Fall Greetings

Fall Greetings from the Principal

Dear TJHSST Families:

It is hard to believe we are nearly finished with the first quarter of school. The opening weeks have been filled with joyful learning and plenty of school spirit.

Before giving you a few updates, I'd like to thank the many parents, students and staff who extended well wishes to me as I recovered from surgery and complications related to a rogue kidney stone. I missed the opening weeks of school and wasn't cleared until the end of last week to return to a regular work schedule. I share this as a cautionary tale about heeding a body's warning signs. Our Challenge Success initiatives remind us each day about the importance of wellness and balance, and I definitely had a lesson learned!

Speaking of Challenge Success, I'm excited to share the fantastic projects teachers have undertaken to be more responsive to our students' unique needs. First, our steering committee composed of staff, parents and students will travel to the Boston area this weekend for a conference that will give us an opportunity to share progress and garner new ideas.

Second, we have nearly 30 teachers selecting a student of their choice to shadow for an entire school day. The goal is to learn more about what students experience in order to make changes in policies or practices to benefit students. Likewise, we have an an equal number of teachers who are focused on workload to examine current homework practices, look for inefficiencies and/or redundancies, and experiment with decreasing workload without sacrificing high standards. They are accomplishing this by observing a colleague's class and completing the assigned homework.

Finally, another large cohort of teachers is focused on project-based learning. They will modify at least one assignment, unit, or assessment to give students more voice and choice with a task that is complex, open-ended and authentic to the core work of the discipline.

We look forward to reporting out on this important and meaningful work.

Continue reading below for more timely information about the upcoming PSAT day, vision and hearing screening, and the FCPS Youth Survey. Also, take a look at a Homecoming 2019 photo gallery.

Yours in Colonials Spirit,

Ann N. Bonitatibus, Ed.D.



PSAT DAY OCTOBER 16 with Early Release at 1:00 p.m.

 October 16, 2019 will be an early release day for all high schools in FCPS to support the administration of the PSAT/NMSQT to all 10th and 11th graders.

It will be important that students arrive on time so we can begin testing immediately at the start of school to meet our deadline for dismissal at 1:00 p.m.

Regardless of grade level, all students will be dismissed and the buses will depart TJ at 1:00 p.m. Lunch will still be served.

This day has been designated by FCPS as a Transition Day for all 9th graders (Class of 2023). The Class of 2023 will be working with IBET teachers and their counselors  on activities and lessons that will focus on their transition to high school as well as some time to discuss the importance of wellness in their academic lives. Some of the topics being addressed may include an overview of the Naviance system and a strengths/interest inventory to explore the various career clusters, academic and career planning, building a resume, goal setting, working with one’s teacher, and mastering homework. 

Students in grade 12  do not take the PSAT. Instead, we will have a variety of activities available for the Class of 2020 on October 16 that include:

  • All research labs (12) will be open for seniors throughout the day. All TJ lab teachers will be present to provide assistance and support to the seniors.
  • Seniors will be scheduling time for individual essay writing conferences with their English Teachers.
  • Between scheduled writing conferences and senior lab visits, students may also work on revising their essays in the cafeteria or research labs.
  • Seniors who arrive between 8:40 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. need to sign in at the attendance office.
  • NOTE: any students, including seniors, who are not present will be marked absent and will need a parent's note to be excused.

We hope all seniors will take advantage of this extended opportunity to work on their senior essays and their senior research projects. It will also be a time for seniors to spend a relaxed day of school at TJ and enjoy the company of their classmates and dedicated senior teachers.



On Tuesday, October 22, and Wednesday, October 23, we will be conducting our Vision and Hearing Screenings in the Wrestling Room and Room 104 near the Health Room.  All 10th graders will be screened during their PE/Health Class (including online PE students) and any new* students to FCPS in 9th, 11th, and 12th grades will also be screened.  [*New to FCPS students do not have to wait for the screening dates and may stop by the health room anytime during their lunch or between classes to be screened.] It takes 2-3 minutes to be screened. Students who wear glasses/contacts need to bring/wear them on the day they will be screened.

Parents, if you are interested in volunteering on either or both of these days to help conduct these screenings, please contact Tanya Holloway, School Health Aide by e-mail at tholloway@fcps.edu or call 703-750-8320. Please leave your name, contact information, and the time slot(s) 8:40 a.m.-3:30 p.m., 8:40 a.m.-12:00 p.m., or 12:30-3:30 p.m. that you are available. Training for the screenings can be done 10-15 minutes before the shift you choose. Your help is greatly appreciated and necessary to complete these FCPS mandated screenings.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Tanya Holloway

School Health Aide                                                                        




Class of 2020 and 2022 Parents/Guardians:


Each year the Fairfax County School Board and the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors work together to administer the Fairfax County Youth Survey for all students in grades 6, 8, 10, and 12. We are planning to administer the Fairfax Youth Survey on November 11 at TJHSST via World History 2 and AP Government classes.


Please take a moment to review the letter recently sent by Dr. Brabrand to the community that describes the survey, where to find results from previous surveys, and information about how to opt students out of the process if you choose. The letter from Dr. Brabrand can be found at the following URL: https://www.fcps.edu/sites/default/files/media/forms/YouthSurveyOptOutMSHS-english.pdf 


Homecoming 2019 Photo Gallery


TJHSST Cheerleaders bring spirit and incredible athletic talent as they lead us in cheers while performing breathtaking stunts.



Dress-up days are part of Homecoming Week tradition. TJ students are always creative such as pictured here. Walking greeting cards distributed words of kindness on sticky notes. Our students have heart!



Students aren't the only ones who show spirit. Our Mathematics and Computer Science Division came out flashing Pi. Line up carefully!  Pictures are Mr. Stern, Ms. Razzino, Ms. Nelson, Ms. Schmitt, Ms. Spoden, and Assistant Principal Mr. Yohe. 


Each class creates a banner to show off class themes. We love how students interpreted technology use through the decades.



Artwork during Homecoming is not limited to drawings and paintbrushes. Each class creates sculptures with canned goods, again reflecting their Class Themes. Rule changes this year incorporated the use of platforms for even more dynamic displays. Beyond the art, students pride themselves in donating the canned goods to a worthy organization.

Sr float

It can't be Homecoming without floats! This year's creations were among the best in recent memory.


Class of 2020

Float 2021

Class of 2021

Float 2022

Class of 2022

Float 2023

Class of 2023


In support of the Senior Class who dress in togas each year, the administrative team donned their Greek wear in school colors. From left to right are Mr. Hodges, Mr. Frank, Dr. Bonitatibus, Mr. Resquin, Mrs. Hawkins, Mr. Kosatka.