FHES Weekly Update: 11/22/2020


Principals' Message

Happy Sunday, Freedom Hill Community!

As you are probably aware, gratitude is a trait that our students study through the Positivity Project. We would like to take this opportunity to express how grateful we are for each member of our community.  We recognize the challenges you are facing and the sacrifices you are making in order to partner with us to make this virtual learning situation the best it can be. We appreciate the unwavering support you provide as we continue to navigate this unprecedented time. 

We look forward to providing continued updates as our return to school plans are reassessed. 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:





From all of us "on the Hill", wishing you a safe week and a very happy holiday!


Nicholas Zapadka, Principal

Eric Kopacz, Asst. Principal

Upcoming Dates for Your Calendar

  • November 23 - 24 - Asynchronous Planning Day for Grades 1-2
  • November 25 - 27 - Thanksgiving Holiday, School/Office Closed

Viewing Report Cards

Report cards have been mailed home. If you would like to additionally view it online (or have opted out of receiving a paper copy), you may view it through ParentVue on the "Report Card" tab. 

ParentVue Help Link

Creating A ParentVue account 


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).

AAP Level IV Screening

Reminder: Referral Window for Advanced Academic Programs (AAP) Level IV Screening Consideration Ends December 1

Tuesday, December 1 is the close of the window (Sept 8-Dec 1) for parents to submit a referral form for their student to be screened for full-time Advanced Academic Programs (AAP) Level IV. The parent referral form, submitted to the school, is one pathway to have a student screened for AAP Level IV. Parents should not wait for an announcement of the second grade screening pool if they want to make sure their students is screened for AAP in the coming screening cycle. Parents of students in grades 2-7 will need to submit the referral form by December 1. Referrals will not be accepted after December 1. For more information about AAP Level IV or the screening process, please visit https://www.fcps.edu/academics/academic-overview/advanced-academic-programs.

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. 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


Thanks to everyone who came out to Chipotle and to the PTA meeting last week. If you missed it, the presentation and recording is here. Here's the recording and password: Y?XNNV95. Here's the minutes and powerpoint. There are no PTA meetings scheduled for December or January.


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.      

SHOW YOUR THANKS WITH WORDS We know it's been said before, but what better way to show how much we appreciate our teachers and staff by submitting outstanding employee nominations. Last day is Tuesday, November 24th.

MARSHALL HOLIDAY SALE - Poinsettias and Candles Support the Marshall High School Class of 2021 by purchasing beautiful 7" poinsettias in four color choices (pink, red, marble and white) and Chanukah candles (purple, blue or multi-colored).  Purchases can be made on P44S.com. If you have an account but are associated with Freedom Hill, just edit your account to associate with Marshall High School temporarily to make the purchase.  Once you've completed the purchase you can edit your account again to associate with your current school. You may also email or text Dianne Gurdak with your order at dsgurdak@positek.net or 703-403-2463 and Venmo or mail her a check. Orders can be picked up December 5 at Marshall High School. Thank you for your support!


For those who celebrate, we hope you and your family have a safe and nice Thanksgiving holiday. Here are a few printables and activities that can help your kids stay occupied during the holiday. Enjoy!