Finishing Touches

Finishing Touches

High and middle schools prepare for Sept. 6 opening.

Fairfax High

3500 Old Lee Highway

Fairfax, VA 22030


Principal: Scott Brabrand

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Wednesday, Sept. 21, 7 p.m. for 11th and 12th grades; Wednesday, Sept. 28, 7 p.m. for ninth and 10th grades.

New Student Orientation: Friday, Sept. 2, 9-10:30 a.m. for ninth graders and parents, and 9 a.m.-12 p.m., for 10th through 12th grades.

Fairfax High School is undergoing a $54 million renovation this year, but it will not affect the quality of instruction, wrote new principal Scott Brabrand via e-mail. The Advancement Via Individual Determination program will continue, and one new course, in creative writing, will be added to the program. Fairfax’s sports teams will now be part of the Concorde District, which will include Robinson Secondary School and Chantilly, Centreville, Herndon, Oakton and Westfield high schools.

The new artificial turf on the football field is ready for the season, wrote Brabrand, and by the end of the year, the B-Wing will have two newly renovated physics labs.

But while the renovation project is still ongoing, Fairfax High School will have 32 new trailers, and fewer student parking spaces will be available. Brabrand wrote that renovations should be finished in September 2007.

Enrollment is unchanged from last year, at 2,050 students.

Key goals of the faculty and staff at Fairfax include "enhancing the conditions for listening, learning and leading," wrote Brabrand.

Robinson Secondary

5035 Sideburn Road

Fairfax, VA 22032

703-426-2100 / 2126

Principal: Dan Meier

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Wednesday, Sept. 21, 7 p.m. for seventh and eighth grades; Wednesday, Sept. 14, 7 p.m. for ninth and 10th grades; Wednesday, Sept. 28, 7 p.m. for 11th and 12th grades.

Robinson Secondary School is looking forward to several new things this year, said associate principal Rick Mondloch.

A new modular building in back of the school will add 10 new classrooms to Robinson, along with rooms for teachers and conference rooms. The building, which will also have a covered walkway to the main building and its own plumbing, will be completed in December, said Mondloch.

"We continue to be very large, but this will ease things quite a bit," said principal Dan Meier. Total projected enrollment at Robinson this year is 4,114 students: 2,844 high schoolers and 1,270 middle schoolers.

Robinson will also have a new scoreboard, said Mondloch. Its sports teams are now part of the Concorde District, and will play Fairfax, Chantilly, Centreville, Herndon, Oakton and Westfield high schools.

International Baccalaureate (IB) and Advanced Placement (AP) courses will continue at the high school level, said Meier. In a change from previous years, a full range of honors courses will now be available to both seventh and eighth grades in the middle school.

Robinson also offers classes for students from seventh to 12th grades who are behind more than a grade level on reading, said Meier, as well as remediation classes for students who fall behind on SOL tests. The school is also offering a new criminal justice program for students interested in law enforcement, said Mondloch.

Also, said Meier, Robinson students who want to prepare for the SAT tests can take an online class for free. The school will subscribe to the class so that students can sign on and prepare for the tests from home, he said.

W.T. Woodson High

9525 Main St.

Fairfax, VA 22031


Principal: Robert Elliott

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Wednesday, Sept. 28, 5:30 p.m.

No major changes are planned at W.T. Woodson High School this year, wrote principal Robert Elliott, via e-mail, although the school is expecting renovations around 2007. Trailers will begin arriving in the summer and fall of 2006, wrote Elliott.

During the year, Woodson’s PTSA will sponsor Friday-night sock hops as alcohol-free alternatives following home games. Faculty and staff will continue to focus on overcoming challenges posed by the "No Child Left Behind" law, wrote Elliott. The school houses two regional special education programs for students, some of whom come from outside Fairfax.

Enrollment continues to increase, wrote Elliott, and will be somewhere between 2,050 and 2,100 in the coming year.

<bt>Frost Middle

4101 Pickett Road

Fairfax, VA 22032


Principal: Marti Jo Jackson

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Thursday, Sept. 8, 7 p.m.

At Frost Middle School this year, writes principal Marti Jo Jackson in an e-mail interview, instructors will be focusing on "data driven differentiation." In this teaching method, teachers and administrators look at each student’s performance and tailor the instruction methods to match each child’s needs.

Some new programs in the curriculum include electives such as creative writing and publications, keeping with the school’s focus on literacy.

There are 1,111 students enrolled at Frost this year. The school is a few hundred students over capacity and has six trailers.

Frost has hired several new teachers to replace staff who retired, moved away or were promoted, as well as for the new elective classes. These teachers come from other Fairfax County public schools, as well as from the midwest, New York and San Diego, writes Jackson.

Lanier Middle

3710 Bevan Drive

Fairfax, VA 22030


Principal: Rodney Moore

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Thursday, Sept. 15, 7 p.m. for seventh grade; Thursday, Oct. 6, 7 p.m. for eighth grade

The big news at Lanier Middle School is its renovations. Earlier this year, the City of Fairfax approved a bond for construction work, and now the school is collecting contractor bids. In anticipation of the renovations, said assistant principal Scott Poole, Lanier Middle School removed all 12 trailers from the front of the school and rented them to Fairfax High School. They replaced the trailers with four "quad" buildings of four classrooms each.

If all goes well, said Poole, renovations will begin around March. They will last two years at most, he said.

As for academic programs, Lanier is continuing its work to become a professional learning community school with a collaborative relationship between parents, teachers, students and administrators. No major changes to the schedule or instructional program have been made, said Poole.

Lanier Middle School is expecting a lower enrollment than last year, of just under 1,000 students, said Poole.

Luther Jackson Middle

3020 Gallows Road

Falls Church, VA


Principal: Carol Robinson

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Thursday, Sept. 15, 7 p.m.

Luther Jackson Fall Clean-Up Day: Saturday, Oct. 15, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

VolunteerFest: Saturday, Oct. 22 (Alternate date: Oct. 15)

Merrifield Day: Saturday, Oct. 22

Construction of a 14-room addition at Luther Jackson Middle School began in July, wrote principal Carol Robinson in an e-mail interview. Along with the addition, renovation plans include realigning the road that circles around the back of the building, redesigning the landscaping, and erecting a gated opening between the school and the shopping center next door.

"With good weather and superb construction work, we will enjoy completion in April, at which time we will say ‘goodbye’ to 14 outdoor classrooms," wrote Robinson.

Luther Jackson’s enrollment is down from previous years, wrote Robinson. The school is expecting under 1,000 students.

Teachers and administrators are focusing on reading comprehension, nonfiction writing and technology in the coming year, wrote Robinson.