Last Chance to Complete the Family Choice Form

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This Week’s Headlines:

Dear ACPS Families and Community,

As the winter break approaches, I wanted to express my heartfelt thanks to our ACPS community of students, staff and families for their patience, understanding and fortitude shown during what can only be described as the most challenging time in U.S. education history. Through no fault of our own as the pandemic disrupts our lives, we continue to remain patient, trying our hardest to make the most feasible decisions. At times this feels like taking one step forward into uncertainty and then two steps back. It is definitely a frustrating process and we remain optimistic for our children in 2021 as we put 2020 well and truly behind us without forgetting the lessons learned.

Let me reassure you that we continue to work tirelessly toward our revised reentry timeline, which currently sees all students able to return to in-person learning in mid-February, depending on our community health metrics. So today, may I remind you to please complete the Family Choice Form through your PowerSchool Parent Access account if you have not yet done so. The deadline for this is 11:59 p.m. this Friday, Dec. 11. This information is extremely critical in helping us to solidify our transitional plans for each and every school, classroom and student.

Today, I am excited to see the launch of Phase II of The Identity Project, which outlines the process for selecting the new names for T.C. Williams High School and Matthew Maury Elementary School. This is work we can be truly proud of and I am looking forward to seeing what suggestions our amazing students and community identify to share with the School Board.

Please stay safe, healthy and engaged! 

Dr. Gregory C. Hutchings, Jr.

Student Voices Matter: Launching Our Plan to Find New School Names 

Following a robust community engagement and consultation process, ACPS now has a mandate to move into phase two of The Identity Project as we consider new names for both T.C. Williams High School and Matthew Maury Elementary School. The second phase of The Identity Project — the selection of new names — will ensure that students, staff, alumni, families, and the community are all heard. 

Most importantly, we want to keep the next generation and our students’ voices at the heart of this process. To assist the community with suggested names for both schools, we are inviting students to participate in a student essay/poster campaign to submit names, launching today, for community consideration. As these are student suggestions, our community will also be invited to submit names if they have other names that they would like to be considered as part of the process. 

Watch this video to learn about the timeline and process for choosing new school names:

All ACPS students are invited to submit a name, in line with the criteria outlined in ACPS Policy FF (PDF) and Regulation FF-R (PDF)

The School Board allows a school to be named for:

A person: Presidents of the United States, Virginia historical figures, or specific individuals that have made a significant and extraordinary contribution to the City of Alexandria in terms of education, public service, or involvement in civic or cultural activities over an extended period of time. Active/current employees of Alexandria City Public Schools are not allowed.

A place: Places or events in history that are related to the school facility or its location.

NOTE: School names are NOT limited to these categories and other suggestions can be submitted and will be considered. School names that could cause confusion with other public facilities in Alexandria or with other adjoining jurisdictions and other areas of the Commonwealth of Virginia should be avoided.

Students should submit a short essay (200 words or fewer) or a poster explaining or illustrating why they believe that name should be chosen for either T.C. Williams High School or Matthew Maury Elementary School. Please encourage students to research names and submit their entries through The Identity Project School Name Nomination Form. Entries will be accepted starting Dec. 9, 2020 through the deadline of 11:59 p.m. on Jan. 8, 2021.


Please review the criteria and rules in Policy FF (PDF) and Regulation FF-R (PDF) before submitting a name.

Read about the full engagement process for The Identity Project Phase II — Selection of Names.

Last Chance: Complete the Family Choice Form by Friday

We hope you have received the information to complete the Family Choice Form. You have until Friday, Dec. 11 to share your choice for either hybrid learning or virtual learning for each of your children enrolled in ACPS.

Your choice will help us refine our plans for the reopening of our schools. 

Please review our information on hybrid vs. virtual learning options, then take a moment to complete the form to share with us your choice as it stands today regarding your student(s) intention to return to our classrooms beginning in January 2021. 

Here are your two options for completing the Family Choice Form:

Complete the Family Choice Form in PowerSchool Parent Access.
See the instructions for completing the form. NOTE: You must use a PowerSchool Parent Access account to complete the form. You cannot access the form through a student’s PowerSchool account. If you need help with setting up or accessing a parent account, see the PowerSchool Parent Access webpage.


Call the Virtual PLUS+ Helpline, Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., for help in completing the Family Choice Form:

  • English: 703-844-1763
  • Spanish: 703-844-3424
  • Amharic: 703-927-6866
  • Arabic: 703-927-7095

Watch this video to see how to complete the Family Choice Form in PowerSchool Parent Access:

See more information on completing the Family Choice Form and our Frequently Asked Questions.

Community Meetings on School Reopening

Thank you to those who joined the staff, student and community meetings last week. 

Watch videos of all of the meetings on the ACPS website

Answers to some Frequently Asked Questions are already posted, and we will be adding videos on key topics in the next few days.

FOOD ACCESS – Free Meal Access for All Students to Continue Through the End of the School Year

The United States Department of Agriculture and Virginia Department of Education have announced that their free meal program will continue through the end of the 2020-21 school year.

All children aged 2-18, whether they are enrolled in ACPS or not, will continue to have access to meals at ACPS food distribution sites

Winter Break Reminder:
All ACPS meal distribution sites will be open during normal days/hours through Friday, Dec. 18, and will be closed during Winter Break, Dec. 21 through Jan. 1.

Winter Break Meal Kit Pick-Up:
For those who have requested Winter Break Meal Kits, remember to collect them on Thursday, Dec. 17 at your chosen pick-up location.

ACPS has multiple distribution meal site locations throughout Alexandria for all ACPS students and children over the age of two. See a map of food distribution locations.


Grab and Go breakfast and lunch meals are available Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 7:30 a.m. and 12 p.m. at the following locations:

  • William Ramsay Elementary School
    5700 Sanger Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22311
  • Francis C. Hammond Middle School
    4646 Seminary Road, Alexandria, VA 22304
  • Cora Kelly School for Math, Science and Technology
    3600 Commonwealth Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22305
  • Jefferson-Houston PreK-8 IB School
    1501 Cameron Street, Alexandria, VA 22314
  • Mount Vernon Community School
    2601 Commonwealth Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22305
  • Patrick Henry K-8 School
    4643 Taney Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22304
  • T.C. Williams High School
    3330 King Street, Alexandria, VA 22304

And available on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at our “Pop-Up” sites located at:

  • Mason Apartments at 75 South Reynolds Street, Alexandria, VA 22304
    10:45 to 11:15 a.m.
  • Brent Place Apartments at 375 South Reynolds Street, Alexandria, VA 22304
    11:20 to 11:50 a.m.
  • Ruby Tucker Family Center at 322 Tancil Court, Alexandria, VA 22314
    10:45 to 11:15 a.m.
  • Community Lodgings at 607 Notabene Drive, Alexandria, VA 22305
    10:45 to 11:15 a.m.
  • Old Towne West Apartments (parking lot) at 500 South Alfred Street, Alexandria, VA 22314
    11:20 to 11:50 a.m.
  • Corner of Florence Drive and Four Mile Road, Alexandria, VA 22305
    10:45 to 11:15 a.m.
  • The Fields at 4309 Duke Street, Alexandria, VA 22304
    10:45 to 11:15 a.m.
  • Bennington Crossing Apartments at 441 North Armistead Street, Alexandria, VA 22312
    11:30 a.m. to noon
  • 2727 Duke Street (behind Bank of America), Alexandria, VA 22314
    10:45 to 11:15 a.m.


NOTE: No food distribution will occur on Tuesdays or Thursdays. The limited days for distribution is to support the practice of social distancing and to limit social gatherings. Meals for two days will be provided on Mondays and Wednesdays, and meals for three days will be provided on Fridays.

Other Food Resources in the City of Alexandria:

For food pantry locations and schedules in Alexandria, visit or call ‪703-662-1067.

Questions? Or Need Translation?

Send us your question in Spanish, Arabic or Amharic:

  • Text ACPSMEALS to 797979 (English and Spanish)
  • Call or text 703-927-6866 (Amharic)
  • Call or text 703-927-7095 (Arabic)


Call the FACE Center’s Bilingual Parent Information Lines, available Monday-Friday, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.:

  • For Spanish/English, call 571-775-9719
  • For Amharic/English, call 703-927-6866
  • For Arabic/English, call 703-927-7095

SAFETY REMINDER: Please remember to observe social distancing practices while at the food distribution site by maintaining six feet of personal space between you and other families or individuals.

Anyone exhibiting symptoms of a respiratory illness like fever, runny nose, sore throat, coughing or difficulty breathing on the day of food distribution or in the previous 24 hours should not visit a food distribution site but call a health care provider instead. If you do not have a primary care physician and are not enrolled in a clinic, you may CALL an urgent care center or emergency room.

Playground Safety Reminder

If you are heading to our school playgrounds, please remember that everyone must wear a face covering to adhere to the City of Alexandria ordinance. You will see signs at every school as a reminder.


For all updates, see


Continuity of School Support and Academic Advisement

School Student Support Team staff, including school counselors, school nurses, school psychologists, and school social workers will be available during school hours throughout the closure. Monday — Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. staff will be connecting with students and their families. The Department of Student Services, Alternative Programs and Equity staff members are also available during this time and can be contacted by voicemail and at

Emergency Supports

If there is a crisis or emergency during the time of the closure, students and families can access the supports below:

We know that this is a challenging time. ACPS will continue to share information through the ACPS website, social media, and email. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to your student’s school counselor or school social worker with any questions.


Don’t Feel Well?
Contact your primary health care physician. Don’t have insurance? Contact Neighborhood Health at 703-535-5568.


Have questions, concerns or feedback? Contact us.

ACPS, Coronavirus