FH Weekly Update - 4/23/23


Principals' Message

Dear Freedom Hill Families,

We hope you are well and enjoyed the long weekend with your children, and enjoyed the holiday if you celebrated! Spring has sprung, and with it we have many exciting events on the horizon. We invite you will join us this Friday at 6:30 at Marshall HS for the return of our Staff vs. Westgate Volleyball Game. Everyone is encouraged to wear red, and signs are also welcome! Pizza is available for pre-order and the information is in our PTA section below. We look forward to a great evening!

April 27th is Take Your Child to Work Day.  If you plan on taking your child to work on Thursday, please let the office know ahead of time. Regular school attendance is important, so if your child has already had a significant number of absences this school year, please factor that into your decision.

Finally, SOLs start next week for our students in grades 3-6! Take a quick look at the schedule below and make sure you are getting a good night's sleep the night before! 


Have a great week!

In partnership,

Nicholas Zapadka, Principal

Eric Kopacz, Assistant Principal

Upcoming Dates for Your Calendar

2022-23 FCPS School Calendar

  • April 23 - FH Garden Clean-Up Day, 11AM-1PM
  • April 26 - Q3 Progress Reports Come Home
  • April 28 - Staff vs. Westgate Volleyball Game at Marshall HS, 6:30 
  • May 3 - Grand Opening - FH Salad Bar
  • May 8 - Optional Parent Input for Class Placement Due (See below) 
  • May 8 - 12 - Staff Appreciation Week
  • May 12 - PTA Bingo Night    

2023-24 FCPS School Calendar 

SY 23-24 Class Placement Parent Input

If your child is returning to Freedom Hill next school year, we offer you the opportunity to share any comments you would like regarding class placements. If you know that your family will not be joining us for the 2023-24 school year, please call or email Ms. Sujo at 703-506-7800 to let us know.

Our staff will be working on tentative class groupings this spring, with classroom assignments finalized in mid-August. As we make these placements, we consider many factors including individual academic and social strengths/needs, teacher input, and social relationships. Every class will have a blend of children with diverse needs, personalities, and learning interests. Due to the many factors we must consider in creating classroom placements, including the reassignment of some teachers to a different grade level and the hiring of new teachers, requests for a specific teacher cannot be honored.

If you have information that you believe is pertinent to your child’s placement for next year, please complete the optional Class Placement Input Form (one per child) by Monday, May 8th for it to be taken into consideration. There is no need to complete the form if you do not have any information you would like us to consider. Thank you.

Grand Opening - FH Salad Bar

We are excited to share that Freedom Hill will be adding a nutritious salad bar to our cafeteria starting on May 3! The salad bar will include daily fresh fruits, vegetables and protein sources and will be included in the price of our daily lunches. 

For more information, see this website. We will pass along more information as the date draws closer. We will also be asking for parent volunteers to be on hand during this week to assist students in using the bar. Mark your calendars! 

Positivity Project: Purpose




This week, we are focusing on Purpose/Connection. You have beliefs about the meaning of life and your life’s purpose. You seek to be part of something greater than yourself.


“Regardless of whatever I do, I know my purpose is to make a difference in people’s lives.”

           ~Tim Tebow


Questions you might enjoy talking about:

  • Do you ever wonder what your purpose is?
  • What kind of person do you want to be? What things could you be doing now to enhance the life of those around you?
  • What gifts, talents, and ideas do you have that you want to share?

Watch D.O.G.S. Signup

The signups for our daily Watch D.O.G.S. (Dad of Great Students) is ready! You can sign up to volunteer for a day at Freedom Hill with this link. Thank you to our "Top Dog" David Hay for organizing this for our community. If you missed it, you can learn more about the program in this quick video

The daily D.O.G.S. will report to the front office at 9:00 to receive their schedule. We look forward to it!


2023 SOL Calendar


SOL testing will be taking place in the month of May this year for students in grades 3-6. The SOL assessments are content assessments that measure a student’s growth in Mathematics, Reading, and Science (5th grade only). These tests will be conducted during the morning of the dates listed in the table above. It is important that your child attend school on the dates designated for them to test.  Please ensure your child gets plenty of rest the night prior. If you have any questions, please contact Mr. Kopacz, our school testing coordinator.

Kindergarten Registration Open

It is already that time of year to start planning for next year.  Our Kindergarten registration for the 2023-2024 school year is now open.  Please use the online portal to submit your initial information and our registrar, Ms. Sujo, will follow up with you.  



If you have a child at home who will be five by September 30th, please register now.  If you have any neighbors with rising kindergartners, please send this information to them, as well.  




PTA Updates

Thanks to those who joined in the Chipotle FDO fun and PTA meeting last week! Happy Eid to those who celebrated the end of Ramadan this past weekend. Be sure to get your tickets for the upcoming volleyball game Friday and Bingo on May 12th!



It's almost here!! The Faculty Volleyball Game against Westgate ES will take place on April 28th 6:30-8 pm in the Marshall High School gym. Enter using Door 5 in the back of the school.The teachers of Freedom Hill play against the teachers of Westgate ES. The kids LOVE coming to watch and cheer on their school’s team with pom poms and thunder sticks, eat yummy pizza and snacks and wear their FHES spirit wear or red clothing. We highly encourage folks to purchase their tickets online on Pay4SchoolStuff. Check out the flier here. We will need help with volunteers! Sign up here. Wondering who is playing for FHES? Ms. Curran, Ms. Bliss, Mr. Dowling, Ms. Tota, Mr. Kopacz, Dr. Zapadka, Mr. Wade, Ms. Wade, Ms. Trott, Ms. Luna, Mr. Hasenecz, Ms. Casoni, Ms. Nash, Ms. McFarland and Ms. Blumer! Come cheer them on!



Missed the PTA Meeting? The notes are HERE



We’re so excited to appreciate our awesome staff and teachers and RAISE THE BAR for them! Check out the awesome activities we’ve planned for Teacher Appreciation week in the flier here! Props to Sechin Lee and Sara Lyon for leading this effort! If you can help with set up or clean up (sign up here) or food provisions (here), it’d be greatly appreciated!



Get ready to have an awesome night of fun on May 12th with FHES Bingo Night! Come play bingo with your friends and win prizes on Friday, May 12th from 6-8pm! Bingo cards are $1 per card or $5 for 6 cards. You can also pre-order your pizza too! Card sales and Pizza sales are available to purchase on Pay4SchoolStuff! Pizza sales help 6th grade moving up activities. Sign up to volunteer here. Check out the flier for more info!



This is your chance to give back to FHES through your awesome organizational skills. Apply for the PTA board by emailing this form (also available in word if you email us) to nominating_committee@freedomhillpta.org. Thank you Tori Draude, Angela Waugaman and Michelle Zahalsky for helping with the nominating committee! If you are curious about the time/effort, contact president@freeomhillpta.org or any board member for details!



Nominations are open for the Harriette Best Award. Please email the name of your nominee to info@freedomhillpta.org and write a short explanation on why this person should get this award. Nominations due by Monday, May 15th.  What is the Harriette Best Award? The Harriette Ann Best Award was instituted more than a decade ago by the Freedom Hill’s Parent Teacher Association as a tribute to honor our former Assistant Principal.  Mrs. Best was the epitome of dedication to the staff, students, and community of Freedom Hill from 1991 through 2003.  Since its inception, this award has been given each year since to the parent(s) and/or staff member(s) who best exemplify what Mrs. Best continued to accomplish until her retirement. Recent award winners include: Katherine Cadena-Gonce and Elizabeth Spinney (2022), Neda Sarafrazi and Lisa Bliss (2021), Diana Hernandez (2020), Tina Ejtemai Crawford and Louan Hassinger (2019). 


Check out our FHES Calendar to plan further out in the year.