FCPS This Week - February 22
February is Love the Bus Month, and February 22 is School Bus Driver Appreciation Day. Thank you to all of our bus drivers, including Danielle McNamara, above, who help our students get to and from school every day! 🚌
Cooper Middle School Students Organize Earthquake Relief
Students at a number of Fairfax County public schools are using their ethical and global citizen Portrait of a Graduate skills to aid those who were affected by the devastating earthquakes in Turkey and Syria. Cooper Middle School students, including one who lived in Turkey, talked to Superintendent Dr. Michelle Reid about why they are helping those in need.
Kindergarten Registration: It’s as Easy as 1-2-3…
There’s an easy five-step process for parents wanting to register their child for kindergarten:
- Determine eligibility.
- Identify your local school.
- Gather documents.
- Fill out forms.
- Schedule an appointment.
After the appointment at the school (the student and one caregiver must be present), the student will be ready for orientation, Bridge to Kindergarten, or any other introductory events each school may host. Read more about the registration process.
Providing a Safe and Welcoming Space
The FCPS Trust Policy supports a continued commitment to foster a caring culture and strives to provide a safe, welcoming, and inclusive space for all students and families in our schools. The policy ensures that FCPS students and families can access FCPS benefits and services without fear that information will be disclosed, directly or indirectly, to federal immigration officials.
Additional information is available in multiple languages on our Trust Policy webpage. If you have questions about the policy, please contact FCPS’ Office of Professional Learning and Equity at [email protected]. Staff, students, and families can report possible Trust Policy violations to [email protected].
Lewis High School Hosts National Mental Health Town Hall
John R. Lewis High School leadership and Superintendent Dr. Michelle Reid hosted U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona and U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy last week for a national town hall on mental health and schools.
“We know learning is going to go better when you’re feeling better mentally,” Dr. Reid said, while welcoming more than 200 Lewis High School students to the forum. “This is the number one topic on the minds of our students, our staff, our community, and our country. It is so important that we talk about mental health, because we can’t work to improve things that we aren’t openly discussing.”
Share Your Thoughts with Us!
What keeps you optimistic about FCPS? What are your concerns? Answer these and two other questions on our Strategic Plan Feedback Form, and help shape our school division’s future.
Parental Notifications and Policy 3290: Instructional Materials with Sexually Explicit Content
A Virginia law passed last spring requires schools to create a policy for parental notification of sexually explicit content/materials. In December 2022, the School Board adopted FCPS Policy 3290: Parental Notification Regarding Instructional Materials with Sexually Explicit Content.
FCPS has had policies in place for many years regarding the review of instructional materials, communication with parents, and options for alternative instructional materials.
An expectation of this new policy is the 30-day parental notification requirement of sexually explicit content in instructional materials assigned or selected by teachers. After reviewing the notification letter, parents or caregivers who prefer to choose alternative instructional materials for their child must submit this form to the appropriate teacher within the 30-day notification window. View Policy 3290 for more information.
A Journey Across the World to Become an FCPS Teacher
Catherine Lee, a multiple disabilities teacher at Powell Elementary School, moved to the United States from Hong Kong 11 years ago. Her family was looking for a place where her son could receive the special education support he needed, “so he could grow at his own pace,” she says.
“I was so impressed by the support offered by FCPS; I studied and became a special education teacher myself!”
Webinars and Events for Parents
FCPS’ Parent Resource Center (PRC) is dedicated to helping adults support the success of all students. The PRC will present the following webinars and in-person events in March:
- SIBSHOPS: An Exciting, In-Person Workshop for Brothers and Sisters of Children with Special Needs!: Friday, March 3, at 9 a.m.
Presented by FCPS School Social Work Services, students in grades 2-6 will be able to share sibling experiences, receive peer support, play games, and more. This event takes place at Providence Community Center.
- IEP Updates: A Webinar for Families: Monday, March 6, at 6:30 p.m. and Tuesday, March 7, at 10 a.m.
The Department of Special Services will provide resources for families including an overview of the FCPS Special Education Enhancement Plan, and updated policies and procedures.
- Neurodiversity at Middle School: Friday, March 10, at 10 a.m.
Kristen Haynor, a neurodiversity specialist, will share strategies on setting your child up for success (no matter how their brain functions), advocating for your child, and collaborating with your child’s school.
Click on the titles above to register.
Our Heroes: A TJHSST Athletic Trainer
Dr. Heather Murphy is referred to by some as an "institution" at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology. Her colleagues say that TJHSST sports would not be where it is today without her guidance, expertise, and her kind heart as an athletic trainer. Learn more about Heather in this video.
Attend Today, Achieve Tomorrow!
Every year, absences increase in the weeks before and after spring break. Please make sure your child is in school every day until vacation starts. Important instruction continues up until the last day before break! Visit our website for more attendance resources.
Calendar Reminder: Student Holiday on March 3
Students have an early release on Thursday, March 2. There is no school for students on Friday, March 3, due to a school planning day. See the complete 2022-23 School Year Calendar.
School Board Meeting on February 23 at 7 p.m.
The School Board will hold its regular business meeting on Thursday, February 23, at 7 p.m. See the meeting agenda (English only). Highlights include:
- School Year Calendar Follow-On Motions
- Capital Improvement Follow-On Motions
- FY 2024 Advertised Budget
Find out how to watch and participate in School Board meetings.