Springfield District March Newsletter

Hello, Springfield!

This month has finally felt like the beginning of turning a corner. Vaccines are being distributed, flowers are blooming, and the weather is finally starting to warm up. I’ve so enjoyed seeing our neighbors out on walks and kids out on their bikes. For the first time in a year, I got to hug my niece this week. There’s just not a whole lot that is better than that.

This month has seen all of our students who selected in-person learning returning to our buildings. So far, I am hearing good things from our students about both their in-person and virtual learning experiences. I want to thank our staff who has gone out of their way to make this a positive experience for our students and families and thank our PTA/PTOs who have gone out of THEIR way to make our staff feel appreciated both in our buildings and online.

There have been many questions about the change in CDC guidance from 6ft to 3ft. We are awaiting further information from Dr. Brabrand and anticipate hearing more after Spring Break. I know our Principals and administrators have been working to extend as many in-person opportunities as possible for those students who are more successful in our buildings. Please have patience with them as they navigate any new guidance we receive.

I hope that everyone has a restful Spring Break where they are able to turn off their screens and decompress from a year that has been unlike any other. I hope your family will have the opportunity to be together and get outside to enjoy this beautiful Spring weather. 

All my very best regards, as always-

Laura Jane


This newsletter includes information on the following issues:

  • Upcoming School Board Meetings
  • School Board Work
  • Spring Break
  • Return to School
  • New CDC Guidance
  • End-of-Year Ceremonies and Events
  • Town Hall with Dr. Brabrand
  • Grading Policy Changes
  • Spring SOLs
  • Advanced Placement/International Baccalaureate Testing
  • Plans for Fall 2021
  • Magnet School Applications
  • Applications for Student Representative to the School Board
  • Special Education Conference
  • Head Start
  • Fall 2021 Registration
  • Summer Learning
  • Career Exploration Fair
  • History and Social Studies Standards of Learning Review and Revision
  • Virginia Mathematics Pathways Initiative
  • Family Supports
  • Springfield District Student Successes

Picture of School Board

Upcoming School Board Meetings

  • April 6th at 11 am - Virtual Work Session: Program Budget Review and Public Engagement Committee Citizen Participation
  • April 8th at 7 pm -  *Hybrid Regular Meeting: Special Education Annual Plan and Fox Mill Elementary School Renovation
  • April 20th at 11 am - Virtual Work Session: Student Rights & Responsibilities (SR&R) and Return to School Update
  • April 22nd at 7 pm -  *Hybrid Regular Meeting: SR&R Policy

*Effective November 5, 2020, the School Board returned to in-person Regular Meetings at Luther Jackson Middle School.

The meetings will be broadcast live on Channel 99 (Verizon channel 11) and on the FCPS website. The meeting will be recorded for future viewing and posted to the FCPS School Board YouTube page.

Visit the citizen participation webpage to sign up to speak at a regular meeting. Visit BoardDocs for more meeting logistics, agendas, and handouts.

School Board News - What’s Been Happening

2021-2022 School Calendar Update

By a 7-5 vote the School Board approved a new calendar for School Year 2021-22 on March 18th.  I was among the five Board members who disapproved of the adopted calendar, “Option D,” which does not give student holidays in recognition of minority faiths and removed spring break from the week prior to Easter.  I am dusting off the disappointment and ready to get to work for the following school year calendar!

Going forward, the Board has instructed Dr. Brabrand to create a calendar development process that allows the School Board to:

  • Establish clear criteria and priorities for the calendar
  • Clearly define the roles of staff, Board, and community members
  • Create a robust community engagement process that outlines how and where feedback will be solicited and shared with the Board


Budget graphic


In a unanimous vote, the School Board voted to approve the FY22 Advertised Budget. As a reminder, the School Board does not have revenue authority so FCPS is reliant on local, state, and the federal government for funding. The bulk of our funding (over 70%) comes from Fairfax County.


  • After a difficult year, our budget is centered on the needs of our students, ensuring all students are able to thrive and investing in all students. 
  • This is a fiscally-responsible budget, which balances the realities of a tough economic climate brought on by the pandemic, while also recognizing that a high-quality school system serves as the economic underpinning of a thriving community. It is a budget that will continue to build on FCPS’ tradition of excellence.
  • The $3.2 billion budget also recognizes the sacrifices and commitment of Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) teachers and staff with a proposed 3 percent compensation rate for all employees.

Learn more about the FY 22 Advertised Budget

Next Steps in the Budget Process:

The School Board and the Board of Supervisors met last week for a joint presentation on the advertised budgets for both the county and the school. 

The School Board is scheduled to present its Advertised Budget to the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, April 13th. Additional budget work sessions and public hearings will occur through May.  To learn more about the budget process and next steps, visit the budget page.


School Board Ready to Sign Contracts for Solar Program

As part of an ongoing joint initiative with Fairfax County, the Fairfax County School Board voted unanimously Thursday, March 4th to move forward with a solar program that will allow FCPS to purchase renewable energy with little or no upfront or operational costs.

Other benefits include:

  • Reducing FCPS’ greenhouse gas emissions and electricity costs
  • These cost savings will free up additional funds for classroom investments
  • This investment can potentially become a “learning lab” for FCPS students and will reinforce the value and sustainability of solar energy.

Read more here.


Graphic of family moving

Students Relocating Within Virginia and Contiguous States May Remain Enrolled in FCPS

The Fairfax County School Board has voted to support an exception to Policy 2202, Section III. I. that allows families who are permanently relocating within Virginia or to states contiguous with Virginia to request their child remain enrolled in their current Fairfax County public school (either virtually or in-person) for the remainder of the 2020-21 school year, effective immediately.

The temporary exception, which does not change the policy long-term, is to support students and families who may be relocating during the COVID-19 emergency for the remainder of the 2020-21 school year.

Picture of words "Spring Break" written in sand

Spring Break Travel Guidance

Spring break is here (March 29 to April 2), and we hope you take time for some well-deserved rest and relaxation. If you make plans to travel, please consider the following information:

  • The Virginia Department of Health urges all Virginians to avoid non-essential travel, especially if you are at higher risk of serious COVID-19 or if you will be visiting someone at higher risk of serious COVID-19. This recommendation applies to everyone, even if you have been vaccinated against COVID-19 or have fully recovered from COVID-19.
  • FCPS does not currently have travel restrictions. Students are not required to quarantine or provide COVID 19 test results for either domestic or international travel. Parents may opt to keep their students at home for 14 days after they return from travel, however, it is not required.
  • Per the Student Health and Safety Guidance Document, a Daily Health Screening Questionnaire will be required for all students attending in-person instruction. These daily health screening questionnaires will be completed on an honor basis and will not be required to be submitted to the school.
  • Upon returning, any student, staff or visitor demonstrating symptoms of illness is asked to stay home to help “Stop the Spread” of COVID-19. 

Updates and more information are available online.

Picture of Food Services employee with meals for distribution

Meal Distribution During Spring Break

FCPS is committed to providing all students access to meals March 26 through April 5 when there is one early release school day, the week of spring break when schools are closed, and one teacher workday when students are not in school. See the food distribution webpage for more information.

Video of students and staff returning to in-person instruction

FCPS Return to In-Person Instruction

As students returned to in-person instruction, we captured the excitement and joy of students and staff.  This video was shared at the School Board Return to School work session on March 16th.

This slide show was shared alongside the FCPS Returning Strong video during the March 16th School Board work session.

Picture of school playground

Playgrounds Reopen

FCPS is now permitting the use of playground equipment during recess. Students will adhere to mitigation strategies before and after use, but this is a welcome step for returning to school safely as playing outside is important for students’ social-emotional well-being and a healthy outlet for stress. Read detailed information on playground reopening and other student health and safety guidance.

Stop the Spread

If mitigation strategies are followed, we will be able to operate safely during in-person learning in school buildings. We need to work together to help stop the spread of COVID-19. We are using the following CDC key mitigation strategies:

  • Consistent and correct use of masks
  • Social distancing to the largest extent possible
  • Hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette
  • Cleaning and disinfection
  • Contact tracing in collaboration with the local health department

More on Stop the Spread 

Video of Stop the Spread campaign by Mrs Woodlief's class

Student Voice - Stop the Spread by Ms. Woodlief's Class

Ms. Woodlief's Health and Physical Education class at Lake Braddock Secondary School offers important ways to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Health and Safety Guidance: Response to a COVID Positive Case at a School

Based on recent additional collaboration with the Fairfax County Health Department (FCHD), FCPS is making some adjustments to our COVID notification process for school-based incidents.

While the notification process will be generally the same as the one that was used in the fall, the FCHD will now determine which students and/or staff have potentially been exposed and need to return to a virtual setting until contact tracing is completed. Any students and/or staff directed by local health officials to quarantine will be asked to adhere to FCHD guidance.

As we have been welcoming new groups of students back to in-person instruction, we want to remind staff to review the five key mitigation strategies and the importance of following them every day to help keep everyone safe inside our school buildings. Get more information on the response to a COVID positive case at a school

CDC Announces New Encouraging 3 Feet Guidance for Schools

Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced updated guidance on social distancing for schools, changing from recommending 6 feet of social distancing to 3 feet of social distancing with universal masking in classroom settings. FCPS is working through this guidance and we will update you after break. See Dr. Brabrand's statement.

End of school year events graphic

FCPS Planning 2021 End-of-Year Ceremonies and Events

The Governor’s Executive Order #72 was amended on March 23rd to provide additional guidance on sports and entertainment venues. 

Beginning April 1st, entertainment and recreation venues may open and must follow these requirements: 

  • Outdoor Entertainment Venues - cannot exceed more than 30 percent of capacity.
  • Indoor Entertainment Venues - maximum of 500 people or 30 percent capacity, whichever is less.  
  • Recreational sports, including high school athletics, are still limited to 30 percent capacity. A maximum of 500 spectators will now be allowed outdoors and 100 people indoors.  
  • Social Gatherings Restrictions -  indoor events will be limited to 50 people and no more than 100 people outdoors.

Picture of Teri Hampton, assistant principal at Lake Braddock Secondary School holding number twenty-one balloons

Teri Hampton, an assistant principal at Lake Braddock SS, greets the Bruins Class of ‘21 with celebratory balloons.


FCPS is planning to hold in-person graduation ceremonies for the Class of 2021. While the traditional venues (Eagle Bank Arena at George Mason University and DAR – Constitution Hall) will most likely not be available in June, FCPS is actively exploring other venue options to include the use of our high school stadiums and/or other outside entertainment sites.

With rising COVID-19 vaccinations, Governor Northam issued preliminary guidance that K-12 schools will be able to host outdoor graduation and indoor graduation ceremonies with caps on attendees.  Outdoor ceremonies are limited to 5,000 people or 30 percent of the capacity of the venue, whichever is less; and indoor ceremonies are limited to 500 people or 30 percent of the venue’s capacity, whichever is less. Attendees will be required to wear a mask and practice social distancing at the ceremonies.  I am very happy that we will be able to have in-person graduations for the Class of 2021! 

All Night Graduation Parties and Proms

The Governor’s Executive Order considers prom and All Night Graduation Parties (ANGP) as social gatherings and specifies that social gatherings are limited to 50 people indoors and 100 people outdoors. Proms are school sponsored events. All Night Graduation Parties are not school sponsored events and are organized by parent groups. 

Further guidance will be provided to principals and PTSA groups as soon as more is learned.

Community Use/PTA events

Events and activities held in schools or on school property are still subject to current limits for in-person gatherings: 50 people indoors and 100 outdoors.   No summer camps organized by PTA/PTO/PTSA/Booster organizations will be allowed inside school buildings.  Outdoor camps organized by PTA/PTO/PTSA/Booster organizations will be allowed but capped at 100 participants. At this time, only FCPS, support organizations, and Fairfax County government agencies are allowed to use FCPS facilities. Schools are not available for community use at this time. Updates will be forthcoming as guidance is provided. 

2020-21 Grading Policy Changes

In response to family feedback and student check-in results, FCPS will be seeking to lessen the stress and anxiety posed for some students who have been challenged by the virtual learning environment during the past (and ongoing) pandemic year.

FCPS will provide three additional grading changes to support middle and high school students. More information on the grading policy changes is available online

2021 Advanced Placement/International Baccalaureate Testing Information

The College Board and International Baccalaureate (IB) Organization announced changes to this year’s exams. Information is now available online about 2021 AP and IB testing in FCPS.

Back to School Graphic

FCPS Plans Five Days of In-Person Learning for Fall 2021

With the success of the spring return to school effort, FCPS is optimistic that it can return all students who wish to return five days a week in-person in the fall.

FCPS will continue to work with the Fairfax County Health Department and abide by the CDC’s social distancing guidelines to prepare for its five-day return. The school division will continue to monitor updated health guidance, will investigate additional PPE resources and safety protocols, continue to analyze the potential for COVID-19 testing, and prepare schools for changing social distancing mandates as social distancing is reduced from 6 feet to 3 feet.

This fall, FCPS will be focused on a strong, 5-day in-person start to the FY21-22 school year with an emphasis on:

  • Reuniting our school communities
  • Establishing new routines and orienting students back to schools
  • Continuing outreach to students and families
  • Re-engaging students and families
  • Refining virtual offerings with an emphasis on in-person learning
  • Monitoring health guidance
  • Preparing schools for a reduction in physical distancing (less than 6 feet)
  • Investigating additional PPE resources and safety protocols as needed
  • Exploring additional COVID testing opportunities

Elementary Magnet Schools Applications Accepted March 2nd - April 6th

Fairfax County Public Schools began accepting applications for its elementary magnet school programs beginning Tuesday, March 2nd. Bailey’s Elementary School for the Arts and Sciences will accept lottery applications for students who will be in grades K-2 during the 2021-22 school year; Bailey’s Upper School for the Arts and Sciences will accept applications for students in grades 3 and 4. Hunters Woods Elementary School for the Arts and Sciences will accept lottery applications for students who will enter grades K-6 during the 2021-22 school year.

Selection for available magnet school spaces is based on a lottery. Registration for the elementary magnet school lottery closes on Tuesday, April 6th, at 4 p.m.    

Get more information about the magnet school lottery.

Applications Wanted for Student Representative to the School Board for 2021-22 School Year, Deadline Is April 7th

Each year, FCPS students can apply for the position of the student representative to the School Board. The student representative is not a member of the School Board but serves in a nonvoting, advisory capacity, representing the interests of the students of Fairfax County Public Schools. 

Students who are currently in grades 9, 10, and 11 are eligible to apply, and they do not need to be current members of the Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council (SAC). Applications are due by April 7th. 

The application and more information are available online.

Special Education graphic

FCPS Special Education Conference 2021

The 16th Annual Special Education Conference will be held virtually on Saturday, April 17, 2021. The conference will include a combination of synchronous (live) and asynchronous (recorded) sessions supporting our conference's theme: The time for inclusion is now.

Parents and community members will be able to register online. In addition, FCPS educators, administrators, and preservice teachers will be able to register online and earn recertification points for attending the conference.

Conference Highlights:

  • Guest speakers and FCPS staff presentations
  • A Student Strands for youth ages 14-22
  • Sibshops for students in grades 7-12
  • An Exhibit Hall with FCPS and community resources
  • Inclusive Schools Presentations

Each year our conference draws an audience of parents, educators, administrators, preservice teachers, and community members eager to hear the latest research, strategies, and trends in the education of students with learning challenges, special needs, and disabilities.

Saturday, April 17, 2021 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Register for The Special Education Conference 2021

Student registration graphic

Fall 2021 School Registration is Open!

If you have a rising kindergartener or a student who will be new to FCPS this fall, please begin the school registration process now! The sooner that principals know how many students will attend each school year, the sooner they can appropriately staff classes and obtain resources. Otherwise, class sizes can be bigger and teachers may be unavailable in the fall.

Head Start

The Fairfax County Head Start/Early Head Start program is currently enrolling eligible families in programs throughout the county. HS/EHS provides early childhood education and family supports for children ages birth to five years old and their families, at no cost to families.  Women who are pregnant can also receive services and support through EHS. Services are provided in a variety of early childhood programs including Fairfax County Public Schools classrooms and family child care programs throughout the county. Don’t miss this opportunity to be part of Head Start! For more information, visit Fairfaxcounty.gov and search for “Head Start”, call the Office for Children at 703-324-8290 or view the flyer.

Summer school graphic

2021 FCPS Summer Learning Information

Many students annually participate in summer learning opportunities to advance academically, sharpen their skills, or learn something new.  In response to disruptions to learning during this epic year of the COVID pandemic, the school division plans to offer ten times as many summer learning opportunities.  FCPS has been developing supports for students who need additional instruction and engagement this summer to prepare for their next grade level. Robust summer programming will be offered by all FCPS schools. Students will be identified by schools using the Multi-tiered System of Support (MTSS) process and students/families will be contacted by schools to coordinate program enrollment.  

The FCPS Online Campus will be offering the Language of Medicine and Intro to Technical Drawing as elective, new credit options this year, and self-directed Economics and Personal Finance continues to be available to students who wish to complete the course in the self-directed format. Finally, new work-based learning opportunities are being developed to include potential for students to serve as technology assistants to support with FCPSOn devices, clinical experiences for the Licensed Practical Nursing and Intro to Nursing Program, Youth Registered Apprenticeships and connections with Adult and Community Education (ACE) programming, and pilot programs including marketing, business, and information technology opportunities. 

Information regarding additional opportunities will be announced on the FCPS Summer Learning webpage as they become available.

Self-Directed Economics and Personal Finance: Current grades 8-12

Session 1: Monday, April 19th - Friday, June 18th

Session 2: Monday, June 28th - Friday, July 30th

This online course is for current FCPS students only and is pass/fail only. Self-Directed Economics and Personal Finance requires students to complete work without direct teacher support. Students will access content for this course through an FCPS Canvas online environment. The course was updated in September 2020. The new course features include updated curriculum, interactive modules, and exit tickets. Students will read through 14 modules, complete 140 exit tickets, 14 module tests, and a final exam. This course does not meet face-to-face.

Registration closes

Session 1: April 9th

Session 2: June 11th

Virtual career fair graphic

2021 Virtual Career Exploration Career Fair

Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) high school students are invited to participate in the 2021 Virtual Career Exploration Fair, scheduled to take place from Monday, April 19th, through Friday, April 30th. This completely virtual event will include synchronous (live) and asynchronous (recorded) sessions and workshops.

Developed in conjunction with Arlington Public Schools, the event will offer a connection to more than 100 local industry professionals from in-demand career fields. Students will also be able to attend college- and career-ready workshops and information sessions.

High school students will be able to learn about work-based learning (WBL) opportunities; attend industry panel discussions; take part in mock interviews; attend resumé workshops; and learn about postsecondary education, training, and apprenticeship opportunities.

Here are more details and how to register

Students can also email workbasedlearning@fcps.edu with questions.

Review and Revision of History and Social Studies Standards of Learning

The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) has established a timeline for the review and revision of the History and Social Science Standards of Learning, scheduled to be completed before November 2022. As discussed at the September 15, 2020, School Board work session, FCPS Social Studies has identified significant concerns in the current Standards, catalyzed reform efforts across Virginia, and proceeded with local curriculum revision for historical integrity and cultural responsiveness.

An important part of the review process for the History and Social Science Standards of Learning is the solicitation of comments from teachers, administrators, students, families, and community stakeholders who have an interest in curriculum reform or expertise with the content of the current Standards. Below are multiple opportunities for the FCPS community to engage in the process:

The public can submit written comments this spring to inform the work of the Culturally Relevant and Inclusive Education Practices Advisory Committee to a dropbox or provide live comments during upcoming scheduled meetings (May 18th and July 15th) if they register in advance. Commissioned by the General Assembly, this Advisory Committee is tasked with creating recommendations for the revisions of the HSS Standards as well as broader recommendations for professional development.

The VDOE is establishing several additional Advisory Committees, including a Regional Student Advisory Committee (details TBA).

As stated on the projected timeline, the VDOE will conduct public hearings across the Commonwealth to gain public input on the proposed revisions.

The VDOE staff will continue to accept public comments throughout the review and revision period (Staff Contact: Christonya.Brown@doe.virginia.gov).

FCPS Social Studies is welcoming the public to share their comments not only with VDOE but also via a designated email account (FCPSsocialstudiesreform@fcps.edu) to inform the social studies team’s efforts locally and at the state level.

As discussed at the January 27th work session, additional community engagement focused on anti-racism and anti-bias education in and beyond social studies will take place between March and June to be used in the development of related FCPS policies. Additional details on the schedule for community engagement are forthcoming.

Virginia is for Learners logo

Understanding the Virginia Mathematics Pathways Initiative

Fairfax County Public Schools is preparing for the implementation of the Virginia Department of Education’s (VDOE) Virginia Mathematics Pathways Initiative (VMPI) and we want families to be aware of proposed changes to Mathematics course offerings. To understand the proposed changes to the course progressions, VDOE is offering Community Informational Sessions on the following dates:

  • Tuesday, April 13, 6:30 p.m.—How Does VMPI Affect Virginia Children’s Futures?
  • Tuesday, April 27, 6:30 p.m.—Essential Concepts in Grades 8-10
  • Tuesday, May 25, 6:30 p.m.—Advanced Pathways in Grades 11-12

Questions participants would like to have addressed during the sessions can be submitted online. For additional information, visit VMPI's webpage.

Multilingual podcasts graphic

Superintendent’s Multilingual Podcast Interviews: Messages of Hope, Appreciation, and Readiness

The FCPS Office of Professional Learning and Family Engagement recently launched multilingual podcasts in Spanish, Arabic, and Korean. The podcasts bring families timely, important information related to school news. Listen to the most recent podcast where Dr. Brabrand is interviewed and offers a message of hope, appreciation, and readiness. 

Parent Resource Center logo

Parent Resource Center and Upcoming Free Webinars

The FCPS Parent Resource Center provides access to information and resources to support the success of all students.  They host a variety of free seminars and have a wealth of free resources, including for those with learning challenges, special needs, and disabilities.  In addition, they are available via phone or email for consults. 

  • Tutor Lists and Free Resource Guides Contact them at prc@fcps.edu or 703-204-3941 to get the list of available tutors.  Additionally, they have free resources on topics such as: Executive Functioning, Parenting & Basic Needs, Adults with Disabilities, Mind in the Making, Mental Health, Fairfax County Government Resources, Military Connected Resources, Kindergarten Readiness, Adapted Sports and Recreation, and many more.

The FCPS Parent Resource Center (PRC) is offering four free parent webinars in April. They are:

  • Construyendo y manteniendo familias fuertes Un seminario web presentado en español (Building and Keeping Strong Families: A Webinar Presented in Spanish), on Tuesday, April 6th, 6:30 to 8 p.m.
  • Skill, Not Will: The Collaborative Problem-Solving Approach Webinar for Families, on Friday, April 9th, 10 to 11:30 a.m.
  • COVID-19 Vaccines and the Vaccination Process in Fairfax County: A Webinar for Families, on Tuesdays 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.
  • Encouraging Positive Behaviors at Home Series: Minimizing Prompts and Maximizing Your Child’s Independence, on Thursday April 22nd, 10 to 11:30 a.m. and 6:30 to 8 p.m.

More information on each session and how to register is available online.

Note: Previous webinars have been recorded and can be viewed on the PRC YouTube channel


Healthy Minds Podcasts

Being apart from each other hasn’t been easy for anyone. Check out FCPS' Healthy Minds Podcast to hear how others are handling uncertainty; get new ideas to help you, your friends, and family feel better; and learn ways to feel more energized. Tune in to the Healthy Minds Podcast.

The FCPS Parent Resource Center (PRC) is offering the following free parent webinars in April. They are:       

SIBSHOPS: An Exciting, Virtual Workshop for Brothers and Sisters of Children with Special Needs

The Sibshop workshops are for children in grades 2-6 enrolled in Fairfax County Public Schools who have siblings with special needs to:

  • Meet other siblings in a relaxed, virtual setting.
  • Celebrate the many contributions made by brothers and sisters of children with special needs.
  • Share sibling experiences and receive peer support.
  • Play games and have fun!

Presented by FCPS School Social Work Services

Monday, April 5, 2021

Two time slots are available:  10 a.m. or 1 p.m.  Sessions run 1-1.5 hours

Register for SIBSHOPS: An Exciting, Virtual Workshop for Brothers and Sisters of Children with Special Needs    

Construyendo y manteniendo familias fuertes Un seminario web presentado en español (Building and Keeping Strong Families: A Webinar Presented in Spanish)

This webinar will provide strategies to build a stronger family, overcome life's challenges, take control over your family's future. (Presented in Spanish) 

Topics will include:

  • How to build resiliency 
  • Empowering families to:
    • Create safe and stable homes
    • Be involved in their children’s lives
    • Build strong partnerships with schools
  • Find and access resources within the school system and community

Presented by Northern Virginia Family Services (NVFS) and Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS)

  • Aynalem Valdes: NVFS Mental Health Counselor Resident
  • Ana M. Stevenson: NVFS Licensed Clinical Social Worker
  • Angela Aldave: FCPS Family Engagement Region Representative – Region 5

Tuesday, April 6th, 2021, 6:30 – 8 p.m.

Register for Building and Keeping Strong Families: A Webinar Presented in Spanish

Skill, Not Will: The Collaborative Problem-Solving Approach Webinar for Families

Join us for the important session to learn some key strategies from the Collaborative Problem Solving® approach to manage challenging behavior. 

The Collaborative Problem-Solving Approach:

  • Promotes the understanding that challenging kids lack the skill (problem-solving, flexibility, and frustration tolerance) - not the will - to behave
  • Focuses on collaborating with the child/youth/young adult to solve the problems leading to challenging behavior and building the skills they need to succeed.

Avoid the use of power, control, and use motivational procedures instead. 

Presented by staff from United Methodist Family Services: Carmen Dailey, Organizational Learning Manager, and CPS Certified Trainer.

Friday April 9, 2021 10 - 11:30 a.m.

Register for Skill, Not Will: The Collaborative Problem-Solving Approach Webinar for Families

COVID-19 Vaccines and the Vaccination Process in Fairfax County: A Webinar for Families

Join the Fairfax County Health Department and the Fairfax County Public Schools or FCPS Parent Resource Center for important updates about COVID-19 and the vaccines that have been developed to help prevent disease.

Topics will include:

  • COVID-19 impacts (health, economic, education)
  • The vaccine
    • Community immunity: What is it and How do we get there?
    • Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson vaccines— how they work and their effectiveness 
    • Safety of vaccines
  • Vaccination process: Eligibility and How to register
  1. Tuesday, April 13:     Session in Spanish – Register here
  2. Tuesday, April 20:     Session in English – Register here
  3. Tuesday, May 4:       Session in Vietnamese – Register here
  4. Tuesday, May 11:     Session in Korean – Register here
  5. Tuesday, May 18:     Session in Arabic – Register here
  •   Sessions are subject to change or cancellation based on the number of registrations

Brilliant Work Ribbon graphic

Springfield District Happenings

High School Students Named Recipients of 2021 Student Peace Awards

The Student Peace Awards of Fairfax County were begun in 2006 to encourage people to think more about peace as both a means and an end, and to recognize young people who work as peacemakers. Every year, the high schools in Fairfax County are asked to select one junior or senior, or a group of students, whose work has promoted peace. The project is organized by volunteers and funded by donations from 17 secular and religious sponsoring organizations.

Congratulations to Sumaya Zahid of West Springfield High School, who is the co-founder with her older sister and current president of Spartans for War Victims (SWV) which provides aid and assistance in the form of materials and money to victims of war and raises awareness of the effects of armed conflict. 

Accolades are also in order for Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (TJ) students in TJ’s Assistive Technology Club (ATC) who use their technology skills to provide support for younger students with limited mobility, speech, or hearing abilities.  

This News Release contains more information about the recipients.


Chantilly High School Selected for 2021 First Amendment Press Freedom Award

Chantilly High School continues to be saluted as one of 14 schools nationwide selected as a recipient of the 2021 First Amendment Press Freedom Award. This is the seventh consecutive award for Chantilly.

The award recognizes private and public high schools that actively support, teach, and protect First Amendment rights and responsibilities of students and teachers, with an emphasis on student-run media where students make all final decisions of content. 

The schools will be honored at the JEA/NSPA (Journalism Education Association- National Scholastic Press Association) Spring National High School Journalism Convention during an awards ceremony on April 10th. Representatives from the JEA, NSPA, and Quill and Scroll International Honorary Society selected the winners.

Read more about the award in this News Release.


Rocky Run Middle School Team 1 Wins Virginia Regional MS Science Bowl

Congratulations Raghav Karthikeyan of Rocky Run Middle School!  His team competed in the 2021 Virginia Regional Middle School Science Bowl competition and finished in first place in a field of 14 teams.  Raghav and his team will represent Virginia in the national competition this spring. The virtual competition was composed of 15 toss-up questions per round; correct answers unlocked additional bonus questions. Teams were quizzed on their knowledge of math and a range of science disciplines, including energy, life science, math, physical science, and Earth and space. The team received a team trophy, individual participant medals, a Virginia Regional Science Bowl banner, and $750 for the school to use for its STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) programs.  Contact team coach Sheeba Sumesh at sheebab@yahoo.comRead more about the team.


Lake Braddock Secondary School Students Recognized by NCWIT

Congratulations to two Lake Braddock Secondary School students who have received awards from the National Center for Women and Information Technology (NCWIT) which recognizes students for computing-related aspirations, demonstrated interest in technology, leadership ability, persistence in pursuing interests in computing, and plans for post-secondary education.  Sisters Lidya and Nardos Demilew are part of the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) Impressionists group, an after school mentoring program that works with middle and high school minority girls interested in participating in career-related STEM activities. Through that organization, she and her group have had the opportunity to facilitate their own STEM seminars. HackSIP, a hackathon financed with an NCWIT grant, teaches girls from around the country how to code using a microbit. This summer, after securing a second NCWIT grant, the students will be hosting HackSIP2, a weeklong summer STEM camp for girls. 

  • Lidya Demilew was selected as a 2021 NCWIT Virginia affiliate winner.  More information is available in the More information may be found online..
  • Nardos Demilew was selected from over 4,200 national applicants as a recipient of the 2021 NCWIT honorable mention. Read Nardos' News Release

More information about the winners is available on the NCWIT Aspirations in Computing website or by contacting Angela DeHart at dehartstem@gmail.com.


FCPS Students Win Awards at Virginia DECA Conference, Earn a Trip to DECA International Conference

Students from six Springfield District high schools were recognized as competitive event winners at the Virginia DECA State Leadership Conference held virtually March 3rd-7th. These students earned the right to compete at the virtual DECA International Career Development Conference April 12th-May 6th.

DECA is a career and technical student organization that prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs to be college and career ready.  In the Commonwealth of Virginia, DECA members are enrolled in a marketing education class at their high schools. More information is available online

Congratulations to the following students:

Chantilly High School: Samarra Pack and Ashley Zou

Fairfax High School: Disha Kiran, Kate Mason, Riya Menon, Ryan McManus, Alex Mitchell, Ella Modes, Arveen Nazemian, Shirely Nguyen, Nikash Pant, Matthew Tzong, Ben Vicenio, Grace Walters, and Rugiatu Wurie

Lake Braddock Secondary School: Melanie Dang, Madison Judd, Rachel Pritz, Annelisa Rebello, and MaKenna Super

Robinson Secondary School: Kylie Arnott, Eric Hodge, Sophia MacLachlan, Kristine Pham, and Ethan Waugh

South County High School: Max Borenstein, Christopher Cammarata, Avery Clanton, Maya Martinos, Jack Megan, Audrey Pederson, Annabelle Rizer, Campbell Shouse, Amina Suleman, and Sara West

West Springfield High School: Lauren Dalrymple, Sofia Fasiolo, Kaitlyn Mersiowsky, Naana Owusu, Anna Pester, Riley Sturtevant, and Bez Zike


2021 Science Fair Award Winners

The 66th annual Fairfax County Regional Science and Engineering Fair virtually showcased over 200 high school science projects. Via recorded videos, 300 students presented their research projects in a wide variety of science and engineering fields. Projects were judged by over 150 STEM professionals and 50 professional organizations and businesses.

The Grand Prize,1st place, and 2nd place winners are eligible to compete in the Virginia State Science and Engineering Fair to be held virtually in April.

Congratulations to the below Springfield District category awards winners:

Fairfax High School 

Maya Littman - second place for Earth and Environmental Sciences

Lake Braddock Secondary School 

Natania Elias - honorable mention for Environmental Engineering

Hannah Lee and Sophia Willis - first place for Earth and Environmental Sciences

Donald Riley - honorable mention for Behavioral and Social Sciences



Allison Seo - honorable mention for Environmental Engineering

Neha Sripathi - second place for Microbiology

Woodson High School:

Benjamin Kurland - third place for Physics and Astronomy

Abbey Moran - honorable mention for Materials Science


Congratulations to the below Springfield District organization awards winners:

Fairfax High School

Maya Littman - first place, American Water Works Association, Virginia Section (VA AWWA); first place team, Federal Water Quality Association (FWQA); first place, Virginia Lakes and Watershed Association (VLWA); and second place, Virginia Water Environment Association (VWEA)

Lake Braddock Secondary School

Brooke Bretney - honorable mention, American Water Works Association, Virginia Section (VA AWWA) and third place team, Federal Water Quality Association (FWQA)

Donald Riley - awards ceremony and Langley museum tour, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)


Sachin Satishkumar - honorable mention, Commissioned Officer Association, U. S. Public Health Services, District of Columbia Branch, (DC-COA); Technology Excellence Award Certificate, Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineers (IEEE), Northern Virginia Section; and first place US Air Force

Allison Seo - third place, Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association, Northern VA Chapter (AFCEA); Student Award For Geoscience Excellence Certificate, Association For Women Geoscientists, Potomac Chapter (AWG); Notable Achievement in Optics and Photonics Letter of Recognition & Certificate Award, Optical Society of America, National Capital Section (OSA) and IEEE, Photonics Chapter; and Outstanding Engineer Award, Society of Women Engineers, Baltimore Washington Section (SWE)

Neha Sripathi - second place, American Society for Microbiology, Washington DC Branch (ASM);  honorable mention, Commissioned Officer Association, U. S. Public Health Services, District of Columbia Branch, (DC-COA); first place, Northern Virginia Dental Society (NVDS); and honorable mention, Washington Statistical Society (WSS)

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