Wednesday Word - 4/19/23




  • Wednesday, 4/19 - Kindergarten Orientation 5:30pm-6:30pm
  • Friday, 4/21 -  Holiday - Eid al Fitr
  • Wednesday, 4/26 - FES PTA Restaurant Night  at La Fiamma
  • Wednesday, 4/26 - Talent Show Permission Slips Due
  • Thursday, 4/26 and Friday, 4/28 - Lion King Kids Musical 6:30 pm




 Kindergarten Orientation TONIGHT

Do you have a child who will be 5 years of age by September 30, 2023, and do you plan on sending them to kindergarten at Franconia for the 2023-2024 school year?

We are in the process of preparing for our kindergarten registration and orientation.  If your child is ready for kindergarten, call the school at 703-822-2200 so we may add you to our list of rising kindergarten students.

Please consider joining us at the school with your future kindergartener for our Kindergarten Orientation TONIGHT from 5:30-6:30pm.  During this presentation, we will provide information about the kindergarten program at Franconia Elementary, while the future kindergarteners get to explore the classroom, participate in fun kindergarten activities, and take a ride on a school bus around the neighborhood. 

❤ Kindergarten Team



April is the Month of the Military Child

Every year we take the opportunity to recognize military-connected youth for their service and contribution to our community. Fairfax County Public Schools is proud to have over 14,000 military-connected youth as a part of our student body. We appreciate the varied life experiences they bring to our school community, and recognize their strength and resilience. Learn more about Month of the Military Child and FCPS’ resources for military families.


Franconia is proud to be a Purple Star School.  The Purple Star designation is awarded to military-friendly schools that have demonstrated their commitment to meeting the needs of military-connected students and their families. 


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Purple Up Spirit Week!

Just one day left  for our school to visibly show our support and thank our military children for their strength and sacrifice.


Thursday, April 20 - PJ Day to start the long weekend

Friday, April 21 - NO SCHOOL




La Fiamma Restaurant Night Tonight


Support your Franconia PTA and make dinner easy! Dine in or carry out at La Fiamma 6124 Franconia Rd. Alexandria, VA 22310 for dinner  TONIGHT, and a portion of proceeds will be donated to the PTA for events and activities that support all students.

You MUST indicate that you are dining with Franconia PTA Restaurant Night when placing your order either in person or via phone.

La Fiamma's famous children's dining room will be staffed and available on a first-come, first served basis.




Lion King Kids Musical

Tickets on Sale Now!


Reserve your Lion King Tickets NOW! Doors open BOTH NIGHTS at 6:15. Click the links below to reserve your FREE tickets to the performances!


HERE is the link to reserve your seats for Thursday April 27th at 6:30

HERE is the link to reserve your seats for Friday April 28th at 6:30







2023 Edison Pyramid ART SHOW

Art work from our own Franconia students and those from Bush Hill, Cameron, Clermont, Mount Eagle, and Rose Hill Elementary Schools, as well as Mark Twain Middle, and Edison High School will be on display at the 2023 Edison Pyramid Art Show.

April 25th


At Clermont Elementary School

5720 Clermont Drive

Alexandria, VA 22310




The Franconia Penguin Talent Show

Franconia Elementary is proud to present the 2023 Penguin Talent Show.  If you are interested in auditioning for a spot in the show, you and a parent will need to read and agree to the guidelines on this form.  Then fill out the permission slip, and return the form to Mrs. Yortzidis by April 26th.

Filling out a permission slip does not mean that your child will be in the talent show. That will be determined during auditions.

School Auditions will be held on Tuesday, May 2, 2023 during the school day.  Your child will audition during their specials time on that day. We are looking for the BEST talent.  ARE YOU THE NEXT TOP TALENT?




PE News

Field Day Shirts!

While we don’t yet have a specific date for field day, the PE team is well into planning the event! We have decided on a ‘Super Franconia World’ / video game theme! Below you can find the link to order shirts for field day! The order will not close until April 21st and the shirts will arrive around the end of April/beginning of May. Plan for field day in May or June and we’re excited to get out more details once we have them!

-Miss Borsos and Mr. Harris




Project Read Event

Saturday, April 22nd, from 4:30pm - 5:30pm


Project Read is an organization dedicated to encouraging children in K-6 grade to enjoy reading and advance their skills. Project Read will be hosting an event at the Kingstowne Library (6500 Landsdowne Centre Dr, Alexandria, VA 22315) on Saturday, April 22nd, from 4:30pm - 5:30pm. This event will include high school volunteers reading with children, interactive games and ice breakers for children to get to know each other better, and creating reading groups among grade levels to motivate children to read with new friends! Most importantly, volunteers will be working with kids to help them find books that they will enjoy and be able to take home! 

Fill out this form to sign your child up:




How Do YOU Practice Wellness?

Sign up to share on the morning news


Penguins, we want to know how you practice wellness in your life. Use the link below to sign up for a Wednesday to share a video showing your wellness journey with your fellow Franconia Penguins. Videos should be 3 minutes or less. Be sure to include yourself talking about why the wellness practice is important to you, and how it helps you. (if you need to include 2 shorter videos, one showing the activity and one of the student discussing the activity, that is fine and I can combine them for you. They should be no more than 3 minutes when combined.) 


You can show yourself practicing wellness by:

- a sport you play (for example soccer, gymnastics, martial arts training, etc)

- practicing a skill you're learning (for example dance, playing an instrument, or any other artistic/creative expessions)

- showing activities your family enjoys together (for example, taking walks together, cooking meals together, family game time, etc)

- showing activities you enjoy doing when enjoying alone time (for example reading or drawing)


Use this link to sign up:


Ms. Octaviano will contact you the week before your video will air on the morning news with additional information about how to submit your video.


If you have any questions, please email Ms. Octaviano at:



Counselor's Corner

Mindfulness at Franconia Update


At Franconia, we have the unique opportunity of creating a mindfulness lab using our  wellness ESSER funds. Mindfulness is all about being in the present moment. In the lab, we have created opportunities for students to be in the present moment by creating mindfulness centers. Students can explore different mindfulness centers such as reading, breathing, art, affirmations, games and mindful movement. This space has provided an opportunity for student wellness by causing students to relax mentally, emotionally and physically. Also in the lab, as special treat to our students, we have a comfort dog named Charlie who visits with classes in the lab!

Take a look at one of our spotlighted classes in the mindfulness lab:

Ms. Johnson’s Class! Students had fun participating in mindfulness centers.


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Guidance Topics for April


K-2- How to be a responsible citizen by showing kindness.

3rd grade- We will learn different test taking tips and how to stay mindful throughout testing.


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Character Trait for the Month


April's character trait is Responsibility-doing what is expected and taking ownership of your actions/behavior.


March's Character Trait was Patience-to wait calmly without complaining. Check out this video with our student highlights for patience:




Brownie Troop 53110 Plant a Garden




Last week, our own Brownie Troop 53110 took on a community beautification project and planted a garden around our Franconia sign.  Next time you are passing by school, take a look and enjoy the results of their hard work and green thumbs!



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Special Visit from the Superintendent

On March 27th, we had a special visit from Superintendent Michelle Reid.  Superintendent Reid came to have a conversation with Peyton Lawson,  a Fifth Grade student in Ms. Dickerson's class.  Peyton was inspired to write to the Superintendent after she participated in a student survey here at Franconia.  The Superintendent was so impressed by Peyton's letter she asked to meet her in person!



If you missed the write up about Peyton and the visit in the April 10th edition of the Superintendent's Weekly Reflections, you can read it below.

My heart beats strongest in our schools and I was so inspired to start my week prior to the break being interviewed by Peyton, a fifth grader at Franconia Elementary School. Peyton asked some hard-hitting questions about being a leader, why I came to Fairfax County, and what objectives our team is working on to help students. We also shared hobbies and found that we had quite a bit in common, including a love of math and spending time with our families. It is truly magical to be in schools learning more about our students and their experiences in our community. Peyton said to improve Franconia, she would expand the library and get more books for students to read. That means I would add a third thing we have in common, Peyton! I love to read, too! It was such a pleasure to meet you! 



 Edison Tennis Camp 

Learn How to Play Tennis!


Lessons are open to students in Grades 3 - 12

June 20th - 24th

9am- Noon

at the Edison HS tennis courts, 5801 Franconia Rd, Alexandria, VA 22310


**Beginner Friendly**


Weekly Rate: $150 for beginners | $200 for advanced
Daily Rate: $40/day for beginners | $50/day for advanced


Hurry Space is Limited!
Contact Coach W at to sign up!

Sponsored by the Edison Booster Club




Important Information Regarding the Virginia Medicaid Return to Normal Enrollment Plan


The federal government declared a public health emergency when the COVID-19 pandemic began. Since then, state agencies, including Virginia Medicaid have continued health care coverage for all medical assistance programs, even for people who are no longer eligible or who’s eligibility status has changed. This is what’s being referred to as the continuous coverage requirement.

Effective March 31, 2023, the continuous coverage requirement will end.  This means on April 1, 2023, all states may return to normal enrollment processes, including redeterminations and processing reductions/closures of coverage. 

While Virginia is initiating its first month of redeterminations in March of 2023, reductions/closures of coverage will not begin until April 30, 2023.

The Virginia Medicaid agency is committed to working in partnership with community partners to ensure their members have the information they need to complete their renewal documents/renewal process.


Additional information can be found in this video




Help Needed in the Library

Do you have a spare moment in the day to lend Mrs. Vandersande a hand?

The library needs volunteers to help scan in returns and shelve books any time during the school day.


Calendar Reminder


April Calendar Reminders


No School April 21st - Eid al-Fitr 

Eid al-Fitr, marks the end of Ramadan, the Muslim holy month of fasting, and is celebrated during the first three days of Shawwal, the 10th month of the Islamic calendar. Read more at

FCPS has designated Eid al-Fitr as a religious and cultural observance day designed to allow students the opportunity to miss school for observances not already designated as school holidays. Eid al-Fitr is from sunset April 20 to sunset April 21. Thursday, April 20, is a half O Day, and Friday, April  21, is a holiday.


See the complete 2022-23 school year calendar.




Please remember to notify the school office of any of the following changes that come up for your child.

Notification should be made by 9:00am on the day of the change.

  • Absence
  • Late arrival
  • Planned early pick-up or mid-day appointment (pick-up and return)
    • If your child needs to be picked up unexpectedly, please call the office (703-822-2200) in advance of your arrival
    • This allows the office to contact your child’s teacher to prepare your child for their departure
    • For early pick-ups after 3:00pm, please park on Kathmoor as the school buses start to arrive for dismissal at that time and the front parking lot will be off limits
  • Changes in dismissal mode (

Below are the 3 options by which to notify the school office (choose one option):

Please do this IN ADDITION to contacting your child's teacher.  There could be times when the teacher is absent and, by also contacting the office, the information will be properly noted.

To email your child’s teacher, click HERE.

Thank you for your cooperation and understanding.





Recognize FCPS Employees

FCPS Cares is an opportunity for parents, staff, and community members to recognize FCPS employees for going above and beyond to help others and show they care.

The start of the school year is a great time to acknowledge someone who has helped to make your child's return to school amazing.

Learn how you can acknowledge an FCPS employee for their great work.


FCPS Parent Resource Center

Dunn Loring Center for Parent Services

2334 Gallows Road, Entrance 1, Room 105

Dunn Loring, VA


The FCPS Parent Resource Center (PRC) offers a welcoming and engaging environment for families, educators, and community members.




Phone: 703-204-3941


Twitter: @prc_fcps






  • The PRC offers free, confidential in-person, videoconference, and phone consultations for families and FCPS staff.
  • Appointments are highly encouraged.
  • They can brainstorm strategies and possible solutions to help you address your concerns by drawing upon resources and support from FCPS, as well as community, state, and national centers.


  • The PRC maintains a list of current FCPS employees who hold a valid and current teaching license in VA and want to tutor after their contracted school day.
  • Contact the PRC at 703-204-3941 or for more information.


  • Come explore the library for families and staff, 8:00am-4:00pm
  • The library contains over 10,000 books, eBooks, DVDs, and CDs on topics related to parenting and educating all children, including those with learning challenges, special needs, and disabilities.
  • Check out up to 6 items and keep them for 3 weeks.  Renewals are easy - just call or email us.
  • Find library resources to support your child with help from the Parent Resource Center staff.
  • Call us and we can have library materials ready for you to pick up.
  • Return library materials to us 24/7 in our book return or use the FCPS inter-office mail.  Contact us for details.



  • Register here -
  • Watch recorded webinars - https://bit.ly3rpPl3Q
    1. To turn videos into preferred languages, open a video - choose any video on YouTube and follow these directions to have closed-captioning in your preferred language:
    2. Click the CC button - make sure it is underlined in red.
    3. Click the settings button - it looks like a gear.
    4. Click subtitles.
    5. Click auto-translate.
    6. Choose a language.



Penguin Points

Click on a link for information

Franconia Elementary School website