Upcoming Events and Important News

Summer 2021 Playdates for Rising Kinders & New VES Students

****Update Sunday, July 25 at 3:40 p.m.: As of now today's 4:00 p.m. playdate is still on and a PTA volunteer will be at the playground to greet new families and hand out freeze pops. However, according to the radar, rain and possible storms are located just west of Gainesville and Leesburg and are heading east. If it begins to rain or we hear/see thunder and lightening, we will head home so everyone is safe. If today's playdate is interrupted by weather, two more playdates are on the calendar: Wed. August 4 from 5:00-6:30 p.m. and Sat. August 14 from 9:00-10:30 a.m. Thank you!****

Original post: The Vienna Elementary PTA invites families of rising VES Kindergarteners and students new to attending VES in person to join us for popsicles on the VES playground for four playdates this summer.

The dates/times are:

Thurs. July 15 from 5:00-6:30 p.m.
Sun. July 25 from 4:00-5:30 p.m.
Wed. August 4 from 5:00-6:30 p.m.
Sat. August 14 from 9:00-10:30 a.m.

Siblings are welcome! All children and unvaccinated adults must wear masks. The PTA will supply the frozen treats, but please bring your own water bottles. Looking forward to seeing you!

Changes due to inclement weather will be announced on www.ves-pta.org and VES PTA social media accounts. Questions? Please email president@ves-pta.org


Happy Summer!

We wish you and your families a safe, happy, and as-close-to-normal-as-possible summer. Stay tuned for information on summer playdates for rising Kindergarteners and families with students new to VES.


EPI School Supply Kits On Sale Now

The School Supply Program is BACK and VES families can now order school supply kits for next year. The kits are only available for purchase online and the sale will run through July 6th.  

Go to www.educationalproducts.com/shoppacks and enter the school ID, VIE008 (3 letters/3 numbers).  Select your child's grade for the 2021-2022 school year and follow the directions to complete your order. Keep your online confirmation as your receipt. School Supply Kits will be delivered to school for distribution. If you have questions, please contact Alison McKee at 703-304-8852 or alisonmckee0519@gmail.com.


Virtual PTA Meeting Monday, May 17 at 7:00 p.m. to Vote In New Officers for 2021-22


Please join us for the last PTA meeting of the year on Monday, May 17, at 7:00 p.m. on Zoom. On the agenda: voting in the new PTA Board members for 2021-22 and an update from Principal Carmichael. An enormous thank you to the following parents who volunteered to serve as PTA officers for the upcoming school year:

  • Incoming President: Taylor Krieger
  • Incoming Vice President: Position still open; volunteers welcome!
  • Incoming Treasurer: Jing Sun
  • Incoming Secretary: Gul Raza Gharbieh

We welcome and encourage all PTA members and parents and guardians of VES students to join us for the virtual meeting and to gather afterward at Bear Branch Tavern, located at 133 Maple Ave. E in Vienna. If you are unable to attend the virtual meeting, a recording of the meeting and the minutes will be posted on the PTA website.

Want to join the PTA meeting Monday, May 17 at 7:00 p.m.? Please email Co-Presidents Heather Kenney and Stefanie Petrucelli at president@ves-pta.org so the Zoom link and password can be sent to you. 


VES Library Virtual Spring Book Fair Open Through May 15

Young readers rejoice! Thanks to VES Librarian Extraordinaire Paulette Torpey and Bookworm Central, the VES library’s virtual spring book fair is live and will run through Saturday, May 15. Additional information and a link to the book fair are available here on the Vienna ES website. Please contact Mrs. Torpey at ptorpey@fcps.edu with questions. Thank you for supporting the VES library!


Dining for Dollars at Rita’s of Vienna Wednesday, May 26

Come get a sweet treat from Rita’s of Vienna on Wednesday, May 26 from 3:00 to 9:00 p.m. and support the VES PTA. Enjoy an Italian ice, custard, blendini, milkshake or any other treat and 20% of your purchase will be donated back to our school! Be sure to mention Vienna ES when you order. Rita’s is located at 116 Church St. NW in Vienna.



Recording, Minutes of April 27 PTA Meeting Now Available 


A recording of the VES PTA meeting held Tuesday, April 27 via Zoom is now available at this link. Principal John Carmichael and Vice Principal Even Montaquila discussed staffing changes, SOLs, and a new FCPS proposal to renovate the VES playground. The meeting minutes and images of the proposed playground are available at this link. 


Staff Appreciation Week Is May 3-7


VES Staff Appreciation Week is coming up soon! Scheduled for May 3-7, Staff Appreciation Week will coincide with National Teacher Appreciation Week. 

The VES PTA Staff Appreciation Committee will ensure that all 74 of our hard-working VES staff members receive a treat or gesture of thanks each day that week. Even though the PTA will be honoring all staff members throughout the week, families and students are more than welcome to celebrate and thank VES staff members and teachers electronically or in person in whatever manner they choose if they’d like. 

If families do want to send in cards and gifts, the front office asked that food items kindly be pre-packaged. Not all teachers are working in the building, so if you would like to send in a gift or item for a teacher who works remotely please consider a non-perishable item such as a plant. 

Because of the virtual start to the school year many classes do not have a room parent as they have had in the past. As such, families should feel free to honor teachers and staff as they see fit and are comfortable doing so. Any gesture to thank them would be appreciated. If you have any questions please email president@ves-pta.org


Update on PTA Officers for 2021-22 School Year


Great news! A number of parents have volunteered to serve as officers on the new PTA board for the 2021-22 school year, but the Vice President position is still open. Other details are being finalized and as soon as they’re complete we’ll announce the new officer candidates and confirm the final PTA meeting date and time to vote them in for next year. The final meeting of the year is currently scheduled for Wednesday, June 2 but will likely be moved to Monday, May 17. THANK YOU to these kind individuals for volunteering to lead the PTA and help support the VES students and staff! 


Thank You to the Wine Out Committee


A heartfelt thank you to Wine Out Chair Erin Moseley, the Wine Out Committee, and Vienna Vintner for modifying the Wine Out Fundraiser for the second year in a row as a result of  pandemic-related restrictions. The VES community appreciates you! 

Congratulations to the following 2021 Wine Out Raffle Winners, whose names were drawn last week: 

-- Trish Helsley, who won the Bartaco gift card

-- Shannon Cilman, who won the Kendra Scott jewelry set, and

-- Georgia McKain, who won the Dyson vacuum

Thank you to all the parents who bought raffle tickets and shopped at Vienna Vintner last week to help the VES PTA! 

Spring Scavenger Hunt


Reminder that an outdoor, just-for-fun scavenger hunt for VES students of all ages is available at this link. There are three parts to the scavenger hunt, and families can complete all three or pick and choose which ones they prefer to do. Please have an adult accompany students or make sure students get their parents’ or caregivers’ permission and help before setting out to complete the scavenger hunt. No rush, no time limits, and no deadlines -- just go at your own pace after school hours or on the weekend as you wish and are able. Happy Spring!



Wine Out Is Back April 15-18! Buy Raffle Tickets Online Today


From Thursday, April 15 through Sunday, April 18, Vienna Vintner will donate 20% of proceeds to the VES PTA. This applies to purchases made in store (masks required!) or orders placed over the phone for curbside pickup or delivery. Just mention the VES PTA Wine Out at the time of purchase. We’re also holding a raffle to coincide with Wine Out. Vienna Vintner is located at 320 Maple Ave. East in Vienna. Click here for the flyer. For more info and to purchase tickets online via Paypal, go to www.ves-pta.org/wine-out-2021.


Urgent Call for VES PTA President or Co-Presidents for 2021-22 School Year


As of April 12, we have volunteers who have kindly agreed to serve as VES PTA Vice President, Treasurer and Secretary for the 2021-22 school year. (Thank you!) Now we just need a President or Co-Presidents so that the VES PTA can keep its charter and continue providing financial support to help VES students and staff. 

The President or Co-Presidents will be essential in helping VES return to a sense of new normalcy next year. The PTA pays for several VES programs and covers many VES expenses, including supplemental food for families with food insecurity, technology equipment for classrooms, field trip buses, and supplies for teachers and staff just to name a few. The President and Treasurer manage the VES PTA finances, and both are required to sign checks. If the President position is not filled, these important programs will no longer be funded.

Serving as President is much easier if you have a partner to serve as Co-President, so talk to your friends, find a buddy, and let us know if you are interested in taking on this important and rewarding role. If you are interested in volunteering, please email current Co-Presidents Heather Kenney and Stefanie Petrucelli at president@ves-pta.org. We're happy to answer questions, provide direction, and help you throughout the transition and into next year as you need us. For details on the dozens of ways the PTA supports and helps VES students and staff, please see https://www.ves-pta.org. Thank you!



Minutes, Recording Now Available of March 3 PTA Meeting, Discussion with Authors of Something Happened in Our Town


The minutes and a recording are now available of the March 3 virtual PTA meeting, which included an update from Principal John Carmichael on the return to in-person learning and a discussion on Race and Racism with Marietta Collins, PhD and Ann Hazzard, PhD, co-authors of the book Something Happened in Our Town. We were honored to have these award-winning authors join us for a very important and timely discussion. An info sheet provided by authors that provides antiracism resources for adults can be found here: https://www.ves-pta.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Antiracism-Resources-for-Adults.pdf



Nothing Bundt Cakes Dining for Dollars on Thursday, March 18

Let’s celebrate! On Thursday March 18, stop by Nothing Bundt Cakes to get a yummy treat and help the VES PTA! 25% of all sales from that day will be donated back to Vienna Elementary – just be sure to mention Vienna Elementary when ordering. Only orders that are picked up from Nothing Bundt Cakes on 3/18 can be used toward this fundraiser. Remember, the shop has amazing cakes, but they also have a great selection of gifts and decorations!


Minutes, Video Available of Feb. 9 PTA Meeting and Principal Q&A

The minutes and a recording of the February 9 virtual VES PTA Meeting and Q&A with VES Principal John Carmichael are now available. The meeting also included a presentation from the VES Assistant Principal Eben Montaquila on the school's return to school plan. For the minutes, click here. For a recording of the meeting, see:


Important Note from the VES Front Office on Return to School Changes

If you need to make a change for your student to go from 100% Virtual to In-Person instruction, please let the school know by noon on Wednesday, February 10.  The school needs time to make sure room assignments are large enough for the number of students scheduled to be in the classroom and make changes as necessary, schedule transportation, and make sure staff support is in place to be able to accommodate your request.  Please email Shelly Baumer at smbaumer@fcps.edu with any requests for a change.  Thank you!


Virtual PTA Meeting & Q&A With Principal Carmichael February 9 at 6:15 p.m., Followed by Optional Wine Tasting


Please join us on Zoom at 6:15 p.m. on Tuesday, February 9 for a virtual VES PTA meeting and Q&A with VES Principal John Carmichael regarding the return to in-person learning. Want to submit a question for Mr. Carmichael? Use this form or go to www.ves-pta.org/form. **Deadline for question submissions is Monday, February 8 at 9:00 p.m.** Click here for the meeting agenda

Directly following the PTA meeting we’ll move on to a virtual wine tasting hosted by the Vienna Wine Outlet for those who would like to participate. Please click here for the wine tasting flyer and a link to the private tasting page. Participation in the wine tasting is completely optional. If you do choose to participate, please purchase and order your wine from the Wine Outlet prior to the tasting. Items ordered from the Wine Outlet are available for delivery and pick up.

Interested in joining the PTA meeting and/or the wine tasting? Please email PTA Co-Presidents Heather Kenney and Stefanie Petrucelli at president@ves-pta.org so we can add you to the list and send you a Zoom link for the meeting and wine tasting.

Save the Date!

Wednesday, March 3 from 6:30-7:00 p.m.: PTA Meeting/Parent Discussion on Race and Racism with the co-authors of the book Something Happened in Our Town. More details on this event will be included in the next issue of the Viking Voice and posted on the PTA’s social media accounts.


VES PTA Scavenger Hunt Coming Soon 

As the gray days of Winter tick by and inch us closer to Spring, the VES PTA is planning a Scavenger Hunt for students that will include both virtual and outdoor clues and items. All VES students are welcome and encouraged to participate! More details will be announced soon. 


Looking Ahead to the Next School Year: New PTA Officers Needed!

Although most VES PTA programs and events have been put on hold as a result of the pandemic, we expect to ramp back up as soon as it is safe to do so. The following list includes just a few of the events and programs the PTA sponsors throughout the year:

Initiatives to Help VES Families with Food Insecurity

5k and Family Fun Run/Walk

After School and Summer Classes and Camps 

Bike & Walk to School Programs

Bingo Night

Dining for Dollars           

Donuts with Dad & Muffins with Mom

Faculty Basketball Game

Family Dance & Teacher Raffle

Family Socials 

Great Art 


Science Extravaganza 

Teacher/Staff Development & Appreciation

Team Projects & Competitions in STEM  

VES Garden

Continuing these programs will be more important than ever going forward -- particularly in the 2021-22 school year -- and will be dependent upon new officers being in place by June. The current PTA board is term limited and in a few short months must pass the torch on to a new secretary, treasurer, vice president, and president (or co-presidents). If you are interested in volunteering for one of these important positions, please use this form to send current co-presidents Heather Kenney and Stefanie Petrucelli your information and any questions you may have. [Update: we have received interest in the VP position (thank you!).] Serving as president is much easier if you have a partner to serve as co-president, so talk to your friends, find a buddy, and consider taking on these important and rewarding roles! Please email Heather and Stefanie at president@ves-pta.org with questions. Thank you! 

Happy Holidays!

To the entire VES community, we wish you a happy and peaceful holiday season. We’re looking forward to a healthy New Year and hoping it will be as close to normal as possible. Have a safe and restful holiday break! The next issue of the Viking Voice will be emailed on Sunday, January 3.


Many Thanks to Parents, Teachers and Staff

As we wind down this most unusual year, we want to say thank you again to VES parents, families, teachers and staff for your many kindnesses and steadfast support. You have not hesitated to lend a helping hand this year, whether it be donating gift cards to families in need or assisting the PTA Board with yearbook deliveries. We are sincerely grateful and hope we are able to see your smiling faces in person in the coming months.


Need to Drop off Holiday Gifts for Teachers and Staff? Please Drop Off by 4:00 p.m. Monday, Dec. 14

Several parents have inquired about sending holiday gifts to teachers and staff, as most classes do not have room parents this year. If parents and students would like to send gifts and items to teachers and staff, they are welcome to send them electronically and/or they can drop them off at the VES office by 4:00 p.m. Monday, December 14 so the VES front office has time to distribute items before the holiday break.** Please clearly write the recipient's name on items brought to the office.


VES Fall/Winter Virtual Book Fair Open Through Fri. Dec. 18

Readers rejoice! The VES virtual book fair Web site is now up and running, so you can purchase books and support the VES library at the same time. The book fair will be open through this Friday, December 18. Questions? Please email VES Librarian Paulette Torpey at ptorpey@fcps.edu.


FCPS to Release Updates on Return to School Plan on January 5, 2021  

FCPS provided an update on its Return to School plans to the Fairfax County School Board during a work session on Thursday, December 10. Presentations from that work session include a Return to School Update for December 10, 2020 and FCPS Operational Levels, Groups, and VDOE Phase Guidance. FCPS plans to share its final decision-making tool with the Board on January 5, 2021.

Recording Available of VES PTA Virtual Discussion with School Board Member Melanie Meren

A recording is available of the November 11 VES PTA discussion with Fairfax County School Board Member Melanie K. Meren. We appreciate Ms. Meren taking the time to speak with us! Click here for the meeting recording:



Dining for Dollars at the Sandwich Shop Thursday, Dec. 3

Support VES while enjoying the best sandwiches in town! The Sandwich Shop will be donating 20% of sales to the VES PTA on Thursday, December 3 from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. If ordering online include “VES” or “Dining for Dollars” in the notes. The Sandwich Shop is located at 132 Church St., NW.


Virtual PTA Meeting Tuesday, December 1 at 6:30 p.m.

Please join us for our third virtual PTA meeting of the year on Tuesday, December 1 at 6:30 p.m. Items on the agenda include an update from VES Principal John Carmichael and a presentation from VES Librarian Paulette Torpey. Want to join the meeting? Please email PTA Co-Presidents Heather Kenney and Stefanie Petrucelli at president@ves-pta.org to receive the meeting link via e-mail.


VES PTA Virtual Discussion with Fairfax County School Board Member Melanie K. Meren Wednesday, November 11 at 7:00 p.m.

Throughout the fall, FCPS and the Fairfax County School Board have continued working toward the goal of bringing students back into the buildings for in-person instruction. Plans have changed and evolved since July when parents made back-to-school choices for this school year, and depending on health-related conditions in the community it is possible that  plans and timing may change yet again. To explore these and many other issues, Fairfax County School Board Member Melanie K. Meren has agreed to join the VES PTA for a virtual discussion the evening of Wednesday, November 11 at 7:00 p.m. Want to join the discussion? Please email Co-Presidents Heather Kenney and Stefanie Petrucelli at president@ves-pta.org to receive the Zoom meeting link and password prior to the meeting. Want to submit a question for Ms. Meren? Please use this form to send questions by Sunday, Nov. 8 at 9:00 p.m.

Background: FCPS Superintendent Scott Brabrand presented an updated Return to School report and recommendations to the school board on Thursday, October 15. Board members were generally split on consensus regarding timing and suggested revisions to the in-person learning model. School board members and Dr. Brabrand will revisit many of those issues at the school board’s November 12 work session. 

We appreciate Ms. Meren scheduling time to speak with us and sharing her thoughts on the remainder of the 2020-21 school year.

NEW -- VES Principal Q&A with parents Thursday, October 29, at 8:00 a.m.

Principal John Carmichael is hosting a Q&A with parents on Thursday, October 29, at 8:00 a.m. Please RSVP and submit questions to Shelly Baumer at smbaumer@fcps.edu by 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, October 28. You will receive a link after you RSVP to attend the meeting.

Principal Q&A, Student Wellness Presentation from October 20 PTA Meeting Available

The following documents from the VES PTA meeting on October 20 are now available: the meeting minutes and Principal Carmichael's answers to parents' questions and a presentation on student wellness shared by VES Counselor Sharon Powers.


Dining for Dollars at The Casual Pint Sunday, November 8 from Noon-8:00 p.m.

Support VES and grab food and drinks in time for Sunday football at The Casual Pint, a VES-family owned pub in Falls Church, on Sunday, November 8, from Noon-8:00 p.m. The Casual Pint is located at 6410 Arlington Blvd in Falls Church -- about a 15-minute drive from Vienna -- and features a kid-friendly menu and great food for the grown-ups! Show the attached flyer or mention VES and The Casual Pint will donate 20% of profits back to the VES PTA. Online ordering and take out are both available! https://fallschurch.thecasualpint.com


Chipotle Dining for Dollars on Tues., October 13 from 4:00-8:00 p.m.

Support VES by participating in our Dining for Dollars event at Chipotle in Vienna on Tuesday, October 13 from 4-8 p.m. Order online and pickup Chipotle by using the Promo Code WAEQCD8 on the Chipotle app or website. You can also order in person and mention the VES fundraiser. Either way, Chipotle will donate 33% of the proceeds to the VES PTA.

Kona Ice on Blacktop for VES Students Fri., Sept. 25 from 3:30-5:00 p.m.

Kona Ice is coming to the Vienna Elementary School blacktop this Friday, September 25 from 3:30-5:00 p.m.! This is a FREE event for all VES Students. A friendly reminder to please wear a mask and social distance. Event sponsored by the VES PTA. We hope to see you there!



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


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

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