FHES Weekly Update: 11/15/2020


Principals' Message

Happy Sunday, Freedom Hill Community!

I hope this finds you and your family well during these very unique and challenging times. Our school was overtaken by a flurry of activity last week as we finalized preparations for our kindergarten and Head Start program to return. We enjoyed seeing and interacting with students and parents during conferences, our first Eagles Read! night, and our information session for families of in-person kindergarten students. There are several important updates embedded in this newsletter, so please take a moment to read thoroughly through the information.

For families of students returning this week:

Families who chose in-person instruction for 2 days a week should have received updated information from their classroom teacher on Friday. This email also contained a recording of the parent information session from Friday (in case you couldn't make it!)  Please make sure that you complete your Parent/Guardian Health Screening Commitment Form (details below) prior or on the day your child returns to the building.  

The table below includes important dates to note for return to school:

Grade Level:

PreK, K, Specialists

Grades 1-2

Grades 3-6

Teacher Assignments Mailed:




Teacher Planning Days (Asynchronous Days for Students)


11/9, 11/12, 11/13, 11/16


11/16, 11/20, 11/23, 11/24


Students return:

Week of 11/16

Week of 12/7

Week of 1/11


In advance of the return dates, teachers will be provided time to plan for the change (listed in table above). On these days your children will engage in asynchronous work. Teachers will also be planning opportunities to connect with new students prior to class changes. We will communicate this shortly. 

Wishing you safe week, 


Nicholas Zapadka, Principal

Eric Kopacz, Asst. Principal

Upcoming Dates for Your Calendar

  • November 16 - Asynchronous Planning Day for Grades 1-2
  • November 17 - Kindergarten, Head Start return
  • November 17 - FH Begins Updated Schedule (see email from teacher)
  • November 17 - Family Dinner Out, Chipotle 
  • November 18 - Art Fundraiser Order Deadline
  • November 19 - Virtual PTA Meeting, 8PM
  • November 20 - Asynchronous Planning Day for Grades 1-2

FH Holiday Assistance


It’s that time of the year again when Freedom Hill organizes a Holiday Assistance Program for those less fortunate in our community. Staff and community members can adopt families and support them with presents for their children. The sign-up link will be open for you to adopt a family and drop off presents at the school until December 4th. Due to COVID-19, we are following protocols for the safety of our community. If you have any questions, please contact us at the main office: (703)-506-7800

We appreciate your generosity!


Staff Awards

Nominations are now open for the Outstanding Employee Awards! To submit a nomination for a Freedom Hill Outstanding Employee in one of the categories below, please complete the nomination through this Google form links below.  You may nominate one employee at our school or multiple employees (one individual may only nominate one employee per category.)

All that is required for a preliminary nomination is a paragraph or two about how this employee demonstrates exceptional work in the criteria for that category. 

Outstanding Teacher  

Eligibility: Has at least three years of experience as a teacher (in any school/school district); librarians are included in this category.

Outstanding New Teacher 

Eligibility: Within their first three years of being a teacher (in any school/school district); librarians are included in this category.

Outstanding Leader  

Eligibility: At least one year of experience in their current position as a Schedule-C or School-Based Administrator scale employee (that is not the building principal).

Common positions in this category: Assistant and Associate Principals, Director of Student Activities, Director of Student Services.

Outstanding New Principal

Eligibility: Be within the first 3 years of their assignment as building principal (in any school/district).

Outstanding Professional Employee  

Eligibility: At least one year experience in current position as a Schedule-B employee or other non-instructional employee in a school that supports school leadership.

Common positions in this category: School-Based Technology Specialist, Technology Support Specialist, Assessment Coach, Career Center Specialist, Instructional Coach, Psychologist, Social Worker, School Counselor, Safety and Security Specialist, Resource Teachers that serve in an administrative role in a school.

Outstanding Operational Employee 

Eligibility: At least one year of experience in current position as Schedule-A or Classroom Instructional Support Scale employee.

Common positions in this category: Administrative and Office Staff, Safety and Security Assistant, Custodial Staff, Food Service Staff, IA, PHA, PHTA, All Parent Liaisons (regardless of how they are paid).

Continental Math League

Freedom Hill is starting a CML club on Thursday mornings. CML, or Continental Math League, is a National organization that offers math challenges five times during the year.  It is very similar to the Math Olympiad program.  In the past, CML challenges have been completed during math classes.  Because of our virtual format, we decided to offer it in a new way!  Each week we will be practicing problem solving activities that promote deeper math thinking and application skills.

This will be a virtual club, and all 4th, 5th, and 6th graders are invited to attend.  It will be held each Thursday morning from 8:30-9:10, starting November 19th.  Please fill out this form if your child(ren) are interested in joining this club! 

Please contact me with any questions!

Tara Fredericks

Advanced Academics Resource Teacher


Playground Closed During School

We kindly ask that you do not bring your children to the FHES playground to play during school hours beginning Monday, November 16th. As we welcome more children and adults back to our buildings, they will utilize the outdoor spaces.

Mondays: 9:00am - 12:00pm

Tuesday - Friday: 9:00am - 4:30pm

Return to School Form

For students who are returning for in-person learning, families must complete the Health Screening Commitment form prior to the first day of when your student will return. 

Please email the Health Commitment Form to ssujoromero@fcps.edu or drop off to the front office between 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. It can also be acknowledged through ParentVue. Again, we need the form prior to the student’s return to school.

Health Commitment Form- English

Health Commitment Form- Arabic

Health Commitment Form- Chinese

Health Commitment Form- Farsi

Health Commitment Form- Spanish

Health Commitment Form- Urdo

Positivity Project - Gratitude




This week, we are focusing on Gratitude. You are aware of and thankful for good things that happen.

“The real gift of gratitude is that the more grateful you are, the more present you become.”

                                         ~Robert Holden

Questions you might enjoy talking about:

  • What are the easiest things to be grateful for? What are the most difficult?
  • What are some benefits of gratitude?
  • How does it make you feel to think that others are grateful for you?

Family Resources

 Parent Technology Help Desk  833-921-3277 (833-921-FCPS) 

Parent and Student Technology Support Portal 

Freedom Hill Digital Tools Webpage  

FCPS Parent Resource Center 

FCPS Return to School

Updates from the PTA

CHIPOTLE FAMILY DINNER OUT - NOV. 17TH  Stop by Chipotle on Maple Ave. on on Tuesday, November 17th from 5-9pm and pick up some food. Be sure you say FREEDOM HILL to help us earn dollars for the PTA. Thank you Jennifer King for arranging it.


Our next PTA meeting takes place on Thursday, November 19th. Join the meeting here or phone in with: 312-626-6799 and ID: 989 4927 5843. When you enter the meeting, you will be placed in a meeting room and admitted. Let us know questions ahead of time by emailing us


If you'd like your student's artwork the week of 12/7, the parent order deadline is 11/18. If you still want to upload art and order items, you still can (they just may not arrive in time for the holidays). Visit the Art Fundraiser page of the PTA website for details.

UPDATE YOUR DIRECTORY INFO Please update the AtoZConnect directory! You should have gotten an email which will prompt you to update the Freedom Hill Directory with your current information. Take 2 minutes to update your info for your child, teachers, and contact info.