Upcoming Events and Important News

September 8, 2020: Welcome Back to School!

On behalf of the VES PTA Board, welcome to the 2020-21 school year! This year may look and feel quite different, but we plan to do all we can to keep the VES community connected, active, and informed. Keep an eye on social media and email for announcements about virtual meetings and programs. If health conditions allow, we’ll explore resuming in-person PTA events in a safe manner later this year. Our top priority for 2020-21 is continuing to help VES families facing food insecurity issues. Now more than ever we feel it is crucial that we work together to support families that need help.

Please email us at president@ves-pta.org with questions and ideas. We welcome your input and can’t wait to meet new families and see familiar faces!

Sincerely, PTA Co-Presidents Stefanie Petrucelli and Heather Kenney, Vice President Mitch Schwartz, Treasurer Kim Bryant, and Secretary Molly Peng

 

First PTA Meeting Tuesday, Sept. 22 on Zoom

Our first PTA meeting of the school year will be Tuesday, September 22 at 7:30 p.m. on Zoom. Items on the agenda include a Q&A with VES Principal John Carmichael and discussion and approval of the 2020-21 budget. We welcome and encourage all PTA members and parents and guardians of VES students to join us! 

Want to submit a question for Mr. Carmichael? Use this form. **Deadline for question submissions is Sunday, Sept. 20 at 9:00 p.m.** 

Want to join the PTA meeting Tuesday, Sept. 22 at 7:30 p.m? Please email Heather and Stefanie at president@ves-pta.org if you'd like to join the meeting so we can send you the Zoom meeting link and password prior to the meeting. An agenda will be posted soon.



August 25 Update: Preparing for Fall

 

Hello VES parents and caregivers! We hope you and your families have had a good summer. Although we are not able to host in-person back to school get togethers for new students and families this year, we are looking forward to seeing parents soon via monthly Zoom PTA meetings, the first of which will be Tuesday, Sept. 22 at 7:30 p.m. Details will be announced in early September. And if health conditions allow we sincerely hope that we're able to see you again in person in the next few months.

The first regular issue of the PTA's Viking Voice for the new school year will be published soon. In the meantime, please check our social media accounts for updates: Facebook: @VES.PTA; Instagram: VESPTA; and Twitter: @ViennaPTA. You can learn more about the VES PTA and find information on how you can join, volunteer, and donate on this website.

 

Grocery Gift Card Drive for VES Families with Food Insecurity

 

The VES PTA on behalf of the student community at Vienna Elementary School is announcing the launch of a fall grocery gift card drive to benefit VES families with food insecurity. A local nonprofit organization, Belong, provided assistance to families over the summer but that assistance is ending, so grocery gift cards for stores including Giant, Target, Safeway, and Wal-Mart will be collected Monday, August 25 through Tuesday, September 1 by the Bryant family. Once gift cards and donations are collected, gift cards will be handed over to VES Principal John Carmichael so he can distribute them to VES families in need.

To donate, you can drop off grocery gift cards at the Bryants' home at 231 Talahi Rd SE Vienna, VA. They are placing a donation box on a couch next to their front door and will be checking it regularly. You can also send electronic contributions to Brandon Bryant via Venmo or Paypal if you prefer. Venmo: @BrandonBryant75 and PayPal: bbryantmd@gmail.com. All funds sent to Brandon will be used to purchase Giant gift cards, which will then be given to Mr. Carmichael. Please email Kim Bryant at kimbjapan@yahoo.com with questions. The VES community was incredibly generous during this spring's grocery gift card drives, and VES families who need a helping hand will sincerely appreciate your assistance once again. Thank you!

 

Laptop/Supply Kit Pickup Reminder

Please see below for the VES administration's schedule for laptop and supply kit pickup the week of August 25.

If you ordered a supply kit through the PTA in the spring/early summer, pickup will be Wednesday, Aug. 26 from 9:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. on the VES blacktop near Door #12.

If you requested a laptop for your student(s), the pickup schedule is:

Tuesday, Aug. 25:
8:00 a.m. until 11:30 a.m.: VES will distribute laptops to 5th and 6th graders who requested a laptop. Sixth grade students please go to Door #1 and fifth grade students please go to Door #14.  
12:30 p.m. until 4:00 p.m.: VES will distribute laptops to 3rd and 4th graders who requested a laptop. Fourth graders please go to Door #1 and Third graders please go to Door #14.  

Thursday, August 27:
8:00 a.m. until 11:30 a.m.: VES will distribute laptops to Preschool students and 2nd graders who requested a laptop. Second graders please go to Door #1 and Preschool please go to Door #14.  
12:30 p.m. until 4 p.m.: VES will distribute laptops to students in Kindergarten and First grade who requested a laptop. Kindergarten please go to Door #1 and First grade please go to Door #14.  

Please fill out the Technology Permission Form and bring it with you https://www.fcps.edu/technology-permission-forms. All students who requested a laptop need to come to laptop distribution so they can sign into their computer at the school. Also, do not come to school if you have a fever or any other COVID 19 symptoms. Masks are required and please maintain social distance.

July 23 Update: On the switch to a virtual start to the school year, we're all in this together and will help each other through it

 

Dear VES Parents and Families,

In light of the revised plan for all FCPS students to begin the school year virtually, we hope you and your families are adjusting as best as you can to this change. Obviously things are quite a bit different than they were just a week ago when we submitted enrollment choices for our children. Although we are facing many uncertainties this coming school year that will be tied to health conditions in our region and state, we want you to know the PTA officers will do all that we can to help you and your families navigate these unknowns. We saw time and again this spring that unexpected challenges brought out the best in our VES community. At the end of the day no matter how bewildering the world may be, we can and should take comfort in the fact that the VES community is a kind and generous one full of thoughtful and creative students, parents, teachers, and staff. We are all in this together and we'll help each other through it.

Now a few quick notes and ways the PTA intends to move forward and support VES students and families as we approach September 8 and through the fall:

-- According to the VES front office, the school will likely inform parents and caregivers about students' class assignments in early September.

-- PTA-organized summer get-togethers for new VES students and families in August and early September are still a high priority, but they may be staggered or even virtual depending on the health conditions in Fairfax County over the next two to three weeks and whether Virginia remains in Phase 3 of its reopening plan.

-- The school front office will announce plans soon for the pick-up/distribution of 2020-21 school supplies and 2019-20 yearbooks for those who ordered them.

-- Many PTA events through Winter, including student favorites like the family dance and fall festival, will most likely be difficult if not impossible to schedule because of social distancing limitations. We will make every effort to alter other PTA activities and programs to become virtual if possible.

-- We intend to hold monthly Zoom meetings that will be open to *all* VES parents and caregivers regardless of enrollment choice or school assignment if in-person learning begins midyear. We hope to schedule another Zoom Q&A with VES Principal Carmichael in August, and we're reaching out to specialists and counselors with invitations to speak at the monthly meetings. A schedule of meetings and speakers will be released as soon as it is available.

-- Some parents across the county in recent weeks have discussed forming optional learning groups -- also referred to as study buddy groups, cohorts, or play groups -- for their children during distance/virtual learning. The VES PTA is looking at ways to set up a *very* simple platform where all VES parents are able to connect and indicate their interest in forming an optional and informal learning group or play group with other VES families, possibly based on grade, class, etc. Parents would be responsible for contacting each other and taking the ball from there, but the PTA would like to at least make it easier for everyone to share info and contact each other. The level of commitment and activities would be entirely up to families and groups. Some parents have considered hiring daily tutors or "education coaches" and splitting the cost with other families in a group while other parents want to form more casual play groups that meet periodically. Those decisions and group formations would be completely up to parents. Because of legal and insurance-related limitations, the PTA cannot organize groups of this nature or manage them, but we can help put you all in touch with each other so you can form groups if you'd like. More details on the platform to come soon. Reminder: class/teacher assignments will likely not be released until early September (see first item above).

The FCPS website provides regular updates on the Return to School plan, including updates to its FAQ for students and families. It is also continuing to provide food resources to FCPS families through the summer. You can find more information at https://www.fcps.edu/

We welcome your thoughts, ideas and questions and wish you all well. Please let us know how we can best assist you. We'll be back in touch soon.

Kind regards,
PTA Co-Presidents Heather Kenney and Stefanie Petrucelli
president@ves-pta.org

 

Q&A of July 7 PTA-Sponsored Virtual Parent Coffee With Principal Carmichael and Follow-Up Questions Now Available 


A video recording and Q&A are now available of the PTA-sponsored Virtual Parent Coffee with VES Principal John Carmichael on Return to School that was held via Zoom on Tuesday, July 7. The Q&A, which now includes follow-up questions answered by VES on July 13, is available at this link. A recording of the meeting is available here: https://us02web.zoom.us/rec/share/4NxIc_be-GFJG52d1G7zd6JmB5_GT6a8hCAaq_tfxBm4OlyStLyloinVa8CfTvVb

 

School Supply Sale Now Extended Through July 7! 


Even though we will be ending this school year virtually, we must continue to plan for the 2020-2021 school year. Therefore, the School Supply Program is back and the sale has been extended through July 7. The kits will only be available for purchase online. Our grade-level teams have carefully created these supply lists and the kits will contain supplies including hand sanitizers and Lysol wipes.  

With current supply situations and shipping delays at many major retailers, it is uncertain what the "Back to School" season will look like.  Be confident that these school supply kits will have all of the supplies your child needs to be prepared for class! Click here for information on pricing.

Go to www.educationalproducts.com/shoppacks and enter the school ID, VIE008 (3 letters/3 numbers).   Select your child's grade for the upcoming 2020-2021 school year and follow the directions to complete your order.  Keep your online confirmation as your receipt. School Supply Kits will be delivered to the School.  Arrangements will be made to distribute kits to families should there be an extended distance learning schedule.  If you have questions, please contact Alison McKee at 703-304-8852 or alisonmckee0519@gmail.com.




                Previous Updates on School Closure and Cancelled Events


April 26, 2020: Thank you from the VES PTA Board

It has been just over six weeks since our students and families last had a normal school day and familiar routine. Despite the unexpected circumstances of our lives right now, the kindness and generosity shown by the VES community -- parents, teachers, and staff members included -- has been overwhelming. Last week we put out a second call in as many months for gift cards to benefit VES families in need and within a few days we had received almost $2,500 in donations. There’s no doubt these are strange times. But we are fortunate and grateful to be surrounded by such caring neighbors, friends, VES staffers, and teachers. Thank you all! Stay safe and be well.

March 24, 2020: FCPS Schools Closed Through End of Academic Year
FCPS announced on March 23 that all FCPS schools will be closed through the end of the academic school year as a result of ongoing concerns about the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in our region. FCPS is in the process of sending details to families about distance learning and updates on food resources during the closure. In the meantime, you can find more information at https://www.fcps.edu/
 
We wish you and your families the best throughout this unprecedented time. Please feel free to email us with any questions you may have during the closure. We may not have the answers but we will do our best to help find them for you. Please stay healthy and safe!
 
Kind regards,
Heather Kenney and Stefanie Petrucelli
PTA Co-Presidents
president@ves-pta.org 

All Upcoming Events That Have Been Cancelled
Tues. March 31: VES Faculty Basketball Game at James Madison High School CANCELLED. We are hoping to reschedule for next year.

Sun. April 26: VES 5k and Fun Run. CANCELLED. We are hoping to reschedule for next year.

Thurs., April 30: VES PTA Wine Out at Vienna Vintner. April 30 event CANCELLED. We are working to determine whether the silent auction can proceed.

Tues., May 12: Rita's Dining for Dollars Walk up Window CANCELLED