Family Newsletter November 17, 2023

70th anniversary party

Principals' Note

Good Afternoon Families,

Cameron Elementary celebrated 70 years of excellence on Friday evening, November 10th with over one hundred guests that included former and current staff members, alumni, and families. Our school community came together and honored our legacy and continuation of focusing on students and families. The gymnasium was decorated with Cameron t-shirts from over the years that sparked conversations among many. The library housed artifacts such as yearbooks, photos, etc. with a slide show that encapsulated a time line of our history to present showcasing Cameron’s highlights over the past 70 years.

We were honored to have FCPS Superintendent, Dr. Michelle Reid, FCPS Chief of Schools, Dr. Geovanny Ponce, and FCPS Region 3 Executive Principal, Mr. Jesse Kraft to join us for our celebration. Dr. Reid addressed the audience and shared, “Each wild cheetah has different spots and a unique pattern. Some cheetahs have more stripes, some have splotches, some even have freckles instead of spots. Each cheetah is different, but they’re all cheetahs. The same is true for Cameron ES Cheetahs, and for all of us at FCPS. Though we’re all different, we all have the same mission. And by celebrating and learning about our unique cultures, languages, and traditions, we grow stronger, and we grow closer. Go Team FCPS! And go Cheetahs!”

A special thank you to our committee members for all the hard work to make this evening memorable. A special thank you to Dr. Bryant, former Cameron staff member and Dr. Hylton, Cameron alumnus for sharing reflections and stories that moved us emotionally.

We will be honored and recognized at the School Board Meeting on December 4th at 7:30pm for 70 years of excellence. All Cameron school community members are invited to celebrate this milestone.

Respectfully Yours,

Mr. Eric T. Johnson & Ms. Amanda Snyder

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Celebrating Veterans Day

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Thank you to our military connected families that joined us to celebrate your service and sacrifices you make daily to keep our country safe. We honor you!

🦃Thanksgiving Lunch


Thank you to all of our families that joined us for our Thanksgiving Luncheon. We had over 200 family members that attended the event. This was powerful for our students and will be memories they will remember for sure.

book fair

Book Fair is Back!

Book Fair kicks off next Thursday night 11/30 with a fun family event from 4:30-6:30 in the library. Bring your family and be the first to shop the fair, with special giveaways only on Family Night!

We're adding something new to our school's BOOK FAIR this year: a book giveaway for our families in need! If you would like to contribute, please visit and send a donation of any amount to our Cameron Cheetahs. Thanks to the All for Books program, Scholastic will match ALL donations with books for underserved children around the world. We appreciate your generosity and support!

Family Night Thursday November 30 4:30-6:30pm

Book Fair open during school  Friday December 1-8

Volunteer sign up

Book fair webpage

Staying Healthy This Cold/Flu Season

Cases of RSV, the flu, and other viruses often rise this time of year. It is important for students to wash their hands regularly and cover their coughs and sneezes. Please monitor your child’s health daily and keep them at home if they are sick. Visit FCPS' Health and Safety Guidance webpage for more tips.

🙋 Student Attendance and Engagement

During the Academic Matters segment of the November 9 School Board meeting, Superintendent Dr. Michelle Reid discussed student attendance and engagement. Attendance and absenteeism rates are one measure for Goal 2 of our 2023-30 Strategic Plan

Chronic absenteeism — which is defined as a student missing 10% or more of school for any reason — is a concern across Virginia school districts. Although FCPS continues to outperform the state average in attendance rates, we are tracking chronic absenteeism closely.

Data shows that:

  • Missing just 10% of school — just two days a month — negatively affects a student’s academic performance. 
  • Only 17% of students who were chronically absent in both kindergarten and first grade were reading proficiently in third grade, compared to 64% of those with good attendance.
  • Students who fail to read at grade level by the end of third grade are four times more likely than students who achieve proficiency to drop out of high school.
  • By sixth grade, chronic absenteeism becomes a leading indicator that a student will drop out of high school.

Attendance is critical for academic success!

Missing School Over the Holidays

Looking ahead to the holiday season, if missing school is unavoidable, please speak with your child’s teachers in advance to create a plan for making up missed work. However, a homework packet cannot make up for the interaction and learning that happens in the classroom.

Visit FCPS’ website for more attendance resources.

Special Education Resources for Families

Fairfax County Public Schools has the following resources available to assist families of students with special needs. 

  • The Office of Special Education Procedural Support helps staff, families, and students with the implementation of and compliance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, as amended. 
  • Kathy Murphy, the assistant ombuds for special education, provides information and support to caregivers and students regarding special education and Section 504 services. Contact the Ombuds Office by submitting a question, calling 571-423-4014, or emailing

Additionally, the Virginia Department of Education has updated the Virginia Family's Guide to Special Education. This state guide was developed to help those involved in special education including families, teachers, school administrators, advocates, and  students.

📚 Community Review of Elementary English Language Arts Basal Instructional Resources 

FCPS will adopt new Elementary School Language Arts Basal Instructional Resources for the 2024-25 school year. Public review of the recommended materials is part of the process for selecting new resources. 

You may access the resources in person and online from Wednesday, November 15, until Friday, December 15, at noon. Digital materials for public review and comment will be available on the Elementary Language Arts Basal Resource Review webpage. Those reviewing instructional materials may complete an electronic comment sheet that will be available on the webpage during the review period. 

Visit FCPS' website for instructions on how to view hard copies of the instructional materials at Pimmit Hills Center. The Elementary Language Arts team will be there to answer questions Friday, December 1, 4-8 p.m., and Saturday, December 2, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. 

All community feedback will be shared with the review committee and School Board.


No School November 22-24 Thanksgiving

Schools and offices will be closed November 22-24. Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving! Classes will resume on Monday, November 27. Learn more about the first Thanksgiving. See the complete school year calendar.

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Important Dates

Nov 21 - Turkey Trot

Nov 22-24 - No School, Thanksgiving Break