 8, 2019. I just wanted to take a moment to thank Ms. Gianella for her help this summer at Edison Summer Clinic. We would not have been able to complete as many cases as we did without her support. I appreciate her help with all the testing and meetings. The time she spent calling families and meeting families prior to meetings helped them feel more comfortable with the special education process. Ms. Gianella's help at the meetings allowed parents to fully participate in the meeting discussion and to understand forms that were being completed. She always checked in with staff and asked if we needed help. It was a pleasure working with her this summer. Thank you again for everything you did to support students, parents, and staff."

- Susan Kannengiesser, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Andrew Guillen, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"Andrew was excellent in providing support to a student new to McLean who required special education service. Andrew was responsive, knowledgeable and genuinely cared about both the staff and student's needs. Thank you for your support and very timely response."

- Mark Thompson, McLean HS

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Betsy Whiting, Deer Park ES

"Betsy is a powerful advocate and mentor for digital citizenship education, blended learning, and POG. Today she supported this year’s Digital Citizenship Cohort Schools with powerful ways to educate and engage the parent community using a pyramid wide approach.  Students at Deer Park and the Westfield Pyramid are learning critical Dig Cit skills and dispositions through authentic use of digital tools backed by a research based Dig Cit curriculum. Thank you, Betsy, for your leadership and advocacy!"

- Tammi Sisk, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Leo Colgan, Oakton HS

"Leo is a powerful advocate and mentor for digital citizenship education, blended learning, and POG. Today he supported this year’s Digital Citizenship Cohort Schools with powerful ways to assess the needs of students, teachers, and parents through the use of empathy interviews. Students at Oakton HS are learning critical Dig Cit skills and dispositions through authentic use of digital tools backed by a research-based  Dig Cit curriculum. Thank you, Leo, for your leadership and advocacy!"

- Tammi Sisk, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Tabitha Reber, Hayfield SS

"Tabitha is a powerful advocate and mentor for digital citizenship education, blended learning, and POG. Today she supported this year’s Digital Citizenship Cohort Schools with powerful ways to educate and engage students in learning critical Dig Cit skills and dispositions through authentic use of digital tools backed by a research based  Dig Cit curriculum. Thank you, Tabitha, for your leadership and advocacy!"

- Tammi Sisk, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Regina Natale, Hayfield SS

"Regina is a powerful advocate and mentor for digital citizenship education, blended learning, and POG. Today she supported this year’s Digital Citizenship Cohort Schools with powerful ways to educate and engage students in learning critical Dig Cit skills and dispositions through authentic use of digital tools backed by a research based  Dig Cit curriculum. Thank you, Regina, for your leadership and advocacy!"

- Tammi Sisk, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Kathleen Fugle, Chesterbrook ES

"Kathleen is a powerful advocate and mentor for digital citizenship education, POG, STEAM, and Computer Science! Today she supported this year’s Digital Citizenship Cohort School with powerful ways to educate and engage the parent community around these important and connected topics. Thank you, Kathleen, for your leadership and advocacy!"

- Tammi Sisk, Willow Oaks Administrative Center 

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Ivan Johnson, Rita Matos, Frehiwot Gelagay, Mesfin Woldetsadik, Blanca Cienfuegos, Chau Kin Poon, Grace Adarkwah, Veronica Baires, Elizabeth Chartey, Candida Escobar, Sandra Gonzalez, Mark Holmes, Cynthia Koufie, Samford Kwarteng, Margaret Kyeraa, Songlorn Ly, Dinora Menjivar Lopez, Maria Reyes, Felicia Tanimowo, Comfort Tuffour, and Reina Valdez, West Potomac HS

"Ivan and his custodial staff worked swiftly and magically to deliver furniture to my new office and classroom.  As a new employee here at West Potomac, I was patient, but excited, to get set up as soon as possible.  I anticipated waiting a while, but Ivan and his staff ensured I didn't have to and diligently and quickly got me all setup! Thanks!"

- Mike Henrich, West Potomac HS

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Blair Kersh, Chantilly HS

"Ms. Kersh is a very professional STEP staff member who cared about me. When I was having difficulty with one of my peers in the STEP Program, she stepped in to help. We since stopped butting heads and showing animosity towards each other and realize that we can't be acting like the campus or workplace bullies. Ms. Kersh even came back last year and even cared about me when my mother was at Reston Hospital Center. She deserves a raise and we need more caring people like her."

- a former FCPS student

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Brandon Armentrout, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Brandon went above and beyond to help me with a Great Beginnings Summer Institute project that I was trying to complete to help the vendors and the school. I needed a PDF copy of the floor plan that I had created using a large map. He took time out of his morning to make a copy that was able to be sent via email as a PDF file. My copy was worn and flimsy so it made the process harder. Thank you, Brandon, for being so responsive, positive, and collaborative."

- Shelli Wayland, Gatehouse Administration Center

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Jean Kim, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Jean has provided great customer service. I am very impressed with the quick responses from her every time and her true professionalism in delivering high-quality services. Recently, I requested a FOCUS basic finance training for a new team member in a very short notice. Without doubt, Jean tried her best to meet my request in her busy schedule and provided training the next business day! As always, Jean did so well in providing the trainings that my team has very good comments about her. The training materials are very helpful and her training is thorough. She makes sure she covers every perspective and is patient with questions. Her training is very informative. Jean is extremely knowledgeable about the financial system and we certainly benefit a great deal in our work due to her training. I truly appreciate that Jean Kim shows great care. Her commitments to go above and beyond in providing supports show that FCPS Cares."

- Lifen Zhou, Gatehouse Administration Center

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Stefan Slavov, Sean Petitt, Energy ZoneFood Services Center and Dan Checkosky, Woodson HS

"We recently held our SIA BOY Conference at Woodson HS. This was our first experience using the catering services provided by Stefan and Sean. They were fabulous and exceeded our expectations making it a memorable event for all. Not only was the food delicious, but the fact that they took care of every detail made the day a huge success. Thank you, Stefan and Sean. Dan Checkosky stepped in when we found ourselves without tech support. He made sure we had access to the sound room and had all the tech equipment necessary for a  successful conference.  We would have been lost without him. Thank you, Dan!"

- Robin Borean, Sprague Technology Center

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Alicia Hawks, Fort Hunt ES

"Mrs. Hawks went above and beyond by fulfilling duties outside the scope outside her job by assisting with Choir, tutoring, helping band students, mentoring children at Fort Hunt, and supporting students in their extra curricular activities."

- a Fort Hunt ES parent

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Jenna Jablonski, McLean HS

"Jenna was the counselor for all three of my girls. One of my girls has difficult struggles in her junior and senior years. If it weren't for Jenna Jablonski, I don't know that my daughter would have graduated, let alone survived.  Jenna was always there for her to talk about anything, guide her through serious troubles she was having emotionally, and helped guide her through some tough struggles her senior year. Jenna is such an asset to FCPS, truly she is. I'm sad that she left Robinson, as my youngest will have a new counselor, but I'm excited for the new opportunity she is pursuing. I just wanted to recognize her for the amazing person, counselor, employee that she is."

- a Robinson SS parent

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Mary Lou Bare, Rolling Valley ES & Hunt Valley ES

"I am a teacher of a preschool autism class (PAC) at Cherry Run. I believe we are the last program to close up for the summer. The last few days are a flurry of activity as we complete progress reports and other paperwork and close down classrooms for summer cleaning. ALL of my Microsoft Office applications stopped working this afternoon (the day before our last day!). In a panic, I submitted my need to RequestIT. I received an email from Mary Lou Bare that evening (after work hours). Mary Lou is a Technology Support Specialist, from a different school than me. Using webmail from my phone to communicate with Mary Lou, I was able to try her suggestions. They didn't work. She told me that she would be at her school around 7:30 a.m. the next day and would be able to assist me further. Mary Lou and I communicated the next morning. She used remote access and had my laptop and the programs up and running by 8:00 a.m. so that I could finish my necessary paperwork tasks for students. Mary Lou and I have never even met but I am so grateful to her for stepping in to fill an immediate need and helping me finalize important items for students as we complete our school year. I don't know what I would have done without her."

- Leslie Lauth-Torres, Cherry Run ES

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Laura Brown, Stonecroft Transportation

"Laura worked with Mahmood Saeed this summer and was just as wonderful! She was joyful every morning and afternoon, and my students looked forward to interacting with her. She continuously made an effort to ensure that my students felt safe and cared for, both on the way to school and on the way home. I hope to have the pleasure of working with Laura again; kindness seems to come so naturally to her!"

- Adrienne Dupont, Little Run ES

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Mahmood Saeed, Stonecroft Transportation

"I had the pleasure of working with Mahmood this summer; he drove a few of my PAC students to school. He was never anything but remarkably kind and made a tremendous effort to get to know and love my students. He greeted each and every child with a smile and wished them a wonderful day at school, every single day this summer. I hope to have the pleasure of working with Mahmood again!"

- Adrienne Dupont, Little Run ES

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Cesar Santamaria & Lisbeth Santos Enamorado, Stonecroft Transportation

"The PAC team at Forestville Elementary School would like to thank two FCPS employees who not only went above and beyond but went the extra mile for our students. Mr. Cesar and Ms. Lisbeth supported the bus route for Summer PAC. Both individuals took great pride in their roles to support our students, by asking questions, building relationships with teachers and families, and demonstrating their professional knowledge of supporting students with exceptionalities. Prior to session start, Mr. Cesar and Ms. Lisbeth made it a point to build a relationship with the school team. Every drop off and every pickup, continued to build upon the relationship.  Both employees demonstrated professional knowledge of their job and responsibilities while showing compassion towards the children. Each morning, we were greeted with a friendly smile. As we entered the school building, both employees supported us in the littlest of ways that made a huge difference. Mr. Cesar would open and hold the doors and we shuffled students in the building. Ms. Lisbeth would support children who may be sad or upset. They became part of our class and morning and afternoon routine.  Mr. Cesar and Ms. Lisbeth showed that they cared for the students as well as us as individuals. By building relationships, demonstrating positive attitudes, and creating a welcoming environment on the bus each morning and afternoon, we became a team. Thank you!"

- Shannon Hoff, Forestville ES

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Will Gideonse & Sue Payne, Fairfax High School - IFTA

"During the month that IFTA (The Institute for the Arts) was located at Fairfax High School, Will and Sue worked along with the IFTA staff and teachers to help the program run smoothly. They always had a positive attitude and made connections with both staff and students. It was a joy to have them on our IFTA Support Team!"

- Elizabeth McCall & Sally Gilliam, Fairfax High School - IFTA

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Betsy Green, Hunt Valley ES

"I just wanted to recognize Mrs. Green for going above and beyond for her students.  My kid is in the Sped program and she has volunteered her own lunch time and on occasion her personal time before school to work with my child. I just wanted to recognize her for being a great teacher and going above and beyond being a true dedicated teacher all year long."

- a Hunt Valley ES parent

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Ramez Mossed, Evergy Zone Food Services Center 

"Ramez went above and beyond for our summer enrichment students. He came out every day to restock our vending machines, but while he was here I watched him help many of our students from elementary to high school purchase the snacks they wanted. He approached every student and situation with a warm smile and lots of patience."

- Andrea Cook, Fairfax HS

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Anne Fenton, Chantilly HS

"Anne went above and beyond for me this summer. I previously worked in the same building with Anne at CHS about a year and a half ago but never had the pleasure of working directly with her. We would simply say hello in the hallway, eventually learned each other's names, and briefly talked about our daughters. This school year, I found out I will be teaching in a new subject area and reached out to Anne during the summer via email because I knew she taught science. I wasn't even sure which one. She emailed me back within minutes and took time out of her day to me at a coffee shop the following Monday. She gave me a USB with all of her course materials for the course I will be teaching. In addition, she offered continued support throughout the school year and we exchanged numbers. I have worked in FCPS for fifteen years and this is by far one of the kindest things a colleague has done. There are teachers in this county who truly care about one another and support each other. Anne is one of these people and I am grateful for her. Thank you, Anne."

- Stacy Mitchell, TSRC - Fairfax

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Aaron Curtis, Anith Muthalaly, Michael Jones, Robert Besceglia, Nathaniel Gibson, Negusse Ghebremichael, Francisco Lopez, Imran Ali, and Benhur Negusse, Forte Center

"Kudos to Aaron Curtis and his team! I would like to thank the warehouse team, drivers and crew for always going above and beyond! When you go in for assistance you are always greeted immediately and get escorted around to view items available and orders are placed. We just had two trucks loaded with all my delivery items. The team was fantastic. They were so organized and fast. Aaron again worked his magic, so after they unloaded, his team picked all my returns to go back to the warehouse at the same time! We would like to thank them for all their hard work, dedication, and as always, getting things done so fast! Great teamwork!"

- Gail Rostamie, Cedar Lane School

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Gladys Laureano, Waples Mill ES

"Gladys Laureano is the building supervisor at Waples Mill. Her support and professionalism during the month-long Extended School Year greatly contributed to the program's overall success. Gladys and her team ensured the building was a safe and welcoming place each day. She demonstrated her caring culture by greeting staff and asking what help may be needed. Gladys worked hard to back us during ESY! This was completed in addition to the countless tasks necessary to prepare the building for the beginning of the school year. Thank you, Gladys!"

- Tim Scesney, Waples Mill ESY

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Danielle Haig, Hunt Valley ES

"Mrs. Haig is an outstanding Teacher of the Visually Impaired. She has worked hard to build rapport and trust with my son and our family. She consistently models a positive, encouraging attitude, open communication, and a dedication to making learning fun. She holds our son to appropriately high and challenging expectations and she works hard to help him meet and exceed those expectations, all while having fun. She listens to his ideas and helps him to take ownership of his learning experience. Recently, she helped him to design a braille board game, which they use to help him learn braille. It’s clear that he helped to make the board game and Ms. Haig has done an excellent job of tapping into his interests in order to engage him in learning. The board is decorated with his favorite Star Wars vehicles and the game pieces are his favorite Matchbox cars. He asked to bring the game home, and at his request, we played it in the hotel on a recent family vacation. What 5-year-old comes back from a hotel pool on a family vacation and exclaims, “Let’s play braille!”? He frequently tells me that braille is one of his favorite parts of the day. We are so thankful for Mrs. Haig and the positive impact she has had on our son. Moving into FCPS, we came from a much different situation in another state, and we have been so impressed by Mrs. Haig’s professionalism, patience, dedication and creativity. She is an early literacy superstar in our book, and we are so grateful."

- a Hunt Valley ES parent

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Bryan Buser, Gatehouse Administration Center

"I would like to offer my thanks and kudos to Bryan Buser.  A team of people from IS, HR and SS recently convened to renew the ways we communicate background checks and fingerprinting processes. Together, we worked to create new web language that was sent to Bryan. The very day the content was sent to Bryan, a new site was created. The day following, some tweaks were made and again, that next day, Bryan "got 'er done!" Our new site went live on July 25, 2019, and it's sure to help staff members and volunteers navigate the background checks and fingerprinting process - further advancing student safety. Thank you, Bryan."

- Jay Garant, Gatehouse Administration Center

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Debbie Miller, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"I want to take a moment to acknowledge Debbie Miller. She has worked countless hours this summer ensuring Extended School Year site locations are running smoothly. She has worked to troubleshoot logistics, find evidenced based programs needed to support students and to problem solve issues as they arise. In addition, she found the time to meet with me to discuss plans moving forward regarding Virginia Alternate Assessment Program (VAAP) training for the upcoming school year. Thank you, Debbie, for all of your time, effort and collaboration!  It does not go unnoticed."

- Kelly Petty, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Derek Kelley, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"Derek Kelley spent a tremendous amount of time yesterday at our SBTS kick-off. He provided us with feedback and additional ideas as to how we can support SBTS with the FCPS Theory of Action and the work they are doing with the SIIP and ISTE Coaching Modules. After a long day, Derek continued to support us in our growth while we reflected as an entire time. We are so lucky to have such a patient and supportive leader who guides us to grow in our knowledge and practice. Thank you, Derek!"

- Carrie Pratt & Jason Covey, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Rick Stegman, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"Rick Stegman went above and beyond, helping us set up for the SBTS kick-off. It was challenging, dirty, and sweaty work! He showed up eager to help, with a smile, and his amazing positive aura! We are so grateful to have Rick on our team, not just because he always seems to be there…but because he is truly an awesome teammate!"

- Carrie Pratt & Jason Covey, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Margaret Sisler, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"Margaret Sisler is so creative, willing, informational, and kind. She helped us bring smiles to every SBTS during kick-off with her awesome SWAG and creative sign-in station. Margaret is a deep thinker and reflector, who asks great questions as a coach. Thank you, Margaret, for all your ideas, creativity, and coaching!"

- Carrie Pratt & Jason Covey, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Summer Johnson, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"Summer Johnson teamed up with us to support the processing and reflection of FCPS Theory of Action during the SBTS kick-off. Her ideas, support, and interactions helped High School and Middle School teams push their thinking. Thank you, Summer! We are so lucky to have you on our team!"

- Carrie Pratt & Jason Covey, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Leslie Borkenhagen, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"Leslie Borkenhagen not only helped teams process their plan during a large event but also took the time to personally support us as we thought about our part during a large event. Her assessment and honesty were helpful and guided some changes throughout the rest of the day. Thank you, Leslie!"

- Carrie Pratt & Jason Covey, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Elizabeth Hernandez, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"Elizabeth Hernandez supported, listened, and provided feedback during a critical time in our learning. What she shared shaped our thinking and understanding of how teams were approaching their discussion of SIIP work. We are fortunate to have her as a partner, and for her perspective to help us grow. Thank you, Elizabeth!"

- Carrie Pratt & Jason Covey, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Tammi Sisk, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"Tammi Sisk is someone who always puts the work of the team at the center of everything she does. Prior to, during, and after a very large event, Tammi offered her advice, guidance, mental and physical support. She was always there asking questions, getting us thinking, and cheering us on. We are so lucky to have her on our team and a partner in all that we do. Thank you, Tammi!"

- Carrie Pratt & Jason Covey, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Gisele Gray, Fairfax High HS

"Our department, the ABA program, had the pleasure of working with Gisele Gray, in order to secure a location for our year-long Preschool Autism Classroom New Teachers' training. She took time out of her busy schedule to show us around, provide all the caveats of the space, and truly make us feel welcomed. Ms. Gray also sent a follow-up e-mail to ensure we had all the information moving forward.  Such a welcoming and positive experience."

- an FCPS colleague

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Brian DeQuittner and Casey Culbreath, Stonecroft Transportation Center

"Brian and Casey are a wonderful team. As transportation professionals, they always make sure my son is safe. They also go above and beyond to help him feel welcome, happy, and excited about school. They ensure my son starts his day at FCPS on the right foot and ends on a high note. In addition, they are each very professional, just plain friendly and always smiling! I am sure they have had bad days - they are human after all - but to be honest, I'd never know it given their positive attitudes.  It really makes a difference for the kids. Thank you, Brian and Casey!"

- an Aldrin ES parent

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Jen Spicer, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"Jen Spicer is an ABA Coach who is supporting Colin Powell ESY this summer. She is an affable and extremely capable ABA coach who somehow manages to be everywhere all at the same time! She takes initiative and provides learning opportunities for all staff members. She is extremely dedicated to student safety and providing opportunities for students and staff to learn. Jen is always willing to discuss student needs, strategies, policies and then gets involved in classrooms to demonstrate her recommendations. She has taught me so much in only three weeks of ESY this summer and I am so grateful for her dedication to the ESY program."

- Emily Cincinnati, Colin Powell ESY

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Hank Garrett,  Virginia Hills Administrative Center

"I'd like to express my sincere appreciation to Mr. Hank Garrett. I am new to Virginia Hills this past year and he has helped me in countless ways, including addressing challenges with air conditioning, heating, lighting, door access and much, much more. Last week, I was teaching a class in the multi-purpose room. Mr. Garrett came to the rescue within 30 seconds when water started dripping from the ceiling while we were teaching our class. His professionalism, his leadership, his ability to quickly problem solve, and collaborate are a few of the many talents he brings to FCPS. Thank you, Mr.Garrett, for all you do each and every day!"

- Laura Thieman, Virginia Hills Administrative Center

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Quincy Johnson, Joe Pence, and Aaron Curtis, Forte Center

"Good morning, Aaron. I wanted to thank you again for your assistance this morning. Quincy and Joe were outstanding in helping us get our shipment from the loading dock through our front doors. We greatly appreciate all of you for responding so quickly to our request and for all of your help! I can’t thank you enough…we are so grateful! Enjoy the rest of your day! Thank you for ALL you do."

- Melissa Miller, Deer Park ES

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John Russell, Sideburn Support Center

"Mr. John Russell has been key to the school's recent re-tiling and carpeting endeavor.  He has assisted in numerous ways from guidance on the many options for flooring, to personally helping us move bookcases back into place. His expertise is impressive and his follow-up and concern with making things look great is much appreciated.  Thank you, John!"

- Terri Lynn Damon, Fairhill ES

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Paul Green, Sideburn Support Center

"Paul and his team did an excellent job with a recent project at Fairhill ES. Paul was courteous and efficient while taking the time to let the office know the progress of the project. We sincerely appreciate his direction and efforts to keep everything moving along while maintaining attention to detail. Thanks, Paul!"

- Terri Lynn Damon, Fairhill ES

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Vicki Glaze and George Kovch, Stonecroft Transportation

"Vicki and George are an exceptional bus driver and bus attendant team. They are currently supporting Eagle View Extended School Year and have been such an asset to our staff. We conducted a bus evacuation drill and Vicki and George were very well organized and prepared. They provided school staff with a diagram of their bus detailing the name of each student, where each student was seated, as well as the needed accommodation(s) of each student. Once all students were accounted for after the bus evacuation, they were able to locate all student belongings on the bus and return them to each student in a timely manner.  Their efforts did not go unnoticed.  Kudos to this fabulous team! Our students are lucky to have such caring professionals working with them on their commute to and from school each and every day. Thank you!"

- Kelly Petty, Willow Oaks

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Aaron Kalman, Longfellow MS

"Mr. Kalmon made himself available to myself and my daughter whenever necessary. He listened to my concerns and addressed them. My daughter has never had such a math teacher. He provided instruction and taught my daughter as a whole person not just the subject. He helped both myself and my daughter recover from our anxiety over the subject matter thus making her available to rework her skills and learn new information. I have taught for 25 years and he is one of the most outstanding teachers I have ever had the pleasure to meet."

- a Longfellow MS parent

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Tim Hilkert, Gatehouse Administration Center

"Mr. Hilkert provided an extraordinary level of service to help ensure the Adapted Curriculum Program was able to advertise and fill a position prior to the June deadline. Mr. Hilkert was incredibly responsive and helpful.  While I found his service to be exceptional, what takes it up a notch is how many other people I can only imagine Mr. Hilkert was assisting with requests at the end of June in addition to mine. His responsiveness enabled me to advertise before staff left for the summer and fill the position prior to the deadline. In the end, Mr. Hilkert’s work is going to enable the Adapted Curriculum Program to provide a higher level of support to schools working with students with disabilities who are accessing an adapted curriculum. Thank you, Mr. Hilkert!"

- Ellie Stack, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Will Waite, Herndon MS

"Will volunteered his time to help unbox, scan, and configure settings on 3,068 laptops at Chantilly HS this morning. Without his help processing these laptops would have taken several days. His generous support allowed us to finish this project in a matter of hours. Thank you!"

- Jason Franks, Chantilly HS

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Yvette Wilde, Rocky Run MS

"Yvette volunteered her time to help unbox, scan, and configure settings on 3,068 laptops at Chantilly HS this morning. Without her help processing these laptops would have taken several days. Her generous support allowed us to finish this project in a matter of hours. Thank you!"

- Jason Franks, Chantilly HS

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Sharron Wooden, Poplar Tree ES

"Sharron volunteered her time to help unbox, scan, and configure settings on 3,068 laptops at Chantilly HS this morning. Without her help processing these laptops would have taken several days.  Her generous support allowed us to finish this project in a matter of hours. Thank you!"

- Jason Franks, Chantilly HS

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Summer Johnson, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

"Summer, thank you for taking the time to teach Bea and me how to apply add-ons to Google Forms. We will be able to utilize these add-ons during our ESOL In-service and make it easier for our teachers to reserve their space. Thank you for sharing your time and expertise with us. We were impressed with your guidance and promptness."

- Evie Ifantides, Willow Oaks Administrative Center

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Kim Horn, Daniels Run ES

"Mrs. Horn is inspirational and she has a wonderful rapport with her students. She seems to have a unique and effective way in connecting with her students and I feel this should be recognized. She is the best teacher in the world."

- a Daniels Run ES parent

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Shatha Kamal, Ali Al Khanak, Huchen Zhang, Mahnaz Rismanchian, Eunsook Kwon, Eunyoung Cho, Saher Adnan, and Tan Nguyen, Gatehouse Administration Center

"This amazing team of translators provided translations in 8 languages for a collection of new resources to support Twice-Exceptional (2e) Learners. They did this difficult work on a very tight timeline, and the 2e Handbook project team is extremely grateful!"

- Beth Baldwin, Willow Oaks

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Fran Migdal, Canterbury Woods ES

"This summer, Extended School Year services are being provided at Canterbury Woods ES. Some of the tech tools we needed had been put away in places we could not access. Fran came to school during his summer break to help locate them so that classrooms could run successfully. He said it "wasn't a big deal," but to those of us providing access and instruction to ESY students, it was a very big deal. Thank you, Fran, for being a fantastic team player!"

- Mollie Kropp, Assistive Technology Services

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Jose HerediaSerrano, Spring Hill ES

"Jose has been my colleague and friend for many years.  Over that time, I have asked him numerous questions pertaining to the technology field. His range of knowledge baffles my brain every single time I send him a question!  He answers me in a manner that feels like he is talking "with" me, and not "down" to me.  I truly appreciate the fact that he shares his expertise so willingly throughout the year to myself, as well as our colleagues! He is a very helpful member of FCPS, and should be treasured!"

- Kurt Kohls, Madison HS

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Terri Anderson, Plum Center

"Terri Anderson was exceptional in the way she helped me complete a registration for my son!  Even in the midst of the last date for summer class registration, she treated me like I was the only one she had to deal with (which I know was not true!). She took her time with my particular needs, we came to many roadblocks due to the nature of the class requested, but she navigated them easily!  In the end, she was able to get my son into an available class. I couldn't see it, but she gave off the sense that she had a smile on her face the entire time!  She is quite an asset to the ACE department! Thank you, Terri!"

- an FCPS parent