FCHS News & Announcements - 9/5/23


Important Dates

  • 9/5 - Tardy Notifications begin (see announcement below)
  • 9/7 - FCHS Spotlight Theatre Company Fundraiser (see announcement below)
  • 9/9 - Band Tag Day

Attendance Matters!

Take a look at the FCPS Calendar:  

  • Ensure that any trips that you have planned for the school year are on weekends and school holidays.  Every day of learning is a day toward success.
  • If your child needs to miss school because of an illness or appointment, you must report the absence to the school.  You may submit information via https://fallschurchhs.fcps.edu/about/attendance-form or calling 703-207-4044.  We appreciate your collaboration in scheduling appointments outside of school hours, when possible.
  • If you know in advance that your child will miss school, please complete and submit the Prearranged Absence Form.  Forms must be submitted in advance to allow adequate time for administrative review.  When planning trips, please keep in mind that absences add up quickly, and students who are absent 10 percent of the school year, or just two days per month, are considered “chronically absent.”


  • Students should miss no more than nine days of school each year to stay engaged, successful, and on track to graduation.
  • Absences can be a sign that a student is losing interest in school, struggling with school work, dealing with a bully, or facing some other potentially serious difficulty.
  • By 6th grade, absenteeism (defined as missing 18 days per school year) is one of three signs that a student may drop out of high school.
  • By 9th grade, regular and high attendance is a better predictor of graduation rates than 8th grade test scores.
  • Missing 10 percent, or about 18 days, of the school year can drastically affect a student’s academic success.
  • Students can be chronically absent even if they only miss a day or two every few weeks.
  • Attendance is an important life skill that will help your child graduate from college and keep a job

Tardy Notifications

To help support timely attendance, Falls Church High School is continuing our tardy notification program starting Tuesday, September 5, 2023. This notification program will alert parents each period a student has an unexcused tardy. An unexcused tardy is when a student arrives to class late without a pass. This information will be communicated to you through e-notify approximately 30 minutes after each period ends. If your child is late, you will receive the message below (a similar, but abbreviated message will also be sent via text):

Dear Falls Church High School Parent, You are receiving this notification because your child was late to [period] class on [date]. We stress the importance of timely arrivals to class in order to maximize instructional time and prevent distractions created by late arrivals. Please speak with your child about the importance of arriving to class on time. Thank you for your support. -Falls Church High School Administrative Team

Tardies add up over time and have an impact on student achievement and success in the classroom. It is important that our students arrive to class on time, every period, every day. Should you receive the above message, please have a conversation with your child regarding the importance of attendance.

If you have any questions, please contact your student’s administrator.


National Honor Society (NHS) Invitations

Parents of 11th & 12th Grade Students

Please help us remind students to check their fcpsschools.net email for an invitation to apply to the National Honor Society.  Students need a 3.50 or higher GPA and to be in the 11th or 12th grade. 

There is a strict timeline to apply, so please don’t delay.  If you think your child is eligible to apply but did not get an email, please contact Ms. Sokol at jmsokol@fcps.edu.


SEL Screener Parent Notification and Updates

FCPS is committed to supporting the mental wellness of all students. The Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) Screener helps our students share their perspectives on how their schools and communities support them and help them develop the skills they need to succeed.

The screener is offered to all students in grades 3 through 12 in the fall and spring. It addresses skills like achieving goals, understanding and managing emotions, establishing and maintaining relationships with adults and peers, and making responsible decisions. Students also share how successful their school and community are at making them feel valued, included, and supported. Screener data is used to plan programming for the division, schools, and individual students. 

Key updates to the screener this year include:

  • Different versions for students in grades 3-5 and 6-12. 
  • Fewer topics with more questions to provide schools and families with more data to support planning. 
  • Additional questions aligned with FCPS’ commitment to educational equity.

Results are mailed home to families after each screening. Families who wish to opt their child out may do so by completing the opt-out form in the Annual Notice packet or SIS ParentVue. 

For more information, please visit the Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) Screener webpage.

Please note that the SEL Screener differs from the anonymous Fairfax County Youth Survey. For more information about the Youth Survey, see the Fairfax County Youth Survey site.

From the College & Career Center

College Representative Visits to FCHS begin Week of September 12- Juniors and Seniors may sign up in Naviance to meet with college representatives

Wednesday, September 13 during 4th Period Advisory/Intervention- Student’s Counselors and the FCHS College & Career Specialist will meet with students to discuss post-secondary (after high school) options which may include: four-year college, two-year college, vocational training (licensure and certification), and military. Please encourage your students to attend this important meeting and to register for more specific follow-up sessions.

Tuesday, September 19 7:00 pm FCHS Library- Senior Night- FCHS College & Career Specialist will walk parents/guardians through the college application process

Wednesday, October 11  FCPS SAT & PSAT Testing Day- All FCPS sophomores and juniors will have the opportunity to take the PSAT. All Seniors will be given the opportunity to take the SAT, but they MUST REGISTER BY SEPTEMBER 6! There is no cost associated with either test on October 11. All students are encouraged to participate.

Sunday, October 15- George Mason University College Fair- 4:00 pm– 7:00 pm Eagle Bank Arena. Students will have the opportunity to meet with representatives from over 250 colleges and universities.  

Tuesday, January 9 - College Access Fairfax FAFSA Completion @Annandale HS 6:00-8:30 pm

Saturday, January 20- College Access Fairfax FAFSA Completion @ Justice HS 10:00 am-12:00 pm (noon)

Tuesday, January 30 - College Access Fairfax FAFSA Completion @ Falls Church HS 7:00-9:00 pm

Thursday, February 1- College Access Fairfax FAFSA Completion @ Lewis HS

Terri S Markwart, College & Career Specialist

FCHS Spotlight Theatre Company Fundraiser

You’re Invited→

Thursday September 7, 4:00pm-8:00pm

Five Guys Merrifield

8130 Arlington Blvd, Falls Church, VA 22042

Meet & Eat with Theatre Arts Director Beth DeMarco & members of the Jaguar Theater Boosters at 7:00pm

20% of All Sales will be donated to the Jaguar Theater Boosters!!


A Great School Year Starts With Mental Wellness

All FCPS high school students can access virtual therapy sessions with licensed counselors from Hazel Health at no cost.

Hazel’s therapists — who specialize in working with teens — can help students address mood/behavior changes, motivation, grief/loss, anxiety, peer and family relationships, and academic stress.

For high schoolers to participate in teletherapy services, caregivers must:

Students must be referred to therapy by a caregiver or designated school staff member.

Visit the FCPS Teletherapy webpage for more information.


Support Your Child’s Success

Access your student’s attendance records, grades, and assignments at any time with SIS ParentVUE. Caregivers should receive an activation code when they register their child. 

Once you have activated a ParentVUE account for an FCPS student, you will keep the same account until the student graduates. Information about students in the same family can be accessed through the same ParentVUE account. Access SIS ParentVUE by using an app on your iPhone, iPad, or Android devices. 

Need help creating a SIS ParentVUE account? This video walks through the steps. Find out more about SIS ParentVUE.

2023-24 Student Rights and Responsibilities

FCPS’ Student Rights and Responsibilities document (SR&R) explains expectations for student behavior and adult responses to enhance school safety and to create a fair, equitable, and supportive school environment. In late June, the School Board approved changes to the SR&R for the 2023-24 school year. Updates include a revision of dress code expectations, bystander expectations for students witnessing harmful or unsafe behaviors, bullying, and substance abuse responses. Read Superintendent Dr. Michelle Reid’s letter to families regarding the SR&R

Parents/caregivers should talk to their child(ren) about expectations for this school year. Also, please log in to SIS ParentVUE and sign to acknowledge your review of the SR&R, or sign and return the signature sheet to your child’s school by Friday, September 29.

Parental Permission to Use Digital Resources

Some FCPS-approved digital resources require parent/caregiver consent before they can be used by students. Find the list of resources which require consent on the Parent Consent webpage. This page also includes directions for providing permission. 

Each digital resource used in FCPS has had an instructional and technical review. Information about the educational technology tools approved for use within FCPS can be found in the online Digital Ecosystem Library.

Find more information about FCPS-approved digital resources on the Digital Resources in FCPS webpage.

Lightspeed Parent Report on Child’s Device Activity

FCPS has tools to help parents know more about their child’s activity on any FCPS device. These tools are provided at no cost to families by Lightspeed, the school division’s internet content filtering service.

Parents may sign up for a weekly Parent Report, which will provide a list of the top sites your child visited. The report also offers parents the ability to sign up for free access to the Internet Use Parent Portal. Through the portal, parents may pause their child’s access to the internet on their FCPS device during non-school hours.

Learn more about Lightspeed Parent Reports.

School Meals

Preparing for and Paying for Meals at School

Parents/caregivers need to provide their students with money to purchase meals at school, send them with a packed lunch, or apply (and be approved) for free and reduced-price meals benefits. School breakfast for students costs $1.75. Lunch is $3.25 for elementary students and $3.50 for middle, secondary, and high school students.

Free and Reduced-Price Meals

The application for free and reduced-priced meals is now available for the 2023-24 school year. Students who were approved for free and reduced-price lunch last year are eligible for the first 30 days of school this year (or until a new application is processed). Families should re-apply as soon as possible for the 2023-24 school year, so eligible students continue to receive meals at no cost. 

Paying With MySchoolBucks

The best way to purchase meals (and keep food lines moving!) is to use MySchoolBucks. Set up your student’s MySchoolBucks account today. Our front office staff can help with any questions. 

MySchoolBucks accounts can be set up to add money to the account automatically, as needed. Families with multiple children can use the same MySchoolBucks account. Visit FCPS’ Food and Nutrition webpage for more information.

FCPS Family Resource Center

Free Resources for Families

Did you know that caregivers can access free webinars, confidential consultations, a lending library, and resources to help adults support the success of all students, including those with learning challenges, special needs, and disabilities? 

Learn more about FCPS’ Family Resource Center (FRC).

Workshops for Families

The Family Resource Center is already scheduling a helpful series of webinars for the 2023-24 school year. Save the date for the following discussions in September. See the full list of workshops. Click on the title to register for each event: 

Be the first to learn about new workshops by signing up for the FRC newsletter.

Student Bus Passes


Useful Links/Information

FCHS Bell Schedule



FCPS 22-23 School Year Calendar

FCPS Cares

FCPS Cares

Do you know a Falls Church HS or FCPS employee who does ordinary things in an extraordinary way or goes beyond what is expected? If so, then click here to share with everyone.