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Pictures from Oak Hill's SCA Spirit Week.
Each year, the Office of Transportation Services reviews the bell schedules for all Fairfax County Public Schools and makes minor adjustments as necessary to improve on-time arrivals. Developing this school year’s bell schedule has been extremely challenging for the transportation department due to the pandemic. Earlier this year I advertised an updated bell schedule to reflect these changes. However, given the all-virtual start to the school year, we had not needed to implement the new bell schedule.
At the School Board Work session on December 10, Superintendent Brabrand presented a revised phased in plan to return all students who have selected the in-person option starting in January 2021. The following bell schedule will be in place effective January 12, 2021 for both virtual and in-person instruction.
Oak Hill's Bell Schedule will be 9:00 AM – 3:30 PM. Thank you for advocating for an earlier dismissal time. We know this will be better for our students!
The fifteen (15) minute reduction in the school day is due to the increased cleaning time required between bus runs. Additionally, as more students return to school, the number of students allowed on each bus will be reduced substantially to meet social distancing requirements. With fewer students able to ride a bus at the same time, FCPS has no choice but to adjust the times that our buses are transporting students.
Additionally, Dr. Brabrand has determined that January 4, 2021 will be asynchronous for kindergarten – sixth grade. Work will be posted for students to complete asynchronously. Please also see the communication that your child’s teacher has sent out about these days.
We apologize for the hardship this will present to some of our families and staff. However, it is the only way we can return all of our grade levels to in-person learning, while keeping our students and staff safe.
We hope our community is safe over the break and practices healthy habits that keep COVID-19 from spreading among us. Thank you for your continued support and appreciation of our wonderful staff!
Holly DeVore, Principal
Draft of In-Person Return Timeline
Below are the DRAFT dates for return of in-person students:
Group 5 PreK & Kindergarten Proposed Return Date January 12
Group 6 Grades 1 & 2 Proposed Return Date January 19
Group 7 Grades 3 & 4 only Proposed Return Date January 26
Group 7 Grades 5 & 6 only Proposed Return Date February 2
Beginning Tuesday, January 12, Oak Hill's bell schedule will be adjusted for both virtual and in-person learners. The new schedule is 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Outstanding Oak Hill Staff Awards
We want to thank all of the teachers and members of the community for taking time to nominate and recognize our outstanding staff. We are pleased to announce our finalists for the following categories. These finalists will be moving onto the next level.
Outstanding Principal: Holly DeVore
Outstanding Professional: MaryBeth Anderson
Outstanding Teacher: Kathy Rock
Outstanding New Teacher: Lily Parshenov
Outstanding Operational: Lorraine Colavito
Oak Hill would also like to congratulate all of our nominees in each of the categories!
Outstanding Teacher: Corrine Elgert, Mollie O’Donnell, Anne Weider, Sara Horne, Pam Bennett, Rebecca Fredericks, Erica Giovanini, Laura Rynecki
Outstanding Operational: Holly Deschene
Thank you again for recognizing all of the hard work, time, and dedication these staff members have put forth during distance learning. Congratulations to all of our finalists and nominees!
As a reminder, this year winter break starts on December 21 and ends on January 1, 2021. All students will resume classes virtually on Tuesday, January 5, 2021. Monday, January 4, 2021, is an asynchronous (independent) day. See the complete 2020-21 school year calendar. The Oak Hill Office will be closed for Winter break at 4:30pm on Friday, December 18, 2020. The office will re-open at 8:00 am on Monday, January 4, 2021. We wish your family a happy and relaxing break.
Slide into 2021 Spirit Week
Slide into 2021 with Spirit! Take our spirit day challenge with a different theme for every day in January! We encourage you to take pictures of your students participating in the fun challenges throughout the month and send them to email@example.com. Have a blast! Go Wolves!
While this school year might look different, we still want to help you celebrate your child’s most important milestones, including school picture day! These pictures will go in our 2020-2021 yearbook. The picture date for virtual students is Monday, February 1st. A sign-up genius for time slots will be provided later in January. The picture dates for in-person students are Tuesday, February 2nd and Thursday February 4th. An Electronic Flyer (PDF) will be provided in the weeks to come and all orders should be placed online. Rest assured that we at Oak Hill and the staff from our photography company are taking extra precautions to ensure the safety of your student and your families! More details will be provided closer to the picture dates and we will update you on any changes that might take place based on the return to school timeline.
New Employment Opportunity
FCPS schools and centers will be hiring classroom monitors to provide in-person classroom assistance for students when a staff member remains virtual. If you would like more information about the position, please review the job description and qualifications online and apply if interested. You may also call Oak Hill at 703.467.3500 and speak to Administrative Assistant, Katherine Andersen to voice your interest for this position at Oak Hill. Please feel free to share information about this opportunity with anyone else you think may be interested.
FCPS is Seeking Individuals to Serve as Substitute Teachers
Are you or somebody you know interested in substitute teaching with FCPS? Apply here or attend one of our Friday information sessions to learn more! To sign up for a session visit our substitute information page here. Say Yes 2 FCPS! If you have an interest in subbing at Oak Hill, please call the Oak Hill office at 703.467.3500 and ask to speak to Denise Russ.
Grab and Go Meals for Winter Break
Fairfax County Public Schools is providing all students access to meals during the FCPS Winter Break. The following plan will be in place from Friday, December 18 through Wednesday, January 6, 2021
Kwanzaa is an annual weeklong celebration of African American culture which is held each year from December 26th to January 1st.
The name Kwanzaa is derived from the phrase “matunda ya kwanza” which means “first fruits” in Swahili and was introduced as a festival by Dr Maulunga Karenga in 1966 as a ritual to welcome the first harvests to home. Additionally, it was created as a response to the commercialism of Christmas and thus the Seven Principles (Nguzo Saba) reflect that mindset. Those Principles are Umoja, Kujichagulia, Ujima, Ujamaa, Nia, Kuumba and Imani. Those that participate in Kwanzaa celebrate with feasts (karamu), music, dance, poetry, narratives and time dedicated to reflection and a recommitment to the Seven Principles and other central cultural values.
In the words of Dr Karenga, “Kwanzaa…is a time of serious and sustained remembrance, reflection and recommitment…it calls us to sit down and to meditate deeply on the awesome meaning and responsibility of being African in our community, society and the world…And it requires us to remember…that we are heirs and custodians of a great legacy and we must bear the glory, beauty and burden of that legacy with strength, dignity and determination”.
Technology and Winter Break
During Winter Break, student laptops will likely be used less often. To prepare for school after Winter break on January 4th, please power on your student laptop for awhile and restart it twice so that any updates there might be can be pushed down at that time instead of at the beginning of the school day on Monday, January 4th.
If you have technical issues during break, you can contact the FCPS Technology Help Desk (833-921-3277 between 7am and 11pm, seven days a week.(information below) or submit a ticket. Tickets will be reviewed by our technology team upon return after break on January 4th.
Clinical Tip of the Week
Going on a Safari
As the students continue to learn about the relationship between their thoughts, feelings, and behavior during their Social Emotional Learning (SEL) time, you can reinforce some of that learning by engaging in activities with them at home, such as “Going on a Safari,” as outlined in “5 Fun Mindfulness Activities for Children” by Alexandra Eidens.
“Going on a Safari” is a great activity that helps redirect a child’s focus away from stress and anxiety. It might be helpful to try after a long day of virtual school or during the lunch hour, as it gives them a mental break.
You can go on an exciting adventure on your next walk. As you walk, put all of your senses to work by paying close attention to your environment. Notice the feel of the air on your skin; notice the sound of the ground as you walk and pay attention to all of the little movements and sensations that you experience.
As you walk, you can also try picking up a small rock, or touching a plant or flower. Notice the bugs or the birds. Take a moment to kneel down and touch the ground. Walk mindfully, paying close attention to everything. Make sure you walk in silence because you want to notice all those little details.
Walking is a wonderful stress-relieving activity because it helps clear the mind and sparks creative ideas. Try going on a safari the next time your child gets frustrated. You might be surprised at how well this works!
We hope you have a wonderful winter break!
Kim Gallagher, School Counselor at firstname.lastname@example.org
Cammy McCleskey, School Social Worker at clmcCleskey@fcps.edu
Ginny Phinney, School Psychologist at email@example.com
Christy Ryder, School Counselor at firstname.lastname@example.org
Reading Tip of the Week
Engaging in Conversations about Books
Dialogic reading, also known as Interactive Read Alouds, provide opportunities for parents to have meaningful conversations about books with their child. Dialogic reading can be used on narrative and nonfiction texts. By reading aloud, parents can not only model fluency and vocabulary, but they can open the doors for children to think critically about texts. To learn more about how to promote different levels of thinking with your child, please click here.
Oak Hill's new Library Book Drop which was funded by our PTA.
Join the PTA
Oak Hill Elementary School PTA membership dues support your child by funding essential educational and curriculum needs. Don't miss out on early access to PTA clubs. Please be on the lookout for announcements and if you are not a member, please consider supporting our students. To get information and join our PTA, click here and use the code 8HSEEV. The pledge membership is $30 per family.
Key Calendar Dates
December 21-January 3: Winter Break, school closed
January 4: Asynchronous (independent) day
January 5-8: Slide into 2021 Spirit Week
January 11: IOWA Testing for certain students
January 11: Asynchronous (independent) day
January 12: New Bell Schedule Starts
January 12: PreK & Kindergarten proposed return to school date
January 18: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday, no school
January 19: Grades 1 & 2 proposed return to school date
January 20: Inauguration Day, no school
January 22: End of Quarter, 2-hour early release
January 25: Teacher Workday, no school
January 26: Grades 3 & 4 only proposed return to school date
February 2: Grades 5 & 6 only proposed return to school date
Ways to Stay Informed
Visit the Oak Hill website and FCPS website for updates.
Follow Oak Hill on Twitter @OakHillES.
Access Oak Hill's News You Choose.
3210 Kinross Circle Oak Hill, VA 20171 | Main Office: 703-467-3500
Attendance: 703-467-3535 | Web | Twitter