March Updates

Spring is Almost Here

Dear Students, Families and Staff,

Spring is certainly in the air.  I hope that you will be able to attend some of the amazing performances of our students, either on the sports fields and courts or in our auditoriums.  Our students are amazing.  On Friday, Hayfield Secondary School’s Boy’s Basketball will be competing against Battlefield High School for the state championship. 

It is also a good time to schedule a visit to our nation’s capital to see the beautiful Cherry Blossoms.  They are expected to peak at the end of the month.  The cherry blossoms provide an excellent opportunity to visit our national monuments in D.C. and reflect on our nation’s rich history.  We are so lucky to both live in close proximity to our nation’s capital and have so many important parts of our history here in Mount Vernon.  I urge you all to take the time to visit Mount Vernon, Gunston Hall, Gum Springs Historical Society, the newly opened Army Museum, the Lorton Workhouse and more. 

My colleague Rachna Sizemore Heizer brought forth an important resolution to encourage greater inclusivity in our schools and community within the framework of the “Spread the Word: Inclusion Campaign.  The campaign focuses on the importance of ensuring that all of our students with intellectual and developmental disabilities feel valued, supported and hopeful in our schools, community and work place. Read the resolution. 

 For over 125 years parents have partnered with teachers and advocated for excellence in education.  I was honored to be able to bring forth a resolution honoring this partnership at our last School Board Meeting. PTA resolution Read the resolution here.

School Board Fiscal Year (FY) 2023 Budget

In advance of the Board of Supervisor’s advertised property tax rate, the School Board Adopted its Advertised Budget.  The advertised budget is provided to the Board Of Supervisors so that they are aware of the needs of the school system as they proceed with their budgeting process.  The School Board adopted the FY2023 Advertised Budget focused on student achievement and recognition of world-class educators and operational staff. The FCPS advertised budget includes three main areas of focus - Compensation, Opportunity and Access, and Critical Operational Needs.  This budget prioritizes investments that ensure all students receive the rigorous instruction and comprehensive support they need to thrive. 86% of the $3.3 billion budget goes directly to instruction.

As in previous years, FCPS will continue its collaborative work with the Board of Supervisors and County Executive during the County budget process.  A joint meeting of the two boards was held on March 1.  A major concern for both boards is the impact of the increased cost of housing in Fairfax County and the need to adjust property tax rates. The School Board presents the Advertised FY23 Budget to the County Board of Supervisors on April 12.  A link to the budget and more details can be found here: View the budget documents here

This evening the Board will receive a briefing on the FY 2022 Third Quarter Budget Review reports on activity and recommendations made since the School Board’s Midyear Budget Review, approved on December 16, 2021. Recommended School Operating Fund expenditure adjustments reflect a decrease of $12.5 million resulting from staffing reserve savings.  It is recommended that the savings be transferred out to the Grants and Self-Supporting Programs Fund to support the summer school programming which is expected to be widely subscribed to.

Supervisor Storck and I will be having a joint budget town hall on March 23.  

3-23- Budget Town Hall


ESSER III Schools Plans to Support Learning & Student Wellness Are Available Online

Last fall, FCPS received $188.8 million in Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER III) funding to address the impacts of COVID-19 on students.  Each school developed a plan to target their students' academic and wellness needs, which was reviewed and approved by the region and ESSER leadership teams.  click here to see the plans.

ESSER III focus areas include:

  • Prevention and mitigation strategies to help keep schools open and safe for students and staff.
  • Academic intervention services, such as tutoring, after-school programs, and summer learning programs. 
  • Equity professional development to ensure our schools are welcoming and culturally responsive to all students and families.
  • Multilingual engagement to ensure information is accessible to all families.
  • Additional support for students’ social-emotional needs, such as counselors, psychologists, social workers, and family liaisons.

The plans will be revised over time to reflect progress made and analyses of the data collected through on-going assessments.  Updated information will be available once the revision and approval processes are complete.

To watch a video about the impact COVID-19 Recovery Funding is having in our schools, click here. To learn more about ESSER III, click here.


“LIGHTSPEED” is a very helpful and free online service for FCPS parents to help monitor their child’s internet activity on FCPS laptops.

Parents can sign up to receive a free weekly report from Lightspeed, FCPS' internet content filtering service. Lightspeed will email parents a list of the top sites their child visited each week. 

In addition, parents can sign up to access Lightspeed’s Internet Use Parent Portal. This portal allows parents to log in any time to see more details about their child’s internet browsing and gives parents the ability to “pause” access to the internet during non-school hours on the FCPS device.  

Parents will need to provide basic contact information and identify their student. To protect the privacy of our students, parents must provide the email address of the enrolling parent to match the enrolling parent email address currently in our Student Information System (SIS), as well as the student ID of their child. Both of those pieces of information must exactly match what we have on-file in SIS before we will provide access to the Parent Screen Activity Reports. 

To sign up and find out more about the Lightspeed Parent Reports, click here.

Annual FCPS Special Education Conference


Registration is now open for FCPS’ 17th annual Special Education Conference, being held virtual on Saturday, March 26, with a combination of synchronous (live) and asynchronous (recorded) sessions.

Speakers include:

  • Dr. Lisa Cullins, A Conversation About Compassion Fatigue.
  • Marlo Keller, Exceptional Family Member Program Pathways: Navigating the Halls of a Permanent Change of Station (PCS) School Move.
  • Ann Dolin, Less Policing, More Parenting: How to Improve Your Child’s Executive Functioning Skills Without All the Arguments.
  • Dr. Lisa Bateman, Reducing the Stigma Around Mental Health Challenges and How to Support Children in Asking for Help. 

To view the full agenda and register for sessions, click here.

Individuals needing foreign language interpretation (Spanish, Ahmaric, Arabic, and Korean), American Sign Language (ASL), or Cued Language Transliterator (CLT) interpreters for the live sessions may request this on the registration form. 

For questions, please contact


Summer 2022 FCPS Learning Opportunities  (Academic, Fine Arts, Career & Tech)

FCPS offers many summer learning opportunities for students to advance academically, to sharpen their skills, to learn something new, or to participate in fun Fine Arts and Career and Technical Education camps, institutes, and academies. 

FCPS summer programs include: a Credit Recovery Academy that offers credit recovery courses; Online Campus courses; Institute for the Arts; Tech Adventure Camp and CTE Summer Academy; and Summer Learning Opportunities at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology.

For more information and registration details for Summer Learning Opportunities, click here.


Institute for the Arts


Registration is now open for the Elementary Institute for the Arts (E-IFTA) and Institute for the Arts (IFTA) for students who are interested in exploring the arts. 

Elementary Institute for the Arts (for rising 3rd through 6th graders) and Institute for the Arts (for rising 7th through 12th graders) will be held July 5-29 at Lake Braddock Secondary School from 8:30 am-2 pm. 

The views contained within this newsletter reflect the views of the individual school board member who is the publisher of this newsletter and may not reflect the views of the Fairfax County School Board.

© 2022 Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax County, Virginia