Originally published September 13, 2023 at 08:40a.m., updated September 13, 2023 at 11:07a.m.
Superintendent Michelle Reid’s Hidden Gems
Did you know we have a Neurodiversity Specialist as well as a Twice Exceptional Specialist to ensure this population of students is supported? For those of you who don’t know, a twice exceptional student is one that has been identified as academically gifted in one or more areas and also identified as having a disability. Without support,
those challenges can often hide the student’s abilities. These roles are unique to K-12 public education in the US. These staff members are such a great resource for our families and teachers. More detailed information and photos can be found here.
Kristen Haynor, Neurodiversity Specialist for Fairfax County Public Schools, first neurodiversity specialist in a K-12 school in the U.S. She hopes her appointment will encourage other districts to do the same. Haynor spends time in the classroom talking to students about her work.
Nonye Oladimeji began as the division’s - and Virginia’s - first public school - Twice Exceptional (2E) Education Specialist. Rachel Rubio serves as the new FCPS Dyslexia Specialist, a highly specialized role dedicated to the reading and writing disability that affects 20% of the population. Without teachers having the tools to recognize the signs, it can often go undiagnosed.
What are the most significant issues specific to the FCPS?
Strategic Plan: We are excited to be implementing our FCPS Strategic plan, which will serve as our North Star in ensuring excellence, equity and opportunity for all students through 2030. This plan reflects many months of hard work and input from students, staff and families: we reviewed more than 100,000 feedback survey responses and hosted more than 65 planning team and community meetings.
Our plan includes five goals: Goal #1, a strong start for all students, Goal #2, ensuring all feel safe, supported, included and empowered, Goal #3 reflects our commitment to academic growth and excellence, Goal #4 relies on equitable access and opportunity and Goal #5 is leading for tomorrow’s innovation. We will aim to meet our plan’s objectives by doing things like increasing Pre-K programs to meet community need, strong support for community literacy, boosting student participation in extracurricular and leadership activities, supporting successful completion of at least Algebra I by eighth grade, expanding availability and enrollment in advanced coursework and bolstering financial literacy among our student population.