MHS PTSA eNews, January 26, 2022

PTSA Volunteer Openings

YOUR PTSA NEEDS YOU and appreciates all that you do!


PTSA Board Nominations for

Are you interested in being on our PTSA Board or do you know someone who would be great in a Board position next year?

Please take a quick look at the Board positions and their related job descriptions on our website  and let us know who would fit any of these positions. If you know of someone who would generally be a great Board member, but you are not sure in which specific position, we also want to hear from you!

Starting in late January, the Nominating Committee will be collecting the names to slate for our 2022-2023 PTSA Board and we always want to get a diverse group of members from our broad community on the Board. 

Please contact the Nominating Committee at with names and referrals.

Thank you in advance.


Book Talk for Parents is Tonight!

 Wednesday, January 26, 2022

From 6.30-8.00pm @ MHS Lecture Hall

Your PTSA is partnering with the Student Services to bring this book talk on What Do You Say? How to Talk with Kids to Build Motivation, Stress Tolerance, and a Happy Home. This past October, the book's authors spoke to McLean and Longfellow parents virtually. They offered much-needed practical parenting tips as our children came back to school. On Wednesday, January 26, Kathleen Otal, one of McLean’s school counselors, will be hosting a book talk. We will discuss the first half of the book as well as share struggles, ideas, and tips with one another regarding our own children and parenting experiences.

The event will take place in McLean’s Lecture Hall from 6:30pm – 8:00pm.

If you are interested in attending this book talk, please register here.If you need to purchase the book, you can do so at this link.

If you have not seen the author talk from October 2021, you can do so here.

Please email if you have questions or need additional information. We hope to see you there!

coat drive

McLean High School Coat Drive

Drop of your greatly appreciated coat and jacket donation in the Main Office and at other bins around the school this week!


January Friday Tea
Station SignUp

Let's treat our wonderful teachers and staff to some breakfast treats and bring in the new year!

SIgn up to bring weekly Friday morning breakfast treats (January 14th and January 28th).

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

Thank you!

Lunar New Year

Lunar New Year is February 1st

Lunar New Year is the beginning of a calendar year whose months are moon cycles, based on the lunar calendar or lunisolar calendar. Lunar New Year is particularly celebrated in East Asia, influenced by the Chinese New Year and the Chinese Calendar. 

Health & Wellness Therapy Dogs

Our therapy dog friends return next week, February 2nd, 11:00am-1:30pm. We are expecting five or six pups, some “old” familiar furry faces, and some “first timers” dog visitors to MHS! Our thanks to the PTSA Health & Wellness Committee for organizing!

Please contact for more information.

therapy dogs

parent coffee

Sophomore Parent Virtual Coffee

All parents and guardians of current sophomores are invited to join the PTSA for a virtual coffee on Wednesday,  February 2nd at 9:00 am, to reconnect with old friends and meet some new ones.  

Interested? Please sign-up here to get a Zoom link to participate in the meeting.

Monica Charles- Williams, MHS Assistant Principal and Class Administrator for the Sophomore Class will join us. 

Please fill out this form to submit any questions you may have ahead of time.

If you have any questions about this program, please contact Sandra P. Buteau at

Hope to see you there!

Elaine Tholen mtg

Recording for January 12th PTSA Membership Meeting

Click this link to hear the MHS PTSA  membership meeting recording with school board updates and Q&A with Special Guest Elaine Tholen.

Elaine Tholen is the FCPS School Board Member representing Dranesville District in Virginia.

Student Achievement

scholastic art

Scholastic Art Award Winners

Please join us in congratulating the students who participated in and won awards in the Regional Scholastics Art Contest.

The categories included Photography, Drawing and Illustration, Ceramics and Glass, Mixed Media, Sculpture, Painting, Digital Art, Painting, Comic Art, and Art Portfolio.

Click HERE for the full list of students.


All-District Band Audition Results

Congratulations to all the MHS students that auditioned for the All-District Bands!

We are proud to report that a huge number of our students have made the bands this year.

Click HERE for the full list of our winners!

Support Your McLean High School PTSA


PTSA Sponsored
Mock ACT/SAT Tests

EC Tutoring is offering mock ACT and SAT tests in January and February. 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 - February 5th, 9:00am-1:00pm    Registration Form

Mock ACT Test - February 26nd, 9:00am-1:00pm  Registration Form

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.

PTSA Funds Enhance Student Learning

Please consider making a tax-free donation to the PTSA.

Your contribution translates directly into academic enhancements, virtual programs, improved technology, and courtyard and facilities renovations. 

Click here to donate.

Remember When Shopping to Activate the Rewards Programs


Earn rewards while you shopHelp Our Cause: Check out a one-stop-shop to earn rewards while shopping at 1000+ stores online or on your phone.

Simply register once and use it often to get shopping discounts, travel rebates, discounted textbook purchases, electronics, vehicle donations, and much more.

Details about the program are found here.


Harris Teeter Together in Education: Visit this link to register your card or register with the cashier next time you shop at Harris Teeter. MHS Code: 5560; Phone: (800) 432-6111.

Office Depot

Office Depot – MHS Code: 70104184

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

Holiday shopping

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! Thank you!

restaurant night

Local Restaurant Fundraisers

Show Highlander Spirit and Support Your Community

While Dining In or Carrying Out

sweet leaf

Sweet Leaf Cafe is Tonight!

January 26th, 4:00pm - 8:00pm

1359 Chain Bridge Road, McLean, VA 22101

silver diner

Silver Diner - 1st Thursday

February 3rd, 5:00 - 8:00pm

8101 Fletcher Street, McLean, VA 22102

Stay in the Know!

Everything You Need to Know About Marijuana in One Hour: A Webinar for Families

Friday, January 28, 2022, 10:00am - 11:00 am. 

“Everyone’s doing it” is what most teenagers will say about marijuana, but truly only about 20% of teens have used marijuana in the last 30 days. During our session, we’ll talk about a myriad of topics relating to marijuana including: THC vs CBD, legalization vs decriminalization, the various ways marijuana can be consumed, and more. 

Discussion Highlights:

  • Legalization vs. decriminalization
  • Drug use and the pandemic
  • THC's various forms of use
  • THC through the years
  • THC vs. CBD

Join Tiffany J. Jones, FCPS Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist for this important webinar.

Register online for Everything You Need to Know About Marijuana in 1 hour: A Webinar for Families


National PTA Listening Sessions for Parents and Educators

Fairfax County Special Education PTA (SEPTA) is hosting virtual focus groups to discuss National PTA's Standards for Family-School Partnerships. Share your experiences and your perspectives on family-school partnerships.

  • How do you want to engage with your child’s school?
  • What are the most important parts of a parent-educator relationship?

Your feedback will be used to make family-school partnerships more inclusive and impactful in FCPS. National PTA will also use your feedback to inform a set of National Standards for family-school partnerships nationwide.

For more information click here.


COVID-19 Diagnostic Testing Available for All Students

All FCPS students and staff will have access to COVID-19 diagnostic testing. Diagnostic testing for those who are symptomatic, or have been in close contact with an individual with COVID-19, is an additional layered prevention strategy to support safe in-person learning.

Effective testing is essential in helping slow the spread of COVID-19 by identifying those who have the virus so they can receive treatment and isolate. Testing is also a step in the return to school or work process following illness or exposure.

COVID-19 diagnostic testing will be available at six drive-through sites throughout Fairfax County. A full list of locations and schedules is available on our website.

Appointments are not needed, but parents or guardians will need to provide their child’s information and consent for testing through FCPS’ secure online portal

Staff will also need to register through the secure online portal to receive testing services.

Students or staff receiving diagnostic testing will be given a rapid antigen test and wait 15 minutes for the results. If the test is positive, a PCR test will be administered to confirm the positive result. 

Any FCPS student or staff member who is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or is identified as a close contact of someone who is COVID-19 positive may use the six drive-through diagnostic testing sites.

More information about FCPS’ COVID-19 testing program, including diagnostic testing, is available online.

COVID-19 Test

Free Home
COVID-19 Tests Available

Every home in the U.S. is eligible to order four free at-home COVID-19 tests, completely free.

Visit to order your free at-home tests and find free testing locations in your area.

bus pass

Free Student Bus Pass Program

Students can sign up for the Free Student Bus Pass Program at all FCPS high schools: 

Visit the Fairfax Connector website for more information and to download the application. 


Online Campus & Self-Directed EPF Registration Opened on January 18th

Online Campus: Current grades 7-12

  • Non-SOL courses: Tuesday, June 21-Wednesday, July 20
  • SOL courses: Tuesday, June 21-Wednesday, July 21
  • IFTA HPE 9: Tuesday, July 5-Tuesday, July 26
  • HN Geometry: Tuesday, June 21 – Thursday, July 29
  • Algebra 2 Head Start: Monday, July 18-Friday, July 22

Time: Synchronous lessons will be between 8 am – 2 pm and will last 60-90 minutes daily.

These courses provide opportunities for credit recovery and acceleration for eligible middle school and high school students. 

Registration: Tuesday, January 18-Friday, June 10

Self-Directed Economics and Personal Finance: Current grades 9-12

  • Session 1: Monday, April 18-Friday, June 17
  • Session 2: Monday, June 27-Friday, July 29

Self-Directed Economics and Personal Finance requires students to complete work without direct teacher support. Students will access content for this course through FCPS Schoology. The course was updated in September 2020. The course features an 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 is an online course and does not meet face-to-face. Students may only take this course as "Pass/Fail."


Session 1: Tuesday, January 18-Friday, April 8

Session 2: Tuesday, January 18-Friday, June 3

Information about additional programs will be posted as it becomes available on the FCPS Summer Learning webpage.  

Student Contests, Programs,
Workshops, Selected Resources & Webinars 

the society

2022 Summer Internship Application is Open

We are excited to announce that the Society's 2022 summer internship application is officially open! This year, we are partnering with the Emerson CollectiveGeorge Washington University, and Smithsonian Institution to form the Emerson Collective Youth Collaborative (ECYC).

To learn more about the Society's internship program and the opportunities available through ECYC, students can visit our internship website.

The application deadline is February 28, 2022.


Vans High School Custom Culture was created to inspire and empower high school students to embrace their creativity through art and design and bring attention to diminishing arts education budgets. Vans believes everyone should be empowered to express themselves creatively and should be given the tools to do so. 

Custom Culture High School is a national high school customization competition using blank Vans shoes to be customized around the specific themes, Hometown Pride and VanD(IY)oren Legacy.

In order to compete in our competition, an art teacher or school administrator needs to register the high school on between January 10, 2022-February 4, 2022.

See the contest rules for exact details.


For 2021, Cooper Hewitt’s Design Challenge is: What Would You Design to Create a Healthier World?

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum launched the National High School Design Competition in 2016. Every year, students around the country are challenged to design a solution to a unique scenario, inspired by Cooper Hewitt’s rich collection and stimulating exhibitions.  

Awards: Membership to Cooper Hewitt and networking opportunities with designers / other experts in the field  

Participants: Students ages 13 through 19 who are high school students in Grades 9 through 12, or who are homeschooled students working toward a high school degree anywhere in the United States.

You can enter as an individual or as a team of up to three people. 

Registration opens: January 4, 2022

Deadline to submit: February 28, 2022

Registration Fee: FREE  



Doodle 4 Google Contest 

Submit a design to Google for a chance to have your artwork appear on millions of computer screens as the Google Logo.  

For more information visit here.

Library of VA

2022 Student Creative Expressions Contest

Contest Extended to February 28, 2022

No matter who you are or what your background is,
you bring your own values and experiences to every situation.

High school students in Virginia are invited to honor outstanding African Americans by participating in Dominion Energy and the Library of Virginia’s Strong Men & Women in Virginia History student contest. This year’s contest is built around the inquiry process of project-based learning and is designed to hit grade-specific standards through a multidisciplinary approach. While analyzing historical and contemporary injustices, students will use and develop creative and critical thinking skills.

  • Students are allowed to enter one submission during the contest period.
  • Students should choose to compete in only one category. 
  • The performance or digital project entries must include a video piece with narration describing what your project is and how it addresses the prompt. 
  • The performance or documentary videos must run 5 minutes or under. 
  • Creative Writing entries are limited to 500 words and must include language that addresses the prompt.

Winners will receive an Apple MacBook Air and $1,000 for their schools. Four winning projects will be chosen, one project from each of four regions in the state.

The people honored as Strong Men and Women in Virginia History used their experiences to overcome obstacles and achieve their goals. Is there a past honoree who inspires you particularly? How do your values and experiences help you meet your goals and overcome obstacles in your personal life, at school or in your community?

For more information about the contest, please visit here.

Applications Are Now Open for the

2022 AFSA National High School Essay Contest

Apply at

The application deadline is 11:59 p.m. EDT on April 4, 2022



Envirothon Competition for
High School Students

As we determine best practices for reaching Zero Waste goals in Fairfax County, let's engage our high school students' voices! This year’s Envirothon Special Interest topic is “Waste to Resources” and the Oral Presentation question has just been announced! Visit the VA Soil and Water Conservation District’s Envirothon competition page to explore resources on waste and other competition topics and to learn how to participate in the Envirothon competition.

Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District (NVSWCD) provides training trunks on aquatics, forestry, soils, and wildlife available teachers to borrow. Each trunk is full of dozens of valuable resources like guides, hands-on tools and equipment, and specimen samples. NVSWCD will also be hosting local training and will be providing more details soon.

Contact Ashley Palmer to learn more.


SPJ/JEA High School Essay Contest

The Sigma Delta Chi Foundation of the Society of Professional Journalists and the Journalism Education Association (SPJ/JEA) want to increase high school students' knowledge and understanding of the importance of independent media to our lives.

Upload/received by deadline: February 19, 2022, 11:59 p.m. Central time/9:59 p.m. Pacific time.

Essays will be accepted beginning November 1, 2021.

For more information click here.

cyber cup

National Cyber Cup

A free, 100% online Jeopardy-style Capture the Flag competition for students in grades 4-12 to sharpen their problem-solving skills through cyber-based challenges. 

For more information, please look here

Registration opens on March 1, 2022. 


Scholarship Information

You can access here a comprehensive list of scholarships for high school students to help pay for school their freshman year of college and beyond.

college transitions

Competitions and Contests that Boost Your
Admission Prospects

list of 70 academic competitions and contests selected by the College Transitions.


Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is Open? 

Parents of high school seniors are encouraged to work with their students to complete the FAFSA as early as possible, but before March 1st, as you prepare for your child to begin college in the fall of 2022. 

Parents and students should start by creating an FSA ID and then begin the FAFSA.

College Access Fairfax, an FCPS partner, will be offering sveral webinars on completing the FAFSA and finding and applying for scholarships on January 8th. Information on these programs and how to access them can be found at the College Access Fairfax website.

In addition, College Access Fairfax staff are available for virtual one-on-one help sessions to complete the FAFSA. Interested families should email to request an appointment.

Snow Day Holidays

Weather Cancellation Procedures

Be informed in the case of inclement weather or other emergency situations.          

Visit this site for more information.

Parents and Students, Did You Know?


School Safety & Threat Assessment

Parents and Students: View training modules on threat assessment and learn about FCPS' anonymous Tip Line

Fairfax County Public Schools has a well-established policy and protocol for responding to threats of violence in our schools. We have collaborated with the Youth Violence Project of the University of Virginia's Curry School of Education as part of our efforts to educate parents and students on how to help reduce threats and increase safety in our schools.

We invite parents and students (12 and older) to view the training modules on threat assessment here. These brief modules will help you understand the threat assessment process used in our schools and how it can help prevent violence.

Universal Mask

Universal Mask Wearing Remains a Critical Layered Prevention Strategy

FCPS continues to require universal mask wearing in alignment with CDC guidance. As they said "their layered prevention strategies have proven effective in keeping transmission rates low in our schools. We know our students are best served by in-person instruction. Adhering to our layered prevention strategies, especially universal masking, keeps our schools open and safe places for students to learn."

Read more on the FCPS website.

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.

Calendar Reminder

Calendar Reminders

Upcoming Important Dates

Upcoming Events

January 26 - Book Talk for Parents at MHS

January 26 - Sweet Leaf PTSA Fundraiser

February 1 - Lunar New Year

February 2 - Health & Wellness Program - Therapy Dogs at MHS

February 3 - Silver Diner Tysons Fundraiser

February 5 - Mock SAT Test - Registration Form

February 26 - Mock ACT Test - Registration Form

March 1 - Hidden In Plain Sight - Community Awareness Program

March 16 - PTSA General Meeting

June 1 - Graduation at 2:30pm at Constitution Hall

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


Parent Information Phone Lines

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

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. 


Guidelines for School Visitors, Volunteers and Guests

FCPS asks guests to follow a few guidelines to help keep our schools safe and healthy. If you are visiting, please review the health and safety guidelines for visitors in advance to prepare.


Multilingual Parent Podcast

Listen and subscribe to an FCPS multilingual family podcast to hear timely, important information related to school news. The podcasts are produced in conjunction with the Office for English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Services and the Office of Professional Learning and Family Engagement.

Listen and subscribe:

online activity

Get Your Child’s Online
Activity Report 

FCPS has tools to help parents and guardians know more about their child’s activity on any FCPS device. These tools are provided by Lightspeed, their internet content filtering service, at no cost to families. 

You may sign up for a weekly Parent Report, which will provide a list of the top sites your child visited. If you want more detailed information, sign up for the Internet Use Parent portal and log in anytime to see more details about your child’s browsing and “pause” access to the internet during non-school hours. 

Find out more and sign up for these services on the FCPS website.

Thank you to our Business Sponsors

Georgetown Learning
LM Orthodontics
Policy Viz Business Sponsor