FHES Weekly Update: 1/3/2020


Principals' Message

Good morning Freedom Hill Community,

From all of us "on the Hill", wishing you and your family a very Happy New Year and start to 2021. We hope this newsletter finds everyone safe after the holiday break!

Our Positivity Project trait of study this week is optimism. It is in this spirit that we enter a new calendar year with our students and community. We are optimistic and hopeful that the pandemic will begin to subside, and that students will be reunited with their teachers in the school building. As we have since last March, our staff deeply appreciates the efforts and partnership of our community and remains open to your feedback. Our doors remain open to assist your family. 

As a reminder, the Fairfax County School Board will be meeting on January 5 to discuss return to school plans. Regardless of their decision, our bell schedule will be changing on January 12. Freedom Hill's bell times will be 9:45-4:15. Teachers will send their families an updated class schedule by the end of the week. 

Looking forward to seeing you in 2021,

Nicholas Zapadka, Principal

Eric Kopacz, Asst. Principal


Upcoming Dates for Your Calendar

  • January 4 - Teacher Work Day, AM Meeting will be held
  • January 5 - 8 - Virtual week of instruction for all students
  • January 6 - Curbside Book Checkout, 2-6PM
  • January 11 - Teacher Work Day for 3-6 teachers
  • January 12 - FH Bell Schedule/Master Schedule Change to 9:45-4:15
  • January 12 - (Tentative) Pre-K and Kindergarten Return
  • January 13 - Family Dinner Out, Silver Diner, 5-9PM

Positivity Project: Optimism


Optimism means you expect the best from the future and work to achieve it. It represents a state of hopefulness and confidence about the future (both short and long term). People with this strength are future oriented. They have a positive vision of what the future holds and maintain confidence that they will get there. They keep a positive attitude despite setbacks – and often find ways to convert what seems like an obstacle into a stepping-stone to achieve their goals.

FH Outstanding Employees


We are delighted to share that Freedom Hill received many nominations for 2020 Outstanding Employee Awards from our community. Thank you so much. All staff members will be able to view the content of these submissions. A school committee selected our finalists for Freedom Hill. These individuals were honored at a recent staff meeting and will progress to a "next round" for Marshall pyramid winners. 

Outstanding Teacher: Jessica Curran (3rd Grade Teacher)

Outstanding New Teacher: Melanie Callihan (1st Grade Teacher)

Outstanding Professional Employee: Craig Fenton (Technology Specialist)

Outstanding Operational Employee: Sey-Lu Sujo (Student Information Asst.)

Outstanding Leader: Eric Kopacz (Assistant Principal)

Outstanding New Principal: Nicholas Zapadka (Principal)

A big thank you to Ms. Lisa Bliss for organizing this process for us, and an additional thank you to our community for the ongoing support of our staff and students!

Join our Team!

We will be hiring classroom monitors to provide in-person classroom assistance for students when a staff member remains virtual.  If you would like more information about the position, please review the job description and qualifications online and apply if interested. Please feel free to share information about this opportunity with anyone else you think may be interested.

Holiday Meal Service

  • Monday, 1/4/2021 -- Bus routes delivering breakfast and lunch will resume daily service
  • Tuesday, 1/5/2021 -- Grab & Go locations resume daily meal distribution
  • Wednesday, 1/6/2021 -- Sites that distribute 7-day meal kits resume

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

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



Support our school by placing an order at Silver Diner on January 13 from 5-9PM. Make sure you mention you are calling from the Freedom Hill community. Here is a link to their menu. Thank you for supporting the PTA and our school. 


Thank you to everyone who ordered spirit wear during our Fall sale!  If you ordered spirit wear and didn’t pay to have it shipped to your home, it is ready for you to pick up at Michelle Zahalsky’s house, down the street from the school. Email her at mzahalsky@gmail.com to let her know when you want to pick it up, and she’ll put it outside her door for you.  

ENTER THE VA PTA CITIZENSHIP ESSAY CONTEST  Virginia PTA is committed to promoting a sense of citizenship and responsibility in the lives of our children – tomorrow’s leaders. To demonstrate the value that Virginia PTA places on good citizenship, we are proud to sponsor, support, and encourage Virginia students to write an essay for the 2021 Citizenship Essay Contest. This year’s selected theme is “How can we stand together when we are so far apart?” There are different requirements for various grade levels. Details are here. Essays are due by February 1, 2021. Winners can receive a cash prize and may be sent to the state finals.