High Schools Ready for Tuesday

High Schools Ready for Tuesday

School Snapshots

August 29, 2002

There are six high schools in the Alexandria area of Fairfax County.

Edison High School

5801 Franconia Road, Alexandria, VA



There are a total of 1,656 students: 1,481 are in general education, and 175 are in the special-education, self-contained program.

There are 6.5 administrators, 163.5 teachers and specialists, eight guidance counselors, four safety and security staff, 10 instructional assistants/attendants, 13.5 office support staff and 19 custodians.

"Thomas Alva Edison once remarked, 'Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and hard work,'" said the principal, Luther W. Fennell. "Edison High School will always seize opportunities and work hard to make good things happen for our students. We subscribe to the belief that we are good and getting better, but that the best is yet to come. Our deeply dedicated, talented and hardworking faculty and staff commits itself to the improved quality of life for every student, and where pride is a personal commitment that separates excellence from mediocrity."

Hayfield Secondary School High

7630 Telegraph Road,

Alexandria, VA 22315.


There are a total of 2,186 students: 2,063 are in general education, and 123 are in the special-education, self-contained program.

There are 10 administrators, 153.3 teachers and specialists, 10.5 guidance counselors, four safety and security staff, six instructional assistants/attendants, 14 office support staff and 19.5 custodians.

"Hayfield Secondary School is a comprehensive six-year school with approximately 3,350 students in grades seven through 12," said the principal, Glynn Bates. "Hayfield's mission is to provide a strong academic environment to meet the educational needs of the diverse population of the school where academic success is paramount. Hayfield is committed to maintaining and enhancing a learning atmosphere of respect for self and others. Hayfield's students are offered a wide variety of experiences through 50 clubs and organizations."

Mount Vernon High School

8515 Old Mount Vernon Road,

Alexandria, VA 22309.


There are a total of 1,767 students: 1,545 are in general education, and 222 are in the special-education, self-contained program.

There are 11 administrators, 153.2 teachers and specialists, nine guidance counselors, five safety and security staff, 14.7 instructional assistants/attendants, 15.5 office support staff and 20.5 custodians.

"Mount Vernon High School is a vibrant educational environment characterized by commitment to excellence," said the principal, Cathy Crocker. "Mount Vernon High School has a world-class curriculum. Students choose from a wide range of course offerings. Mount Vernon High School offers students a broad range of extracurricular and co-curricular activities designed to meet and extend the broad range of student interests.

“Fine and performing arts students and athletic teams have received numerous awards and recognition. Contributing to Mount Vernon High School's character and strength is its diversity. More than 50 countries and 30 languages are represented in its student population. This diversity is enjoyed and celebrated daily, as well as through a series of cultural events that bring students, parents and faculty together and demonstrate cooperative living in a multicultural world."

Thomas Jefferson High School For Science and Technology

6560 Braddock Road, Alexandria, VA 22312.


There are a total of 1,669 students at the school, all of whom are in general education.

There are five administrators, 114.2 teachers and specialists, seven guidance counselors, three safety and security staff, four instructional assistants/attendants, 13.5 office support staff and 12 custodians.

"Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology offers a comprehensive college preparatory program emphasizing the sciences, mathematics and technology," said principal Elizabeth Lodal. " As a governor's regional school, students from several school jurisdictions are selected on the basis of aptitude and interest in the biological, chemical, physical, mathematical and computer sciences and intent to pursue college preparation in the sciences, engineering or related fields. We encourage independence in learning, confidence in ability, and social and ethical responsibility. Students and staff members develop their own processes for learning and using information in an ethical, cooperative network."

West Potomac High School

6500 Quander Road, Alexandria, VA



There are a total of 1,944 students: 1,788 are in general education, and 156 are in the special-education, self-contained program.

There are 10 administrators, 170 teachers and specialists, 8.5 guidance counselors, six safety and security staff, 26 instructional assistants/attendants, 13 office support staff and 21 custodians.

"West Potomac High School [WPHS] offers a diversified and challenging academic program for all students, which includes the second largest number of advanced-placement, college-level courses in Fairfax County," said the principal, Henry Johnson.

"Approximately one-third of our school population attains honor roll status each quarter. The school's motto is ‘Excellence Is a Tradition.’ West Potomac High School maintains a close relationship with the community, local businesses, and the middle and elementary schools sending students to WPHS. "

Bryant Alternative High School

2709 Popkins Lane, Alexandria, VA 22306;


The Landmark Career Academy

Suite D-216, 5801 Duke St., Alexandria, VA 22304;


There are between 350 and 400 students at the school each year.

Jan McKee has been the principal at Bryant for seven years. "There are five separate programs in the building, so we can meet the needs of a very diverse group of students," she said. "While a very small percentage of our students are referred by the School Board, most of them come to us voluntarily for a variety of reasons. Some of our students do not speak English very well but have a great deal of education in their home countries; some have missed a lot of school at their base schools because of job responsibilities; some just need a different environment than that which is offered in a traditional high school."

Many of the students are over 18. These students apply to Bryant on their own. "About 85 percent of our students work full-time and attend school," McKee said. "We have night classes to accommodate these students. We also have a partnership with United Community Ministries, who operate a daycare facility in our building. We have a certain number of slots reserved for our students who have children."

About 20 percent of the students at Bryant attend the program for pregnant and parenting teens. "We offer the young women classes in child development and parenting so that they can understand the needs of their children," McKee said. Some of these students can be as young as 13. "We work very closely with Fairfax County Department of Human Services to arrange health-care appointments and to meet the day-care needs. We focus on preparing all of our students for careers after high school because we understand that a high-school diploma does not necessarily prepare you for a career."

Bryant staff works closely with a number of technology corporations to prepare students for careers in the computer field. Bryant offers A-plus training and other technology courses. "Our technology teachers teach the course, but we work closely with corporations to determine the requirements that students will need to meet to obtain jobs in this highly competitive field," McKee said.