WE ARE LOCAL News in Prince William, Virginia




What’s in a name change? Officials react to Godwin decision

Officials said the decision to rename Mills Godwin Middle School was the right compromise to make.

There were two failed tied votes during a March 2 Prince William County School Board meeting. The first to name new elementary school near the corner of Spriggs and Minnieville roads after fallen Prince William County firefighter Kyle Wilson, who died nine years ago at age 24. The second was to name the school after 87-year-old Army officer turned educator and community philanthropist, Dr. George Hampton. (more…)

Where will Manassas students go after redistricting?

On Monday, February 22 and Wednesday, February 24, Mayfield Intermediate School will host a School Board Meeting and redistricting presentation from 7 to 9 p.m.

The Monday meeting will focus on students from pre-k to fourth grade while the Wednesday meeting will focus on students in fifth and sixth grade. The city school division has been working on redistricting, particularly within elementary schools.

This has prompted the question: “Who will be affected and where are the students going to go?”

The meeting is meant to be a community engagement to discuss the proposed boundaries for the upcoming 2016-2017 school year. The initiative for these new district lines is due to the pertinent overcrowding within the elementary schools of Manassas. (more…)

Blizzard brings delays for report cards, college transcripts

As students mourn the loss of their beloved snow days, some stop to ask themselves; What does this mean for the remainder of the school year?

Prince William County  Public Schools are allotted 12 snow days this school year. After the #sNOVAlanche storm that blanketed the region with up to to two feet of snow January 22 and 23 , Prince William County Public School students and teachers have about 5 snow days left.

As of now, Prince William public schools students will not have to make up the missed time, according to school officials. (more…)

Prince William County Schools open two hours late Tuesday

Prince William County Public Schools will open two hours late Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2016.

More in a press release: 

On Tuesday, January 19, All Prince William County Public Schools will open two hours late due to the projected sub-zero temperatures in the morning. SACC will open two hours late. These precautions will ensure the safety of all students, especially the thousands who walk to school.

What other area school divisions are saying about the forecasted cold weather(more…)

Prince William middle school students awarded $23,000 Grant

Prince William middle school students awarded $23,000 GrantThis grant was made possible through the Haymarket Fund, a donor advised fund at the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia. This fund supports families and children with an emphasis on health, education, community development and improvement, and arts and culture.

The after-school program kicked off last week with a special program at George Mason University’s Science and Technology campus in Manassas. Organized by Jeff Girvan, Supervisor of History and Social Sciences for Prince William County Public Schools, the students heard from Virginia Delegate Richard Anderson, enjoyed a reenactment by LeCount Holmes about the life of Frederick Douglass, and learned about a life of service from Colonel Richard Camp, USMC, Retired.

Their learning will continue with workshops and sessions in which they will identify a problem to study, gather information, examine solutions, develop a public policy, and create an action plan to influence the appropriate government or governmental agency to adopt the proposed policy.

In February, the students will take a field trip to Richmond for a tour of the state capital with Delegate Anderson. The program will culminate in June with final presentations to government officials or agencies responsible for implementing the new policy.

“We funded this new Civic Engagement Program in Prince William County Public Schools because we believe it will both teach and encourage active citizen engagement with all levels of government,” said Eileen Ellsworth, President of the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia. “It is a terrific opportunity for these middle school students to acquire a much deeper understanding and appreciation of the role of government in our society and their capacity to influence the course of events.”


New Manassas school to replace old Baldwin Elementary

A new school is opening in the Manassas area in the winter of January 2017.

Due to overcrowding in grade levels fifth and sixth, this new school is being built to relieve overcrowded classrooms. These students will be coming from the Baldwin attendance zone.

This new school will be succeeding the soon to be former Baldwin. It will still be known as Baldwin Elementary School and Baldwin Intermediate School. A portion of the new school will accommodate the Pre-K through fourth grade students. The intermediate portion of the school will accommodate the fifth and sixth grade students.

According to Almeta Radford the Public Communications Coordinator for Manassas City Public Schools, the new building is 140,188 square feet. Pre-K through fourth grade students will have 32 designated classrooms while 12 classrooms will be for the fifth and sixth grade students. The six encore classes for gym, art, and music will be shared.

Construction of the new Baldwin began in March of 2015. The elementary side will be opening in January 2017 for 700 students. The fifth grade side of the school is scheduled to open in the fall of 2017. The sixth grade side is scheduled to open the following fall in 2018. Collectively, 316 students will fill the intermediate side of the school will be expecting 316 students.

About 140 staff members are expected to work throughout the school building.  


Retiring Prince William School Board members get hearty send off


Only on Potomac Local 

Residents came together on Saturday, December 12 at Brothers Encore Italian Restaurant in Montclair to celebrate the public service of School Board members Milt Johns and Betty Covington.

Speakers included Alyson Satterwhite, Gainesville District School Board Representative, Gil Trenum, Brentsville District School Board Representative, Dr. Michael Otaigbe, Coles District School Board Representative and Tim Singstock who organized the event.

The attendees focused on the dedication and commitment of these two public servants.

Covington was first elected to the School Board in the Dumfries District in 1995. She stepped down and went back to work as an Elementary School principal until running again in 2003.

In addition to her service on the School Board where she has served continuously from 2003 through 2015, Covington has committed over half a century of her life to Prince William County Schools.

Johns was elected to represent the Brentsville District in 2003. He was elected Chairman – At Large in 2007 and will serve through the end of 2015. Johns did not seek reelection this year. When speaking, Johns noted that his single greatest accomplishment as Chairman of the School Board was “opening the schools on time every year.”

Neabsco District School Board member Lisa Bell and Coles District School Board member Dr. Micheal Otaigbe will also retire from the School Board at the end of December. 

A new School Board was sworn in earlier this month following the Nov. 3 election

Prince William County’s new ‘Parkway Elementary’ would sit next to Chinn Library

Parents will get their say over a planned elementary school next to Chinn Park Regional Library in Woodbridge. 

A public hearing is scheduled Jan. 7, 2016 to give parents new information about the planned school that aims to relieve overcrowded conditions at other nearby elementary schools.

Here’s more in a press release: 

School officials will hold a public meeting on January 7 to discuss the proposed elementary school near Prince William Parkway at Chinn Park. The original meeting date of December 15 was changed to January 7 to allow staff more time to address concerns raised at the first community meeting. The change will also provide additional time for all interested members of the public to become informed, and will introduce additional transparency.

The new school is scheduled to be ready by the start of school in 2018 and relieve overcrowding at Vaughan, Westridge, Marumsco Hills, Kerrydale, Springwoods, and other area schools.

Learn more, provide feedback, and have concerns addressed at this second public meeting hosted by the PWCS Office of Facilities Services.

PW Parkway Elementary School at Chinn Park Public Meeting
Thursday, January 7, 2016, 7-9 p.m.
Gar-Field High School, 14000 Smoketown Road, Woodbridge, VA 22192

Now identified as the “PW Parkway” Elementary School, the new school had been described as “Elementary School East (Neabsco Mills Area)” in the School Division’s Capital Improvements Program (CIP) for Fiscal Years 2016-25. The proposed location will address student housing needs in the Neabsco Mills area as well as the western Lake Ridge area, based on current elementary school boundaries.

The CIP provides general guidance over a ten-year period to address the demand for new schools, additions to existing schools, site acquisition, school renewal, upgrading, and maintenance of PWCS infrastructure. The plan is reviewed and updated annually, with long-range plans adjusted to reflect the latest enrollment projections and financial limitations.

This is the second planned information session for the new school, according to a Prince William County Public Schools spokeswoman. The January 7 session was rescheduled from December 15. 

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