The COVID-19 crisis has had a dramatic impact on us all, and especially on our children. Disruptions to school, food insecurity, economic downtown and social distancing have had an even greater impact on the nearly 60,000 FCPS students in need. In the midst of this uncertainty and fear, the Fairfax community has responded with overwhelming kindness and generosity. To date, more than $500,000 has been raised through donations to our Access for All Fund, providing technology access and connectivity; as well as Collect for Kids, the annual effort to furnish school supplies for these students. This school year may look different for our students, but thanks to this outpouring of support, we can ensure they have the tools they need to succeed.
For more information on these efforts, please visit the “Impact” tab at the top of our website.
At its regular meeting on June 23, the board of directors of the Foundation for FCPS elected new leadership for the coming year. Congratulations to all!
Officers for 2020-2021
Chair: Len Forkas, Milestone Communications, Inc.
Vice Chair: Sunil Budhrani, M.D., Innovation Health
Treasurer: Jeri Fellerman
Secretary: Cindy Anderson, Boeing
More information on the Board of Directors can be found in the “About Us” tab on this website.
Capital One has donated $90,000 to the Foundation for Fairfax County Public Schools (the Foundation) to support the purchase of MiFi units for students without internet connections in their homes during the COVID-19 quarantine. The units are being used to provide students in need with internet connectivity for up to five devices so that they can participate in classroom activities and distance learning.
To read more, or learn about the other ways Capital One supports our students, visit https://www.fcps.edu/news/capital-one-invests-fairfax-county-schools-support-student-connectivity-during-distance
Since 2016, Leidos has been sponsoring the First Robotics team at Chantilly High School. Learn about how Leidos’ support, including employee mentoring, is helping building the workforce of the future. To read more about this partnership and its impact on students, visit https://www.fcps.edu/blog/leidos-supports-workforce-development-through-project-based-learning
Watch a video of the Robotics team in action here
Your contributions have made it smoother for some of our neediest students. With your help, the Foundation’s “Access for All” fund has raised over $175,000 since March 13. The money has been used to :
* assist FCPS in delivering 30,000 school supply kits directly to students in Title I schools.
* purchase mobile wifi connections so students can learn at home.
* provide grocery gift cards for homeless or unaccompanied youth in FCPS.
* provide free adult meals to over 2,000 people at the FCPS Grab & Go sites.
* assist local food banks with funds to purchase food to be distributed to FCPS families.
Your response to “Access for All” has been heart-warming and gratifying. Thank you. The need is on-going and your continued support is much appreciated.
Funds raised at the Foundation will help to provide ACCESS for the nearly 60,000 students who live in poverty. These students need access to technology, school supplies, and connectivity, as well as nutrition.
FCPS and Food and Nutrition Services are providing “Grab and Go” meals at many sites and through bus route distribution. A listing of all food resources, including non-profit organizations that provide food assistance, in every area of the county are listed on the FCPS website.
From now until June 30th, the Foundation for FCPS will benefit from Whole Foods’ Nickels for Non-Profits program. Every time you re-use a bag at the stores below, Whole Foods will donate a nickel to the Foundation. The goal of the program is to reduce the use of new bags, while increasing funding for a local non-profit.
Participating stores: Fair Lakes, McLean, Springfield, Tysons Corner and Vienna.
Thank you Whole Foods – now let’s get shopping!
Teachers at Glen Forest Elementary School were awarded a Foundation for FCPS grant to provide a field trip for the 5th grade class to the Thinkabit Lab on the Falls Church campus of Virginia Tech. At the lab, students explore STEM related careers and assess their own strengths, interests and values. Then students work in teams, in the technical lab, to engineer, code and build a robo-craft. These creations were displayed in a gallery to the rest of the class, and everyone was able to gather valuable feedback and enjoy seeing what their classmates built. For many students, this was the first time they had been on a college campus, or a STEM lab, or had given thought to how specific careers could be related to STEM and what that actually meant. In many cases, visiting the lab was a catalyst to change student perspectives positively about STEM careers and what is possible for their future.
Students in the Young Scholars program at Mosby Woods participated in a 10-week after-school program, funded through the Foundation for FCPS, to explore potential solutions to food shortages in the world. The students learned how to engineer a vertical farm as one solution to the problem. They learned how an engineer would approach the problem, and followed the engineering design process to develop and test a solution. Students used a number of resources including recycled products to build a water pump system and light system to construct three different levels of a vertical farm. They started out small, learning about the process and uses of technology in many aspects of life, and worked up to their final design by creating window gardens, investigating ways to deliver water to different locations through tubes and pumps, and making sure each location receives direct light through lights and mirrors.
After completing their vertical farms, the students presented their findings to professionals in the field from Arcadia Center for Sustainable Food & Agriculture, and to the Fairfax Food Council. They were able to interact with professionals, and answer questions about the real-world implications of the students’ work. Students gained a lot from their experience, including working in small groups, using critical thinking, applying creative skills, and learning about environmental stewardship. All of them wanted the project to last longer!
Great job, Mosby Woods kids!
Mosby woods students present results of vertical farm work to Arcadia Center and the Fairfax food Council.
Centreville Elementary School has a Green Ribbon with the US Department of Education and is an Eco-School with the National Wildlife Federation. Part of the school’s philosophy is teaching students that stewardship can be a profession. To that end, the Foundation for FCPS provided a grant that enabled students to expand the school’s garden and continue to hold the student-run farmer’s market, the first such one in Virginia. Students in 4th-6th grades figure out what vegetables to grow, what factors will help them thrive, and what other materials are needed to run a successful market. The school also receives vegetables from a local organic farmer to supplement the market and enable the entire community to have more choices for healthy eating. Students learned through the year how to operate a business and developed critical life skills in collaborative, communication, planning, customer service and math.
In the Young Scholar’s Career Academy at Braddock Elementary, 54 students in 4th and 5th grades gathered either during lunch or before school to learn about future careers and college opportunities. With funds from the Foundation for FCPS, students and parents were able to take a field trip to George Mason University, where they had a tour from a current student who also grew up locally. Grant funds also provided supplies for students to research different careers and educational paths. The students created presentation boards that looked like magazine covers for each career or college that they researched. They were surprised at the variety of potential careers that existed, and many of them learned about a path for the first time. The students held a Career and College Fair for the whole school, so everyone could benefit and see some interesting new ideas for their future. The Foundation is proud to support this important program and give students a glimpse into the possibilities.