Education

Drawn from the 15 weekly community newspapers published by Connection Newspapers.

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Students Think Twice About Spending

Eighth graders learn the cost of financial responsibility.

That Christmas check from grandma will probably be spent on the latest video game or that trendy pair of boots a typical teenager has been saving to buy. But for eighth graders in Fairfax County, they might think twice before splurging on that one luxury item.

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New Shoes for Children at Hutchison Elementary

The Council for the Arts of Herndon joins with the Dranesville supervisor’s office every holiday season to gather new shoes for children at Hutchison Elementary School in Herndon. Hutchison is a Title I school serving many students with challenging social and economic issues.

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Cappies Review: ‘Peter Pan’ Recreated

Herndon High produces “Peter Pan,” or the “Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up.”

What do fairy dust, a vengeful pirate, and a flying boy have in common? The answer would be Herndon High School’s production of “Peter Pan,” or the “Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up.” The show, debuting in London in 1904, was J.M. Barrie’s most famous work, along with his 1911 novel version of the same story.

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Langley Principal Leaves for South County

Matthew Ragone created “Saxon Country,” says school family network committee co-chair.

For six years, he was the glue that brought Langley High School (LHS) together. LHS Principal Matthew Ragone has left the school to boost South County High School’s academics as its new principal.

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Karen Garza’s vision: the irresistible force meeting and moving the immovable object of Fairfax County Public Schools?

Karen Garza is a good listener. And once she’s listened, she is, admittedly, not very patient. “If there's a real issue, I don't think it has to be debated for 10 or 15 years,” Garza said in an interview. “Either we're going to do something about it or not.”

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View from Texas: Fairfax County Public Schools Superintendent Karen Garza

“When I hired Karen in 2005,” former Superintendent of Houston Independent School District (HISD) Dr. Abelardo Saavedra said, “the position of chief academic officer had been open several months. I went looking for her. I’d never met her but I’d heard about her. There is a big difference between a mid-sized district and a larger one; the dynamics are completely different. I was taking a risk because she came from a mid-sized one of about 40,000 in Corpus Christi, and ours was much bigger. She adjusted very quickly.”

Fairfax County Public Schools Needing Community’s Help

Superintendent Karen Garza begins and ends her Listening Tour meetings with a plea to those in the room — parents, teachers, employees, unions — to help her achieve what needs to be done for their school system. “I am going to need your help,” she says to audiences who voice concerns about class size, resources for special education, and teacher salaries.

Fairfax County Public Schools Superintendent Karen Garza Bio

Current Position: Fairfax County Public Schools Superintendent

Timeline of Fairfax County Public Schools Superintendent Karen Garza’s career in education.

1986-1991: Elementary School Teacher, Yoakum, Texas (1,539 students, 38% white and 50% Latino and spends about $8,000 per pupil).

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Reston South Lakes Hosts Winter Concert

Students perform “Sounds of the Season.”

Reston’s South Lakes High School choral department presented their free winter concert “Sounds of the Season” at the school auditorium on Dec. 11. Music preformed included both sacred and secular selection, and was an opportunity for family members and friends to hear the results of many hours of practice and rehearsal.

Roundups for Centreville and Chantilly

Important safety and community information for Chantilly and Centreville

Cappies Review: Near Miraculous Production

“The Miracle Worker” at Paul VI Catholic High School.

“Helen, the chick has to come out of its shell sometime…you come out too!” For Helen Keller, life was a black void of ignorance. Almost sealed off from the outside world, pampered by her parents, she understood only desire and reward.

Cappies Review: Thought-provoking and Inspirational

“One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” at Robert E. Lee High School.

R.P. McMurphy has always been the bull goose of wherever she goes. She is the wildest, lustiest, strongest woman in the world and, as long as she’s stuck in this cuckoo’s nest, the craziest too, the unquestioned bull goose loony. But when she finds herself butting heads with Nurse Ratched and his relentless iron fist of control, it’s not just fun and games anymore.

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Ho Ho Holiday Show in Chantilly

Westfield High’s children’s theater presents its annual “Ho Ho Holiday Show,” Friday, Dec. 19, at 6 p.m., and Saturday, Dec. 20, at 2 p.m.

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Dream Team Vienna Wins State Trophy

At the recent First Lego League VA/DC Robotics ChampionshipTournament, a team of sixth graders, named Dream Team Vienna, won the FLL Championship Research Project Award.

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