Schools Sparkle to Create a Great First Impression 

Did you notice how sparkly our schools looked on the first day of school on Tuesday?

Collage of polished floors and clean schools

ACPS used the first day of school to launch its First Impressions Campaign to ensure that all our schools are welcoming places for all our families — not just in the first week of school, but every day of the school year.

The floors and hallways were gleaming, the lawns freshly mowed, landscaping trim and multilingual signs hung. Students and teachers were welcomed back to freshly painted classrooms and new carpeting in communal areas.

This school year, ACPS is setting a new standard for our facilities. Our goal is to keep each one of our schools looking beautiful every day of the year.

We will also be asking our students to LOVE their SCHOOL and help keep it clean. We will be encouraging students to recycle, pick up trash and keep their cafeteria clean throughout the school year.

The classroom environment matters when it comes to teaching and learning. That’s why the ACPS 2020 Strategic Plan has a goal that commits us to improving the condition of all of our schools: Facilities and the Learning Environment: ACPS will provide optimal and equitable learning environments.

Dr. Hutchings visits a classroom

We are aware that we still have some work to do before all our facilities fully meet the ACPS Standards of Excellence we have set. Our goal is to make sure that we are constantly improving and aiming to meet these higher expectations each and every day.

Over the summer, repairs and renovations continued at a number of our school sites to get our buildings ready for September:

  • T.C. Express, a new grab-and-go cafe opens today on the King Street campus.
  • Mount Vernon Community School’s play garden is ready for action.
  • More than 80,000 square feet of new roofing tops Mount Vernon Community School.
  • Matthew Maury Elementary School dons a new roof at the front entrance, the library and gym.
  • Many upgrades were made at Cora Kelly School for Math, Science and Technology.
  • Minnie Howard has 50 feet of new rubber flooring that is smoother and more appealing.
  • New landscaping at George Washington Middle School adds to curb appeal. Once inside, students are greeted with sparkling hallways.

Many of our schools were established during and just after World War II. Some of these buildings are now three quarters of a century old. Recently, extreme weather events have further stressed our infrastructure. ACPS has a timeline to replace some schools and is targeting more for repair. The ACPS Department of Facilities manages and cares for the school divisions buildings and grounds. The Facilities Department is also responsible for maintenance and repairs of our buildings as well as the construction of new buildings.

To keep families better informed about the work we are doing in each school, we have added facility pages to each of our school websites. From now on there will be monthly updates for schools undergoing repairs as well as helpful information if a problem arises.

ACPS, Alexandria City High School, Brooks, Cora Kelly, George Washington, Mount Vernon