langley eNews
January 14, 2021
from the president
I hope you were able to join us earlier this week for our book discussion on Who Gets In And Why, hosted by LHS College and Career Specialist Hannah Wolff, and our PTSA General Membership Meeting and Principal’s Coffee, where we learned about Langley’s Statement of Acceptance and the launch of the new PTSA Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee. If you missed either event, you can still tune in — click here for a recording of the book discussion and here for the meeting. These links and the meeting minutes are also posted on the PTSA website.

As the first semester winds down, students are in the process of making their course selections for 2021-22. Counselors met with students by grade level during the Langley Links period last week to review the registration process, and parents and students should have received an email on Jan 8 entitled Langley HS Academic Advising Resources. This email contains a wealth of information about registration, including teacher-produced asynchronous curriculum videos and links, registration dates, the LHS course catalog, AP course details, graduation requirements and more. When considering course selections, students should take into account the time associated with their extracurricular activities, sports and family to develop a manageable schedule in what we all hope will be a return-to-normal next fall.

Don’t forget to check the calendar! As with every January, just as we get back into our work and school routine, there are additional days off on the horizon. Over the next few weeks the student holidays and teacher workdays are Jan 18, 20, 22 (two-hour early release) and 25.

~ Kitty Gonzales, PTSA President
outstanding staff awards
In this extraordinary year, everyone at LHS has worked very hard to connect with students and to continue providing the quality of education for which Langley is known. Thank you to all — and congratulations to the winners of Langley’s three outstanding staff awards!

  • Outstanding LHS Operational Employee: Kwok Chan
  • Outstanding LHS Professional Employee: Lindsey Fisher
  • Outstanding LHS Teacher: Tricia Poythress
Mr. Chan has worked in the Langley Cafeteria for three years. Among the nominations, one student noted how hard Mr. Chan works each day, and how kind and enthusiastic he is in greeting and talking with students. Mr. Chan is looking forward to seeing students again when in-person learning resumes.
Dr. Fisher joined LHS in 2019 as our School-Based Technology Specialist. The switch to virtual learning brought immense and unexpected challenges, and Dr. Fisher has done a tremendous job supporting Langley’s faculty. In further recognition, Dr. Fisher was named Outstanding Professional Employee of the entire Langley Pyramid.
Ms. Poythress, Chair of the Career and Technical Education Department, has taught marketing at Langley for 20 years. Ms. Poythress provides a huge amount of inspiration and support to her marketing students, who are known to keep in touch with her for years after graduation.
mlk day of service
This Mon, Jan 18 is an opportunity to honor the life and legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. by engaging in this national day of service. To help students and families get involved, FCPS partnered with Neighborhood and Community Services and Volunteer Fairfax to organize virtual opportunities honoring MLK starting this Sat, Jan 16. Click here for more info.

For service opportunities organized by Langley, visit the LHS Service Learning webpage and scroll down to Winter 2020-2021 Updates for both virtual and hands-on activities. Due to covid-19, parents may serve as the supervising adult and verify hours when students enter time in x2Vol. Questions? Contact Betsy Shomaker at
diversity, equity and inclusion committee
The PTSA's new Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee (DEI) will support Langley’s focus on creating a safe space for all students. Our goal is to start the important conversation about how we can be a PTSA that includes and honors all voices, advocates for equity and celebrates the diversity in our Langley community.

Please come to the first (virtual) DEI meeting on Tues, Jan 26 at 8 pm! To attend, email committee chair Heather Murphy Capps at A Zoom link will be emailed closer to the meeting date.
citizenship essay contest
Students are invited to submit an entry to the Virginia PTA citizenship essay contest. This year's theme is How can we stand together when we are so far apart? Submissions must be 750 words or more and winners are featured in Virginia PTA publications.

Click here for the rules and entry form. Essays are submitted electronically and are due by Mon, Feb 1. Students must be PTSA members to enter the contests. Click here to join. Student membership is $5.
langley/mclean fcps boundary
FCPS announced the following meetings regarding the LHS/MHS adjustment process:

  • Thurs, Jan 21 at 7 pm: FCPS staff will present an option to the School Board.

  • Thurs, Jan 28 at 6 pm: MHS/LHS Boundary Public Hearing. The speakers list will open on Jan 18 — click here to sign up once the list is open.

  • Thurs, Feb 4 at 7 pm: The School Board will vote on the boundary adjustment.

To view the options under consideration and comments to date, click here. Please send your comments or ideas to
sports news
watch langley sports: We can’t pack the gym or stadium for games, but there’s still an opportunity to see the Saxons in action. To watch home events, click here for the Langley Sports Youtube channel. Away games are streamed by the host school — check @langleygleysports for the links on game days.

Langley events this weekend include basketball, gymnastics, wrestling, swim/dive, track and ice hockey. To view this month’s sports schedule, click here. Go, Saxons!
ice hockey: The varsity team won big last Friday, stomping division leader Madison HS 7-4. The Saxons' aggressive offense wore down the tough Madison goalie, with 50 shots on goals compared with the Warhawks’ 12 attempts. Langley's scoring bench was wide, with six players scoring goals: Kam Khazai scored twice and Mike Kuligowski, Noah Scheinerman, Charlie Tourbaf, Dan Veretenov and Max Veretenov each got the puck in the net.

Varsity’s next game is Fri, Jan 29 against Loudoun Valley HS/Woodgrove HS. Tomorrow night, the JV team faces off against the Madison HS/Riverside HS JV team.
staff spotlight
Lindsey Fisher, PhD, Langley’s School-Based Technology Specialist, works with teachers to help them use technology in meaningful, interesting and engaging ways. Starting at LHS in the fall of 2019, she had no idea how important that would become, just a few months later! Her efforts were recognized this year, as Dr. Fisher was named Outstanding Professional Employee both at LHS and in the Langley Pyramid.

The rollout of FCPS laptops to all students over the summer of 2019 proved to be fortuitous, as Dr. Fisher spent the school year before covid-19 working in-person with the faculty at Langley, both to learn what support they needed and brainstorming with teachers on ways to take advantage of the laptops in their courses.

While fairly new to Langley and northern Virginia, Dr. Fisher’s passion for teaching isn’t new. She grew up in Michigan and Wisconsin but moved to Georgia for college and work. “The frozen tundra was a little too cold for me,” she joked. After graduating with degrees in history and advertising from the University of Georgia and a stint in an advertising job, she got her master’s and teaching certification in social science education and taught World History in suburban Atlanta for eight years. After moving to northern Virginia, she continued to teach history for six years, first at a charter school in Washington, DC and then at McLean HS, until she started as Langley’s SBTS in 2019.

Dr. Fisher’s interest in curriculum development, technology in education and the craft of teaching grew over her time in the classroom, and led her to start a doctoral program while in Atlanta in Teaching and Learning at Georgia State, which she completed in 2018. The longer I taught and the more I used technology in the classroom, the more opportunities I saw for students to learn in meaningful, engaging ways. I love the opportunities technology provides teachers to give students choice and autonomy in their learning, to create authentic projects and products, and to explore what makes them curious about the world in the context of what they’re learning in the classroom,” she explained.

With Dr. Fisher and her husband both in education (he teaches history at Frost MS), the majority of her life seems to revolves around school. In her spare time, though, she loves football (especially the Georgia Bulldogs and Green Bay Packers) and Washington, DC teams, traveling and pugs. “We have two adorable, old, pug-mix dogs,” she added.

With school being online this year, a lot has changed for students, parents and teachers.
It’s been a challenge, but it’s amazing to see how much our teachers have risen to the challenges of the pandemic,” Dr. Fisher said. “As we continue through this year, I hope everyone remembers to be kind to themselves, and one another!” she added.

~ Zoe Borisnovna Preisman, Saxon Scope reporter
saxons, did you know…
use for the Saxons did you know blurb. stays small on the mobile view.
a recent North Carolina Journal of Medicine article highlights the risks and benefits of social media. It notes that “… new media have established an increasingly central presence in the lives of youth, presenting both new challenges and new opportunities. As the presence of new media only continues to grow, it will be essential to develop evidence-based approaches for encouraging healthy social media use in youth …”. Click here for the article.
class notes
Read below for class news. Click the green class buttons to go to each class's webpage.
Each year, the Virginia PTA honors seniors who have demonstrated a commitment to community service and academic achievement. The winner is awarded $1000! Click here for the application. Applications must be postmarked by Mon, Mar 1 (no electronic submissions).

Students must be PTSA members to enter the contests. Click here to join. Student membership is $5.
Save the date! Our next Junior Class Forum is Thurs, Jan 28, 9:30-11 am. Presenters will include Assistant Principal Wayne Biernesser, who will preview events that are coming up for juniors. Director of Student Services Braden Peterson will focus on course scheduling for senior year, highlighting all the information now available online. Click here to submit questions in advance for our speakers. The link will be posted closer to the meeting date. 
virginia pta news
One of the key objectives of PTSAs is advocacy for our schools. Education funding and the standards of quality are core priorities of the Virginia PTA. Yesterday, the Virginia General Assembly convened for its 2021 session. Please consider taking action in support of education funding, including restoring $27 million in state-wide funding for school counselors. Click here to find out more and how you can help.
upcoming events
Jan 18: Holiday (Martin Luther King Day)
Jan 20: Holiday (Inauguration Day)
Jan 22: 2-Hour Early Release (End of 2nd Quarter)
Jan 25: Holiday (Teacher Workday)
Jan 28: Junior Class Forum (Virtual), 9:30 am
Join the LHS PTSA! Click Here.
LHS PTSA eNews Editors
Michelle Francis, Stephanie Maxwell, Helen Miller and Amy Prewett
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The Langley eNews is published by PTSA volunteers and includes news that pertains to LHS, PTSA and FCPS.
Any opinions expressed herein are those of the submitter and not necessarily those of LHS, PTSA or FCPS.