MHS PTSA eNews, November 10, 2021

MHS PTSA black logo

November 10, 2021

Your Source for News about
the Highlander Community

PTSA Gen Membership Meeting

PTSA General Meeting
on November 12th 

The MHS PTSA General Membership Meeting is scheduled for Friday, November 12th immediately after the Parent Coffee and Panel Discussion on Mental Health scheduled from 8:30am to 9:30am @ MHS Dance Room.

Participation for the panel discussion is in-person only. A Zoom link for the PTSA General Meeting portion, beginning at 9:30am, will be distributed to the MHS community an hour prior to the meeting.

parent coffee

Parent Coffee and Panel Discussion on Mental Health and Trends

Friday, November 12, 2021
8:30am to 9:30am 
@ MHS Dance Room

Please join us for Parent Coffee on the morning of November 12th.

Panelists will share information on mental health of students, impacts during COVID, and how we can help students in our various roles at the school, FCPS, law enforcement, and more importantly as parents and guardians.

Our panelists include:

  • Experts in their field from the McLean High School clinical team, CarolAnn Forrest and Marly Jerome-Featherson
  • The FCPS Substance Abuse Specialist, Kelly Rankin, and 
  • The school SRO Officer Davis
  • Assistant Principal, Emily Geary, will be moderating the panel discussion

It is an opportunity to meet other parents, ask questions of the panelists and school administrators, and exchange views on how we can collectively help our students.

Space is limited, so please register for the event here.

Questions? Email


On July 1st 2021 Virginia became the first Southern state to legalize marijuana.

The FCPS Substance Abuse Prevention Specialists teamed up to create a video explaining the law and what it means to our community.  McLean High School’s Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist Kelly Rankin was part of that team.

Here is the link to the video in English.

Here is the link to the video in Spanish.

Parent & Student Volunteer Opportunities

grad congrats

Signup for 2022 Grad Party Committee 

It is time to start planning the Graduation Party for the Class of 2022!

The graduation ceremony is planned for June 1st at 2.30pm, and the Graduation Party will be hosted by the PTSA later that evening on June 1st. 

We are looking for Co-Chairs to lead the planning and execution of the event. We also need parents' help with fundraising, entertainment/decor, food, budget, and other activities for the event.

We cannot do this without parent/guardian volunteers.

Please sign up here. Thank you!

Questions? Email

McLean Matters

Holiday Gift Card Drive has Begun!

McLean High School has approximately 75 students who are at, or below, the poverty level. Some are homeless.

If you would like to contribute to this important community effort, please click HERE to sign-up to donate $25 or $50 gift cards to Safeway, Target, or Walmart for McLean High School families to assist them over the holidays.

 There are three ways you can purchase Gift Cards:

1.     Go to a Safeway, Target, or Walmart store and purchase gift card(s) for $25 or $50

2.     Go online to Safeway Gift Cards, Target Gift Cards, or Walmart Gift Cards and purchase “plastic gift card(s)” to mail/drop off to Sue Tabish.

3.     Go online to Safeway Gift Cards, Target Gift Cards, or Walmart Gift Cards and purchase “electronic gift card(s)”, print out the paper copy, and mail/drop off to Sue Tabish.

Please use the following address for all mailed gift cards:

Sue Tabish
McLean High School
1633 Davidson Road
McLean VA 22101

Gift cards are needed by Friday, December 3rd

NOTE: Please indicate the $ amount of the gift card(s) when you mail/drop off your cards.

Let's show our fellow Highlanders some love this holiday season because McLean Matters!

If you have any questions, please contact McLean Matters Chair Emma Blankenbaker at

Share of McLean Logo

Join Us for a Week of Gratitude

McShare Donation Drive

The PTSA is excited to partner with the Student Government Association (SGA) and our local community partner SHARE to conduct a donation drive for the holidays.

Show a little gratitude this month and bring in donations for SHARE of McLean

Between November 15th and November 19th 

The following personal care/toiletry items are high need items for Share’s community-based clients this holiday season:

  • Bar soap
  • Chapstick
  • Deodorant
  • Shampoo
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste

Collection boxes will be located around McLean High School.

Volunteers needed

Volunteer Openings

The McLean PTSA is an all-volunteer organization. Whether you have the time and energy to chair a committee or prefer to volunteer an hour at an occasional event.

YOUR PTSA NEEDS YOU and appreciates all that you do!

Please consider the following open position:

eNews Team

Responsible for sending weekly PTSA e-newsletter. Share relevant information, promote events and enhance parent engagement.  Proof-reading skills are a plus.

All open positions can be found here.


November Teacher Appreciation

Friday Breakfast Station SignUp
(Nov 12th, & 19th)

The PTSA is planning on treating teachers and staff to a Friday morning breakfast treat each week.

Sign up here for the week that best suits your schedule.

Thank you!

Support Your McLean High School PTSA

Did you Know

PTSA Funds Enhance
Student Learning

Did you know that your PTSA donations and membership fees make the grants program possible? Some of the grants awarded so far this year include:

  • Adobe Creative Suite for STEM Classes
  • Chairs and storage bin for outdoor Spanish instruction
  • Foreign language fiction materials for the MHS Library
  • Funds for the Sunshine Committee
  • Journalism and broadcast journalism videography equipment
  • Live performance of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet for 9th Grade
  • Reading library for upper-level Spanish students
  • Smart carts for physics demos
  • Startup money for the CAT B car wash vocational program
  • Supplies for Helping Highlanders
  • VersaTiles® helps students build math and literacy proficiency in a challenging, rewarding way.

Thank you to all of you and continue to donate and if you have not joined the PTSA.  

Please join the PTSA today!


If You Haven't Joined
the PTSA Yet…

Thanks to those who have purchased their 2021-2022 PTSA memberships this year! Your show of support for our parent organization is truly appreciated. 

It is never too late to join. 

Join the PTSA and purchase your 2021 PTSA family membership today!

restaurant night

Local Restaurant Fundraisers

Show Highlander Spirit and Support Your Community

While Dining In or Carrying Out


Pie-tanza is Tomorrow!

November 11th, 11:30am - 9:00pm

Lee Harrison Center, 2503B N. Harrison St., Arlington, VA 22207


Santini's - 3rd Wednesday of Month

November 17th, 11:00am - 9:00pm

1443 Chain Bridge Rd, McLean, VA 22101

Sweet Leaf Cafe - 4th Wednesday

November 24th, 4:00pm - 8:00pm

1359 Chain Bridge Road
McLean, VA 22101

Sweet leaf


PTSA Sponsored
Mock ACT/SAT Tests

EC Tutoring is offering mock ACT and SAT tests in October and November. These tests are available to students at area schools for $20.

*** Please remember to indicate your status as an MHS student on the registration form to ensure that the PTSA receives credit;
the fees support our programs.

Mock SAT Test - November 13th, 9:00am-1:00pm  Registration Form

Mock ACT Test - November 20th, 9:00am-1:00pm  Registration Form

Mock ACT Test - December 4th, 9:00am-1:00pm    Registration Form

Mock SAT Test - December 11th, 9:00am-1:00pm   Registration Form

Earn Rewards While Shopping

Remember to enroll in our rewards programsYou can raise money that enriches the educational, social and physical health of MHS students and staff at no extra cost to you!

Amazon Smile

Earn Money for the PTSA When You Purchase Through our Amazon Link

Simply bookmark: Amazon 

And use the link to access Amazon BEFORE you add items to your cart and check out promptly. 

Items that are left in your cart for 24 hours or more do not qualify. To save items to purchase later, please use your Wish List.

Every Purchase Counts!


Harris Teeter – MHS Code: 5560

Visit this link to register your card or register with the cashier next time you shop at Harris Teeter, and with every purchase, the store will donate to the MHS PTSA.

Cause Network

 Up to 10% of your shopping, booking travel, and donating electronics and vehicles. 

Details about the program are here.

Office Depot MHS Code: 70104184

MHS receives 5% of your purchases.
Details about the program are here

Office Depot

Other News From McLean HS


Purchase a 2022 McLean
High School Yearbook

2022 Yearbooks will be for sale on MYSCHOOLBUCKS by the end of this week.

Make sure to order early, as prices go up $10 on December 1st.

Kudos to McLean High School UNICEF Club

25+ UNICEF Club students handmade Halloween cards for Children's National Hospital (Department of Child Life & Integrative Care Services). The purpose was to uplift the spirits of kids' spending Halloween in the hospital.

Due to the pandemic, these cards could not be hand delivered.  Instead they were uploaded and the shared electronically at the hospital.

The kids sent heartfelt emails to thank the students for this wonderful and generous act!

Kudos to all that volunteered!!!


McLean HS Band

Last Day!  

Support McLean Band and Guard -
Fruit Sale Fundraiser

Please support the McLean High School Band programs by purchasing fresh fruit from Florida! Orders will be accepted through November 10th here for (socially distanced) pick-up on Saturday, December 11th.

Questions or concerns?

Please email

Upcoming Programs, Workshops & Webinars


Emotionally Naked Truth
About Suicide

Monday, November 15th at 7:00pm

The Suicide Prevention Advocacy Presentation is sponsored by NOVA PTA. Registration is required, and this presentation is suitable for educators and parents alike.

Click here to register.


Fairfax County STEAM Opportunities for Youth Page!

The first step in finding fun STEAM activities, information and career ideas for students and their families who have an interest in science, technology, engineering and math, as well as students who want to learn more about STEAM career options. 

The goal is to engage families and community partners to help inspire and prepare all Fairfax County youth to succeed and lead in STEAM fields and beyond.

Interested in learning more visit this site.

author talk

Book Talks Recording and Upcoming Program at
McLean High School

Last week, McLean Student Services hosted the authors of the parenting book, What Do You Say? How to Talk with Kids to Build Motivation, Stress Tolerance, and a Happy Home.  

Dr. William Stixrud and Ned Johnson provided excellent parenting insights and answered many questions posed by our parents. 

This video is now available on the McLean website at this link.

Mark Your Calendar!

On Wednesday, January 26, Kathleen Otal, School Counselor at McLean, will be hosting an in-person book talk on the first half of the book. 

Parents can purchase the book at this link to learn more about what you can say to your child. 

Stay tuned for more information in the next couple of months about the January 2022 book talk.  


Recording for October 27th
PTSA Membership Meeting

Hear what our Special Guest Speakers had to say via this link!

  • Paul Stansbery, Director of Students Services, McLean High School
  • Gregory (Greg) Olcott, School Counselor, McLean High School
  • Olivia Zhang, President, McLean High School Student Government Association (SGA)
  • Arman Nikmorad, McLean High School SGA Officer
  • Rowan Frew, McLean High School SGA Officer

EC Tutoring

Understanding PSAT Scores

A Roadmap for the SAT and College Admission in the
Years of COVID and Beyond

The recording for this successful PTSA sponsored program is here.

Did You Know?

PTA Our Children Magazine

The Unique Voice for Parents - Our Children e-Newsletter

The PTA Children Magazine is the unique voice for parents, published by National PTA, created for the parent who is always on the go and looking for the best info to help their child excel at school and in life.

Topics in Our Children Magazine include parenting, wellness, education, PTA Community.

Sign up to receive the Our Children e-newsletter. Get access to ideas and tips that will help your kids—and the whole family—throughout the year!

Substance Abuse Prevention Support at McLean High School McLean High School has a full-time Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist

Kelly Rankin serves as a resource for students and parents interested in finding out more information on substance use or discussing concerns of use and addiction.

If you need more information, take a look at this flyer.

According to Harvard’s Center on the Developing Child, success is less about grades and extracurricular activities and more about a core set of skills to help children navigate life’s challenges as they grow.

These core skills include planning, focus, self-control, awareness and flexibility.

Here is the full article.

Healthy lifestyles

November is PTA Healthy Lifestyles Month! 

Explore resources to help your family maintain healthy minds, healthy bodies and a healthy Earth.

Learn more here.

Calendar Reminder

Calendar Reminders

Upcoming Important Dates

Upcoming Events

November 11 - Veteran's Day - 2-hour early release

November 11 - Pie-tanza Restaurant Fundraiser, 11:30am - 9:00pm

November 12 - Parent Coffee Panel Discussion, 8:30-9:30am, MHS Dance Room

November 12 - PTSA General Membership Meeting (follows the Parent Coffee Panel Discussion)

November 17 - Santini's Restuarant Fundraiser, 11:00am - 9:00pm

November 24 - Sweet Leaf Restaurant Fundraiser 4:00pm-8:00pm

November 24-26 - Thanksgiving Break

Student Contests

National PTA

The Search is On for a Future Reflections Theme

The National PTSA is looking for students’ original and creative theme ideas to shape the future of our Reflections program. Through our annual search process, one winning student's theme will inspire hundreds of thousands of student artists that participate in the 2023-2024 Reflections program.

The winning student will also receive a $100 award and national recognition.

Check out the winning themes from the past 50+ years here

Students can participate in the annual Theme Search Contest according to their State PTA Reflections Program guidelines.

The contest runs from October 1st  – December 1st

RVA Film contest

2022 Virginia Environmental
Film Contest

The 12th annual Richmond Virginia Environmental Film Festival (RVA EFF) is announcing the 2022 Virginia Environmental Film Contest.

Prizes are awarded in two categories: students 12 and under, and 13-18. The contest is open to Virginia residents with films based on environmental topics about Virginia. Films of all formats, genres, and lengths will be considered. 

The deadline for submissions is November 15th.

FCPS Parent Resource Center

FCPS Parent Resource Center Workshops

The FCPS Parent Resource Center is offering workshops, information and resources to support the success of all students, including those with learning challenges, special needs, and disabilities.

For a list of upcoming events click here. 

Helpful Links


Bell Schedule

Red/Silver Calendar

Office and Support Staff

Student Services

Student Activities

Special Education Resources

Virtual Back to School Night

Teacher Office Hours 

FCPS Return to School Site - Resource to find out which colleges will be test-optional next year.

FCPS Support for Parents & Families

FCPS Parent Resource Center 

Provides access to information and resources to support all families, educators, and students, including those with special needs, learning challenges, and disabilities.

FCPS has Parent Information Phone Lines available in eight (8) languages to assist with general questions about FCPS.


Thank you to our Business Sponsors

Georgetown Learning

LM Orthodontics

Policy Viz Business Sponsor