FH Weekly Update - 11/14/21

Dear Freedom Hill Community,

We hope you are well! We had a wonderful and eventful week at Freedom Hill. We celebrated Veterans' Day with several guest speakers, began our Book Fair for the first time since we can remember, saw many of our students leaving for vaccination appointments, and celebrated our first quarterly Soaring Eagle Citizens. These students were selected by their teachers as students who showcase our Positivity Project traits, and who enrich our school culture through kindness, friendship, and respect. Congratulations to our Q1 Soaring Eagles:


Tito M & Areen N

1st Grade:

Sarah H., Benji H., Josh L., Lilly C., Tameem O., and Navya S.

2nd Grade:

Maria G., Ryan H., Gabriel A., Natalie H., Keira W., Chikamso J., Roselyn L., and Sebastian B. 

3rd Grade:

Axel V., Sophia M., Alaina A., Ethan L., Ehan H., and Elizabeth H.

4th Grade: 

Nasser S., Chidubem J., Hilman M., Eylee E., Ascary R., and Arianna C.

5th Grade (pictured above):

Emma F., Nate H., Alyaa E., Lehi M., Dylan L., Melanie C. 

6th Grade:

Ian W., Maya L., Hanna E., Junior G., River G., Genesis V., 


Book Fair

Thank you to all the families who braved the rain and wind on Saturday morning to support the Book Fair! Despite the early closure, we had an amazing morning of shopping and fun. Ms. Trott was blown away at how everyone pitched in to help protect the fair from the rain.  Students will have opportunities to shop the fair this week during school hours, and families can sign up to visit the fair on Monday and Friday afternoon from 4:20-6:00 pm. You can also shop the online fair and have items shipped to home at https://www.scholastic.com/bf/freedomhillelementaryschool

Outdoor Lunch

As a final reminder, we have extended our outdoor lunch parent support SignUpGenius through November. We are hoping to continue our optional outdoor lunches as long as the weather remains mild and will allow students to bring their jackets outside. Thank you for your support!

In partnership,

Nicholas Zapadka, Principal

Eric Kopacz, Assistant Principal

Upcoming Dates for Your Calendar

2021-22 FCPS School Calendar

  • November 15 - Book Fair Family Night, 4:20-6:00PM, Sign Up
  • November 17 - PTA Meeting, 8PM
  • November 19 - Book Fair Family Night, 4:20-6:00PM, Sign Up
  • November 24 - 26 - Thanksgiving Break, School Closed

RED Days This Week: Tuesday, Thursday

WHITE Days This Week: Monday, Wednesday, Friday

Safety First! Updates

If you child is experiencing any of these symptoms, please keep your child at home! In addition, if any member of your household has been diagnosed with COVID-19, your student may not report to school. Please contact our school clinic or the health department for next steps. 


From the Twittersphere - #FHHighlights


Outstanding Employee Awards 2021-22

Hello Freedom Hill Families and Staff!

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 the Google forms linked as the heading 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. The google form link has more information regarding the criteria for each of these awards and the eligibility requirements are below.


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: Has up to three years of experience as a teacher (in any school/school district); librarians are included in this category


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, 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, Family Liaisons  


The deadline to submit a nomination is Tuesday, Nov 23rd.

If you have any questions, please contact Eric Kopacz at epkopacz@fcps.edu. Thank you for helping us recognize our wonderful community and staff!

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?

COVID-19 Screening Testing- Preregistration and Consent, Online Portal Open

All FCPS schools will begin random COVID-19 screening testing of 10% of students who have parental consent beginning the week of November 15.  Screening testing will happen weekly at Freedom Hill on Tuesday afternoons.

One-time parent/legal guardian consent is required to begin COVID screening testing for a student to be tested at school. You may withdraw your consent for testing at any time. If you want your child to begin participating in COVID-19 screening testing, you must pre-register your child(ren) and provide consent using the secure online portal.

If you do not want your child to participate in COVID-19 screening testing, no action is required. You will have the option each week to update your child’s vaccination and consent for testing.

For more information, visit the COVID-19 testing webpage.

New Staff Members

Please join us in welcoming two new staff members to our Freedom Hill community. They will be working directly with students in small groups as interventionists in reading and math, and will be assisting our teachers as we provide tiered supports for our students this year. 

(pictured left) Vicki Mansuy - Reading Intervention

(pictured right) Liz Finnerty - Math Intervention


PTA Updates


PTA MEETING - NOV. 17, 8PM Join us for the next PTA meeting next week on Wednesday, Nov. 17th at 8pm. Join us here or dial in 301 715 8592 with Meeting ID: 959 1668 4568. 


CHECK OUT GIRL SCOUTS AT FHES Interested in Girl Scouts? There are Girl Scouts troops at Freedom Hill - it's a great leadership experience. Check out the flier for more info or contact Barbara Brown to get all the details.