langley eNews
September 17, 2020
from the ptsa president
I hate to see the summer go, but I do enjoy the (slightly) cooler weather and routine that fall brings. I hope your students are adapting to the online learning environment, and while there are many differences, some of the most exciting elements meeting teachers, getting to know classmates and exploring topics in their courses — have not changed. This is a busy period for all, but I encourage you to make time to attend the Langley PTSA meetings and the class parent forums. Even in the virtual environment, PTSA meetings provide an opportunity to meet and connect with other parents and hear first-hand what is happening in and around Langley, and class forums give you all the information you need to know for the coming year specific to your student’s grade.

Our first of five PTSA meetings is next Wed, Sept 23, 9:30-11 am on the Blackboard Collaborate Ultra platform. Click here for the link. Virtual meeting links also are posted on the calendar located on the PTSA website homepage. (Links for virtual class forums and dinners will be posted on the calendar and also under each class’s tab on the site.)

Another important fall activity that’ll be here soon is Nov 3 — Election Day! Because of the pandemic, many of us may be voting prior to Election Day for the first time. Virginia allows early voting by mail or in person (you do not need a “reason” to vote early). Now is a good time to register to vote or decide whether you will vote early. Information is available from local organizations, including the League of Women Voters of the Fairfax Area — click here for voter registration info and forms for high school students and here for info and forms regarding voting early, whether by mail or in person, or on Nov 3. Note that the PTSA does not take political stances or endorse candidates.

Share your ideas with us! If you have thoughts on how we can work together to connect and support the Langley community in the current virtual environment, please let us know through this Google Form.

~ Kitty Gonzalez, PTSA President
Join the Langley PTSA!
Join the PTSA today! Your annual PTSA membership and donations provide Langley with many programs, materials and equipment that the FCPS budget cannot supply and that directly benefit our staff and students.

This year, a focus of our support will be directed toward enhancing our students’ Langley experience in the virtual environment. Click here to become a member and to donate.

Thank you for supporting Langley!
Congratulations to Langley’s National Merit Semifinalists! These students were among the 16,000 nationwide who scored in the top one percent on the PSAT last year as juniors.

Langley’s semifinalists this year are: Selena Akay, Justin Bahr, Ishan Dogra, Otto Janke, Joshua Jones, Victoria Li, Mikael Nguyen, Michael Pang, Alisha Qian, David Song, Christina Wang, Jasmine Wang and Seohyun Yoon.
mock act
There’s still time to register for the mock ACT on Sat, Oct 3. The test is a full-length practice test in a simulated environment at home via computer, complete with a score report afterwards. Students will need access to an internet-connected computer on which they’ve installed Zoom.

The event is offered by the Langley Academic Boosters with Novastar Prep and is open to all, but especially recommended for sophomores and juniors. Click here for info and to register. Questions? Email
Textbook pick-ups continue today, Thurs, Sept 17, 3:30-7:30 pm and next Mon, Sept 21, 9:30 am-3:30 pm. Click here to sign up for a 10-minute time slot.

At Langley, students enter the Gym through Door 12. Tables are set up by department. Students exit the Gym through Door 13. Bring your schedule and a bag for the books!
library books
Students will be able to check out books from the Langley library’s online catalog and pick them up curbside at LHS on Mondays from 1-3 pm, starting on Mon, Sept 28. View this flyer for details. Questions? Email Mr. Clark at or Ms. Ortiz at
lhs student directory
Keep an eye out over the next week or two for an email from AtoZConnect, which will ask you to confirm or edit your student and family info for the LHS Student Directory.

The directory will be online only and freely available to all. The AtoZ phone app is especially recommended — it’s very handy! Questions? Email
behind the wheel
Is your student learning to drive? Behind the Wheel (BTW) courses are a part of the process and are available both privately and through FCPS. After closing due to the pandemic, BTW classes through FCPS will resume Mon, Sept 21.

Online registration for the FCPS BTW option is temporarily down, however, and students instead can register by phone (call 703-658-1201 on Mon/Wed/Fri), email (contact or regular mail (complete this form and mail to FCPS-ACE Registration, 6815 Edsall Rd, Springfield, VA 22151).
sports notes
Optional athletic conditioning days are open to all students who wish to participate. Before attending, students must complete VHSL physical and concussion education forms and file them with the Activities Office and turn in an Emergency Care card to the coach with whom they’re conditioning.

Click here for the forms. Scan and email the completed forms to Beth Longo at or mail them to LHS, Attn: Activities Office, 6520 Georgetown Pike, McLean, VA 22101.

Before attending for the first time, students need to log into their FCPS email and choose a sport. Once at Langley, students check in outside Door 12 and wait while staff review the paperwork and perform covid checks before going to the Stadium.

Below are the dates and times for the sports that have started, but please check the News tab of each sport’s varsity page on the LHS sports website for details and updates.

  • volleyball: Mondays at 3:45-5:45 pm (arrive 3:15 pm) and Thursdays at 3-5 pm (arrive 2:30 pm). Questions? Contact Coach Shifflett at

  • girls' soccer: Mon/ Wed/Thurs at 3:30- 5:30 pm. Questions? Contact Coach Foster at

  • football: Mon/ Wed/Fri at 4:30-6:30 pm. Questions? Contact Coach Murray at

  • softball: starts today, Thurs, Sept 17 at 4:30-5:30 pm and continues on Thursdays at 4-5:45 pm. Questions? Contact Coach Sharkey at

  • girls’ basketball: starts today, Thurs, Sept 17 at 5:30-7:30 pm and continues on Tuesday/Thursday at 5:30-7:30 pm. Questions? Contact Coach Baker at

  • crew: starts this Sat, Sept 19 and runs on Saturdays at 9:30-10:30 am (arrivals start at 9 am). Visit the crew website for details. Questions? Email

staff spotlight
This year marks Valerie Karasek’s eighth year as artistic director of Langley’s award-winning Saxon Stage. Ms. Karasek grew up in a family with a career Marine father and enjoyed the military tradition of picking up roots and exploring new places. When she arrived at each new school, her question was always the same: “Do you have a drama club?”

After her family settled in Indiana, Ms. Karasek went on to study theatre at Purdue University, where she received her BA. Afterwards, she pursued a career in acting (living in New York City and Los Angeles for several years), has memberships in all three actors’ unions, and has had a variety of roles on stage, film and TV. A major earthquake in California led to an unplanned visit back to the east coast and an opportunity for Ms. Karasek to share her passion for the arts with students.  

Building Langley’s theatre program alongside such gifted student actors and techs has been a true labor of love for Ms. Karasek. “With a focus on professionalism, ensemble, creative collaboration, respect for craft and developing a high standard of excellence, the students have always exceeded expectations,” she said. 

Saxon Stage achievements include seven consecutive Cappies nominations for Best Play or Musical, with wins for Best Play in 2014 for The Children’s Hour and in 2019 for Biloxi Blues. In addition, student-directed entries in the VHSL One-Act Festival have won district titles three times, regional titles twice, and captured the state championship title in 2019.

The unexpected end to last spring’s theatre season hasn’t dampened the spirit of the Saxon Stage and its mission to create great theatre. “We face a temporary new normal but it won’t deter our bond or discourage our commitment to engaging audiences in powerful storytelling,” Ms. Karasek said. “It’s our passion. The show must go on!
saxons, did you know ...
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... In Psychology Today, Jennifer Powell-Lunder, PsyD, a clinical psychologist working with teens and families, writes “The key to keeping it together during these difficult times includes a focus on what you can do, along with a little bit of thinking out of the box.” Click here for advice found in her article.
class news
Read this section for class news and click the green class buttons to go to each class page for more details.
Seniors, will you be 18 years old by Nov 3? If so, register now to vote! Click here for a flyer with all the info and here for the online forms and info. If you plan to vote by mail, register now and don’t wait long to fill out the forms for early voting.

Parents, don’t miss our virtual Senior Class Parent Forum on Thurs, Oct 1 at 10 am. Local psychotherapist, Jennifer Weaver, will discuss “Parenting in a Pandemic” to help parents and students develop new techniques and habits to help navigate through these uncertain times. A meeting link will be provided closer to the meeting date.
Junior parents! Join us at 9:30 am on Fri, Sept 25, for a conversation with the Class of 2022 Assistant Principal Wayne Biernesser. Click here for the meeting link.

Stay current! Join our LHS Class of 2022 Parents Facebook page here, and sign up for the email distribution list found here and on our class webpage. Updates and information are posted regularly on these sites.
Mark your calendars to join us online for our first Sophomore Parent Forum, Thurs, Oct 15 from 9:30–11 am. A link will be sent closer to the date. View our Class of 2023 webpage for more sophomore info!
Freshman parents, connect to the Class of 2024 via our webpage and subscribe to our class email distro group. Stay tuned for the announcement of our first Freshman Class Forum, coming soon!
fcps info
school board updates: In a School Board work session on Tues, Sept 22 at 4 pm, Superintendent Scott Brabrand will present updated info on health and operational metrics to guide the decision-making process regarding resuming in-person instruction. Watch the work session on cable TV channel 99 or here on the FCPS website. It will be available for viewing later on the FCPS Youtube page.
tech support: Need distance learning tech support? Contact the FCPS Parent Technology Help Desk at 1-833-921-3277 (7 am-11 pm, seven days a week) or click here for the online portal, where students or parents can request tech help directly.
community info
VDOT is holding a virtual public hearing on Mon, Oct 5, 7-9:30 pm to present its draft design plans to extend the I-495 express lanes from the Dulles Toll Road to the GW Memorial Parkway. (This meeting had been previously scheduled for March 12.) Click here for the meeting links and more info.

VDOT also is holding an in-person public hearing (reservations required) on the I-495 express lanes extension plans on Thurs, Oct 8, 4-8 pm at the McLean Community Center (1234 Ingleside Ave). To reserve a spot at this meeting, call 703-691-6715 or email with “495 NEXT Public Hearing In-person Request” in the subject line.
upcoming events
Sept 17-18: Senior Class Portraits (LHS)
Sept 17: Textbook Distribution (LHS)
Sept 21: Textbook Distribution (LHS)
Sept 21: Virtual Back-to-School Night, All Grades, 7 pm
Sept 22: Virtual School Board Meeting (Metrics for Reopening Schools), 4 pm
Sept 23: SAT (LHS - Seniors Only)
Sept 23: Virtual Principal's Coffee/PTSA General Membership Meeting, 9:30 am
Sept 25: Virtual Junior Class Parent Forum, 9:30 am
Sept 28: Library Book Pick-Ups Begin (LHS)
Oct 3: Practice ACT (via Zoom)
Oct 5: VDOT I-495 Express Lane Extension Virtual Meeting, 7 pm 
Oct 8: VDOT I-496 Express Lane Extension In-Person Meeting (MCC), 4 pm 
Oct 15: Virtual Sophomore Class Parent Forum, 9:30 am
Langley PTSA eNews Editors
Michelle Francis, Stephanie Maxwell, Helen Miller and Amy Prewett
Amy P
Submit items by Tuesday noon for publication on Thursdays to  
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.