FH Weekly Update - 12/11/22


Principals' Message

Dear Freedom Hill Community,

It is hard to believe that we are entering our final school week of the 2022 calendar year! We look forward to celebrating 2022 this week, and for all that 2023 will hold for our hardworking students. If you haven’t already done so, this is a good time to update your child’s emergency care card and have an alternate plan in place if the weather causes school to open later, dismiss early, or close for the day.

As a reminder, all parent referrals for AAP Level IV (grades 2-6 students only) are due by Wednesday. No late referrals will be accepted.

We look forward to our December Spirit Week (thank you to our SCA!) and to finishing this calendar year strongly! 

In continued partnership, 

Nicholas Zapadka, Principal

Eric Kopacz, Assistant Principal

Upcoming Dates for Your Calendar

2022-23 FCPS School Calendar

  • December 12 - 16 - December Spirit Week
  • December 12 - 14 - Candy Gram Sales at Arrival
  • December 15 -  AAP Level IV Referral Deadline
  • December 17 - January 2 - Holiday Break
  • January 3 - School Resumes

Holiday Generosity


We invite you to join our school community in supporting our families during this holiday season through the following:

  1. Donate a reusable shopping bag(s) to the front office to help us send home food and materials to families
  2. Drop off a gift card to a local grocery store (Trader Joe's preferred) at our front office. We will include these with gifts for families in need
  3. Contribute to the Girl Scout Cold Weather Drive. A box for collecting adult and children’s items will be placed at the school from 12/1-12/16.  Any new and gentle used coats, hats, gloves and scarves are appreciated. 

Positivity Project: Self-Control




This week, we are focusing on Self-Control. You have the ability to control your emotions and behaviors. You think before you act.


“By constant self-discipline and self-control, you can develop greatness of character.”

                    ~Grenville Kleise


Questions you might enjoy talking about:

  • Do you consider yourself to be a person who has self-control? What things do you do that indicate this?
  • Why is self-regulation important?
  • What happens when your emotions take over? How can you work on developing greater self-control?

AAP Referral Deadline

If you are interested in referring your child (grades 2-6) to be screened for full time AAP services, you will need to submit the referral form, questionnaire, and 2 work samples no later than December 15th.  Please submit them electronically to TLFredericks@fcps.edu or to your child's homeroom teacher.  You are also welcome to send in paper copies to your child's homeroom teacher or the front office. Please email TLFredericks@fcps.edu for any questions or help!

Referral form 

Parent Questionnaire

Preparing for Winter Weather

Winter weather will be here before you know it! Watch this video to see how weather-related closing decisions are made

FCPS’ inclement weather procedures will remain the same as last year. The first five inclement weather days will be traditional “snow days” with no school activities. After those five days, we will use the flexibility provided by the Virginia General Assembly to have unscheduled virtual learning days, whenever possible, to maintain the continuity of learning. Virtual learning on these days will be synchronous/live instruction, following the inclement weather virtual learning day schedule (includes a two-hour delay).

FCPS’ website is generally the first mode of communication during emergency weather closings. Other communication channels will be used as quickly as possible including email, text, social media, and news stations. Learn more about how schedule changes are communicated

Be sure to plan ahead for the winter season. Make sure your contact information is up-to-date in weCare@school, bookmark the FCPS website, plan for childcare, if appropriate, and know what items your child may need to take home before a weather event.

Keep Your Child Warm During Outdoor Activities

Your school’s principal will monitor the weather for low temperatures, wind chill advisories and warnings, and weather advisories which may prevent children from being outside. Make sure your child is dressed appropriately with a warm coat and other cold-weather clothing, so they can comfortably enjoy their time outdoors. See the National Weather Service’s tips on staying safe during cold weather.

If you need assistance supplying your child with cold-weather clothing, please call Fairfax County's Coordinated Services Planning (CSP) at 703-222-0880. The multilingual staff can assist with any challenges you are facing, including food, shelter, employment, financial assistance, and healthcare.


Parent Advocacy Handbook

FCPS has published a newly revised Parent Advocacy Handbook for parents and guardians. The handbook contains answers to many questions parents have about the school system and how they can best advocate for their student during various stages of their school experience. The handbook is available in the following languages: Arabic, Chinese, English, Korean, and Spanish.


Does your child need homework help or feedback on their writing? How about a practice quiz to get ready for a test? Tutor.com is open to FCPS students in all grades, on-demand, 24/7, at no cost to families. Learn more.


iReady Winter Testing

Students in grades 1-6 will participate in the math and reading iReady assessment (also known as the universal screener) for the winter window. More information about the assessment can be found on the FCPS Universal Screener Parent Notification webpage. For questions, please contact your child’s teacher.




PTA Updates

Thanks to those who helped with our Ledo Pizza FDO last week! It's an action-packed week with a Teacher Appreciation activity and lunch, Candygrams on sale until Wed., AAP forms due Thursday, and Enrichment closing on Friday. We hope you have a wonderful and relaxing winter break!

Keep your kids entertained these upcoming winter months with before and after-school enrichment activities. This is a great opportunity for your kids to check out activities like PE Club, Cooking: Savory & Sweets, Guitar, Basketball, Spanish, Potions & Explosions, Chess, Pottery, and Minecraft. All classes are conveniently at Freedom Hill before or after school. Registration is open now and closes this Friday, Dec. 16th. Some classes are already full so be sure to check them out this week! More details on the flier. For more information, visit the site for class descriptions.


We are seeking 4-6 volunteers to assist us with a teacher appreciation activity for the week before break. This will be a short easy activity that anyone can do. We will meet Tuesday, 12/13 in the art room from 4:00-6:00 pm. If you would like to participate, please sign up here. If you can't volunteer but would like to leave a kind note for a teacher, submit an Outstanding Employee form by December 12th! If you'd like more info about the activity, contact president@freedomhillpta.org.


Candy Grams Are Here! You can still purchase them until Wednesday, Dec. 14th! The Sixth Grade Class of 2023 is hosting a Winter Candy Cane Sale! Tell your classmates, friends, teachers, and staff how much you appreciate them!
When: December 7th – 14th from 8:30-9:10 am
Where: Outside near the main entrance
How Much: 50₵ each
Order form link here. Your payment along with a completed order form may be returned to the CANDY GRAMS box in the FHES main office. Want to write out your own messages? It’s easy. Go here for printable message notes. Turn in your message along with your order form and payment to the CANDY GRAMS box. Q's? Contact Christine Khuo. 


Props to Sechin Lee and Sara Lyon for organizing an awesome Teacher/Staff Luncheon to take place on Wed., Dec. 14th with a taco bar from Anita's! 


Save the date for our Spelling Bee coming up after the break. Between Jan. 24-Feb. 3rd, kids have the option of participating in a class-level bee. This year will be a little different as the kids who want to participate will be placed in a room together and one grade-level teacher will conduct the grade-level bee. If there are 3 classes in a grade, 6 students (3*2) will be selected from the grade to advance to the School Bee. Study lists supplied by Scripps Spelling Bee are here:https://sites.google.com/site/spellingclubfhes/. To make spelling practice and learning fun, Scripps, for the time first time has released an official free mobile app for iOS and Android platforms available here. The School Bee will be held on Feb. 8th at 6 pm.

You can always get the latest PTA calendar right here!