Newsletter for May

Happy Memorial Day

As we approach the end of the year and begin the non-official start of summer with Memorial Day, it is important to reflect on the many whom have lost their lives in the service of our country.  Visiting sites in our community that honor our heroes is a great opportunity to share with our students the importance of their sacrifice and the history of our nation.  We have the new National Museum of the United States Army here in Mount Vernon, historic sites and Arlington Cemetery nearby. 

Graduation season is upon us. Quander School Graduates were the first on Wednesday of this week and Pulley Center today.  Next week we will celebrate the graduates of Bryant, Edison, Hayfield, Lewis, Mount Vernon, South County and West Potomac. I am so proud of these seniors.  Please join me in congratulating these amazing seniors for a job well done. 

FY 2023 Budget

Last night, the School Board adopted the FY 2023 Budget.  I had the honor of chairing the budget committee this year working closely with my colleague Elaine Tholen. The budget focuses on teacher and staff recruitment and retention, academic excellence for students and increased supports for student physical and behavioral health.  I am especially appreciative of the continued commitment to education by the Board of Supervisors.

Information About Addiction and Overdoses

As we approach summer time, I want to bring your attention to a silent pandemic in our country and that is Opiods and Fentanyl.  Almost a million lives have been lost to drug overdoses in the United States since the turn of the century. Two-thirds of the deaths resulting from opiod overdoses are attributed to Fentanyl. Fentanyl is a synthetic opiod which can be up to 50 times stronger than heroin and 100 times stronger than morphine.  Even small amounts of Fentanyl can cause an overdose and death.  Many illegal drugs, including counterfeit prescription drugs can be laced with or without a person’s knowledge.

Virginia and Fairfax County are not immune to these dangers.  In 2021, there were 111 fatal overdoses in the Fairfax Health District.  The  County and Schools have been working to address this issue with the Opiod Task Force.  A series of Webinars were held last month. At the local level in Mount Vernon and Lee, the magisterial members of the two boards have been working together with schools and county staff to identify areas where our schools and county staff can more closely collaborate.  The Board of Supervisors Adopted a Board Matter put forth by Chairman McKay on Tuesday to convene a roundtable of youth mental health and substance use professionals to address concerns regarding mental health and substance abuse.  Learn more about this important issue and how Fairfax County is addressing this important issue.  FCPS supports for students with addictions can be found here:

Student Safety

Both the Board of Supervisors and the School Board recognize June 3 as Gun Violence Awareness Day in Fairfax County. Senseless acts of mass shootings (outside of our community) impact our students, school employees, and families whom worry about what could happen in Fairfax in their children’s school. We want you to know that the safety of our schools, and the children and staff within them, is our highest priority. We continually work to make critical safety upgrades to our buildings each budget year. FCPS has one of the most advanced school security systems in the nation. Last night the School Board took two actions to further invest in security initiatives, building on the work that began in 2018 and 2019.  These include a review of FCPS building security and add security vestibules to all of our buildings, voted to have an independent audit of our security.

Register on time:

FCPS PreK and Early Head Start is now accepting applications for School Year 2022-23!  PreK and Early Head Start is an income eligible program serving children ages 3 or 4 by September 30 in multiple classrooms across the county and ages 6 weeks to 2 years in the Reston, Herndon and Springfield areas.  Please watch this video to learn more about the program and to see if your child may qualify. English video, Spanish video.

 To Apply Online visit our website here: PreK and EHS Application

 For more information you can reach us via the English Line: 703-208-7900 , Spanish Line: 703-208-7901 or PreK email at:

Mental Health Resources for Students and Parents

May is #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth! 

This month's theme: Meaningful May

Let's find ways to be part of something bigger. Go to Action for Happiness for ideas to help you take action for a happier and kinder world.

2022 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year–Sustained Excellence Award

Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) has received the 2022 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year–Sustained Excellence award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Energy. “This 24-year partnership has been one of the longest and most successful relationships the school division has ever had, and we are proud to be making a difference not only locally, but globally," said Jeff Platenberg, assistant superintendent of Facilities and Transportation. Each year, the ENERGY STAR program honors businesses and organizations that have made outstanding contributions to protecting the environment through superior energy achievements. ENERGY STAR award winners lead their industries in the production, sale, and adoption of energy-efficient products, homes, buildings, services, and strategies. Read more here.

Get to Know Dr. Reid

On Tuesday, May 17, incoming Superintendent Michelle Reid, Ed.D. was joined by families, employees, and community members for a multilingual virtual town hall. Dr. Reid answered questions submitted by audience members on many topics including equity, student success, student and employee social/emotional health, and more. Watch the highlights of the May 17 virtual town hall in this short video.

 Dr. Reid will be hosting additional engagement sessions throughout the county after her official start date on July 1. Stay informed about community engagement opportunities by visiting our website.

Get your School Vaccinations now 

The State of Virginia requires immunizations for entry into kindergarten, 7th grade, 12th grade, and when transferring into FCPS. The Fairfax County Health Department will be offering a immunizations at Fairfax County clinics for students to complete their school vaccine requirements (the COVID-19 vaccine is not a required vaccine). Please go here to learn how to schedule an appointment

Important Immunization Requirement for Students Entering 7th Grade or 12th Grade This Fall

While the COVID-19 vaccination is NOT required by schools for the 2022-23 school year, many other vaccinations are.

Seventh-grade students need:

  • One dose of Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, acellular pertussis) given at age 7 or older.
  • One dose of Meningococcal Vaccine (MenACWY, Menactra, or Menveo) given at age 10 or older.

Twelfth-grade students need:

  • One dose of Meningococcal Vaccine (MenACWY, Menactra, or Menveo) given at age 16 or older.

More information on immunization requirements is available online. See the flyer below or go to to make your appointment today. 

Preparing for a Military Move? What Every Military Family Needs to Know – Friday, June 3rd

Did you know military-connected students experience different “seasons” as they navigate their school years?

Using tools from her book, “Seasons of My Military Student,” Stacy Allsbrook-Huisman will offer relevant tips and strategies for managing new challenges.

  • Registration and withdrawal process
  • How to use the Education Binder
  • Why goodbyes are important
  • Resources within FCPS for military families

Join Stacy Allsbrook-Huisman for the virtual webinar - our fourth of a 4-part series supporting military-connected families.

June 3, 2022 10 - 11:30 a.m.

Register for Preparing for the Unexpected: Challenges of the Military Family

To view the previous webinars concerning Military-Connected Youth as well as other webinars from the Parent Resource Center, click here.

Summer Camps

If you are still looking for summer camps this summer, here are a few options in FCPS and  Fairfax County. FCPS Summer Learning site  has information for many FCPS programs including credit recovery, ESY, enrichment, and Online Campus for grades 7-12. Please go to each camp's websites for more information.

Check your current or next year school for academic, sports, and fun camps offered by the staff. Take advantage of the transitioning ‘camps’ that allow students to spend time in their new school for rising Kindergarteners, rising 6th graders, and rising 9th graders. Sign up now as they fill up quickly.

The Parent Resource Center has information about Special Needs Summer Camps 2022 here. Please contact the Parent Resource Center if you need more assistance.

Beginning English Classes

The Literacy Council of Northern Virginia is excited to announce our Summer 2022 Class Schedule. Registration opens on May 23! LCNV provides beginning-level English classes to adults so that they and their families may survive, thrive, and fully and equitably participate in the community. This summer, we are offering classes on a variety of days and times, at sites spread across Alexandria, Falls Church, Herndon, and Lorton. To learn more and to register, please click here.

iTHRIV – a National Institutes of Health (NIH) - funded, collaborative partnership between the University of Virginia, Virginia Tech, Carilion Clinic, and INOVA Health System – is soliciting input from our community to better understand what factors may encourage or discourage participation in health research.

iTHRIV, the integrated Translational Health Research Institute of Virginia, works with communities and researchers to improve the health of all Virginians.

Your input in this study is vital to our work, and we want to ensure your voice is heard.

By completing this anonymous survey, you can help our work to improve health across the Commonwealth of Virginia. We plan to share the survey findings with the communities we serve.

  • This anonymous survey is estimated to take 5-10 minutes to complete and is voluntary.

In addition, we encourage you to share this information and survey link with your friends, family, and community members.

To take the survey:

The survey is currently open until June 14th, 2022.

To learn more about iTHRIV, click here.

Thank you for helping us and your community!

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.

© Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax County, Virginia