FCPS CARES – May 2022 – Fairfax County Public Schools

To recognize an employee with an FCPS Cares, please visit our submission page.
To view past submissions, please visit our previous submissions page
Pedro Rivera, Forbes Place
I am proud to see how much our ERFC employees care for our members. I had an appointment with a gentleman who is a member and was unable to access his ERFCDirect portal because he was homeless and had lost everything. Pedro heard of my appointment with the member and brought one of his own Chromebooks and a charger from home and gifted it to the gentlemen so he could help get him on his way. That kind of human compassion was so touching to our member and was unsolicited. I would hope more people would do what they can for everyone as Pedro did for our member. He saw a need and met the need! My heartfelt thanks go out to Pedro!”
– Michele Anwyll, Forbes Place
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Laura Lee Couch, Great Falls ES – View the Celebration!
Ms. Couch is a once-in-a-lifetime teacher. Her dedication to her students and families is unlike any teacher that we have experienced. She is focused on getting to know each child’s likes, dislikes, strengths, and weaknesses in order to best connect with her students and tailor her teaching. At the same time, Ms. Couch is focused on keeping learning fun and school an exciting place to be in order to spur her students’ success. On top of this, Ms. Couch spends an immense amount of time communicating and building relationships with student families in order to best support learning. A few examples that differentiate Ms. Couch include: 1) Ms. Couch works to gather the necessary information to determine if a child receives information better in the morning or afternoon and then, she adjusts her individual teaching with the student, accordingly; 2) She sends detailed communication to parents weekly through a comprehensive set of completed school work, a curriculum overview of the upcoming learning goals and supplemental materials to support optional learning at home; 3) Ms. Couch always responds to parent inquiries and often, she responds in a matter of hours; and 4) Ms. Couch pays detailed attention educational, social and emotional behaviors and needs, and readily shares these insights with parents to support the overall development of the children. A successful kindergarten is so important for long-term school success. We cannot thank Ms. Couch enough for all of her work. Our child loves school and learning, and we know that she is set up for success as a result of her time with Ms. Couch.”
– a Great Falls ES parent
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Amanda Dey, Aly McCarty, and Sara Kugler, Woodburn ES – View the Celebration!
Amanda, Sara, and Aly have gone above and beyond to help their students, demonstrating a caring culture while improving attendance and building community in our school. The teachers raised funds and registered these students for soccer, provided them with uniforms, and transportation, and fed them dinner. The teachers are taking their own personal time to support these students at practice and games on nights, weekends, and spring break. The students who could not otherwise participate in extracurricular activities due to their vulnerable family circumstances including students who recently arrived in our country. They have started a program, which we can expand upon with the help of community partners that will enable more of our students who are at risk and who have not been able to participate in organized sports, to be able to enjoy after-school recreation. The teachers’ dedication, kindness, and caring are inspirational and life-changing for our students. We and our students are so lucky that they are part of Woodburn ES.
Robyn Fernandez and Molly Buchanan, Woodburn ES
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Samantha Hartwell, Saratoga ES – View the Celebration!
Ms. Hartwell is an incredible educator and has had such a positive impact on our son this year in Kindergarten. She is very thoughtful and generous. This week, in particular, she helped our son process some big emotions concerning the death of loved ones. He was feeling very sad because the people he loves have been hurting from loss. She made him special, personalized postcards to tell family and friends he is thinking of them. Such a thoughtful and creative way to help him express emotions. The cherry on top, she also made ones for my daughter (age 4) so she can do the same as her brother. We can’t express enough how much we appreciate all she does to further our son’s (and all the other kids!) education. We continue to be in awe daily. Thank you, Ms. Hartwell!”
– a Saratoga ES parent
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Robyn Ridpath, Fairview ES
When Ms. Ridpath learned of my horrible physical injury which sent me to inpatient care for weeks, she checked in on my children every single day. She had lunch with my daughter and talked with her every day during recess. Please understand that Ms. Ridpath has never taught my daughter; she was not her teacher. But Ms, Ridpath cares so deeply for her school community that she did this act of kindness and compassion. As a parent, I was deeply relieved to know that a loving adult at school was supporting my children while I was in the hospital. Robyn Ridpath is a treasure worth celebrating!!!”
– a Fairview ES parent
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Efrosini Stavros, Willow Springs ES – View the Celebration!
Above and beyond does not even begin to describe Ms. Stavros! My son has been fortunate enough to not only be a student in her classroom this year, but a thriving, valued member of her COMMUNITY. He has repeatedly come home telling various stories about his “community,” instead of his “class.” How powerful is that!?! Just a simple change of wording and mindset on the teacher’s part has completely overhauled his outlook about what school means. He feels important, heard, and recognized for who he is. He takes risks because he feels safe. He has grown in every way possible. Ms. Stavros is passionate about having her students be a part of the decision making process for the classroom, having a voice in their learning, and connecting with them on their interests and passions. Thank you will never be enough to show our gratitude to Ms. Stavros. She has become such a huge part of my son’s story and we feel forever grateful to her for that!”
– a Willow Springs ES parent 
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Cynthia Allen, Barbara Cortez, Jae Lemeshewsky, Rosa Lopez, Mohammed Miah, Dorothy Mwawasi, Ablustian Smalls, Sandburg MS 
Thank you to all our wonderful CAT B IAs who have performed way, way beyond their duties during these SOL testing weeks. They have been assisting with the individual SOL testing of our students, which takes place every day. They have also been covering classes for teachers who are testing, and helping our students stay safe and shine! All our IAs have shown amazing attitudes, caring and skilled actions, and incredible f-l-e-x-i-b-i-l-i-t-y!!! We thank you, you are the BEST IN FCPS!!!”
– Hope Esposito, Sandburg MS
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Alice McDonald, Gatehouse Admin Center
Alice is a constant support to the Communication Disorders Program. She assists with daily, monthly, and yearly data management needs. She regularly trouble shoots with our staff (approximately 230 SLPs) to ensure we have secure access to our data. Her hard work makes it possible for us to serve more than 10,000 students. She quickly responds to our questions, listening and offering solutions to ensure a speedy resolution.”
– the Communication Disorders Program
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Hannah Wolff, Langley HS 
We want to praise Ms. Wolff for her extreme professionalism and dedication, especially during the pandemic, in helping all of the students of Langley High School to prepare themselves for the college admissions process and for being an excellent curator of college information and contacts for our students. We appreciate her wise counsel and felt well informed at all points in the college application journey. Thank you Ms. Wolff and best of wishes to you.”
– a Langley HS community member
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Ken Junge, Colvin Run ES
We want to commend Mr. Junge for his strength and leadership in leading the entire Colvin Run Elementary School community through the COVID-19 pandemic. Mr. Junge demonstrated tremendous foresight in 2019 in how he organized the school into virtual and potential in-person clusters so that the school could more easily flex back into in-person learning once that was allowed. He also helped ease everyone back to in-person learning and worked hard to assure everyone’s safety in the school building once that was possible. Mr. Junge continuously served everyone at Colvin Run and stayed positive throughout tremendously difficult circumstances. His optimism and proactive communication made him a beacon of light in a phase of our collective history that was sometimes otherwise full of darkness. Bravo Mr. Junge. We thank you.”
– a Colvin Run ES community member
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Les Gray, Colvin Run ES 
We thank Mr. Gray for being a dedicated and committed sixth grade math teacher this year. Mr. Gray has worked hard to elevate all the sixth graders’ math acumen by starting a before-school math club where the kids can come work on their math skills. This is especially important given the pandemic and virtual school experience that we are all coming out of. We applaud Mr. Gray for his determination to help everyone become stronger in math. Thank you, Mr. Gray.”
– a Colvin Run ES community member
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Jennifer Rindfleisch, Oak View ES 
“One cannot assume that a contracted employee is more dedicated as an hourly employee. At the end of last year, we acquired a testing assistant from Robinson to help with SOLs. Jennifer Rindfleisch stepped up to the plate and knocked it out of the park. Her experience and knowledge were instrumental to an efficient SOL Spring testing window. In addition to loading/monitoring tests and assisting in the design for the SOL schedule, she methodically organized a system to make sure we met all state and county deadlines and requirements, but the most important thing she did was take care of our kids. She provided kind and gentle encouragement to our students while they navigated high stakes testing. She was not just focused on the task of accomplishing testing, she valued the students. Ms. Rindfleisch continued this year as the testing assistant, in a year where assessments were paramount and plenty. She was so determined to make a difference in our community that she also joined the staff as a most dependable substitute teacher and instructional assistant. The idea was to fill her time in between testing windows as a support for our classroom teachers, and then the needs overlapped. During a year where the pandemic caused disruption scheduling and supervision, coupled by a substitute shortage, Ms. Rindfleisch would show up to Oak View to support testing and was pulled in a million different directions and she loved it! Her willingness to support the school in any emergent need or unique situation showcased her natural love of children and her ability to be flexible. At Oak View, we understand the importance of teaching, learning, and supervision. Regardless of our staffing situations (with Covid creating and ample amount of staff shortages), we know that we must be ready and equipped to support students in our building. Ms. Rindfleisch answers the call every time we are in need. She understands the necessity to shift, prioritize the needs, and flip roles to create the safest of school environments. So she juggles and her dedication never waivers. She has substituted at every grade level, served as a student monitor, and keeps up with the vast amount of testing requirements. Due to an unexpected illness, I was sidelined as the testing coordinator during the SOL season this Spring and many teachers were out with Covid. Ms. Rindfleisch hopped in with both feet and covered classes as a substitute and spent every minute of planning to support testing. She was able to step in and handle the administrative tasks of testing. We could not have done it as efficiently without her support. She does all of this with a smile and a kind loving heart. She does it with a positive attitude. She values the importance of building relationships with students. She knows so many by name and need. She works well with the staff and has had a major impact on our school. We are truly blessed that she loves Oak View as much as we love her!
– Lora Adams, Oak View ES 
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Tanya Smith, South County HS 
Throughout our son’s academic career at South County High School, as a family, we would love to thank our son’s gym teacher, Tanya Smith. Mrs. Smith has always made sure to help our son with his athletic needs. Our son has autism and can’t really understand how to do things on his own, but with the help of Mrs. Smith, he was able to gain confidence when performing exercises in gym class. She was the one that introduced him to basketball, which is now one of my son’s favorite things to do. She has helped him resolve issues and guided him through his mistakes. She never gave up on him and made sure that he always did well during her period. Mrs. Smith also always made sure to contact us with updates regarding our son to help keep us in the picture. She has always had such a positive attitude and was always full of energy. For that, we thank her immensely for all that she’s done! Thank you so much, Mrs. Smith, you’re an amazing teacher and person, may you always succeed in life. You deserve it! Thank you so much for everything.”
– a South County HS parent 
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Walter Bagwell, South County HS 
As our son’s last year comes to an end at South County High School, I’d like to take a moment to dedicate this message to an outstanding person that has been a huge impact on our son, Walter Bagwell. Mr. Bagwell has been helping our son since he was in middle school. He has been a guide to him for years now. Our son has severe autism. Mr. Bagwell has supervised every action that needed to take place for our son so that he could always have a successful academic and career life. He did this by constantly supporting and setting up IEP meetings to discuss future goals and overall what they were going to do to help him succeed. Mr. Bagwell has always been ready to assist us, whether it was in person or virtually. He helped us find resources for our son ,so that he could be prepared for after graduation. He also assisted us through his academic career by guiding us on other resources, such as TRS camps, and obtaining legal guardianship for him so that he could gain more opportunities. When our son had a seizure for the first time in school in 2020, he made sure to rescue him and make sure he was okay. For all the years that we’ve known him, he has always been an honest, caring, and amazing person. We are so beyond thankful to have had him be in our son’s life. He has helped our son so much by always making sure that he’s accommodated and comfortable. Mr. Bagwell, without you we would have been completely lost on what to do, you have been such a bright light in our son’s life and we will always have so much appreciation for you. You are amazing at what you do and we are so lucky! Thank you so much for everything.”
– a South County HS parent 
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Apryl Richards-Viale, Oak View ES 
Ms. Viale is a valuable instructional assistant at Oak View. She has been instrumental in supporting our students this year, especially in second and fifth grade. She is talented and able to administer scripted reading programs to our students and give teachers the most detailed feedback on their progress. She also can blend into inclusive settings to support students whether their needs are behavioral or academic. She is top notch when it comes to supporting instruction and educating the “whole child.” And that’s not all. She exceeds in all areas. Her positive attitude is full throttle. Our support staff has had to bend and become the most flexible human beings ever to help us survive the pandemic and the transition back into the building this year. Whatever the need, Ms. Viale is always willing and positive to step in with the kind response, “I can do it.” In addition to supporting instruction, she supports students and the school in all aspects and responsibilities. From bell to bell, she is willing to respond timely to any emerging need. She is the friendly face opening car doors when students arrive. She is the first out at dismissal to communicate the arrival of Kiss & Ride parents. It sounds like a small task, but it is vital to the safety and efficiency of dismissal. When we are stretched and have staff out of the building due to illness, she alters her schedule and will jump into any classroom. When there are testing needs, she implements them professionally. When there is a need for lunch coverage, she treats it as the same importance as any other part of her job, and she can do any of it with a moment’s notice! Every time you approach her to ask her to cover or assist, she always answers, “I can do it.” Four of the most helpful words to help us problem-solve and support our students. Thank you, Ms. Viale!”
– Lora Adams, Oak View ES 
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Brian Magaha, South County HS 
As graduation comes closer, we would like to thank our son’s teacher and guide through his middle and high school career, Brian Magaha. Mr. Magaha has been there for my son constantly throughout the years and has never once failed our family. My son suffers from severe autism, but with Mr. Magha’s help, he has tremendously improved. Mr. Magaha is an exceptional and kind-hearted person with nothing but love and respect for our son. He has been supportive, patient, and thoughtful. When our son had a seizure at school during 2020, he came to the rescue by helping him and making us as a family calm. He is his guidance. He has guided him when he couldn’t do so for himself. We see him as someone who has our son’s best interest in mind at all times. Mr. Magaha assisted him through his work cite jobs and made sure to help him every step of the way. Even though our son is severely autistic, he has continued to show out for him on every occasion. He has made my son feel wanted, cared for, comfortable and overall respected as a person. He treats him not only as a student but as one of his own children. Words can’t describe how thankful we are and how much we owe him for what he has done. You will always be one of the most important people to enter my son’s life and for that, we thank you for doing everything you do. You hold a special spot. Thank you for all you’ve done.”
– a South County HS parent 
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Erin Zurbuchen, Great Falls ES 
Ms. Zurbuchen has taught Strings to many of our children, including both of my children, and has been an encouraging and motivating influence in helping them to enjoy and take pride in playing a strings instrument. She truly has been impressive during these unusual pandemic circumstances, demonstrating patience and kindness especially during the virtual online experience. We are truly grateful for her efforts and tenacity in helping our children not miss the important and essential benefits that playing an instrument individually and collectively can provide. Thank you.”
– a Great Falls ES parent 
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Melody Ain, Marshall Road ES 
Melody Ain is a unicorn of a teacher, which makes her perfect for teaching first grade (though I’m sure she would excel with any age group). She was my daughter’s teacher this year, and I cannot overstate the positive impact she had on her. I am confident that my daughter’s experience in Melody’s classroom will stay with her throughout her school career and into adulthood. My daughter has flourished academically, through research projects, math “games” and reading/writing activities, but she has also expanded her understanding of what it means to be a good person in community with others. She has seen acceptance of others as what’s expected, and that people are important and special, even if they are different from her. Melody is so communicative with the parents, which is incredibly helpful. She goes out of her way to make her kids feel like they matter. This was the first full in-person year for my daughter, and for many others, which brings with it a ton of added complexities (beyond dealing with a “normal” classroom of first graders!) Melody made this transition so much easier for my daughter and for us as parents. I felt better knowing I was sending my child to Melody’s classroom every day. Being a teacher is such a difficult job, made worse by the current state of the world, we cannot thank Melody enough for continuing to bring her light and gifts to the kids she teaches. Every time Melody’s name comes up in conversation, my daughter says, “I love Mrs. Ain, she’s the best teacher ever!” And I can’t help but agree! Melody is a truly special teacher and I am incredibly grateful that my daughter was in her class this year. Thank you, Melody.”
– a Marshall Road ES parent 
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Jenna Schmidt, Union Mill ES 
It has been an extremely rough transition for my child to go back to school in person. She has suffered from separation anxiety and dreaded going to school every morning. I reached out to Jenna at the beginning of the school year, and Jenna has been an essential person in decreasing my child’s anxiety and helping her enjoy school again with all the conversations and interventions that she suggested such as before school club and student/teacher mentorship. I am so thankful for what Jenna has done for my child and my family.”
– a Union Mill ES parent
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Mindy Milliron, Canterbury Woods ES 
Mindy was responsible for the most seamless SOL testing season I’ve ever been in. Every single detail was thought through and communicated to the whole staff, and teachers and students who were not testing on a given day may not even have known that testing was happening. I’ve helped out with standardized testing for many years, and not one has been this easy, well organized and smooth. Even with very rapid turn around on retakes, Mindy handled everything with such grace that it was a pleasure to behold!”
– Fran Migdal, Canterbury Woods ES
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Gwyneth Kiehl, Riverside ES 
Gwyneth has been a valuable asset to our early childhood special education program over these past ten years. She is the consummate professional. Gwyneth is reliable, hardworking, and truly dedicated to her job. She is positive and calm and collaborates well with all her colleagues. Gwyneth cares for all her students and works well with them. She teaches them with patience and has great behavior management skills. She is a great instructional assistant and knows how to lead and take charge of the classroom when the teacher is absent. Gwyneth has worked with students with a wide variety of needs and helps individualize instruction for each and every one of them. She frequently uses visual cues and sign language in class. Gwyneth is very creative and resourceful and has lots of good ideas. She is artistic and has created many visuals for the classroom. Gwyneth is very organized and has put together lists of books, songs, and activities by themes to help the early childhood team find resources more easily. She is always dependable and has been an important team member. We wish her the best as she moves away but Gwyneth will be dearly missed here at Riverside.”
– Christie Kwun, Riverside ES 
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Monique Berkeley, Carson MS 
We encountered two unique situations in which we needed to talk directly with the Principal during the beginning of the school year and last week. Ms. Monique demonstrated empathy and care, and she promptly informed Mr. Strokes to respond to my calls. I felt that she was extremely patient and pleasant during our phone conversations. More importantly, she is very efficient in relaying the right message for prompt responses. She is such an angel!”
– a Carson MS parent 
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Melissa Crowley and Brenda Devine, Kings Park ES 
As the school year draws to a close, we would be remiss not to recognize our daughter’s wonderful Kindergarten teachers, Mrs. Crowley and Mrs. Devine. This school year has brought many challenges, and yet our daughter has had a truly fantastic first year at Kings Park. Mrs. Crowley and Mrs. Devine are endlessly kind and incredibly warm. Their gentle nurturing and constant support has made our daughter feel at home at Kings Park from the first day. During the school year, we participated in the StreamIN/CheckIN program. Our daughter’s check-ins with Mrs. Crowley were the highlight of those days. Mrs. Crowley and Mrs. Devine have created a close-knit community and a learning environment that inspires curiosity, creativity, and joy. Being a part of their classroom has enabled our daughter to learn about herself, others, and the world around her. We are beyond grateful for all that Mrs. Crowley and Mrs. Devine, along with the team at Kings Park, have done this year. Thank you for everything.”
– a Kings Park ES parent 
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Carmen Muniz, Fort Hunt ES 
Throughout the year, I have greatly appreciated Carmen’s positivity, flexibility, and guidance. I can tell that she works hard to build relationships with her students and does a brilliant job creating a welcoming, safe classroom environment. Entering her classroom for art each week brings joy to my day. The passion and creativity which Ms. Muniz has instilled in her students is clear. Thank you for being a part of what makes Fort Hunt so great!”
– Veronia Menotti, Fort Hunt ES 
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Brian Rothe, Lees Corner ES 
Mr. Brian Rothe is absolutely amazing. Going above and beyond to be of service and incredibly supportive does not go unnoticed. He has helped my child tremendously and has always been so kind and compassionate, communicative and collaborative. This school’s staff is truly wonderful. Thank you.”
– a Lees Corner parent 
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Aron Sterling, Willow Oaks Admin Center
We wanted to give a heartfelt thank you to Aron Sterling. He met with us on very short notice via Zoom to help us with reading the weather forecast for our special community event of Field Day. He was able to show us how to read the weather report and give us insight on how to continue to read it on our own. With his help, we were able to make an informed decision for our student body for Field Day. It may not have been the outcome we wanted, but with Aron’s help, it was the safest and best decision.”
– Nisha Hecht and Debbie Callsen, Haycock ES 
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Gilbert Redulla, Lorton Transportation Center
Mr. G has been a force to reckon with this school year. I have truly enjoyed the show! It was done with precision and he has mastered the craft. He cares, shares, and invites you in and is a true asset to all of us.”
– Lisa Robertson, Lorton Transportation Center
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Derek House, Sprague Technology Center
The end of the school year brings about a lot of changes many of which are celebratory in nature. The Teaching Materials Production Center, TMPC, often has the honor of producing mementoes marking achievements and accomplishments attained by FCPS students. The wave of requests arriving in the TMPC inbox was no different in 2022 than in previous years. The difference this year was the condition of the TMPC staff. Sickness and injury had taken a toll on the TMPC designers but there were still deadlines to meet. One of the most difficult and labor intensive TMPC projects is the creation of lawn signs. Following their printing on adhesive paper the signs are manually attached to corrugated plastic backings and then properly trimmed, also manually, for ultimate display effectiveness. This effort takes place in the TMPC and with no healthy staff members available it was up to Derek House to put the deadline on his shoulders and see the job through. The difficulty for Derek was not health or injury but the fact that he had just gotten married 5 days before this job had to be completed. When the situation was presented to Derek he volunteered to come in and complete the work before even being asked. Derek’s can-do attitude and willingness to help whenever and wherever needed are not surprising but are greatly appreciated. Through his giving nature Derek brings great credit to the TMPC and to the Department of Information Technology.”
– Mark Hyer, Sprague Technology Center
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Wanda Holloway, Virginia Hills Center
I want to acknowledge the incredible work of Wanda Holloway. Thank you for delivering over the top professional knowledge and customer service to us again! We had a very important meeting that we had to fit into tight schedule for parents, school staff and Ms. Holloway’s calendar. She made time when there was very little time in her schedule. Additionally, Wanda made arrangements to give the team specific information about a new process to the school staff, making them more comfortable to proceed with a challenging meeting. Thank you Wanda for taking to time to go the extra mile and help us out!”
– Ann Smith, Key Center 
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Amy Schehl, Aldrin ES 
My daughter’s 5th grade teacher, Ms. Amy Schehl, has been just outstanding. She has cultivated spirit of great team work in her class. She is firm, funny, kind and encourages good manners. My daughter has been thriving this year. We are so lucky having her as my daughter’s teacher this year.”
– an Aldrin ES parent 
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Mahnaz Khalil Khosravi, Johnson MS 
I wanted to take this opportunity to thank Ms. Khalil Khosravi for her kindness and caring about her colleagues. I once worked with her in her class and was quite impressed by the way she managed the class because not only were her students very well behaved, but also the students appeared to be enjoying her teaching. After this, I was assigned to work in a class next to her classroom where there were a few students full of energy, I had heard. Before the class started, I ran into her and mentioned my concerns, there and then, she encouraged me and said feel free to come to her for help if I ran a situation beyond control. On the following day, I met her in the hall, she walked up to me to check how the class was going, which has made me feel so touched. Later on when got home I told my experience to my family, they were happy that I have such a caring colleague around. I then realized that she was indeed an excellent example of the FCPS SORA trait, because of staff members like Ms. Khalil Khosravi at Johnson, working there is such an enjoyable experience, particularly for me as a novice staff.”
– Chunju Yang, Johnson MS 
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Beth Smith, Orange Hunt ES
Mrs. Smith is the first grade teacher that every parent wishes for their child! She is amazing. My daughter is excited to go to school every day to learn. She became an enthusiastic reader and writer throughout this year. She gets off the bus and shares stories from her day that show how happy she is at school. Mrs. Smith makes the class feel like a family where everyone is supportive of each other and celebrates successes together. I feel apart of the class community since Mrs. Smith consistently updates parents through weekly newsletters and emails. I wish she could move up to second grade with my daughter next year! Thank you for such a memorable year!”
– an Orange Hunt ES parent 
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Phil Peevy and Kristen Mendick, Fairhill ES, Bush Hill ES
A heartfelt thanks to PE teachers Phil Peevy and Kristen Mendick for continuing the fun tradition of Fairhill’s Ellipse Run. Despite all of the end-of-year deadlines and chaos, they organized a fantastic event. All students were excited to cheer on the 6th graders, then the Staff, as they ran a 600 meter race. Mr. Peevy and Ms. Mendick’s positivity and excitement was contagious, and the Fairhill community is so grateful!”
– Leslie Howard, Fairhill ES 
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Gabriella Anders, Halley ES 
Ms. Anders spent 1-1 time with my son today, walking around the playground at recess, deep in conversation about challenges with making friends. He felt seen and valued by how much time she spent with him, showing him her genuine care, concern, and empathy. After the horrific tragedy in Texas last night, I felt grief, horror, anger, and fear as a parent and how society at large has abdicated its responsibility to children. I feel powerless to protect my child from a massacre like that, but hearing about this meaningful conversation between Ms. Anders and my son today, I am reminded that his teacher is doing everything within her power to ensure that he is safe and that he knows he is seen and valued. I can’t ask for more than that from any staff member. I also want to highlight how Ms. Anders’ classroom community inspires students to think about ways that they can improve their school, their community, their country, and their world. They have a strong sense of justice as a class, and every day I hear about my child’s classmates’ concerns about racism, climate change, pollution, diversity, and other topics that burn brightly in their hearts. They are asking big questions, choosing meaningful topics to research, and seeing themselves as global citizens who have the power to make a positive difference.  Ms. Anders has really fostered a sense of her students’ power to make the world better and the imperative to do so. We are SO lucky Ms. Anders is our child’s teacher and that, during this year of pandemic and death and war and so many unknowns, he has been reminded of his power rather than his powerlessness, of hope rather than hopelessness, and of connection rather than loneliness and amid all that, he has learned double digit multiplication, long division, adding fractions, and ancient history.  Kudos, Ms. Anders.”
– a Halley ES parent 
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Michelle Galvan, Gatehouse Admin Center
“Michelle has been an amazing support to me this year when we haven’t had an AA. She is quick to respond, knowledgeable, and patient. We are so lucky to have her in our region.”
– Ted Cooper, Fairhill ES 
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Pamela Roldan, Terra Centre ES 
Mrs. Roldan has gone above and beyond this entire school year in educating our kids. She continually challenges my child and allows her to feel accepted, loved, and supported in her learning journey. My child comes home daily talking about amazing stories of Mrs. Roldan’s ability to connect and motivate the students in their development of math and other subjects. My daughter feels that her teaching style is one of friendship and love and for that we are so very grateful. I wanted to recognize Mrs. Roldan’s efforts and all she does in brightening these children’s days and education. We are forever changed.”
– a Terra Centre ES parent
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Gilbert Redulla, Lorton Transportation Center
“Mr. G., as I call him, Gilbert R Baker 153 is awesomely genuine, respectful, caring, knowledgeable, humorous and his communication skills are EPIC! This acknowledgment is most definitely not a date or particular day! It’s who Mr. G is EVERYDAY, simply “awesomeness at its finest.”
– Patricia Ferguson, Lorton Transportation Center
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Reilly McDonald, Haycock ES 
“Ms. McDonald has been an incredible advocate for our child for the entire year. Our student has always scored well on standardized tests, but has struggled in other areas, especially writing. When I addressed my concerns with past teachers, the response was always the same: “He’s doing fine. His test scores are good”. Ms. McDonald, however, saw our student as more than a test score. She saw him as an individual who had different needs. She provided him additional support in the classroom throughout the year and helped guide us through the testing processes so we could learn more about his needs. Every time we met Ms. McDonald would share something about our student (likes/dislikes, mannerisms, etc.) that showed she knew him as an individual, not just a student. I wish Ms. McDonald could teach him again next year!”
– a Haycock ES parent
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Gihea Schwartz, Fairhill ES
Thanks, Gihea for your unconditionally support and for the useful resources.”
– Lilly Shin, Greenbriar East ES
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Laurie Stiles, Davis Career Center
Laurie. Thank you putting the wonderful yearbook together this year. The effort and patience of the steps to complete such a task does not go unnoticed. The students love the yearbook and continue to bring the book daily for signatures. Thank you for building the memories for the students to enjoy for years to come.”
– Brianna Graves, Davis Career Center
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Katherine NaujoksTransition Support Resource Center – Alexandria 
Ms. Naujoks has a way of communicating with parents and families that is compassionate, clear, patient, and professional. Whether listening to a guardian upset about transportation or explaining to a parent why their student will need summer school, every time I hear Ms. Naujoks working with families, it is like having a mini professional development. Recently, a student passed away and Ms. Naujoks went through all of the student’s submissions for her Strategies for Success class the previous year. She found ones that demonstrated the student’s love for his family, how he valued kindness, and the importance of empathy. Ms. Naujoks put together an album of the student’s writings to give to the family for the funeral, for which they were immensely grateful. In everyday interactions with families, handling little frustrations, or giving consolation to a parent in their darkest hour, Ms. Naujoks treats every family with commendable respect, kindness, and poise. She always makes families feel heard, understood, and valued. You’re terrific, Kathy!”
– Jude Welling Barrows,
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Jennifer Phipps, Pine Springs ES 
As we close out this year, I want to give the loudest shout-out to Jenn for being the best mentor a first-year teacher could have ever asked for. She guided me through so much this year from IEP jitters, assessment strategies, to a variety of classroom managements that were ever so helpful; all this in addition to the emotional support any first-year teacher requires while navigating a career in public education. Thank you so, very much Jenn, your support and dedication to me and the job is truly insurmountable! Early Childhood is (and I am) beyond lucky to have you as a model colleague.”
– Anna Gionfriddo, Freedom Hill ES 
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Aziz Elhayani, Woodson IT Center
We had originally thought the projector bulb was burned out, but it turned out to be a source issue. Aziz took the time to rewire our projector so that the screen beam and document camera would work correctly without having to go through an AVerMedia box. Then he made sure that I knew what he had done and how it worked.   This was very valuable to me as a Tsspec. Thank you Aziz!”
– Sherri Miller, Willow Springs ES 
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Charles Kim, Sprague Technology Center
Charles went above and beyond to help me set up close to 600 iPads that we received through a grant. He is fairly new to the system but was able to handle all the tasks like a pro. He was able to think outside the box and find ways to help us save money by using previously purchased apps. Charles is personable and very easy to work with and Fairfax County iPads are safe in his hands!”
– Meaghan Tracy, Instructional Programs Support Center
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Daniel Gray, Forte Center 
I wanted to thank Daniel for delivering all of our summer cleaning order straight to the maintenance room. This was such a great help. I do not know if he realizes how much I appreciated it. He is a very nice and pleasant person and you can tell that he cares. Keep up the great work. Thank you Daniel!!!”
– Waverly Cerio, Burke MS 
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Linda Concepcion, Terraset ES 
Linda Concepcion is an Instructional Assistant at Terraset ES in Reston. She absolutely goes above and beyond each day with the students on our caseload, supporting their academic and behavioral efforts to make progress. Linda is kind, patient and, best of all, proactive in using strategies to help students turn behaviors and choices from challenges to positive outcomes. She has been such an incredible addition to our 6th grade team, we feel completely confident in her ability to manage and respond to student needs with creativity and empathy.”
– Leslie Sogandares, Terraset ES
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Angela Hession, Daniels Run ES 
It has truly been my pleasure working with Ms. Hession this school year. She is a passionate educator who loves working with children. She is intuitive, caring, and kind. She has been a great support and mentor for managing a variety of challenges and successes. I am grateful she is a part of the team.”
– Katie Yates, Daniels Run ES
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Cindy Gagnon, Robinson SS 
“Cindy Gagnon embodies what it means to be beyond supportive, because instead, she is an entire support system. She reminds us that no matter her schedule, there is always time to include others and build relationships. Her enthusiastic attitude has not only bettered the Robinson community, but has grown it. As a family liaison at Robinson, I work daily with parents, families, students and the community and I see Cindy engaging the students in every possible way. Cindy has taken her own initiative by contributing to this cause of getting ESOL students involved in the Robinson community by organizing and facilitating students with tools to be more successful. Helping students realize their own ideas for events, and goes one step further by challenging them to obtain their full potential.”
– Ruth Azimi, Robinson SS 
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Kristen Warren, Willow Oaks Admin Center
Kristen has been amazing this entire year. This was my first year teaching as a preschool autism teacher. Kristen was my ABA coach and provided countless hours of help in my classroom. She advocated for me and my students, provided support in the classroom, and was always there to answer any questions I had. She will be missed so much next year as she moves states. Thank you for all that you did for my class!”
– Mackenzie Morgan, White Oaks ES 
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Jennifer Pendley, White Oaks ES 
Jen has been incredible this entire year. This was my first year as a preschool autism teacher, and Jen was always there to answer any question I had. I know she spent countless hours proofing documents, attending meetings, helping in my classroom, and so much more throughout the entire school year. I definitely would not have been able to have as successful of a year without all of her help. Everything she has helped with this year has set me up to continue to be successful for the following years.”
– Mackenzie Morgan, White Oaks ES 
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Kudy Giwa-Lawal and Johanna Aguilar, Fort Hunt ES 
This week’s FOX OF THE WEEK goes to the team of Ms. Aguilar and Ms. Lawal. I had the opportunity to work with them and I noticed they always create a safe and meaningful learning environment. They care a lot about their students and they strive to give them the best. It’s really nice to see students’ progress thanks to the wonderful job they do. Congrats!”
– Giuliana Corrado, Fort Hunt ES 
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Veronica Menotti, Fort Hunt ES 
It is wonderful to be part of a community of caring individuals at Fort Hunt. Our choice for Fox of the Week stands-out the most from our list of many great colleagues. We would like to nominate Veronica Menotti for the Fox of the Week. When she comes to our classroom, she always has a big smile on her face and brings beautiful projects for our students. Veronica is always very attentive to and conscious of our students’ varying needs. She is adaptable in creating art lessons to make them relatable for our students, re-ordering her instructional plans when necessary, and seeking input to ensure future instructional plans are well aligned with each student’s goals. We love the patience she shows with our students when they are making their art activities. It is a pleasure to work with Veronica!”
– Kudy Giwa-Lawal and Johanna Aguilar, Fort Hunt ES
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Erin Weisenberger, Lorton Station ES
As we near the end of the school year, I would like to give a shout out to Ms. Weisenberger at Lorton Station Elementary School. My son sees her weekly for speech therapy and she has made the experience this past school year so much easier than we thought possible. There is a difference between people that do their job and people that are HAPPY to do their job, and Ms. Weisenberger definitely falls into the latter. If there is ever a thought of, how much impact can one teacher have? We plan on moving our son from private school to LSES and she is a very big factor into this decision. We look forward to our sons growth at LSES and hope other teachers will be just as kind as Ms. Weisenberger.”
– a Lorton Station ES parent 
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Sean Shada, Ayana Bundy, Emma Henderson, Cathy Bowman, Tamara Wilson, Tonja Walden, Hollin Meadows ES 
These 6 amazing teaches were all volunteer coaches, and/or Practice Partner volunteers for our Girls on the Run team this Spring. We had 30 girls and could not have done this season successfully with out their dedication. Despite all the other responsibilities and commitments these teachers have, they showed up consistently to lead, run and support our girls. In a time where both our girls needed the programming and emotional support Girls on the Run provides, AND a time where teachers are busier and emotionally taxed, we were blessed by their commitment to the team. They all partnered with girls to run our season ending 5k, providing additional support to the girls when their caregivers were unable. We are so fortunate to have such a large group of dedicated and caring staff at HMES.”
– a Hollin Meadows community member 
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Rebecca Smith, Hollin Meadows ES 
Our HMES Girls on the Run team had their 5k on May 22nd, and Ms. Smith drove a long distance on a Sunday morning to come and support our girls. She had a sign cheering on the team as a whole, and also a specific sign for my daughter, who is her mentee. Her support and enthusiasm made a huge difference for my daughter, knowing her teacher cares as much about her as she cares for her teacher. She was beyond flattered that Ms. Smith came, and has the poster hanging in her bedroom now! Ms. Smith is the kind of caring and fun teacher every child should have in their lifetime.”
– a Hollin Meadows ES parent 
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Danielle Hornbecker, Frost MS 
This individual is living her “why”. She is an education professional whose first concern is the students, and doing the right thing. She’s conscientious, quick to follow-up and most importantly lets the kids know they’re her #1.”
– a Frost MS parent 
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Elizabeth Bakken and Becky Rock, Bonnie Brae ES 
I want to give a huge round of applause to Liz Bakken and Becky Rock. You two are AMAZING! Liz is the SPED lead at my school, and Becky is the local screening chair and has done the reveals this year. The two of them have worked tirelessly to support the MANY (mostly new) SPED teachers at BBES. Your dedication and hard work do not go unnoticed. You meet every teacher where he/she is, share your expertise, and provide endless support and encouragement. With so many new teachers and all students being back at school, this has not been a calm year! The two of you take everything in stride and continue to provide service with a smile. If anyone has a question, you have an answer (or you research it and produce one!). The two of you respond to questions or concerns almost immediately and even though your workloads have been daunting, you are constantly offering your knowledge and assistance to anyone in need. Liz and Becky, stand up and take a bow! Thank you and kudos to both of you!”
– Stacy Greene, Bonnie Brae ES 
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Melissa DeStefano, Silverbrook ES 
I want to give a huge shout-out to Melissa DeStefano! I am a new special Ed. teacher and she is my mentor this year. She has been an enormous help to me and without her guidance, I would have really floundered. I meet with her two days a week and we discuss what I am working on and what I need to be successful. Melissa has spent countless hours answering millions of questions, passing on her knowledge, tips, and tricks, and encouraging me. If I have a question, she usually has an instant answer. If not, she investigates it and gets back to me. Throughout the week, if I have any questions or concerns, I send her an email and she responds immediately! We are at different schools, so we meet virtually. Melissa always greets me with a smile. When I am worried or upset about something, her calming manner and her confidant assurance goes a long way in bringing peace to the concerning situation. Melissa, I know I could not have gotten through this year without YOU! Thank you for all your efforts! I feel like, with your help, I have become a better teacher. You are an inspiration to me, and I strive to be as good a teacher as I know you are. Thank you and kudos to YOU for a job well done!”
– Stacy Greene, Bonnie Brae ES 
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Brian Kaufman, Langley HS
Mr. Kaufman has cultivated such a sense of belonging in my daughter. He has sought unique opportunities for her to shine and has also thoughtfully considered her unique educational and social needs. I have no doubt that things to Mr. Kaufman, my daughter will continue to find artistic release and genuine joy in the performing arts.”
– Ava Walter, Langley HS 
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Brigid Hamilton, Centreville ES 
Throughout this entire year, Miss Hamilton’s awesomeness has been a common topic in our home. Our son absolutely adores her, and he always says she is his favorite thing about school. Miss Hamilton is kind, always wears a smile, and fills her classroom with positivity. She finds so many fun ways to engage the kids and keep them motivated; our son is always telling us about some cool, new project she is doing with them. We especially appreciate that she never misses an opportunity to take the class outside! Miss Hamilton is also an excellent communicator. She sends parents an email at the end of each week with a review of that week’s learning, class goals, and milestone dates. She is also very responsive, open to any and all questions, and incredibly patient (no matter how often I bother her…). Most of all, Miss Hamilton has nurtured our son’s love of learning and brought great joy to his education. We couldn’t have asked for a better teacher. Thank you, Miss Hamilton! You are amazing!!!”
– a Centreville ES parent 
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Amy Sheldon, Willow Oaks Admin Center
I’d like to communicate my appreciation and acknowledgment of Ms. Sheldon’s incredible contributions to the 3-part Webinar Series sponsored by the FCPS Parent Resource Center entitled, Supporting Early Learners ~ Growing the Caregiver’s Toolbox: A Webinar for PreK-2 Families. Ms. Sheldon’s extensive expertise in early childhood and her ability to present complex developmental considerations in creative ways that are meaningful, engaging and accessible for parents and caregivers is tremendous and is in great demand. Her work sets the foundation for positive family and school partnerships for our youngest students for years to come. As our system looks to support our youngest learners and their caregivers in coping with these challenging times, Ms. Sheldon’s role is invaluable. Ms. Sheldon, thank you for your inspiration, passion and collaboration! You are one in million!”
– Laura Thieman, Willow Oaks Admin Center 
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Amy Williams, Flint Hill ES 
Amy Williams is our school counselor at Flint Hill Elementary. She not only takes care of the students, she takes care of the staff as well.  She always thanks her colleagues by specifically pointing out what they did to help a student or a teammate. Today after a staff health emergency she thanked me for helping with the emergency, and checked in with me to  see if I needed to process the crisis. Amy makes the morale at our school very high by always thinking of others, and working as a team to solve any issues. It is an honor to work with a leader who exemplifies Fairfax Counties core values.”
– Lynne Kohls, Flint Hill ES 
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Cassandra Jones-Randolph, Stonecroft Transportation Center
Cassandra (and 2 bus drivers) saved the day for HWES today! We were in a bind and needed 2 field trip buses for our 6th graders to be able to attend orientation at LHMS. I called Cassandra with this last minute request (at 9:00 am) for a 9:40 am departure, never thinking it would be possible. But, due to her efforts, she found 2 drivers (who kindly accepted this last minute assignment) and they were at our school by 9:40 am! We are so very thankful for her calm and quick response. HWES is so very grateful for Cassandra and the entire Transportation team for the amazing feats they do every day! Thank you so much.”
– Linda Paladeau, Hunter Woods ES 
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Peter Kelly and Michael Symanski, Pulley Center
I want to thank Mr. Kelly and Mr. Symanski for taking time from their busy schedule, for being outside every morning talking to the students. My son looks forward to seeing both of you every morning and talking to both of you before he goes to class.”
– a Pulley Center parent 
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Veronica Turley, Herndon MS 
Ms. Turley has been my favorite teacher in middle school. She is always super nice and super chill. She has taught us everything we need to know about 7 honors math in a super clear way that makes easy to learn. I am very grateful that she was my teacher this year.”
– a Herndon MS student
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Shannon Kamenick, Herndon HS 
Ms. Kamenick has been an amazing source of support for our Freshman. She has helped him navigate his first year of high school and first time back in a school building since March 2020. Our son states that she is caring and is a good counselor. For example, she helped him get involved in the theater program which has been a great a great experience for him. We are incredibly thankful for all that she has done to help him have a successful Freshman year as a Hornet.”
– a Herndon HS parent 
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Rachel Schneider, Dranesville ES 
This is our son’s first year experiencing a school setting, and Ms. Rachel, along with her assistant, Mrs. Nilda, were impeccable. Our son was not ready to go in willingly during the first week, but both teachers were there each morning waiting outside the school with smiles, good mornings, and the patience of owls! Within a week my son was strolling into the school without hesitation. Ms. Rachel and Mrs. Nilda have been kind-hearted and supportive throughout the entire year, and a parent of a PreK student could not ask for more.”
– a Dranesville ES parent 
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David Magee, Stratford Landing ES 
Mr. Magee consistently goes above and beyond to help the students of Stratford Landing Elementary. He attends after school events to support students and is always a friendly and warm presence at school. There was no crossing guard after school and many students were trying to cross busy Riverside Road. Mr. Magee stepped in to make sure students could cross the road safely. My students had the biggest smile on their faces getting to see Mr. Magee one more time after leaving school. We are so grateful to have him in their lives.”
– a Stratford Landing ES 
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Donna Jones, Stonecroft Transportation Center
Donna Jones is my son’s special needs bus attendant, she is the best example of kindness, and always going the extra mile to support and help my son who goes to school with his skilled nurse. Ms. Donna Jones is the kind employee that FCPS should be proud of, she is the one who helped my son to overcome his fear of the bus and being separated from me with a high level of expertise,  that even his nurse couldn’t do. I call her my therapist and angel walking on earth. Her calm, amazing voice and her extraordinary wording and terminology with me as mother to calm me down and cheer me up, and her care with knowing the right thing to do with my son is above what I can describe. She has it all, even her communication with the bus driver is beyond professional. If all or most FCPS employees are like Ms. Donna Jones, FCPS will be the place that our kiddos can be safe and loved. Thank you Ms. Donna Jones for being part of my son’s educational team. Thank you for making an overwhelmed,  exhausted single mom happy and certain that her boy is going to school with such an amazing person. God bless you. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you and that still would not be enough to express my gratitude to you. Thank you for assuring me that my son is going with the right expert person to be ready to learn.”
– a Colvin Run ES parent 
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Emily VanDerhoff, Hunt Valley ES 
It is very hard to encapsulate how outstanding and how invaluable Emily VanDerhoff is to the FCPS community. Going above and beyond knowing each student by name and need, every child in the class receives individual attention with both enrichment and remediation with each lesson that is given. There is never a time where a lesson is not delivered that is both engaging and ensures that each student is getting the enrichment and support needed. Each day my child comes home eager to share the incredible amount of knowledge given each day. In addition to academics, Emily is very attuned to SEL and ensures it is a safe and caring environment each day for every student. Students of all backgrounds are welcomed as an integral part of the community. In addition to being beyond prepared for the next grade, just as importantly the foundation of being an enthusiastic and engaged learning is being implemented each day. Students are also held to the standards of being a collaborative and caring member of the classroom. We are extremely lucky she has chosen our school as the setting for this amazing experience.”
– a Hunt Valley ES parent 
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Paula Williams, Terra Centre ES 
Mrs. Williams has been an absolute joy for my child who is in her 2nd grade class. Her enthusiasm and individual care for her students has made the return to a face-to-face environment a wonderful time this year. My daughter has enjoyed learning from her due to her ability to relate to individual students and their strengths and areas for growth. She has mistakenly called me “Mrs. Williams” at home, which is always a great sign that she has great respect and care for her teacher! The Terra Centre community is stronger with her there!”
– a Terra Centre ES parent
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Adolfo Padilla Caceres, Lorton Transportation Center
Adolfo Padilla was my OJT trainer from May 6 to May 13 and he went above and beyond to make sure I got everything right. He has a very calm personality and he makes you feel at ease. He paid a close attention from the minute we met all the way until I finished my training and gave me some good advice and tips. I felt very fortunate to have him as my OJT trainer.”
– Fitsum Abraham, Lorton Transportation Center
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Martha Bouveron, Centreville ES 
Marty is a psychologist who was assigned to Centreville ES in January of this year. While this is an additional responsibility in her already hectic schedule, she has accepted us graciously and always with a positive attitude. She quickly formed relationships with our local screening committee team and is always willing to go the extra mile to ensure we can continue running our meetings without interruption. She is responsive and willing to adapt to meet the ever evolving needs of our school. She collaborates with a variety of different psychologists and comes prepared to speak to all the nuances of any given case. She does everything with a smile and we are fortunate to have had her as part of our “team.” We are so appreciative of all her hard work this year!”
– Josh Douds, Centreville ES 
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Mike Porterfield, Riverside ES 
Mike has the biggest heart for our Riverside students. He is a team player and is always jumping in where he is needed to help support student safety. Mr. Porterfield maintains the integrity of the PE program at Riverside when there is coverage shortages without missing a beat. We appreciate all that he does and is a model for our school moto Effort and Attitude. Thank you!”
– Kaila Wise, Riverside ES 
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Justin Huff, Sprague Technology Center
We were having problems with APPV applications and Justin quickly came up with an alternate solution that allowed Teacher and Students to gain access to software needed for instruction.”
– Derek Knizner, Sprague Technology Center
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Amanda Dey, Woodburn ES 
We have an amazing teacher who saw a need and filled it! Amanda Dey, 5th grade teacher at Woodburn ES, a Title 1 school, needed to motivate her Spanish-speaking students. She envisioned getting her boys involved in soccer though she knew that they did not have transportation or the money needed to register for our local soccer club. She also had girls who needed to develop their self-esteem and worthwhile learning healthy habits. Amanda put a post on her personal Facebook page asking for donations and received a significant amount of money from her friends and family. She used that money to start a Girls on the Run, an after school club for girls and she signed her boys up for soccer teams while not asking for any money from the school for transportation or support. She encourage fellow staff members to donate used soccer supplies or workout wear, sneakers, or anything. She literally takes the kids to practice and games on her own time as well as advocating for them to participate in other school activities. Amanda is beyond a team player and has persuaded her 5th grade team mates to also support the Girls on the Run club… and you have to see their Friday afternoon dance party in the hallway during dismissal! Amanda is a treasure to Woodburn, the community and to the boys and girls whose lives she is actually enriching. When you see the smiles on their faces when they see her, you’ll know what I mean!”
– Margie Campbell, Woodburn ES 
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Allison Petruzzellis, Terra Centre ES 
Ms. Petruzzellis has gone above and beyond to help my kids be excited about reading. She is kind to every single person who walks into the library, and has opened my kids’ eyes to new books and genres. Not only does she recommend new books, but she gets them excited about reading them. She also features a new book every week on TCTV which gets students ready for new reading opportunities. We are so thankful for Ms. Petruzzellis.”
– a Terra Centre ES parent 
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Jameka Jones, Woodlawn ES 
Jameka has consistently offered support and thought out partnership to consider how we can best support students daily. Jameka has offered time and lots of consideration to coach all learners.”
– Carrie Leestma, Willow Oaks Admin Center 
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Chelsy Pelletier-Blaine, Groveton ES
Chelsy Pelletier-Blain has gone above and beyond as a school social worker this year, initiating a number of brand new programs and supports for our Groveton students and families. She started a support groups for military connected kids and helped me with our Purple Star program. She took the lead for our school in dealing with a complicated student situation involving multiple Fairfax County agencies. She recruited and trained our first ever community mentor. She took the lead on our Student Wellness team. Chelsy is by far the most caring and involved SW I have worked with in my long career with FCPS. I want to give her special recognition this week for seeking out assistance for several 6th grade students who have been struggling with both behavioral and emotional issues. Without prompting or request, Chelsy researched and initiated contact with the Short Term Behavioral Health (STBH) program, identified the eligible students, trained both our school counselors and our administrators, and secured those students assistance for the summer and beyond. Even though those students will be moving to middle school in a month. Even though Chelsy will shortly be moving to another school district in another state. Chelsy is simply THE BEST, and I wanted someone to know.”
– Kristine Griswold, Groveton ES 
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Cara Miranda, Fairhill ES 
Mrs. Miranda has been very helpful all year, an example of her going above and beyond is, despite being out sick, she made the time and took the effort to reach out. Her compassion and efforts are so very appreciated.”
– a Fairhill ES parent 
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Chelsy Pelletier-Blaine, Groveton ES 
Ms. Pelletier-Blaine has consistently gone above and beyond in helping our students and families. I’m a counselor at Groveton and work with her. In my 10 years with FCPS, I have not worked with a Social Worker who is so committed to helping families get the services and support they need and require. She has introduced our school community to so many new programs and services I was not aware that are available.”
– Allen Dunn, Groveton ES 
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Maria Filgueira, Deer Park ES 
Maria ALWAYS goes above and beyond her job description to make everyone at our school feel included and cared for. She is always willing to work together to create the best environment for students, staff, and parents. FCPS should feel honored to have her!!!”
– Sydney Shifflett, Deer Park ES 
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Shahrzad Nabaki, Kent Gardens ES
Ms. Nabaki is my teaching assistant and one of the biggest assets of our school. Her dedication, patience, kindness, and equity towards children are remarkable. As my partner, I really appreciate her flexibility and collaboration. Her positivity and calm endurance is always an inspiration for me. Our students are lucky to have her guidance. Thank you for your support from the bottom of my heart!”
– Annie Joseph, Kent Gardens ES
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Bobbi Snyder, Susan Fox, and Mitra Nelson, Westfield HS
My daughter is a senior at Westfield High School. Over the last four years her Guidance Counselor, Bobbi Snyder, has always been there to help with whatever the need was. Mrs. Snyder is extremely knowledgeable and professional, and equally kind and empathetic. When you talk to her, you know your child matters to her. Mrs. Snyder guided us through the process to qualify for extended time accommodations with the College Board for her AP and SAT exams. Later, when a snag arose with the SAT, with not much time to correct it, Mrs. Snyder – along with Mitra Nelson and Susan Fox – got it sorted out quickly. My daughter was able to take her SATS with her time extension and did very well. She never would have had that success without the efforts of these three women. Multiply those efforts in helping my daughter by the number of students these women help all day, every day, and we can see the great positive impact they have on our kids. Thank you so much!!”
– a Westfield HS parent
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Zuleika Budet and Li Ji, Braddock ES
Ms. Budet and Ms. Ji have fostered an incredibly welcoming environment in their classrooms this year. Our daughter was virtual for all of the 20-21 school year and apprehensive about learning in the building this year, especially in Spanish in the dual language immersion program. From day one Ms. Budet and Ms. Ji have been fantastic educators; she has learned so much and most importantly loves going to school each day. They are communicative, sending weekly messages keeping parents apprised of what is happening in the classroom and what parents can be doing to support students outside of the classroom. It is obvious that they care deeply for all of their students. They make a wonderful team and we are so thankful to have them in the BES community.
– a Braddock ES parent
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Tim Brown, Fairfax HS
Tim has been a huge help to the Google team! Not only did he give input around a recent change and how to improve it, but he also helped coordinate testing with some teachers and students so we could ensure things would work as expected. Tim’s willingness to help is greatly appreciated!”
– Sarah Niel, Sprague Technology Center
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MacLean Wilson, Willow Oaks Admin Center
McLean always goes above and beyond and does it with a smile and a good sense of humor. I put in an ITRequest ticket to move a computer station and cited it as “not urgent.” Not only did McLean move the equipment less than 24 hours later, but he also offered tips on how to more efficiently use my wireless accessories. I just appreciate McLean so much. His expertise and responsiveness are amazing and make Willow Oaks a great place to work.”
– Meghan Mascelli, Willow Oaks Admin Center
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Griselda Amaya, Deer Park ES
I was walking my Grandson to school and I see a woman mowing the lawn and my Grandson says, “That’s the lunch Lady”. I said to her, “You’re the lunch lady and your mowing the lawn, Why?”  With a smile on her face she says, “Why Not”. I later find out that she is part of the Custodial Team and currently filling in for the Custodial Superintendent. She has power washed all the Lunch tables and mopped all the floors, a job they have been trying to get to all year. That is pure and simple, ONE SUPER LADY! Way to step up when you are needed.”
– a Deer Park ES parent
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Shannon Hardtke and Kayla Briggs, Fox Mill ES
Ms. Hardtke and Ms. Briggs have been an amazing team that has created a warm, welcoming, and inclusive environment for this entire school year. They knew the return to school would be difficult for some students, and have created an environment that lets all students, especially my son, thrive. The two teachers have supported him throughout his academic struggles and successes, as well as outside of school in his extracurricular activities. The level of joy and excitement he shares when he talks about Ms. Hardtke and Ms. Briggs is a true testament to his appreciation of them, especially from a student who struggles with certain aspects of his education. They have put relationships at the forefront of their teaching and have used those relationships to create meaningful experiences for the students. This year would not have been as successful as it has been without these two incredible teachers and their continued support of my son.”
– a Fox Mill ES parent
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Ilan Chiprut, South County HS
Mr. Chiprut is my son’s World Geography Honors Teacher at South County High School. My son adores Mr. Chiprut. Will is the typical teenage boy when asked how school is that day and what did he learn. His daily response is “Fine, Mom.” However, Will lights up when he speaks about Mr. Chiprut. When I ask him what makes him so special, he shares, “Everything, Mom.” He makes learning fun, and engaging, he genuinely cares about kids and wants them to succeed. We see this daily in the effort this teacher puts into his curriculum, but more importantly, the way he makes Will and other students feel is much more important. Mr. Chiprut has made a real difference in the life of our son and once again, I am reminded that teachers teach kids, not subjects. Thank you so much!”
– South County HS parent
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Sook Smith, Dunn Loring Center
Sook Smith is an outstanding, caring individual who works very hard as the Korean Interpreter not only at our school but at others as well. She diligently and enthusiastically supports not only our Korean families but all families. She never fails to respond to teacher requests for assistance in reaching our families and provides a knowledge platform to facilitate improved communications for the Centreville Elementary community.  She constantly exceeds expectations, and fosters a very positive attitude at all times.”
– Nia Manoleras, Centreville ES
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Holly Hill, Clearview ES
Just want to thank Ms. Hill for always letting me be aware of what my child is learning and what are the plans as they keep developing in class. I love to see how Ms. Hill makes corrections in my child’s work in class, makes me feel that is a wonderful tool for any child to learn the mistakes they made so they can grow in the future! Ms. Hill, thank you very much appreciated!”
– a Clearview ES parent
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Courtney Krsmanovic, Carson MS
I have had the pleasure of working side-by-side with Courtney for the past three years. On a daily basis, she goes above and beyond for our students and staff. If you walk down the hallway to her office, there is routinely a line of students and/or staff waiting to get a chance to say “hi”, grab snacks or consult with her. Courtney is the one you go to when you need guidance or advice. She is an invaluable member of our clinical team. She works tirelessly to ensure our student’s needs are met. Thank you, Courtney, for being the best social worker, mentor, clinical partner, and friend!”
– Melissa Peeples, Willow Oaks Admin Center
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Megan Popelka, Churchill Road ES
Megan has been our Local Screening Chair for the past year. She is professional, dedicated, and a great motivator throughout this difficult post-closure schoolyear! She advocates for our students daily and has great strategies and suggestions during our LSC meetings. She is amazing to work with! Thank you, Megan, for all you do!”
– Melissa Peeples, Willow Oaks Admin Center
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Abigail Pinder, Churchill Road ES
Ms. Pinder is a fierce advocate for her students. She is an amazing leader, teacher, and role model not only for her students but for everyone around her. Ms. Pinder is compassionate and dedicated- a true asset to our special education team. Thank you Ms. Pinder for ALL you do!”
– Melissa Peeples, Willow Oaks Admin Center
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Marilyn Moore, Bryant HS
Ms. Moore has been such a knowledgeable and caring educator.  As a new administrator, I have looked to Ms. Moore for her experience, her wisdom, her guidance, and most importantly, her attentive and understanding attitude. She has taken time out of a busy day to sit beside me while meeting with different department chairs and teachers and has taught me about best practices. She has led by example — hard work and a positive mindset — and I have really leaned into her for advice and assistance. She has given it so freely and has been a constant cheerleader reminding me that I can do this and to believe in myself. I am grateful for Ms. Moore as she embarks on retirement and a new chapter of her life. She has touched the lives of countless students at Bryant High School and has made a real difference!”
– Pipi Harrison, Bryant HS
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Amy Briggs, Spring Hill ES
Mrs. Briggs it’s a very positive professional! She did not let me struggle when I lost my number from the windshield for kiss and ride, she smiled and released my child to me!  I’m so grateful to her.”
– a Spring Hill ES parent
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Patrick Noel, Colvin Run ES
Mr. Noel is an amazing P.E. teacher. I very much enjoy sports, and Mr. Noel is able to teach beginners and advanced players while keeping the games enjoyable. He always makes P.E. high energy and fun. I always enjoy Mr. Noel’s creative games such as “Survivor”. Survivor is a fast-paced game where the target attempts to dodge yoga balls being thrown at him/her. I love how he motivates students to try their best while keeping everybody competitive. Thank you Mr. Noel for helping us stay healthy while having fun at the same time.”
– a Colvin Run ES student
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Jessica Arias, Stonecroft Transportation Center
Jessica Arias is my son’s bus driver. She has been an excellent bus driver since she started at the beginning of the school year. She is always on time and communicates well with the parents about changes in schedules and any other issues that come up. She is also very kind to my son and a pleasure to say hello to every day. On May 10th, the bus was involved in an accident when it was hit by a car. After the accident, Jessica helped the children stay calm and facilitated their transfer to another school bus to arrive at school safely. I want to thank Jessica for her professionalism on that day and for all of her work as a bus driver this year.”
– a Franklin Sherman ES parent
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Michelle Gabro, Thoreau MS
Ms. Gabro has been a steadfast supporter of our daughter throughout the year. She consistently demonstrates poise and thoughtfulness. She goes way above and beyond what she teaches in the classroom to support her students – even successfully encouraging our daughter to try a new extracurricular activity. I am grateful there are teachers like Ms. Gabro at FCPS!”
– a Thoreau MS parent
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Rowena Venable, Lorton Center
Ms. Venable is one of the most versatile employees our transportation office has. On any given day, she could be driving any one of 15 different routes, often a different route each day. She does so with a smile on her face! Ms. Venable also communicates very well, always stopping to call out the bus route number, to allow Hayfield to check in the correct route. Thank you Ms. Venable for your dedication to your position, and your flexibility to back up and support our student body and your fellow bus drivers.”
– James Mercer, Hayfield SS
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Eric Oden and T.J. Wortman, Woodson – IT
I have been working as a TSSpec for over 10 years, and I have never experienced service like this before. I submitted a ticket for a projector and within 10 mins I received a call from T.J. Wortman. T.J. asked a few more questions about the issue and told me he was on his way with a colleague. Both Eric Oden & T.J. Wortman came to the school I support and had the issue fixed within minutes of arriving at the school. I didn’t expect the issue to be resolved until next week. However, they received the ticket, called me, and resolved the issue within the hour.  As someone on the front lines of IT support, I cannot thank Eric Oden & T.J. Wortman enough for this type of support. On behalf of Katherine Johnson Middle School, Thank you both so much!”
– Danny Mikhail, Johnson MS
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Julie Miller, Lake Braddock SS
“Ms. Miller is a very nice teacher and very patient and she made the capstone less painful.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Ana Mack, Carl Sandburg MS 
I do not have enough space for expressing my opinion about Ms. Mack. She is an excellent colleague, who is always attentive, available, emphatic, and ready to help. I am very happy to have met her.”
– Eugenia Williams, Sandburg MS
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Kristina Mirlas, Navy ES 
I received a call from the office about my daughter having a fever. I went to pick her up. Around the same time when I picked my daughter up, there was another child that was hurt in the playground separately while playing. The staff showed great passion in assisting that kid and making sure he received medical attention immediately as he had a cut. We really appreciate the passion and hard work the school staff puts in every day to make students’ learning environment safer and more encouraging. Thank you to all the staff at Navy.”
– a Navy ES parent 
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Deborah Robinson, Haycock ES 
Ms. Robinson is the epitome of a motivating and caring educator. Our daughter absolutely adores P.E. and loves to come home and show us the skills that she learned in class that week. Ms. Robinson’s enthusiasm and dedication to her students are infectious. She creates an empowering and supportive community in her class which is so important, especially for young females! We are extremely grateful for her at Haycock!”
– a Haycock ES parent 
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Aziz Elhayani, Woodson Center
Our PAC class relies on the SmartBoard for instruction, so we were very worried when it randomly stopped working. We were pleasantly surprised when Mr. Elhayani promptly responded to the call to help fix it. He quickly repaired the SmartBoard in our classroom and it was back to work that same day. When word got out that he was here, two other preschool teachers approached him to fix the sound on their SmartBoards. Without hesitation, Mr. Elhayani helped them too! He was super friendly and happy to help us. Way to go Mr. Elhayani! Our preschool team thanks you for your knowledge and flexibility.”
– Fiorella Catalano, Riverside ES 
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Debra Fredericks and Joanna Charlton, Lorton Transportation Center  
These two wonderful ladies helped out when trying to get some of our students home on the late bus route. Even though the students were not supposed to be on their bus, they took them anyway. They even came BACK to our school to pick them up since the original bus didn’t show up. Thank you for caring so much and being a huge help with positive and great attitudes after a long day.”
– Sharon Peterson, Frost MS 
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Brianne Becker, Clearview ES 
Would love to thank Mrs. Becker for all her support as my child has learned to write her name and count. My child didn’t know anything of this at the beginning of the year! My daughter has come a long way, thank you Mrs. Becker for your patience and for understanding where my daughter comes from! You are very much appreciated.”
– a Clearview ES parent 
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Jessica Mendez, Lake Braddock SS 
Jess Mendez has been crucial to getting our seniors to graduation this year. She has spent much of her own planning time remediating students and even testing students on her own time to provide them with the best testing environment for success. She has gone above and beyond to help our students get to graduation and celebrate their successes.”
– Jennifer Bury, Lake Braddock SS 
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Joseph Edwards, Transition Support Resource Center – Alexandria
Mr. Edwards is a Social Studies teacher, but also has the heart of a counselor, mentor, and coach. He holds himself and his students to a high standard of respect for one another and does not shy away from stepping in when he sees that the learning environment is at risk from a student’s behavior. Joe always radiates positivity and possibility. He is a leader for teachers and students alike in building and protecting the community. We are immensely grateful for you Joe!”
– Jude Welling Barrows, Transition Support Resource Center – Alexandria
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Laura Gray, Great Falls ES 
“My student is always very excited about what she is learning in the classroom and is always very excited about the rewards and opportunities earned throughout the year. The alphabet countdown was the cherry on top!  Each day gives her joy. THANK YOU!!!
– a Great Falls ES parent
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Kaitlin McManus, Great Falls ES 
“My student is always very excited about what she is learning in the classroom and is always very excited about the rewards and opportunities earned throughout the year. The alphabet countdown was the cherry on top!  Each day gives her joy. THANK YOU!!!”
– a Great Falls ES parent
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Erik Dahlin, Sprague Technology Center
Erik went above and beyond with helping me solve a display issue with the new Google account naming convention. Instead of giving a quick-reply answer or telling me nothing could be done about a countywide decision in regards to my tech issue, Erik did further research to help me out. He continually checked in with a number of email exchanges until the problem was ultimately fixed. Erik showed that he genuinely cares about doing what is best for teachers and students by the support he gave.”
– Cory Walker, Lake Braddock SS 
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Dylan Taylor, Willow Springs ES 
I was leaving work and all of the sudden my tire pressure was drastically dropping. I pulled over before exiting the school and sure enough, I was getting a flat. I know how to change a tire but have never in my new car. My husband couldn’t leave work, so I called my principal and he said he was on the way out of school to go coach his son’s baseball game. Without hesitation or frustration, he pulled over and changed my tire. A principal’s job doesn’t just involve what’s happening within the walls of a school and he showed that. He saved the day and showed what it means to be an FCPS CARES employee.”
– Alecia Carroll, Willow Springs ES 
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Saundra Hand, Carson MS 
Mrs. Hand is a miracle worker. My son has always struggled with reading, which made English class difficult for him. Despite his challenges, Mrs. Hand found ways to connect with my son, show him how great the English language is, and help him excel at grammar, vocabulary, writing, and reading like never before. Thank you for helping my struggling reader enjoy English!”
– a Carson MS parent 
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Anna Endrizzi, South County MS 
South County Middle School, Math Department Ms. Endrizzi is a phenomenal teacher. She has gone so far beyond any expectations I could have had for my student’s teacher. Ms. Endrizzi communicated frequently with me via email throughout the academic year, updating me on my son’s progress and struggles, often making suggestions about what his tutor could help focus on with him. Entire sections of material were sent to help him progress at his own comfort with the assistance of his tutor. She offered valuable educational insight that I would have never understood otherwise. Countless times she offered to work with my son during Learning Seminar.  Ms. Endrizzi was never frustrated with behaviors that otherwise may frustrate a teacher, or had she felt frustration it wasn’t apparent and my son never felt anything but supported in her classroom for the entire ’21/22 school year. As a testament to her strength in the classroom, my son progressed from 5th grade Math to 8th grade Math in a single year, moving from remedial Math, to small classroom assisted Math and upcoming GenEd Math for the Fall school year. Incredible! This Fairfax County teacher deserves recognition for her dedication to her students and her innate gift of teaching that she shares with her classroom. Ms. Endrizzi is an absolute stand-out within the eleven years I have had children in Fairfax County’s education system.”
– a South County MS parent 
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Shana Schnaue and Abbey Strzemienski, Oakton ES 
Both Ms. Strzemienski & Ms. Schnaue were very responsive when I emailed them with a concern about my son. I was unsure how to proceed (as a parent) and felt very supported by their kind words and expertise. Ms. Schnaue promptly addressed the issue and replied back quickly with a detailed update. They say it takes a village and I’m very grateful to be a part of this one.”
– an Oakton ES parent 
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Natalie Vershaw, Centreville ES 
Ms. Vershaw is an absolutely fabulous teacher! Our twins come home every day so excited to share all that they have learned that day. Ms. Vershaw is a literacy rock star! We are amazed at just how much our first graders have grown in their reading and writing skills this year. They started with a bank of sight words coming into first grade and are now reading chapter books. More importantly to our family though, is the positive and welcoming community that Ms. Vershaw (and her student teacher Ms. Cho) have created. As twins, people assume they are very similar, however, Ms. Vershaw recognizes and celebrates their different strengths and personalities. Following a year of virtual Kindergarten, we were a little worried about how they would adjust socially. We had absolutely no need to worry. We can see how intentional and deliberate Ms. Vershaw has been with creating a warm environment. Her students work cooperatively and support one another through difficulties. We are just so grateful that our daughters have had such a wonderful 1st-grade year and we attribute that all to Ms. Vershaw.”
– a Centreville ES parent 
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Linda Spencer, Johnson MS 
Linda was so kind in a stressful meeting we had about the progress of my son in Middle School, which is a difficult time to navigate. Linda has been great about understanding and managing my son’s big personality with other teachers. She is really a great educator and we are lucky to have her at our school!”
– a Johnson MS parent 
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Jennifer Bury, Lake Braddock SS
I would like to recognize my dear colleague, Ms. Jennifer A. Bury, for making proctoring all SOL the most organized experience that I have witnessed in my extensive career as an educator. Ms. Bury deserves our appreciation for making the SOL experience as smooth as possible for students and teachers alike. Thank you, Ms. Bury, you’re the best.”
– Gil Martinez, Lake Braddock SS 
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Janice Victorov, Davis Career Center
Janice co-leads the DCC Sunshine Committee and plays an essential role in supporting our community’s caring culture. She willingly helps organize cards and other ways of showing care and support for her colleagues as well as planning celebrations throughout the school year. Thank you, Janice, for being a wonderful colleague and making DCC such a special place for all staff, students, and families!”
– Chad Clayton, Davis Career Center
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Lorrie Appleton, Willow Oaks Admin Center
I have never worked with a more caring and professional social worker in my life. Lorrie Appleton is someone that will go out of her way to take care of parents, co-workers, and most importantly her students. She is always ready for the next challenge. She is always ready to advocate for people’s rights. I have learned so much from her. One lesson I will never forget from Lorrie is “What’s the worst they can say, NO” Just ASK!! Lorrie is just AMAZING!! What an honor!!”
– Yami Bosque, Davis Career Center
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Karim Daugherty, Beech Tree ES
Karim Daugherty represents compassion, kindness, and love to all the students of Beech Tree Elementary. She once again has shown, in even difficult situations, that she will do all that she can for the best of every child. Thank you Karim for looking out for students, staff, and the entire community.”
– Michael Ross, Gatehouse Admin Center
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Haemin Shin, Willow Springs ES
Mrs. Shin is the most compassionate teacher we have ever had. She met with me with very short notice about my child’s recent emotional behavior. She shared her own observations, and how she handles it and created a plan for us going forward. Mrs. Shin treats every child with love and is very aware of the individual needs of the children in her classroom.”
– a Willow Springs ES parent
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Ema Escalera Vocal, Lorton Center
I wanted to let you know what a wonderful bus driver my daughter has. We live on Fairwood Lane and I watch buses fly down our street heading to/from Longfellow, Schrevewood, Marshall HS, McLean HS, Haycock ES, etc. However, the one bus that always drives carefully is Timber Lane bus 2. Additionally, the driver never starts moving her bus until all the kids have taken their seats. This is the kind of care parents hope for but rarely witness. I don’t know if the transportation department gives out recognition to their drivers, but in case they do, Timber Lane bus 2’s driver is the model that they should all aspire to.
– a Timber Lane ES parent
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Kristen Rucinski and Ebony Opie, Gunston ES
I am not sure how Ms. Rucinski (our principal) and Ms. Opie (our assistant principal) find enough hours in the day to do everything they do for our school. They go beyond knowing the students’ names, they know about their science projects, how they are doing in school, and what they are passionate about… They work hard to retain our wonderful teachers; they strive to make sure the staff knows they are valued and important. They step in immediately when they receive notice that a child is being bullied, involving the students, the teacher, the counselors, and the parents. They are incredibly supportive of the PTA. Ms. Rucinski called in for PTA meetings from her son’s baseball practices. They turned the cafeteria into a supply store in the summer of 2020 to create supply bags ensuring that each child had everything necessary to learn from home. They are supportive of military families and families with special needs. They recently held an event where parents came to learn games to play with their children to help them learn at home. Ms. Opie double-checked the yearbook for me to make sure as many children as possible would be included. They strive to make every member of the Gunston community feel important and valued. My sixth grader is graduating this year and I just wanted to tell them thank you.”
– a Gunston ES parent
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Lisa Russell, Timber Lane ES
Timber Lane’s librarian, Lisa Russell, organized two book fairs this year. At each book fair, every single child in my class was able to select a book to add to their home library. This is because Lisa made coupons for teachers to give to students in their class. By doing this Lisa created a much more equitable experience for the students of our school. Each child in my class was thrilled to be able to get new books. Thank you for creating this opportunity for our students, Lisa!”
– Chloe Yazdani, Timber Lane ES
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Meaghan Dobson, Bryant HS
Ms. Dobson, Bryant High School Literacy Lead organized an A-MAZING “Books and Bites” event today for our staff to build their classroom library. Teachers were able to select at least ten books of their choosing from- fiction, non-fiction, biographies, and EL reading materials. The book store, she set up made me feel like I was having a personal shopping day for my summer reading by the beach.
– Marilyn Moore, Bryant HS
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Giuliana Corrado, Fort Hunt ES
Giuliana has been a joy to work with since joining our “Life Savers” team of subs. She always comes in with a smile on her face and never hesitates when we have to switch the job or duty that she needs to cover. She accepts it with an “of course” and off she goes with a smile to whichever class we need her to cover. The students love her and she gets along wonderfully with all the staff. Fort Hunt is lucky to have her as a part of our Foxtastic team!”
– Tracy Hutchison, Fort Hunt ES
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Marleigh Hall and Lisa Petruzzi, Herndon HS
These two amazing ladies always take such good care of our athletes when they are on or off the field. They also make sure the parent(s) are informed and understand the next steps if an injury occurs. I LOVE THEM !!”
– a Herndon HS parent
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Mahnaz Khalil Khosravi, Johnson MS
Mrs. Khosravi does a wonderful job at caring for her children! I am so blessed to have my child studying gracefully in her class. Thank you Mrs. Khosravi for everything you have done for my child, he has become a new person entirely from when he was in quarantine. He is so thankful for having you as his teacher for 2 years!! Your teaching methods and speaking abilities have helped him gain more knowledge in Spanish and in life, in general. Anyways, thank you for everything you have done.”
– a Johnson MS parent
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Raheel Ahmed-Litz, Gatehouse Admin Center
Raheel has always helped us with various student needs. I often refer to her as my “cultural bridge” as she provides much support for our students and families during critical meetings. However, the most recent help Raheel provided may very well have been life-saving. We have a 20-year-old student who is experiencing much stress because of what they explain as “a family issue stemming from cultural expectations of matrimony”. The student was in such deep despair, that the issue was taking a toll emotionally and physically. I once again called on our “cultural bridge” Raheel, who could speak with specific knowledge and experience to the students’ concerns. Within 10 minutes Raheel was available to meet with the student on zoom and spoke for over an hour. The student was able to leave us with some strategies, although we remained concerned. The next day the student was excitedly seeking us out. They had gone home spoken to their parents, and come to an agreement that the student was seeking. The student was smiling for the first time in a month.  hey said they had not slept for days before coming to us. None of this would have happened without Raheel. If not life-saving–certainly life-changing. Thank you, Raheel.”
– Karen Hertel, Bryant High School
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Yvonne Wynn, Frost MS
Ms. Wynn has been essential support in working with one of my families these past 2 years. She is always responsive, supportive, and caring in her communication. The consistency of having the same liaison and interpreter has greatly impacted our relationship-building with our family. She puts our families first, and I greatly appreciate her collaboration. I know the family is very grateful for her support as well. Thank you, Ms. Wynn!”
– Larkin Gibas, Frost Ms
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Kevin Deans, Johnson MS
Mr. Deans has ignited an interest in math for my child! He’s excited about going to algebra and is putting in a tremendous effort and the results show in his grade. Kudos to Mr. Deans for being an inspiring teacher! His positive reinforcement and strength-based approach are simply amazing. I also appreciate how he’s engaged me as a parent each step of the way – signatures on homework, phone calls, emails!”
– a Johnson MS parent
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Mahnaz Khalil Khosravi, Johnson MS
She is a very positive teacher! She is supportive of her students. Has a very good heart and has great teaching methods. She is very caring. Such a sophisticated and elegant personality. Thank you for being my child’s teacher!”
– a Johnson MS parent
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Lisa Walsh, Cooper MS
Ms. Walsh is a fantastic Geometry teacher. As a student who does not particularly enjoy school, Math can be quite dull and uninteresting. However, Ms. Walsh’s creative teaching style makes Geometry an interesting and easy topic to understand. I particularly enjoy her review sessions before every test. During these reviews, Ms. Walsh hosts mini math competitions Jeopardy-style, where winners receive prizes ranging from candy or pencils, up to a pizza party. I love how she motivates students to learn complex Geometry topics while making the studying process interesting and competitive. Thank you Ms. Walsh for making every class stimulating and enjoyable.”
– a Cooper MS student
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Rachel Murphy, Shrevewood ES
Rachel deserves the FCPS Cares award as my daughter has had IEPs for 6+ years and compared with previous years’ experience, I can definitely claim she has gone above and beyond the scope of what is expected by FCPS and the school administrators in support of my child. I feel truly integrated into the IEP with her involvement – she would, without prompting, keep the family in the loop on scholastic progress. She goes out of the way to accommodate requests that may in the past be deemed out of scope and expectation of a teacher. She realizes this and puts in the extra effort to achieve excellence in the classroom. In brief, this has resulted in the tremendous growth of my child – not just in academics, but equally important, in confidence. I am confident I am not the only parent to make such claims. I wish she is able to continue onward as my daughter’s teacher next year. Due to logistics that is probably not possible – so my next hope is she gets the recognition she deserves (through this and other FCPS awards) so that she can make a continuing lifelong impact on more kids that needs her help.
– a Shrevewood ES parent
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Tammie Dzubak, Willow Oaks Admin Center
There are no words to express how much I, along with my family appreciate Tammie Dzubak. Mrs. Dzubak, fondly known as Mrs. Tammie has been my daughter’s homebound teacher from January 2022 to the present. Since coming home from the hospital, my daughter has had the pleasure of being taught 3 classes by Mrs. Tammie. She has been a tremendous help to my daughter’s educational growth and self-esteem. In the words of my daughter, “Mrs. Tammie makes me want to be a better student and gives me the drive to learn.” Mrs. Tammie is not only an excellent teacher, but she is also a great advocate and motivator. During times when school-based teachers may not have been following homebound protocol or may have been less than helpful regarding my daughter’s assignments, Mrs. Tammie was able to communicate with teachers or navigate around hard situations for the betterment of my daughter’s learning and educational wellbeing. Mrs. Tammie’s flexibility to accommodate doctors and other medical appointments has been very appreciated. Her optimism, kind heart, and tenacity have been key to keeping my daughter on track and sometimes ahead of her peers. Although my daughter being homebound for the majority of the school year was very unexpected, Mrs. Tammie’s grace and desire to see my daughter thrive has made a hard and heavy situation lighter and more enjoyable. Whether being taught in the classroom, virtually, or homebound, I believe every parent wants their child to have a teacher that will not only teach but will also see them and will bring out the best in them. Mrs. Tammie does just that. There is so much that she could teach to other teachers and educators when it comes to student and teacher relationships. I wish every student could have a teacher like Mrs. Tammie. My daughter not only sees Mrs. Tammie as a teacher, but she also sees her as a gift that was given to her through such a very hard season in her life. I/we will always be thankful to Tammie Dbuzak. She is a gift and an inspiration. Tammie, if you ever see this, THANK YOU! Thank you for making a difference in my daughter’s life. Thank you for being the salt and light on the earth. You are an outstanding teacher and human being. I honor you.”
– a parent of a Homebound student
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Holly Hill, Clearview ES
Ms. Hill is an incredible educator! She is very attentive and engaging with her parents. Her frequent highlights on classwork and achievements are helpful, and her prompt response to questions and concerns is much appreciated. It is evident that she cares deeply for her students and is dedicated to their personal and academic development. Although her class size doubled this year, she hasn’t skipped a beat! We’re blessed to have her at Clearview!”
– a Clearview ES parent
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Kevin Deans, Johnson MS
Mr. Deans is the personification of FCPS Cares. His commitment to having his algebra students succeed became evident when 100% of my son’s class passed their SOL. He offered after-school study sessions, sometimes twice weekly, to help them to reach their goals. Throughout the year, he has maintained open communication. He genuinely cares for and believes in his students. Thank you for your unwavering support and dedication to your students, Mr. Deans!”
– a Johnson MS parent
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Charlie Burts, Johnson MS
Mr. Burts’ energy and enthusiasm have had a significant impact on our son’s interests and engagement. We are extremely grateful for all his hard work and dedication to his students. Thank you Mr. Burts for all you do!”
– a Johnson MS parent
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Kristin Coyne, Gatehouse Admin Center
Kristen is a huge asset as we identify and hire our teachers. She understands the nuances of our specialized programs at Fairfax Academy and is always available to support any conversation to get the right teacher in front of our students. Without her, we would not have been able to hire some incredible industry experts!”
– Andrea Cook, Fairfax HS Academy
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Cynthia Choate, Gatehouse Admin Center
Cindi has been a huge support and advocate for Fairfax Academy and has made the process of filling vacancies easy and efficient. She is always quick to respond to calls and emails and does so with a smile and no question is too small. We are lucky to have her supporting our schools!”
– Andrea Cook, Fairfax HS Academy
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Christina Fernandez, Lorton Center
On May 5th, many 3rd graders at Timber Lane ES were lucky to have Ms. Fernandez as their bus driver on our field trip to the National Zoo. Some unexpected issues arose during our trip and Ms. Fernandez handled them perfectly. Ms. Fernandez was kind, careful, and the best bus driver I’ve worked with in my 8 years as a FCPS teacher. Her kindness, professionalism, and dedication to her job were evident and helped ensure we had a great trip. We are so grateful for her! Thank you for all you do, we appreciate you!”
-Chloe Yazdani, Timber Lane ES
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Jenny Smith, Mantua ES
We would like to take this opportunity of Teacher Appreciation Week to thank Ms. Jenny Smith. She has been a wonderful teacher that inspires students to be their best and has always gone out of her way to challenge them in the friendliest ways! When she learns that some kids are not challenged in the current math curriculum, she creates a special math folder on Schoology with advanced math problems and encourages kids to rack their brains. She does the same thing for language arts and encourages students to take on harder challenges if they would like to. She also works hard to encourage parents into being involved in this process and is always prompt to get back to parents! She is warm, hardworking, and inspiring! Thank you, Ms. Smith, for everything!”
– a Mantua ES parent
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Veeda Ranjber, Lake Braddock SS
Mrs. Ranjber is one of the best and nicest teachers at lake Braddock. She has helped me and given me great advice when I needed it. Mrs. Ranjber has let me come early to school at the very last minute for help so I knew what I needed to do on my PBA sol when I made a bad choice and didn’t pay attention. She is very kind and I am so glad to be one of her students. I appreciate her for everything she has done to help me. She’s just the best and an amazing teacher! Love her so much.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Aanand Vasudevan, South Lakes HS
Mr. V (nicknamed by students) is a glaring example of caring for students. He has consistently been a source of support for my 12th grader whom he taught IB Applications, a very difficult course. My son had a major issue that caused him great distress. He went directly to Mr. V who helped him. The fact that he went to Mr. V for support says so much about the impact that Mr. V has had on my son. South Lakes HS is very fortunate to have a teacher who cares! Thank you, Mr. V.”
– a South Lakes HS parent
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Clayton Allen, Lake Braddock SS
My daughter has worked with Mr. Allen in the pit orchestra for the school musical, Anastasia. She has really enjoyed this opportunity to work with such a great teacher and conductor. Mr. Allen is caring and goes above and beyond in all that he does. He donates his time and money to help improve the experiences of all of the students that he works with. He is one of those teachers that just gets it. He is a rock that the students feel comfortable going to for advice and counseling about anything and everything. This is what makes a good teacher great. He is a huge asset to LBSS.”
-a Lake Braddock SS parent
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Carla Falconi, Gatehouse Admin Center
Carla Falconi is an exceptional Spanish Interpreter with the Language Services Office. I would like to take a moment to commend her professionalism, her cultural knowledge, and the high quality of interpretation she does for our families. Carla and I work tirelessly for hours contacting, and connecting with families in need of interpretation. Her accuracy, clarity, and transparency in communicating with our families are amazing. Thank you, Carla, for all your support and hard work. And thank you Language Services for supporting Fairfax County Public Schools with high-quality Interpreters.”
Arlette Atalla, Leis Center
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Dereke Tapscott, Stonecroft Transportation Center
Monday was a challenging day for Transportation services since there was an unprecedented number of drivers absent. You’d never know this by Mr. Dereke’s smile and positive attitude as he greeted students boarding the bus at 5:30 p.m. and families meeting students at bus stops as late as 6 p.m. Mr. Dereke knew so many students by name. Everyone was glad to see Mr. Dereke driving the bus. Thank you for all you do, Mr. Dereke!  We appreciate you!”
– Rachel Charlton, Clearview ES
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Rosalin Ali, Riverside ES
Roz has been helping our Family Liaisons organize and pass out food for our family food market each month throughout this school year. She connects with the families and always offers a friendly smile. We want to thank Roz for volunteering her time to make the Riverside community feel supported and welcomed. We appreciate your Effort and Attitude!”
– Kaila Wise, Riverside ES
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Roshni Sharma, Woodley Hills ES
Ms. Sharma is my son’s 1st-grade teacher. After a year of mostly virtual kindergarten, my husband and I were pretty anxious about his 1st-grade experience – would he love school, would he develop a growth mindset and start trying new things with a positive attitude, would he have good friends, would his teacher see his strengths and help him see those strengths, too? Ms. Sharma has exceeded any expectations we had for his 1st-grade teacher. She appreciates our child and all of his quirks. She has helped him blossom into a learner who seeks out challenges and perseveres when things get hard. He feels cared for and knows he’s a valued member of his classroom community. We are so grateful to Ms. Sharma for helping him awaken a deep love of learning, a love we knew he had but wasn’t able to thrive in a virtual setting and had gone dormant. He is more than ready to head to 2nd grade and we will always remember the amazing year he had in 1st grade!”
– a Woodley Hills ES parent
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Mackenzie Hays, Woodley Hills ES
Ms. Hays has been our son’s teacher for the last two years – in 2nd and 3rd grade. Over those two years, I have seen my child thrive and truly come into his own. The sense of community and true FAMILY that Ms. Hays has established in her classroom is one I wish for every child to have. She not only recognizes each child’s unique talents, but she also celebrates each child in their full humanity. She does not try to mold them into some version of an ideal student based on someone else’s standards. She helps them figure out what makes them special and then provides them with so many opportunities to let that specialness shine. When I think about our son not having Ms. Hays next year in 4th grade, I get VERY emotional. At the same time, I know that he is more than ready to be successful in all future grades because of the amazing foundation Ms. Hays set for him in 2nd and 3rd grade. I will be forever grateful for all that Ms. Hays has done for my child and every child who has called her their teacher. Our education system is better because of teachers like Ms. Hays. She is a true treasure. I’m not sure our son realizes, yet, how lucky he is to have had a teacher like Ms. Hays. I can guarantee, though, that when he looks back on his school years, I’m positive that 2nd and 3rd grade will be years he looks back on with fondness and gratitude. Thank you, Ms. Hays, for all you do. You are the best!”
– a Woodley Hills ES parent
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Kristopher Benton, West Springfield HS
My son adores Mr. Benton’s class. He says math isn’t just about sitting quietly and taking notes anymore, but instead they are actually doing and learning. He’s “really teaching” which is how my kid describes it. Mr. Benton is likable but firm, with clear expectations and a way of talking to students that makes them feel respected and smart, but also safe enough to make mistakes. He has made math wonderful this year.”
– a West Springfield HS parent
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Dustin Wright and Brandon Clarke, Franklin MS
During the 2022 SOL test administration, our assistant principal became ill and could not report to work.  Coincidentally, our school was scheduled for SOL testing during this time. I contacted Dr. Dustin Wright to ask for his support. In spite of the fact that Franklin’s first day of SOL testing was on the horizon, Dustin did not hesitate to allow me to borrow one of his administrators, Brandon Clarke, to support our school during a morning of SOL testing. As a result of this support, testing at our school went smoothly. Thank you to Dustin and Brandon for exemplifying a collaborative spirit in Region 5!”
– Elizabeth Bumbrey, Virginia Run ES
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Ana Mack, Sandburg MS
Helping me out for the procedures.”
– M. Abe Uygur, Sandburg MS
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Willard Martin, Stonecroft Transportation Center
My student has an intellectual disability but is energetic & excited to ride the bus and go to school & learn & see his friends. Sometimes his twin sister doesn’t ride the bus home & it worries me that my child would get on the right bus, find his way home, and/or know which bus stop is his. Our bus driver, for Bus 1, Willard Martin, goes ABOVE & BEYOND TO ASSURE THAT OUR SON SITS IN THE FRONT OF THE BUS, GETS OFF AT THE APPROPRIATE TIME, AND FINDS HIS WAY HOME. Sometimes I meet them at the bus stop, and sometimes I forget or am running late —and MR MARTIN DRIVES OUR SON TO OUR FRONT DOOR STEP, WAVES, SMILES, and we could even hear him say, “Shut that front door, boy!”  WE FEEL HE GOES WAY BEYOND HIS EXPECTED ROLE TO ASSURE HIS (& all of the children’s) SAFETY. THANK YOU, MR. MARTIN!! YOU ARE AMAZING & WONDERFUL!!! WE LOVE & APPRECIATE YOU!! Thank you for making a significant difference in our lives.”
– a Cooper MS parent
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Alice Heath, Robinson SS
Thank you for making the class interesting and engaging. It was fun to make the masks in class the other day. We appreciate you.”
– a Robinson SS student
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Marvin Sim, Robinson SS
We would like to thank Mr. Sim for his patience with the class and his good pacing with teaching. We appreciate you. He’s made math easier to learn. My student says, “I will never forget slope, dude.”
– a Robinson SS student
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Aziz Elhayani, Providence ES
Today, my smartboard projector had a yellow spot that appeared over the whole screen making it very hard to see. My projector has been dying for a while now, and this made the screen even harder to see than it was already. Mr. Elhayani came an hour later and fixed the projector for our classroom by replacing it with a new one! We were then able to enjoy the new projector for the rest of the afternoon. My students were SO happy and thrilled that they could see clearly on the smart board! Thank you so much for your help Aziz Elhayani and for coming so quickly! We are so grateful that you were able to fix it the same day!”
– Hannah Bergquist, Providence ES
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Martha Murray, Westfield HS
“I would like to take this opportunity on Teacher Appreciation Week to thank Sra. Murray. We have known Sra. Murray for several years, as both our kids have had her as their Spanish teacher. Sra. Murray has always had high expectations for her students. She pushes them out of their comfort zone to bring the best out of their abilities. Due to her dedication and efforts, she has laid a strong Spanish skill foundation. This week our older child is graduating from college with a minor in Spanish and our younger one is ready for higher-level Spanish classes for the upcoming school year. Thank you, Sra. Murray for everything!
– a Westfield HS parent
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Kaylin Newman, Johnson MS
“Kaylin has been part of KJMS family since this year and she has been doing an awesome job reaching out to the families. Her promptness to reach out to the families has helped me build a better relationship with parents and partner with them in their child’s education. Kaylin made my job much easier by taking the responsibility of communicating and updating parents on a regular basis. Thank you, Kaylin.
– Abhilasha Tripathi, Johnson MS
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Ana Maxey, Johnson MS
Ana has been an amazing parent liaison we have at KJMS. She has always been prompt in making phone calls and reaching out to the families. Today, she was prompt in making calls to get parental consent for the students who are eligible for retakes. Thank you Ana for helping the ESOL department with your language expertise.”
– Abhilasha Tripathi, Johnson MS
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Theresa Charles, Lake Braddock SS
Mrs. Charles really cares about her students and she does everything in her effort to help us achieve our goals.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Mahnaz Khalil Khosravi, Johnson MS
She has always been so caring towards my kid and helped in so many ways. Not only does she teach, but she also shows compassion and cares for her students. We visited Mexico and my child could speak to the waitress and people around. I’m so proud of how much she improved because of Ms.Khosravi. She made my child feel like a teacher truly cared for her.”
– a Johnson MS parent
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Nicole Ingegneri, Keene Mill ES
Ms. I is the most fantabulous teacher. my kids adore her and I am thankful that she helped me make sure my child ate lunch. She has a lot of difficult kids, and mine is probably the worst of them. Thanks for your kindness and wearing a mask all the time!”
– a Keene Mill ES parent
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Alicia Fyfe, Thoreau MS
“Alicia is the Technology Support Specialist at Thoreau and she is amazing! She has a huge job and manages it all expertly and with professionalism. She is easy to work with and always happy to help. I work in the front office and things can be crazy at times, but we can always rely on Alicia for help with tech issues for us and for students. Thoreau would be lost without her!”
– Maureen Berry, Thoreau MS
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Nicole Ingegneri, Keene Mill ES
Ms. I is always so kind to everyone around her. She always offers support and guidance, and I aspire to be like her when I grow up. She treats everyone equally and with respect. Any student is lucky to have her.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Karolina Upton, Lake Braddock SS
One of the best teachers a student could ever have.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Kathy Truax, Willow Oaks Admin Center
“I am so thankful for Kathy’s willingness to cover mandated meetings for a colleague at a different school! She has supported the team professionally, knowledgeably, and with a smile. Thank you, Kathy!
– Cynthia Kirschenbaum, Willow Oaks Admin Center
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Cheri Miller, Lake Braddock SS
Magistra Miller is a Latin teacher who cares a lot about every student and is always there to help any students who need it, whether they are in Latin or not. She doesn’t hesitate to ask if anyone needs help or needs to talk about something, and she is always welcoming everyone to chat with her.
– a Lake Braddock SS parent
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Sophia Antoci, Willow Oaks Admin Center
“I am so thankful for Sophia who has stepped in to cover mandated meetings for colleagues. Her willingness to support others is much appreciated as she is able to step into a new team with professionalism and grace.
– Cynthia Kirschenbaum, Willow Oaks Admin Center
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Veeda Ranjber, Lake Braddock SS
I have had Ms. Ranjber for 2 years now and she has been a fabulous teacher both years that I’ve had her. She has always been straight-up with everyone and tells us what she really thinks which I really appreciate about a teacher. She is a wonderful teacher and any student is lucky to have her.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Joanna Wheeler, Willow Oaks Admin Center
Joanna has covered mandated meetings this year at multiple schools. She is always professional, thoughtful, and knowledgeable in her presentation as she guides schools through various processes. I am so thankful for her support, flexibility, and expertise!”
– Cynthia Kirschenbaum, Willow Oaks Admin Center
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Paul Dean, Lake Braddock SS
Mr. Dean is an amazing and caring teacher that helps students with everything they need and ensures that each child is comfortable and happy in his classroom. He’s very passionate about his job and about serving the students and catering to each of their individual wants and needs. Totally the best teacher ever! :)”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Marcia Barry, Willow Oaks Admin Center
I am so grateful for Marcia’s willingness to cover mandated meetings for schools in Region 4 throughout the year. She represents our department well and has worked seamlessly with teams in multiple locations. She is always professional, knowledgeable, and supportive of families and schools. Thank you, Marcia!”
– Cynthia Kirschenbaum, Willow Oaks Admin Center
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Breonna Bryer, Willow Oaks Admin Center
I am so grateful for Breonna’s willingness to cover mandate meetings for colleagues on multiple occasions. She is always professional, collaborative, and student-focused and makes sure the meetings run smoothly. Thank you, Breonna!”
– Cynthia Kirschenbaum, Willow Oaks Admin Center
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Nancy Batchelder, Key MS
Nancy has helped tremendously to get a space and system established for distributing food to students/families and engaging with families who have small children. Our space for family engagement and resources has had a steady set-up, and Nancy stepped up to create a ‘children’s nook’ complete with books, action figures, and furniture for younger children to be able to attend during family events. This will go a long way to making our families feel welcomed, valued, and a sense of belonging. In addition, Nancy has also organized and facilitated the distribution of food to families over long weekends. We are so grateful for Nancy’s leadership and for how she leads with her actions.”
– Danna Hailfinger, Key MS
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Lisa Walsh, Cooper MS
Mrs. Walsh has an outsized load by any count — and she follows through with poise and success in all her commitments. As our department chair, she is responsible for numerous activities that add to her workday, made even greater this year by the need for new teacher interviews. She has three math preps including Geometry, which is very labor-intensive, and Algebra II, a singleton for which she is solely responsible. With all this, she has stepped forward to single-handedly run our Science Olympiad team, taking them to Nationals. She continues to be beloved by all her students — a testament to her expertise and kindness in the classroom. Everyone in our community is grateful for all that she does.”
– Paula Prosper, Cooper MS
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Larry Choates, Lewis HS
Mr. Choates has excellent classroom management skills; truly believes that all students can learn, and is committed to teaching all students. My son did not pass any SOLs in 7th or 8th grade. My son first had Mr. Choates for Social Studies in 8th grade, at Key Middle School. After he served after-school detention with Mr. Choates, my son was squared away. When my son had Mr. Choates for World History as a freshman at John R. Lewis High School, Mr. Choates made sure my son learned the material and my son passed his first SOL. As a senior at Lewis, my son is again enrolled in a class taught by Mr. Choates. Mr. Choates has encouraged my son to work hard in college prep classes and wrote my son reference letters to ten colleges. I believe that these letters honestly reported that over the past five years, my son has made enormous progress, in large measure due to Mr. Choates’ outstanding skills as an educator, coach, and mentor. My son has been accepted at eight colleges and I am a very happy Dad!”
– a Lewis HS parent
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Matthew Baker, Cooper MS
Mr. Baker has worked diligently with Cooper Band and makes sure every child in the band is successful. My children have a great experience in Cooper Band. Mr. Baker makes the band program an enjoyable learning experience for them.”
– a Cooper MS parent
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Natalie Rubertone and Ashley Mistretta, Rose Hill ES
Both Natalie and Ashley started and held a magnificent event in the month of March centered around ST Math. Their energies led our students to complete tens of thousands of puzzles each week. Videos were created each week and even JiJi, ST Math’s mascot made personal appearances. My students dove into Math in a huge way. I love their enthusiasm so much. We just celebrated JiJis birthday last week where birthday pencils were given out too. Thank you Natalie and Ashley for helping us all to see that math is “fun”.”
– Danny Adams, Rose Hill ES
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Dakotah Turner, Rose Hill ES
Miss Turner is a teacher at Rose Hill in our Enhanced Autism program. She eats lunch in the cafeteria with her students. She saw a student in my class that caught her attention. She decided to sit with that student and give her attention and care. She met with her today again at lunchtime. I was overwhelmed by Dakotah’s offer to take an interest in this student when all educators are doing so much. I know that the school year is winding down, but Dakotah’s love and care for this student will be life changing I know. Thank you, Dakotah so much.
– Danny Adams, Rose Hill ES
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Lisa Barrow, Michael Rath & the entire Admin Team, Cooper MS
Lisa Barrow gets the job done! That’s what we know about our Principal at Cooper MS. She works tirelessly behind the scene to make sure each school day is a successful one. She personally answers incoming calls to address parents’ concerns and questions. She strongly supports student activities and shows her pride in student achievements. One time my son received a congratulation postcard from her and was very encouraged by her thoughtful act. Mr. Rath is my son’s 7th grade AP. He is helpful and kind. He always smiles and greets students warmly. Through the challenges of the pandemic, the admin team worked hard to support the school. There was an English learner who struggled with every school subject. We came to Mr. Rath with special requests. He made sure that help was on the way. He offered this student a list of study materials and online resources to improve learning. And when my son needed to isolate for weeks due to Covid, Mr. Rath called to explain remote learning procedures and showed so much patience and concern for his student. Happy School Principals Day. Thank you both and the entire admin team for your daily work.”
– a Cooper MS parent
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Eric Eichelberger, Natalie Markey, and Teresa Vazquez-Salvadores, Lake Braddock SS
The Lake Braddock SGA hosted a spring dance on Friday, April 29. We want to thank Eric, Nataly, and Teresa for coming out to support the students and help supervise them. They gave up a Friday evening to support our students. Their dedication to the Lake Braddock Community is evident and the kids loved seeing them. Thank you for all that you do to support LB and SGA!!”
– Sarah Padilla, Lake Braddock SS
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Chelsea Wolodkowicz, Cooper MS
Mrs. Wolodkowicz is one of the best math teachers my son has ever had. She makes math comprehensible to her students and consistently works to challenge them with rigor and high expectations. She goes above and invests her time to make sure that learning is effective. My son has grown a lot in his knowledge and confidence this year in Algebra which is an important course leading to higher-level math. She is doing a commendable job teaching math.”
– a Cooper MS parent
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Emily Knupp, Cooper MS
Ms. Knupp is a wonderful science teacher. She cares to build strong relationships with her students. Her enthusiasm and energy keep students connected and their learning continuous. On a science field trip, I watched her tirelessly tending to the needs of both parents and students. She went around answering questions and worked very quickly to resolve all the problems. And when my son approached her with a project outline for a regional science fair project, she gladly reviewed it and offered encouragement and support. She is always willing to help. Thank you, Teacher.”
– a Cooper MS parent
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Philip Kipperman, Cooper MS
Mr. Kipperman is an exceptional teacher who has in-depth knowledge in his subject matter – History and a heart full of passion and dedication to influence his students for the better. He cares a lot about his students and constantly encourages them on their work and accomplishments. Even after a long day of teaching, he will make an effort to stay after school to help out in the front office, monitor students in the after-school clubs, attend his students’ music concerts, assist in directing musical productions, etc. One time he went out of his way to help locate my son’s music instrument after we had left school. He answered the call and took care of it without any hesitation. Through his words and actions, Mr. Kipperman fosters a great sense of community. The FCPS Care characters shine through amazing teachers like him. Thanks for caring so much.”
– a Cooper MS parent
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Elly Slugg, Newington Forest ES
I put today’s date of my experience with Ms. Slugg, but really it has been all year. She has been amazing working with my son who currently has an IEP that she oversees. From working with my family and other members of the IEP team, she has gone above and beyond to make sure that we are heard and advocated for. I truly feel that she has my son’s best interest at heart. She goes above and beyond by sending Get Well cards home and also providing extra resources. The most recent example is the wonderful binder that she has made for us. The extra work is separated according to IEP sections and even has a Spiderman cover page. My son is thrilled with this extra touch of personalization. Thank you, Ms. Slugg!
– a Newington Forest ES parent
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John Holman, Cooper MS
It is hard to write in a few words about all the work that Mr. Holman does in our school, he is our French and Coding teacher, he is also involved in several after school activities, such as Science Olympiad, Robotics and especially the Scale Model Building club, which he started last year during COVID, this club is not only about building models but also learning about the different aircraft and vehicles that students work on. Last month, he invited his students to participate, in the Northern Virginia Modelers contest, it was going to be the first time that Cooper students were going to the event. On that morning, I was amazed by Mr. Holman’s dedication, he was waiting patiently (for hours) at the entrance for the students to arrive, so he can help them to register, exhibit their models accordingly and give them a tour of the whole event. While there were only a couple of students who attended (my son was one of them), in the end, both students received awards. For my kid, this has been not only a great opportunity to earn an award, but also, more important to improve his confidence. Mr. Holman is a great teacher who goes beyond academics, he looks to motivate his students, as he did with my other child, as his French teacher he inspired her to love learning another language.
– a Cooper MS parent
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Stacy Mitchell, Lake Braddock SS
Thank you Mrs. Mitchell for everything you have done for me! Being in theatre this year has done SO MUCH for my anxiety and all of the people I have met here make my day so much better! Again thank youuuuuu! :D”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Jacquie Diggs, Kings Park ES
Jacquie consistently goes above and beyond to not only teach and enrich her Kindergarten class but also to ensure that they know that they are loved. When I asked my daughter this week about how Mrs. Diggs makes her feel special — she said that she makes sure to tell her students that she loves them. My sweet perfectionist girl feels happy, safe, and loved… and is learning a ton this year. I honestly couldn’t ask for more!”
– a Kings Park ES parent
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Mark Witzel, West Springfield HS
Mr. Witzel has absolutely breathed life into history (and school) for my son. His enthusiasm, extensive knowledge, and what my son describes as “total fairness” have created an interest in history that was definitely not there before. We are so grateful that Mr. Witzel has chosen to use his extensive life experience and knowledge as a teacher.”
– a West Springfield HS parent
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Katy Bohn, Orange Hunt ES
Mrs. Bohn has shown incredible compassion and empathy for our shy son. He has absolutely blossomed in her class. He adores genius time, and he has become quite the researcher in all matters of outer space. He has gone from not being able to make eye contact to being able to present a few Google slides from his independent research. Mrs. Bohn has held him to high standards in such a loving way that he isn’t even aware of how much he has been challenged to grow and evolve. We are incredibly grateful that she is his teacher.”
– an Orange Hunt ES parent
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Benyamin Mohamad, Lorton Center
I would like to commend Benyamin Bus 1144 driver for his kindness and dedication to students. He waits an extra moment for kids if they are running late or caught in the rain. He is such a kind driver! Thank you, Mr. Benyamin.”
– a Glasgow MS parent
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Sandy Goodwin, Yovanka Perez, Laura Santini, Carmen Arrieta, Herndon ES
Sandy, Yovanka, Laura, and Carmen are the most caring, kind, and wonderful office colleagues to work with. They can always be counted on for support and go above and beyond in their daily work. I know they have my back. I feel truly fortunate to be working with them every day. In a school with almost 800 students, we function like a well-oiled machine because of their hard work and dedication to Herndon ES. Thank you for being amazing colleagues!”
– Shermin Sirajudin, Herndon ES
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Jill McDaniel, Orange Hunt ES
Ms. McDaniel has been a wonderful teacher to have this year. My son has really enjoyed being in her class. We were nervous about how our first year in public school would go after the pandemic and she made it so easy and great. We came from a co-op preschool where we were very involved so it was a bit hard to be so hands-off this year with the school but I always felt as if I could reach out to Ms. McDaniel with any questions. Looking forward to volunteering in the future.”
– an Orange Hunt ES parent
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Kaitlin Kroptavich, Terra-Centre ES
My second grader lost her tooth at school yesterday. And then she LOST her tooth at school. She was apparently a bit upset as she thought that the tooth fairy wouldn’t visit without that missing tooth. Her teacher Mrs. Kroptavich emailed me to let me know that they looked high and low but could not find the tooth, which upset my kiddo. She then took time out of her busy day to write a note to the Tooth Fairy assuring her that my daughter’s tooth did indeed fall out and she asked the Tooth Fairy to use this note in place of her tooth. My toothless kiddo came home beaming that she had lost a tooth AND her teacher sent a note home since the tooth fell out of the necklace holder. I know teachers are busier than ever. Taking the time to make this small gesture put a smile on my daughter’s face and is something she – and I – will remember for a long time. These little connections are what make teachers really special people. I’m grateful my daughter is in such good hands with Mrs. Kroptavich.”
– a Terra-Centre ES parent
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Friday Oeur, Johnson MS
Throughout the year Ms. Oeur helped my kid with medical issues. She reached out to me many times to discuss and coordinated with teachers. She went way above and beyond to help us.”
– a Johnson MS parent
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Eric Welch, Justice HS
Mr. Welch has helped so many students recognize that college is not an impossible journey. He has connected college alumni to share their experiences with High School seniors/juniors to further motivate them to pursue higher education. He has helped me, my brother, and soon my sister with the college process because he is passionate about motivating students after high school. Thank you for all your hard work and dedication.”
– a Justice HS student
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Mary Keane, Kings Park ES
Mary Keane has gone above and beyond to help our first-grade son. She spends time with him 1:1 for advanced academic learning and makes an effort to truly understand him and his needs. She works with his classroom teachers to ensure they use consistent strategies to engage him, without making him feel like an outsider. As a twice-exceptional student, our son has a unique set of needs, strengths, and challenges, and we are so grateful he has an ally in his corner. Thank you, Mary!”
– a Kings Park ES parent
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Tamara Ackland, Kings Park ES
We are a military family that had to move into the area in the middle of the school year. Ms. Ackland has been so wonderful in helping my daughter transition to a new school. It was such a wonderful surprise to have her new classmates have cards welcoming her on her first day. She made her and our family feel so welcome. Thank you!”
– a Kings Park ES parent
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Jenny-Lin Bennett, Fort Belvoir ES
Mrs. Bennett has done a wonderful job educating my son’s first-grade class. He comes home each week a little smarter than the week before. When he shares his day at dinner, I am consistently surprised by the intelligent things that he says. I know my son will miss Mrs. Bennett at the end of the year. Thank you for being good at what you do! You deserve recognition.”
– a Fort Belvoir ES parent
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Hitomi Sato, Lane ES
Ms. Sato is an inspiring and lovable teacher. She is amazing at her job and she really deserves the best. Ms. Sato makes learning fun and more understandable.”
– a Lane ES parent
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Nancy Sawicki, Kings Park ES
We are a military family that had to move into the area in the middle of the school year. Nancy Sawicki was so helpful in the process helping to ensure our daughter had a great transition. She even messaged me during our daughter‘s first day saying she saw her in the hall later in the afternoon and that she was smiling and having a great day. She took an extra step to make sure I knew things were going well. It was thoughtful and certainly helped calm some nerves.”
– a Kings Park ES parent
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Edidiong Utuk, Lake Braddock SS
“Ms. Utuk is an amazing teacher and person. She provides good review sessions for the AP exam and she is a very kind person.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Mike Glander, Woodson HS
Mr. Glander is a first-year US VA Government teacher working with seniors. I have been very impressed by the creativity of his lessons and projects. It’s very difficult to keep seniors engaged especially in May but he is still finding new ways to present the government topics. They are learning through graduation.”
– a Woodson HS parent
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Josephine Stokes, Lake Braddock SS
“She is really cool and our table conversations with her are really fun and I hope she continues to teach at Lake Braddock.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Mahmud Syed, Lake Braddock SS
Mr. Syed constantly makes his class a fun environment. Every time a student makes a mistake or looks stressed Mr. Syed does his best to help them out. He constantly keeps his students engaged using witty humor and not overloading his students.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Laura Manduzio, Clearview ES
Laura Manduzio is a PE teacher at Clearview Elementary and she is an FCPS treasure! In the last few weeks, Ms. Manduzio planned and flawlessly executed the 6th-grade basketball game and the Family Fitness Night for Clearview. These are both huge events that hundreds of students, family members, staff, and community partners participate in. She is also in the midst of planning the Clearview 5K and 1M Fun Run for the school and community. She puts so much time and effort into these events, while always modeling and encouraging a healthy and active lifestyle for the Clearview students. Her enthusiasm is contagious and the kids love her!  We are incredibly blessed to have Ms. Manduzio at Clearview! Thank you, Ms. Manduzio, for all that you do for Clearview!”
– a Clearview ES parent
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Laura Peters, Lake Braddock SS
Mrs. Peters is my second-period math teacher and has improved my math skills in an unfathomable way. I went to a private school in third and fourth grade, which brought down my academics drastically. My parents helped me work hard to do well in school and we succeeded in all but one area… math. I could get by every now and then, but I was really struggling to comprehend the basics. Once freshman year began, Mrs. Peters literally changed my life. I was so worried about not graduating because I was extremely terrible at math. Ever since I’ve been in her class, the topics we’ve been learning have been short and sweet, explaining them instead of just walking us through the problem. She also helped us individually inside and outside of class. Mrs. Peters appreciates us, treats us as equals, and is so sweet but is firm when she needs to be. I am very thankful for her.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Alexandra Kolovos, Davis Career Center
A HUGE shout-out to Alexandra for being extremely flexible and willing to go the extra mile to help assist students at their worksite. It was such an honor working with you and seeing how the students interacted with you was heart-warming. Thank you again for being a supportive colleague and willing to go the extra mile for students that you may not know.”
– Brianna Graves, Davis Career Center
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Suzanne Hurwitz, Lake Braddock SS
Mrs. Hurwitz is a kind and caring person. She always has time to support me and talk. Sometimes a little lecture comes with it. She is my favorite person at this school, I am so lucky to have this wonderful advisory teacher. I Love you!”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Susie Garcia, Lees Corner ES
The teacher not only cares for child’s education but overall she gives a great effort for children to learn and develop their wellbeing.”
– Lees Corner ES parent
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Heidi Bajpai, Dranesville ES
Thank you Mrs. Bajpai for being my favorite adult! You make me feel safe. I love the fun things we do in your class! Thank you for being patient and kind.”
– a Dranesville ES student
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Hitomi Sato, Lane ES
Being in Ms. Sato’s class has been such an amazing and fun experience. Ms. Sato constantly makes learning more interesting and fun. You can always count on Ms. Sato to be by your side no matter what. You could be in the worst mood of all time, whether it’s anger, fear, or even discouragement, and Ms. Sato will still manage to get you back to your happy self. This has been the best school year and it’s all because of Ms. Sato. She makes every day more exciting with her enthusiasm, humor, love, help, and ability to make the best out of things. Ms. Sato has definitely had her fair share of challenging students, but that never stopped her from being an even better teacher. Something that Ms. Sato has that many other teachers lack, is the ability to joke and have fun but also gets everyone’s act together and makes sure that everyone’s aware of what needs to be done and when it needs to be done. (QUEEN) Ms. Sato is the strongest, most fun, and most encouraging teacher I know. I truly appreciate her and all she does. I really do mean it when I say that I look up to Ms. Sato, and hope to be as kind-hearted, and loving as her.
– a Lane ES student
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Hitomi Sato, Lane ES
Ms. Sato is a great and fun teacher. I have learned so much from her and truly appreciate her.”
– a Lane ES student
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Margaret Delaney, West Springfield ES
I feel so privileged that my daughter has Ms. Delaney as her teacher this year. She has shown tremendous growth not only in her academic learning but in her confidence as well. She talks to anyone that will listen about different projects they are completing in class. She had to prepare a presentation to her girl scout troop and decided to create a google slide presentation to include a learning target and links with timers to keep her troop on task. She often shares that she wants to be a teacher when she grows up. I can only hope that she will be as wonderful to her future students as Ms. Delaney has been to my daughter and the rest of her students.”
– a West Springfield ES parent
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Jaime Villamarin, Stonecroft Transportation Center
There are people who make things easier for me, and Mr. Jaime Villamarin is one of them. Ever since I’ve known him, he’s been attentive to my son’s needs. He’s an accessible, kind supervisor who does everything possible and impossible to perform his duties 100% I admire the way you work to do are heavy life, easier. Thank you very much Mr. Villamarin for making a difference in the Fairfax County Public School Transportation Department.”
– a Kilmer Center parent
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Narinderjeet Singh, Stonecroft Transportation Center
It feels good to have a friendly smile each morning Mrs. Narinderjeet Singh is a polite, friendly, thoughtful person. Thank you for all your help.”
– a Kilmer Center parent
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Hitomi Sato, Lane ES
Ms. Sato is an astonishing teacher. She is one of the very few teachers who know how to properly perform their jobs. She works very efficiently and effectively. Ms. Sato knows how to emotionally care for her students and knows how to not only have them enjoy their time at school but, also teach them important information. I cannot believe how well one human can affect one’s life.”
– a Lane ES student
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Hitomi Sato, Lane ES
Miss Sato has been such an amazing teacher, she cares for her students and treats them equally. She is an amazing teacher, she has great ways to do different subjects. She has taught me a lot and helped me realize my mistakes. She is nice, funny, smart, and very caring to her students. She keeps all students safe and gets them prepared for not just middle school, but LIFE. She keeps us in line, while also being funny and making us focus on our work, even if it’s difficult for some. I’ve had so many laughs this year. This is definitely my best year at Lane. Why? I got such an amazing teacher.”
– a Lane ES student
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Hitomi Sato, Lane ES
“Ms. Sato has brought us this year an unexplainable and mindboggling year that has brought us more joy than I can explain. She has taught us how to complete multiple advanced assignments and has helped us overcome complications. I have learned we have made a classroom that is formed many friendships that will last a lifetime.”
– a Lane ES parent
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Hitomi Sato, Lane ES
Ms. Sato is an amazing teacher. She is very strong in what she teaches and she cares for her student’s education very carefully. Ms. Sato has been one of the best teachers I have ever met in my 12 years of life. Ms. Sato is not only a teacher that knows how to connect with her students but, she also knows how to help teach students in their own preferred ways.”
– a Lane ES parent
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Tracy Hutchison, Fort Hunt ES
Do you need to send a student to the office? Ask Tracy. She’s always on the go and willing to help in any way. Tracy plans/coordinates/runs the 6th-grade promotion ceremony. Tracy does all of our communication with both staff and families. Tracy helps with all the substitutes and fills our many daily openings. Tracy is also a part-time nurse and helps in the cafeteria AND in classrooms when needed – she is a truly integral part of our office. She makes sure Mickey has candy! Along with all the tasks given to her by Katie and Tim. She’s a priceless part of our Fort Hunt Staff. Please thank her (and the other ladies), when you get a chance for all she does.”
Stephanie Seadeek, Fort Hunt ES
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AJ Keifer, Lake Braddock SS
“Mrs. Keifer always makes students feel welcome and is very kind. She makes her lessons feel relatable and is always open to new ideas.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Justin Toney, Lake Braddock SS
Mr. Toney is really caring and likes to make sure everyone is safe and doing well. He explains things in a way that makes sense, he is also super nice and has a great sense of humor.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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David Wickham, Lake Braddock SS
Mr. Wickham always finds ways to make class fun. He makes jokes and makes us laugh every class. He not only teaches us but makes sure we are ok, and shows that he cares for his students. While he can be strict sometimes, it’s only when needed. He tries to make the class as enjoyable as he can for us and it’s much appreciated. Thank you.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Catherine Fleury, Lake Braddock SS
She is patient with everyone in the class and really cares about us. She is always so nice and welcoming when I walk into the classroom. I always look forward to English.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Venetia Edwards, Lake Braddock SS
Ms. Edwards continues to prove to me that she is able to observe student’s behaviors and use the information she gains effectively. When she sees a kid who does not understand the information that is being taught, she subtly re-explains the concept. When students have questions but are afraid to ask them, she asks the students the questions and then explains the answer. All of this is clear evidence that her way of teaching is effective and is noticed with great respect.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Gil Martinez, Lake Braddock SS
He teaches us the lessons and lets us have free time as well. He always says good morning and welcomes each student.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Clayton Allen, Lake Braddock SS
Mr. Allen is my orchestra teacher and is the best I could have ever asked for. He made sure to set all of our expectations high, and I ended up improving a ton over the course of the year. He is hilarious and kind, and I would love to thank him for all the field trips we went on this year. He has turned all of the students in orchestra into more of a family than a class.”
 
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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David Wickham, Lake Braddock SS
Mr. Wickham never gives us any tests and I am grateful for that. Also, he is a kind person who doesn’t give out homework at all.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Ashley So, Lake Braddock SS
Mrs. So makes learning easy and fun and makes the assignments interesting and easy. The slides she puts together make the class easier to pay attention and to do the work after reading the slides.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Linda Alvarez, Lake Braddock SS
She always gives us a break in class to recharge and lets us do homework for other classes.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Lindsay Puffer, Lake Braddock SS
Mrs. Puffer always makes the class fun, such as including bingo, including the math problems around the halls, and so on. Algebra is one of my favorite classes because of Mrs. Puffer.”
– a Lake Braddock SS student
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Stephanie Curb, Hunt Valley ES
Ms. Curb is a phenomenal teacher and human. She has gone above and beyond throughout the years to always make sure my child and their peers feel welcomed and loved. I will be forever grateful for her and everything she does.”
– a Hunt Valley ES parent
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Chip Lowe, Wilton Wood Center
Chip has always been very helpful and instructional in supporting our team with many of our supporting technologies. We use several environments to boost our FCPS applications and tools, and Chip has always been helpful with maintaining these environments and providing guidance and direction for use as we work with many vendors and tools!”
– Paul Downey, Sprague Technology Center
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Nastaran Wise, Herndon MS
Nastaran is a new ESOL Chair for Herndon and is working through the English learner accommodation process for the first time this year. The EL accommodation process is complex and involves coordination with the School Testing Coordinator, Special Ed department, school admin, and classroom teachers. The process requires a considerable amount of time and effort to document accommodation decisions for all ELs. Nastaran has been very proactive with this work. She first contacted me in September to make sure she understood what needed to be done. She’s checked in several times this year and has been careful and conscientious about making sure the English Learners at Herndon Middle have the accommodations they need. I appreciate the work Nastaran has put into supporting these students.”
– Brian Herberger, Willow Oaks Admin Center
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Erik Dahlin, Sprague Technology Center
We had a student who lost her AP capstone project and reported that she had worked on it for the last few weeks in FCPS Google workspace. Erik was able to dig into all of the records and transactions the student had performed over the last few weeks. Though we did not find the file that she was looking for, our hunch is she did not actually perform the work in FCPS Google workspace, Erik spent an inordinate amount of time helping to pull logs and scouring her Google Drive to find the file. Erik did so with great expediency due to the deadline the student was under. Through the data provided, we were able to affirm the work was not performed in FCPS Google workspace and gave her strategies for searching her personal computer and personal account. I would like to thank Eric for his diligence and his expediency and for working with us to tackle the challenge and identify a potential solution.”
– Tim Brown, Fairfax HS
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Lauri Hilburger, Lees Corner ES
Mrs. Hilburger is an exceptional teacher and makes every student feel good about themselves. In addition, she is fun and funny, making it a very enjoyable learning environment for her fourth-grade class.”
– a Lees Corner ES parent
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Susie Garcia, Lees Corner ES
Ms. Garcia is a loving and kind teacher. In her own special way, she guides the kids in her first-grade class with patience.”
– a Lees Corner ES parent
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Julie, Buckley, Kings Park ES
Julie is passionate about working with students with special needs students pushing them to reach their goals each day. She is such a positive, patient, and calm presence in a classroom where often students have big feelings and become dysregulated. She is consistent with maintaining the structure of our classroom expectations, and behavioral and curriculum programs. Often last-minute staffing changes happen due to school-wide behaviors and the demands of testing with myself getting pulled in many directions, Julie is truly an extension of me and jumps into this role immediately with no questions asked. Julie maintains and promotes positive relationships with inclusive classrooms encouraging social relationships with all students and all staff. I cannot thank Julie enough for always showing up and giving the absolute best for our students. It has been such a pleasure working alongside her for four years building long-lasting relationships with our students and their families, whether we were connected through the computer or in person. All KP students and staff are very lucky to have Ms. Julie but especially in our classroom, you are irreplaceable.”
– Lindsay Leahy, Kings Park ES
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Erin Morency, Eagle View ES
Ms. Morency has been an amazing support to my son, and she takes the opportunity to praise him when she sees his efforts pay off. Ms. Morency is a SPED teacher in a CSS program, I imagine her efforts are not always appreciated but for me, she is a true hero.”
– an Eagle View ES parent
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Jessica Vitale, Newington Forest ES
During an LSC meeting for my daughter, Jessica was ready with data to show my daughter’s strengths and weaknesses. She gave detailed and accurate data. She clearly has the best interest in students learning at the heart of her teaching.”
– a Newington Forest ES parent
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Melissa Dobson, Kings Park ES
Ms. Dobson goes above and beyond to incorporate creativity and positivity in her classroom! Her dedication comes across through the smiles and enthusiasm my daughter comes home with every day. We feel so grateful she helped my daughter navigate her transition back to in-person learning after a year and a half without setting foot in a school building.”
– a Kings Park ES parent
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Robyn Ridpath, Fairview ES
When Ms. Ridpath learned of my horrible physical injury which sent me to inpatient care for weeks, she checked in on my children every single day. She had lunch with my daughter and talked with her every day during recess. Please understand that Ms. Ridpath has never taught my daughter; she was not her teacher. But Ms, Ridpath cares so deeply for her school community that she did this act of kindness and compassion. As a parent, I was deeply relieved to know that a loving adult at school was supporting my children while I was in the hospital. Robyn Ridpath is a treasure worth celebrating!!!”
– a Fairview ES parent
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