FCHS News & Announcements - 9/18/23

bus loop

Important Dates

  • 9/19 - Senior Night w/College & Career Specialist (7:00 pm, Library, see announcement below)
  • 9/21 - PTSA Meeting (7:00 pm, Library)
  • 9/25 - Holiday
  • 9/26-9/29 - Underclassmen Pictures
  • 10/11 - PSAT/SAT School Day

Attendance Matters!

When a Student Should Stay Home From School

Whether students miss school because of illness or any other reason, missing school leads to learning loss.

Help your student succeed by encouraging them to attend as many days as possible, but do make sure your student stays home if they are sick. Visit FCPS’ website for information on when you should keep your child at home.

If your child has a chronic illness, make sure to notify their teacher, so that assistance can be provided if needed. Please contact us as soon as you know your child will be absent. 

Read more about how families can help form good attendance habits.


2023 @CollegeBoard’s National Recognition Program awardees!

Congrats to our 2023 @CollegeBoard’s National Recognition Program awardees! The honor recognizes their academic excellence and hard work in high school, and that’s a cause for celebration!

Thirteen students at FCHS earned academic honors from @CollegeBoard’s National Recognition Programs. The award is an easy way to showcase their hard work with colleges.

  • Abigail Romero: NHRA
  • Andrew Rivas: NAARA
  • Conner Elling: NAARA
  • Diego Mahon-Santos: NHRA
  • Fabricio Orellana: NHRA
  • Hlena Hailemariam: NAARA
  • Khai Davis: NAARA
  • Loic Bernasconi: NHRA
  • Mohamed Elmi: NAARA
  • Naum Avila: NHRA
  • Safiya Hersi: NAARA
  • Samantha Johnson: NAARA
  • Widad Khalid: NAARA

Award Key:

National African American Recognition Award (NAARA)

National Hispanic Recognition Award (NHRA)

National Rural and Small Town Award (NRSTA)

National Indigenous Award (NIA)

College Fair and Postsecondary Virtual Events

High school students and their families are invited to attend the annual FCPS College Fair and the Postsecondary Virtual events. The College Fair will feature admissions representatives from more than 250 colleges and universities from across the United States and abroad. The fair will be held at George Mason University’s Eagle Bank Arena on Sunday, October 15, 4-7 p.m. 

The Postsecondary Virtual Event will be held on Monday, October 16, and Tuesday, October 17, 5-8 p.m. The virtual event will feature workshops related to the college admissions process, financial aid, and other postsecondary educational opportunities. 

Students are highly encouraged to register in advance for these events.

From our Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist (SAPS)

Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist (SAPS) Introduction 

Each school pyramid has a Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist (SAPS) to provide substance abuse prevention, education, and intervention services. Substance Abuse Prevention Specialists are part of the FCPS Office of Student Safety and Wellness. Like other members of the mental health team (school social workers, school psychologists, and school counselors), SAPS do not provide treatment services, but we support students while they are in the buildings.

Key roles of a Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist:

  • Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drug education for students, parents, staff, and Fairfax County community stakeholders.
  • Intervention services upon violation of the Student Rights and Responsibilities handbook or referral for suspected substance use involvement.
  • Assessment of a student’s level of substance use and, if appropriate, subsequent referrals to the Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board for additional services or other community resources as appropriate.
  • Individual and group interventions for students. Prevention services for students, staff, parents, and Fairfax County community stakeholders.
  • Most importantly, building and maintaining positive relationships with students to provide support and encouragement.


Free Virtual Parent Support Group

Free Online Narcan Training for Opioid Overdoses (English & Spanish)

Free Lock Boxes for Medications & Firearms

Spiritual Support by Phone for Adults

Spanish Podcast: Tips on How Parents Play an Important Role in Substance Abuse Prevention

Juvenile Court Parent Support Group

For general questions about the FCPS Substance Abuse Prevention Program, please contact the Office of Student Safety & Wellness at: (571) 423-4270.

For further Information & support:

Anna Teeter, amteeter@fcps.edu
Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist

Back-to-School Preventative Health Practices

Flu season is quickly approaching, and communicable diseases continue to be present in our schools. We are committed to providing students with the education and support to help them succeed while maintaining a safe environment for in-person learning. Families and staff are encouraged to engage in the following health practices to prevent the spread of illnesses. 

  • Make an appointment to get a flu vaccine as soon as possible. Everyone 6 months and older should get a flu vaccine (with rare exceptions). Flu vaccines are widely available at doctors’ and pediatricians’ offices, grocery stores, and pharmacies.
  • Get vaccinated against COVID-19 if you have not done so already. An updated COVID booster for the 2023-2024 season should be released in the coming weeks and will more effectively target the current circulating strains of the virus. Find out where you can get a COVID-19 vaccine or booster in your community by visiting: vaccinate.virginia.gov or call (877) VAX-IN-VA or (877) 829-4682.
  • Check with your students’ healthcare providers to make sure they are up to date on their required school entrance immunizations. Immunization records can now be updated online in SIS ParentVUE through the Online Verification Update form.
  • Check for mild, cold-like symptoms each day, such as fever, runny nose, cough, or shortness of breath. Parents/caregivers are advised to keep their children home if sick and get them tested for COVID-19 to stop further spread from occurring. Additional guidance noting when to keep your child home due to symptoms and illness is available on the FCPS Attendance webpage. Employees are also advised to stay home and get tested when feeling sick.
  • Don’t forget to wash hands regularly, avoid touching the face with unwashed hands, cover the mouth when coughing or sneezing, and limit the time children spend in large group settings with contagious individuals whenever possible.

The most up to date information regarding COVID-19 school health practices is available on the Health and Safety Guidance Document webpage.

Thank you for your continued partnership in keeping our schools safe and healthy.

Caregiver Checklist: Have You Completed These Important Forms? 

During the first weeks of the year, caregivers receive many forms to complete. Several of the most important ones are below:

  • Digital Resources Consent: 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 Digital Resources - Parent Consent page. This page also includes directions on how to provide permission.
  • Student Rights and Responsibilities: This document explains expectations for student behavior and adult responses. Parents using SIS ParentVUE will be prompted to sign the document when they log in to that platform. A printable version of the document with a signature sheet is available on the SR&R webpage.
  • Opt-Outs: The Opt-Out Booklet is online or available from your child’s school. It contains information on: 
    • Parents’ rights to inspect and consent or opt out before their child participates in certain surveys.
    • Parents’ rights to inspect instructional materials.
    • Rules regarding student records and disclosure of student information (including photo/video of students) and the right to opt out.
    • Parents’ rights to opt out of the Social Emotional Learning Screener, physical exams not required by state law, career or social emotional counseling, Library Equity Access Pass Project, and/or Tutor.com.
    • The process by which complaints may be filed if parents or students believe their rights have been violated.

Paper forms can be signed and returned to school.

From the FCHS 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

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

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.