The One with a Ton of End of Year Information - TJHSST April Update

Message from the Principal

Dear TJHSST Families:

In eight weeks we'll wave goodbye and say we did it! What a tremendous year returning face-to-face and coming together again as a TJ family.

My note is a short one this month because there is so much information below. Please take time to mark your calendars and support your children throughout these final weeks. Find ways to help our students destress during the testing season. Assist with time management and insist on sleep for wellness. Most of all, emphasize that perfection is not necessary. All of our children are amazing, beautiful, and talented just the way they are! 


Dr. Ann N. Bonitatibus 

TJHSST Proud Principal

Twitter @TJAnnB 

AP Testing Schedule

We will be holding AP tests from May 2-13, with the late/makeup window going from May 17-20. To minimize class changes during the testing windows, we’ve eliminated Anchor Days those weeks, which results in the flipping of some Red and Blue Days. 

Here is the link on our website that features the day by day bell schedule:

Please read it carefully as the schedule changes each and every day. Here  are a few key ones to note:

  • Lunch Schedules - Lunch will be extended on several days. That is being done to make sure everyone who is testing has at least a 30 minute lunch. Days that are labeled Cold for lunch means that the cafeteria is being used for testing, and we will have sandwiches to distribute to students on those days. More information on how that distribution will work is forthcoming. 
  • Tuesday, May 3 - No AP testing on this day. It was originally a religious observance day, but the correct date for Eid al-Fitr is actually Monday, May 2. Despite the correction, FCPS has decided to have all schools hold the tests that would have taken place on this date during the makeup week on Tuesday, May 17.
  • Wednesday, May 4 - Classes will go backwards in order (from 4th period down to 1st period). This is being done to balance time spent in class since morning classes will be longer than the ones in afternoon during the AP testing period.
  • Thursday, May 5 - Classes will be in normal order, but 7th period in the afternoon will be extended to 130 minutes.
  • Wednesday, May 11 - 5th and 7th period will be held in the morning. 6th period will be held in the afternoon and extended to 140 minutes.
  • Thursday, May 12 - Classes will once again go backwards in order (from 4th period down to 1st period).
  • Friday, May 13 - 6th and 7th period will be held in the morning. 5th period will be held in the afternoon and extended to 140 minutes.


SOL Testing Updates

We will also be administering SOL tests. The SOL schedule is as follows:

  • Monday, April 25 - SOL Reading occurring during morning
  • Tuesday, May 17 - SOL Biology done through students' biology classes
  • Wednesday, May 18 - SOL Biology done through students' biology classes
  • Thursday, May 19 - Algebra 2 and World History 1 SOL occurring during morning; World History 2 SOL done through students' history classes
  • Friday, May 20 - World History 2 SOL done through students' history classes


We Have a Prom Location and Date!

The Senior Prom is set for Wolf Trap on Saturday, May 21 from 8:00-11:00 p.m. It is free for TJ Seniors. They can purchase a ticket for a non-TJ senior guest for $50. This can be done until May 6 in MySchoolBucks. Approval process for bringing guests will be shared with students soon.

FCPSOn Laptops Need to Be Brought to School on April 18

All students need to Bring their FCPSOn laptop (not their personal device) to school on Monday, April 18. During advisory they will be instructed to perform important computer health checks as we enter spring testing season.

Students that do not have a laptop device from FCPS will be provided with a laptop on the days of testing.

Class of 2022 - Important Information Regarding Exams, Grad Rehearsal and Graduation

Here are some notes for the Class of 2022 and their families about the end of the year and upcoming graduation.

Senior Final Exams

Based on the dates that FCPS gave us we are holding the Senior Final Exams on these dates.

Wednesday, May 25 – Periods 5 and 7

Thursday, May 26 – Periods 1 and 3

Friday, May 27 – Periods 6 and makeups

Tuesday, May 31 – Periods 2 and 4

Wednesday, June 1 – if there are any other makeups that need to be done (hopefully not) then they need to be completed in the morning. Final senior grades are due at noon.

Graduation Rehearsal

Seniors need to report to TJ on Thursday, June 2 to participate in Graduation Rehearsal. Attendance is mandatory.

It will take place in Gym 1. It will begin at 9:30 a.m. and will last most of the morning. Seniors have been instructed not to arrive before 9:00 a.m. in order to not disrupt the beginning of the day.


Graduation is scheduled for Saturday, June 4 at Eagle Bank Arena on the campus of George Mason University. It will begin at 7:30 p.m.

We will soon have a graduation webpage that will answer all the questions you are sure to have. Once it is published we will send out a link.

Underclassman Final Exam Schedule

Below is the final exam schedule for our underclassmen this year. Each day will be a half day. We will get you a more specific schedule once it becomes available.

Monday, June 6 – Periods 1 and 2

Tuesday, June 7 – Periods 3 and 4

Wednesday, June 8 – Periods 5 and 6

Thursday, June 9 – Periods 7 and makeups 

Friday, June 10 – 2 hour day 

Save the Date - Sports Physicals Returning to TJ June 1

MEDICAL VOLUNTEERS NEEDED. We are not able to open registration yet since we have not had any medical professionals volunteer to help this year.

Volunteers (MD, DO, PAC, NP, RN, PT) are still needed to run physicals.  We need parents to help make the sports physicals a successful event. Your expertise and a few hours of your time will greatly benefit our TJ athletes.  Students are also encouraged to sign up and get community service hours! Dinner will be provided for the volunteers.

Every athlete needs a new athletic physical every school year so save some time and come out to TJ on June 1, 2022 and support the TJ Athletic Training Program. Need a BOY SCOUT or CAMP PHYSICAL at the same time?  No problem, just make sure you bring all the forms with you on June 1st.

Heather Murphy & Caroline Taylor are coordinating this popular at-school event to ensure that our athletes are ready for the 2022-23 seasons.  Medical professionals will perform the comprehensive physicals. The screening will check height, weight, vision, vital signs, whole body flexibility, strength, and posture.   ALL PHYSICALS MUST BE COMPLETED ON THE JANUARY 2021 version!  You can download one from the website under files and links.

The physical is $50 for pre-registered students and $60 for walk-ins (taken after 6pm on space available basis) and all money goes to support TJ Athletic Training!  FCPS Athletic Trainers get $0 from the county for supplies. We have not been able to hold this event at TJ or earn any money since 2019. Registration link will be posted in April via the website and social media accounts.

Email if you can volunteer or have any questions.

Thank you for all your support. See you on the sidelines. 

Heather Murphy, ATC and Caroline Taylor, ATC

Educational Experiences: Collecting Samples from Jefferson Memorial and Arlington National Cemetery

Students in Dr. Burnett's DNA Research lab have been working in collaboration with officials from the Jefferson Memorial and Arlington National Cemetery to collect biofilm from a black mold type substance that has been growing on them. The purpose is to find out exactly what this substance is and how park officials can best keep these important landmarks clean.

Recently, Dr. Burnett and several of her students traveled out to both locations to gather some more samples. The TJ Partnership Fund documented the trip and was kind enough to share some photos with us. 

Collage of photos of students collecting biofilm at Jefferson Memorial and Arlington National Cemetery

TJ PTSA Holds Holi Celebration

On March 31, the TJ PTSA Diversity Committee, in conjunction with the Namaste club, held a Holi celebration. Holi is often called the Festival of Colors and celebrates the arrival of spring. TJ thanks the PTSA for organizing this event, please enjoy some photos. 

Collage of Holi celebration photos

Students Showcase Unique Talents

On March 25, the TJ SGA put on its first "TJ's Got Talent" showcase. Students showed off for families and friends some of the unique skills they have. We had singers, dancers, cultural performances, musicians, and even some magic! Here are some photos from that fun event!

Collage of TJ's Got Talent PhotosCollage of TJ's Got Talent Photos

Educational Experience: Meteorites at TJ

The Astronomy research lab recently had a visit from Mr. Cal Powell, a Lead Volunteer from the Astronomy Education department at the National Air and Space Museum. He brought several meteorites from his collection, mostly gathered in North Africa. Students got a hands on experience with real pieces of the Moon and Mars, a piece of the Chelyabinsk meteor that exploded over Russia in 2013, as well as several other unique objects.


Meteorite display at TJ


In each newsletter we want to give some quick shout outs to TJ staff, students, teams, and alumni:

  • Congratulations go out to 33 TJHSST students who presented their 26 outstanding research projects in mid-March at the Fairfax County Regional Science and Engineering Fair. An astonishing 19 of the 26 earned a First Place prize designation in their categories, and the remaining seven earned either a Second or Third Place prize. In addition to the category prizes, 20 TJHSST projects earned over 40 different specialty society prizes from science and engineering organizations totaling in the thousands of dollars in cash and prizes. 
  • Our alumni are using their knowledge to go after the big bucks! Carter Lockwood ('10) and Nadege Aoki ('14) each got the opportunity to compete on Jeopardy recently! 
  • The National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) gave out its 2022 Award for Aspirations in Computing late last month. Over 3500 applications were received, and an impressive 14 TJHSST female students earned honors!
  • Congratulations to the TJ Orchestra program!  Both TJ orchestras earned Superior ratings at State Assessment with straight Superiors in every category from every judge!  
  • The TJHSST MUN Club won the Best Large Delegation award at the McLean Model UN Conference weekend of March 18-19. This marks the THIRD such accolade of this nature in a one month period, and represents a clean sweep of Spring MUN conference team awards on the Northern VA circuit! In addition to the overall team award, 18 students in our delegation won individual or team awards. The TJ MUN Club is now preparing to host its own Model UN Conference – TechMUN – April 29-30, 2022. Club leaders anticipate that several hundred middle and high school students from near and far will attend the conference, engaging in a weekend of good natured diplomacy and simulated international cooperation.

  • The 2021-22 TJHSST Chess Team competed during the last weekend of March in the 2022 Virginia Scholastic Chess Championships.
    • Five TJ students placed in the top 10 of the State Championship Blitz Tournament.
    • In the 5-round Virginia Scho­las­tic State Championship, 10 of the 16 members of the team placed in the top 30! That led TJ to its 20th straight year of winning the state championship!
    • In the under-1400 championship, TJ took second to Maggie Walker with two students coming in second place in their respective divisions.
    • The TJ Chess Team would like to thank Dr. Peter Gabor and Dr. Abdel Hady Ebrahim, who are the Chess Club’s faculty sponsors.
  • The TJHSST Chess Team then went on to place eighth in the National Chess Tournament, April 8-10 in Memphis, Tennessee. Eight students took part. The day before the the main event, four TJ students combined to place fourth in the Blitz Tournament.
  • Congratulations to four TJ Students and faculty advisor Jayne Iyengar for earning the 2022 State Championship in the Personal Finance Challenge competition!

Remember to Clear Student Obligations

TJ Students - do you still have TJ textbooks/paperbacks from last year (or prior) sitting at home? Please turn them in to the Finance Office (Room 105) to clear your student account of any outstanding obligations. Be on the lookout for individual student email reminders regarding any outstanding books, field trips and activity fees. Fees can be paid on MySchoolBucks. Feel free to stop by the Finance Office (Room 105) with any questions.

Reminder for Seniors: You will not receive your cap and gown until all outstanding obligations (books, materials, field trips or activity fees) have been cleared from your account.  

Another Lost and Found Clean Out

TJ Students and Families - Even though we just cleared out the Lost and Found before Spring Break, it is now full again with everything you left in the school while leaving for Spring Break. As a result we are going to empty it again. If you think you have anything you are missing please stop by the Lost and Found (located by the stairs near the Darwin Commons entrance) by April 26.

TJ is Now On Twitter!

Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology is now on Twitter! Visit @TJHSST_Official  for news, upcoming events, reminders of important deadlines, and updates of all the fun activities going on at the school.

Be sure to give us a follow!

Important Calendar Reminders

April 22: Religious or Cultural Observance Day (Orthodox Good Friday/Last Night of Passover)

April 25: SOL Reading Test given in morning for students who need to take it.

April 26: I-Nite - 7:00 p.m. at NoVA Alexandria Campus

May 2: Religious or Cultural Observance Day (Eid al-Fitr)

May 2-13: AP Testing During School Day (See article above for complete schedule)

May 6: Next News You Choose newsletter will be released.