Belvedere News and Announcements - January 26, 2024

From the Administration

Dear Belvedere Family:

We trust this message finds you well and enjoying the shift from freezing temperatures to the warmth of spring. We encourage you to take the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors with your loved ones.

On a bittersweet note, we want to share news about a cherished member of our Belvedere family. Nora Bonilla, our dedicated building supervisor, is set to retire this coming Monday after an incredible 28 years of service. Nora has been a pillar of strength, diligently caring for our entire community and ensuring the smooth operation of our facilities. To honor Nora's remarkable journey, the staff came together to celebrate her contributions yesterday. It was a heartfelt gathering filled with gratitude for the years of dedication and hard work that Nora has poured into making our community a better place.

As we bid farewell to Nora next week, we can't help but feel a tinge of sadness at her departure. Her presence and commitment will be deeply missed by all who have had the privilege of working alongside her. Please join us in extending our warmest wishes to Nora as she embarks on this new chapter of her life. May retirement bring her the joy, relaxation, and fulfillment she truly deserves. We are immensely grateful for her years of service and the positive impact she has had on our Belvedere family.

We also want to thank our incredible PTA for planning and hosting the VIP and Me breakfasts earlier this week. We had a wonderful turnout and it was heartwarming to see all of our families come together to start the school day.  The PTA will also be hosting a Bingo Night next week on Thursday, February 8th from 5:30-7:30 pm.  This event will help raise funds for our 5th graders to have an end of year celebration. There will be prizes for winning, pizza, and snacks to purchase, and a couple fun raffles. We hope to see you there!

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend.

Warm regards,

Cecilia Vanderhye, Principal

Tara Boone, Assistant Principal

Kelly Cabezas, Assistant Principal

Need Help with Food, Financial Assistance, or Medical Assistance?

You may qualify for federal benefits, such as Medicaid, Food Assistance (SNAP), TANF (Temporary Financial Assistance for Families), Energy Assistance (Fuel, Cooling), and more. Visit or call 1-833-522-5582 to apply. Call 703-324-7500 or visit if you need help applying.

Children who do not qualify for Medicaid may qualify for the Medical Care for Children Partnership (MCCP), a reduced-cost healthcare program for children under 18 from low-income families. Call 703-324-7315 for more information.

Please click here for more information about food, financial and medical assistance available to students and families.  If you need support or have questions, please contact the Belvedere parent liaison, Ivanova Plazas, at 703-916-6824 or at  We are here to support you and want to support all who may qualify to access this assistance.

Parent Coffee - Friday February 9th

Please join us for a parent coffee with an informative presentation from our Reading Specialist, Ms. Smith, about the Science of Reading. See details below:

parent coffee

Important Form for Parents of Rising Kindergartners!

We sent home a form in Friday folders for parents with a rising kindergartner for the 2024-25 school year.

Completing this form is crucial for the enrollment process, and we kindly ask all eligible parents to take a moment to fill it out and send it back to our dedicated Student Information Assistant, Ms. Belcher. Your cooperation ensures a smooth transition for your child into the upcoming school year.

If you have any questions or require assistance, please don't hesitate to reach out to our school office. We appreciate your prompt attention to this matter and look forward to welcoming the newest members of our Belvedere community!

Thank you for your cooperation.

Snow Days This Winter

For the current school year, FCPS will be returning to its previous procedure for snow days — there will be no virtual learning days when school is closed due to bad weather. 

During snow days, students may still access, complete any supplemental learning opportunities recommended by their teachers, and view educational programming (available virtually and on public access television channels):

Eleven snow days are built into the existing FCPS calendar. Eliminating virtual learning days will allow us to maximize students’ in-person learning and provide equitable access to instruction and student services.

❄️ Preparing for Winter Weather

Winter weather will be here before you know it! Watch this video to see how weather-related closing decisions are made.

FCPS’ website is generally the first place where we will post an emergency weather closing. Other communication channels will be used as quickly as possible including email, text, social media, and news stations. Learn more about how schedule changes are communicated

Be sure to plan for the winter season. Make sure your contact information is up-to-date in SIS ParentVUE, bookmark the FCPS website, and plan for childcare if appropriate.

Dads at Belvedere (DAB)

Dads at Belvedere (formerly Watch D.O.G.S.) is a program to help our school be positively impacted by the committed involvement of fathers and father-figures in their student’s life. Our goal is to have you spend at least one day this year at the school to be a positive male role-model. Dads this is your chance to get involved in a fun atmosphere at school!

Dads will volunteer at the school for one full day. School will provide the schedule to include activities such as: recess, lunch, specials, classroom time, etc.

Our kids love seeing the grown-ups in their life at school! Additionally, Dads are demonstrating through their presence that education is important.

Sign up for a day on our calendar using the Signup Genius below:

Download the flyer!

📝 Can Help With More Than Homework offers more than help with homework! This on-demand tutoring service also provides a comprehensive range of resources including exam prep for AP, SAT, and ACT tests at no cost to families. 

Students can take practice quizzes at any time. If they struggle in particular areas, they can immediately connect to a live tutor for help through voice or chat options. Learn more on the FCPS webpage.

Buses and Delays

If a student’s bus is delayed, parents may access the Bus Delay Notification System or use the Here Comes the Bus mobile app to receive the delayed bus report.  Use code 28982 when registering for Here Comes the Bus. 

PTA News 

Thank you for supporting VIP and Me!

We had a great turnout for VIP and Me this week! It was fun to see all the special people in students’ lives. Thank you for joining us to celebrate!  

VIP and ME


Belvedere Bingo Night (February 8)

Mark your calendars for Belvedere Bingo Night on Thursday, February 8th (5:30-8:30pm) in the Belvedere cafeteria. We will be selling pizza and refreshments. If you would like to help volunteer or have questions, please contact Jessica Strelitz (

Belvedere Auction Fundraiser in April 

The PTA is hard at work planning for an in-person auction fundraiser this April. More details and info coming soon! If you are able to volunteer in any way, please email us at

Lebanese Taverna Food Truck in February

More details coming soon!

Become a Member of the PTA and/or Support Belvedere with a donation

Our PTA supports Belvedere in myriad ways: organizing school events, enrichment and outreach activities; providing funding for field trips, library books, and technology in the classroom; and building a school community outside the classroom through events like movie night, teacher appreciation, international night, read-a-thon, and more.

To purchase a membership or make a direct donation, please go to and choose your membership type (Staff $5 or Parent $10) and/or select Direct Donation to make a one-time or recurring donation. Thank you again for supporting the Belvedere PTA!  

Visit for more information about our PTA or to make a donation.

Save the date for our next meeting, Wednesday, February 7, 6:30 pm. 

Questions or concerns? Email

Upcoming Dates

  • Wednesday, February 7 - PTA Meeting
  • Thursday, February 8 - Bingo Night from 5:30-7:30 pm
  • Friday, February 9 - Parent Coffee 9:50-10:30 am
  • Monday, February 19 - President's Day (No School)

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FCPS Calendar: 2023-2024