Summer Ends, School Begins

Summer Ends, School Begins

Elementary schools prepare to open doors Tuesday, Sept. 5.

Clifton Elementary

7010 Clifton Road

Clifton, VA 20124


Enrollment: 400

Principal: Arthur Polton

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Morning Kindergarten, Grades 1-3, Tuesday, Sept. 19, 6:30 p.m.; Afternoon Kindergarten, Grades 4-6, Thursday, Sept. 21, 6:30 p.m.

Parents at Clifton Elementary School can look forward to extra chances to meet with their child's teachers this year, as the school will begin offering curriculum nights during the year.

Principal Arthur Polton said the curriculum nights will be offered to help families "learn more about the delivery of instruction in math, reading, science and technology."

More information will be sent home to parents in the school's newsletter after the school year begins.

Enrollment for this year is expected to be around 400 students, which Polton said is close to last year. No physical changes are expected at the school.

"We want to continue to improve our SOL test scores and continue to work with all members of the community," Polton said of his goals for the upcoming year.

A family picnic has been scheduled for Friday, Sept. 29 at 5:30 p.m., which will bring together students and their families and the staff at the school, including six new staff members.

Fairview Elementary

5815 Ox Road

Fairfax Station, VA 22039


Enrollment: 600

Principal: Easter Lancaster

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Kindergarten, Grades 1-3, Tuesday, Sept. 12, 7 p.m.; Grades 4-6, Thursday, Sept. 14, 7 p.m.

Students at Fairview Elementary will have at least two new faces welcoming them when they arrive on Tuesday, Sept. 5.

New Principal Easter Lancaster and new Assistant Principal Patti Brown have joined the staff at the school over the summer.

For her new school, Lancaster has set a goal of improving achievement and closing achievement gaps through technology improvement, balanced literacy and compacted math opportunities for students at Fairview.

Enrollment for this year is expected to be 600 students, a steady number from last year.

Halley Elementary

8850 Cross Chase Circle

Fairfax Station, VA 22039


Enrollment: 586

Principal: Janet Funk

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Kindergarten, Grades 1-3, Tuesday, Sept. 12, 7 p.m.; Grades 4-6, Wednesday, Sept. 13, 7 p.m.

Principal Janet Funk said students should expect more of the same when they return to Halley Elementary School next week.

The school will continue its FECEP program, the Family and Early Childhood Educational Program, which is similar in concept to HeadStart.

In addition, Funk said the staff and administration are working on "narrowing the achievement gap between our LEP, African American, Hispanic and economically disadvantaged students and their white classmates," and will be utilizing a Teacher Leadership Development Grant.

No physical changes are planned at Halley this year, Funk said. Enrollment is expected to be 586 students when school opens on Tuesday, Sept. 5. School hours for students will be slightly different, starting at 8:45 a.m. and ending at 3:15 p.m.

Two teachers that are new to Fairfax County will be on staff at the school, Funk said.

Lorton Station Elementary

9298 Lewis Chapel Road

Lorton, VA 22079


Enrollment: 990

Principal: Susan Garrison

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Kindergarten, Grades 1-3, Monday, Sept. 11, 7 p.m.; Grades 4-6, Tuesday, Sept. 12, 7 p.m.

No major changes are expected in the curriculum at Lorton Station Elementary School for the upcoming year, said Principal Susan Garrison.

"We're not adding any new programs, we're going to continue with what's already in place," Garrison said.

No physical changes are expected either, she said.

"This year, we're going to work on forming communities and connecting what we know to what we need to know," Garrison said of her educational goals for the year.

Twelve new staff members have been added throughout the school, she said, where enrollment remains at 990 students.

"We hope to continue our academic success," Garrison said.

Newington Forest Elementary

8001 Newington Forest Ave.

Springfield, VA 22153


Enrollment: 600

Principal: John Kren

Web site:

Back To School Night: Tuesday, Sept. 19; K-2; Wednesday, Sept. 20; 3-6.

<bt>Students at Newington Forest will be arriving at school one hour earlier for the 2006-07 school year, said Assistant Principal Christine Gray, the result of a modified bell schedule for middle school students at South County Secondary.

"For us, we'll be doing what we do anyway," she said. "It'll just be earlier."

Principal John Kren said the adjustment may actually be more difficult for the parents than the school staff.

"The staff is happy about it," he said. "We think it's going to be a great thing."

No other major changes are expected to Newington Forest this year, Kren said, adding that he anticipates a calm, quiet year ahead for his staff.

"We've added one special education teacher, one general education teacher and one G/T resource instructor," he said, a smaller number of new staff additions than in recent years.

Enrollment is expected to be at about 600 students, about the same as last year, Kren said.

The focus of education for the upcoming year will be more on each individual child instead of the whole school as a group, he said. "We want to make a difference for each and every child," Kren said.

Sangster Elementary

7429 Reservation Drive

Springfield, VA 22153


Enrollment: 745

Principal: Gail Kinsey

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Kindergarten, Monday, Sept. 11, 6:30 p.m.; Grades 1 and 3, Monday, Sept. 11, 7:30 p.m.; Grade, 4, Thursday, Sept. 14, 5:30 p.m.; Grade 5, Thursday, Sept. 14, 6:30 p.m.; Grade 6, Thursday, Sept. 14, 7:30 p.m. New parent orientation, Wednesday, Sept. 13, 9 a.m.

Students returning to Sangster Elementary School will have a slightly different class schedule waiting for them, said Principal Gail Kinsey.

On Mondays, children will attend class from 9 a.m.-1:10 p.m., with lessons on Tuesdays through Fridays from 9 a.m.-3:35 p.m. Morning Kindergarten classes will be between 9 a.m. and 11:05 a.m., while the rest of the week will be scheduled for 9 a.m.-12:20 p.m. Students in the afternoon Kindergarten class will be in school between 11:05 a.m.-1:10 p.m. on Monday, but 12:20-3:35 p.m. the rest of the week, Kinsey said.

Enrollment is still expected to be at about 745 students, she said.

No physical changes will be made to the facility, Kinsey said, and teachers will continue to focus on working in teams to best meet the needs of their students. In math classes, teachers will use grouping and compacted curriculum practices to ensure each child learns to the best of his or her ability. SmartBoard technology will be incorporated into several classroom, she said, and the school will be working with Cherry Run Elementary on creating reading strategies.

A handful of new teachers will be greeting students at Sangster, Kinsey said, including some teachers from the special education department.

An open house has been scheduled for Thursday, Aug. 31 at 2 p.m., but new students and their families are being asked to arrive at 1:30 p.m.

Silverbrook Elementary

9350 Crosspointe Drive

Fairfax Station, VA 22039


Enrollment: 1,205

Principal Robert Holderbaum

Web site:

Back-to-School Night: Kindergarten, Grades 1-3, Wednesday, Sept. 20, 7 p.m.; Grades 4-6, Thursday, Sept. 21, 7 p.m.

A new four-room modular classroom has been installed at Silverbrook Elementary, said Principal Robert Holderbaum.

To help accommodate the school's 1,205 students, the school now has 22 outdoor classroom, housed in a 10-room modular, two four-room quads, two single-room trailers and what Holderbaum calls a "duplex."

New faces will abound at the school this year, as a total of 14 new teachers have been added to the staff.

"We've expanded our English for Speakers of Other Languages program to help meet the growing need in our area for this service," Holderbaum said. Three new teachers were hired for that program, which had only two teachers at the beginning of the 2005-06 school year.

Additionally, new teachers were added in third, fifth and sixth grades, along with a new counselor, a librarian, a speech and language specialist and a new art teacher, to list a few.

Holderbaum said he's set a theme for this year of "Building a Better 'Brook," which he said focuses more on being available to help his staff and students in any way they might need.

"We do a lot here to make people feel welcome," he said. "In a school of 1,205 students, parents worry about their child getting lost. We do what we can to keep that from happening."

Holderbaum said he and his staff agree that teaching children to read and write is important, but teaching children to get along with each other may be their top priority.