TJ News: Employee Awards, Book Club, School Improvement and More

Employee Award Nominations

Staff, Parents, Students:

The FCPS Employee Award is an annual awards program designed to celebrate employee success and increase recognition of outstanding employees across the school system.  We are now taking nominations for the FCPS Outstanding Employee Awards and would love to have TJ staff included among the honorees!

To submit a nomination for a TJHSST Outstanding Employee in one of the six categories, please complete the nomination through this Google form. Students, parents, and staff may nominate an employee in one or more categories. All that is required for a preliminary nomination is a paragraph about how this employee demonstrates exceptional work in the criteria for that category. 

If you have any questions please contact Assistant Principal Mike Yohe at Note: the deadline for nominations in November 22. Thank you for recognizing our fine staff members.

School Improvement Goals

Each FCPS school is required to design an annual School Improvement and Innovation Plan (SIIP). Our plan is being driven by our Challenge Success focus on decoupling workload and rigor, sleep, and managing expectations. The SIIP goals in support of those efforts are as follows: increasing the number of students who report being engaged in school, improving student advocacy, and building strong connections between students and adults. Teachers are shadowing students, visiting colleague classrooms, and innovating with performance-based activities in support of our SIIP. A complete breakdown of our SIIP details can be found on our website

PTSA Book Club with the Principal: Learn How to Catch some ZZZZZZs!

Don't be mislead by the title- this year's book club is not a snoozer!

Each year the TJHSST sponsors a Book Club with Dr. Bonitatibus. This fall's book is Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker. Learning about the science behind sleep and its importance on overall wellness, particularly for teens whose brains are still developing, complements our school's Challenge Success efforts. 

The PTSA has arranged the first session for this week November 1, from 5:00-6:00 p.m. Parents, staff and students are welcome. You do not need to have read the book to participate in the conversation.

Two additional sessions are on Friday, November 15, and again on Friday, November 22, from 5:00-6:00 p.m. Join one, two or all three sessions at your convenience.

For more information, visit the PTSA Book Club webpage.

Having a Fit Over College? Fit is It!

The looming early decision and early action college application deadlines can be a stressful time for students and families, not to mention teachers and counselors earnestly writing recommendations. Take time to reflect and ask questions. Do college rankings really matter? Are students who attend more selective colleges better off later in life? What is "fit" and why does it matter? The research answering these questions may surprise you. Read the Challenge Success white paper: A "Fit" Over Rankings: Why College Engagement Matters More Than Selectivity.

Coming and Going

We have bid a fond adieu to a few support staff members and welcomed new faces to the TJ family. Marie Lauducci, a mainstay in our 8th period office for 19 years as both a volunteer and employee, retired on September 30. She looks forward to spending time with family and traveling. Also from the 8th period office, our coordinator over the past year, Catherine Massar, has decided to stay home effective October 22 and embrace motherhood as she gets ready to welcome her first baby. We wish Marie and Catherine the best and thank them for their service to TJ.

Our 8th period office is now under the coordination of a new dynamic duo, Laura Slonina,program specialist, and Ariana Delgado, office assistant. Both have jumped right in and flawlessly executed several 8th period days. Please welcome Laura and Ariana.

Finally, the administrative assistant to the principal, Ms. Cathie Love, is retiring effective November 1. Ms. Love has worked 16 years at TJ serving three different principals. She looks forward to traveling, knitting and spending time with family and friends. We know how the principal's secretary is a right and left hand to all the operations of the school, and Ms. Love's expertise, kind disposition and sense of humor have contributed positively to our school each day. We wish her the best.

Following in Ms. Love's footsteps is Ms. Bethany Fortier. She currently serves as an assistant at a FCPS central office and she has worked in a variety of schools and private industries in a support role. We will welcome her on November 11.

November 4-5 No School for Students

As we conclude first quarter, this is a reminder there will be no school for students on November 4 and 5.  November 4 is a Planning Day for staff. November 5 is a Teacher Work Day and teachers may be working elsewhere to finalize quarter grades.  The building will be open both days but staff will not be available for most of Monday due to Professional Development meetings and activities. Also, if you visit our campus Tuesday, please be aware TJ is a voting site for local elections.