End-of-Year Bulletin; Fall 2019 Dates; Summer Enrichment Opportunities

Happy Summer!

Dear TJHSST Families:

Thank you for a memorable year as we have continued to excel in our academic pursuits while making strides toward student wellness and balance.

We joyously celebrated the Class of 2019 with 425 seniors earning diplomas representing a rigorous program of study emblematic of a Virginia Governor's School. This impressive class accepted over $6.8 million in scholarships and financial aid, with 99% of the graduates planning to attend college immediately in the fall. Among them were Christina Blake (University of California, Santa Cruz) with an Air Force ROTC scholarship and Srinidhi Nagireddy (Texas A&M) with a Navy ROTC scholarship. We are thankful to TJHSST graduates who give service to our country via a process that identifies future military officers based on leadership potential, academic achievement, extracurricular accomplishments, community engagement, and physical fitness. The remaining 1% of the Class of 2019 will enter the workforce, provide humanitarian service or pursue other personal interests that continue to pave the way to post-secondary education and career opportunities. 

As I concluded my remarks to the graduates, I cited the children's novel The Phantom Toll Booth. "The most important reason for going from one place to another is to see what's in between." For all students at TJHSST, I hope our school is a rewarding space between their middle school years and what lies ahead.

I offer my deepest appreciation to our teachers and staff who deliver outstanding educational opportunities each day. Also, we would not be a community school, a home away from home, without the unflagging dedication and sacrifice of our students' families. 

Best wishes for a fulfilling and relaxing summer, one where we can all make time for PDF: Playtime, Downtime, Family time. We look forwarding to welcoming all students back to school on Monday, August 26.


Ann N. Bonitatibus, Ed.D.


Fall 2019: Important Dates

August 19: All teachers and staff report to TJ

August 22: Freshman Orientation

August 26: Students report to school

August 30 - September 2: Schools Closed Labor Day Weekend

September 5: Back to School Night (specific grades to be announced)

September 12: Back to School Night (specific grades to be announced)

Summer Academic Enrichment Opportunities

Our students have had a busy year and may have plenty on their plates this summer. They also need time for relaxation, family and friends.

Likewise, we recognize students are lifelong learners, and their education is not confined within a defined 10-month period. Learning can occur any time anywhere.

At TJHSST we have a schoolwide focus to be mindful of student workload and stress. When we start the year with reduced stress, we set a positive tone for learning.

Therefore, TJHSST is now a leader in FCPS as we are re-envisioning summer assignments. Effective this summer, teachers will not give required assignments.

We admire our students’ initiative and intrinsic motivation, and we believe they will respond to teachers posting academic enrichment opportunities to keep skills fresh or otherwise be ready for the new year.

Anything posted on our website shall be optional for students. Students may be encouraged to review concepts, practice problems, design, read, write, etc. They shall not be required to complete an assignment to turn in, asked to teach themselves new content for which they will be held immediately accountable upon their return, or be expected to take a test for a grade upon their return to school. In short, there are no required deliverables or requirements to be assessment-ready.

As we move forward with efforts to decouple rigor and workload, we recognize quantity does not equate to quality. Scaling back the amount of work previously required over the summer does not mean we are sacrificing the overall quality of our educational program. Teachers have been creative and thoughtful with how they will lead through this shift to promote a healthier start to the school year.

The summer academic enrichment opportunities will be posted to the TJ website no later than next Friday, June 21. At that time you may find the appropriate web page by clicking here. Note: the link is NOT active until then.

Fourth Quarter Photo Gallery


For staff appreciation week, we complemented our Challenge Success efforts by distributing TJ pillows and Matthew Walker's compelling book Why We Sleep. Put this book on your summer reading list to learn the neuroscience behind sleep's transformative power for health and wellness.


Our Challenge Success Team is recommending three key focus areas for our school: decoupling workload and rigor, sleep, and managing expectations. We still need your help completing the parent survey! At least another 200 participants are need. Click here.


TJHSST students have the unique opportunity to select from over 150 clubs and activities. This past spring our TJ Academic Boosters hosted its annual honors ceremony to recognize all the competition teams it sponsors. Many of our teams this year earned state and national championship titles. Thank you to all the sponsors and parent volunteers. Most of all, congratulations to our talented students!


Outside the academic arena, student members of our TJ Cultivators of the Earth Club beautify our campus.


TJ is proud of our students' community outreach efforts. Thousands of young children throughout the region attended Techstravaganza and were inspired by TJ students who thoughtfully designed interactive lab experiences for hands-on authentic learning. 


The TJ PC Builders Club refurbished 25 donated laptops from the VA STAR organization and delivered them to surprised students at Holmes Middle School. We were all taken aback by the tears of joy when the middle schoolers learned they could keep the devices as their own.


TJ students are known for their exceptional communication skills, which is why TEKNOS, our award-winning scientific journal, publishes student articles worthy of peer reviewed journals.


TRY ME. A bold yet apropos thematic statement in Techniques 2019, our student yearbook. Stories and photos capture the undaunted tenacity of TJ students.


When our seniors are nearly ready to graduate, families want to tap their minds and hear lessons learned about the college application process. Thanks to the PTSA College Outreach Committee for assembling an astute panel of experts.


Our annual tjSTAR had a new look this year while maintaining the feel of a professional symposium with industry experts. Thanks to the TJ Partnership Fund for its support and to our keynote speaker from Amazon, Paul Misener. 


Work hard, play hard. That's what J-Day is all about. Our Student Government Association annually organizes a virtual festival of games and food galore. Student clubs sell their goodies to raise funds for next year's events. Get your slushie here!


Students aren't the only ones who work hard and play hard. Mr. Frank, Ms. Qamar, Ms. Russell and Ms. Tinkelman enjoyed the g-force of roller coasters at King's Dominion when they chaperoned the sophomore class spring trip.


When you work hard for 30 or more years, you deserve to retire! Mark Hannum roasts John Dell at the yearend faculty luncheon. Other retirees from TJ this year are Tim Davis, Lee Ann Hennig, Hadan Kauffman, Rick Monteverde, Jo-Ann Muir, and David Zack. Congratulations! Thank you for your years of dedication and best wishes! 


We are so proud of TJ Drama Teacher Andrew Reid. He was recently honored as a finalist for Fairfax County Public Schools New Teacher of the Year. Beyond playwriting original works and empowering his students, Mr. Reid is known for bringing balance and passion to his students' lives.


Counselor Alexa Scott and Dr. Bonitatibus pose with Camden Wiseman at a recent FCPS Board of Education meeting where Camden was recognized with the 2019 School Board Character Award. He is an inspiration to us all and represents the strong character found at TJ.


Members of the Class of 2019 pose with the Assistant Superintendent for Region 2, Dr. Fabio Zuluaga. TJ is fortunate to have strong support from FCPS leaders.

Bye Bus

TJ teachers and staff affectionately wave bye-bye to the yellow chariots that whisk away our students for the summer. We will miss our amazing students!


How do seniors and Dr. Bonitatibus bid adieu to each other? Just look at the rock at the front entrance wishing everyone a heartfelt Bonitati-bye!