COVID Closure Daily Update for Monday, June 15

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Day 60 — Graduation Special

Congratulations to all 865 amazing graduates from the T.C. Williams High School Class of 2020. We salute you!

Resilient Class of 2020 Graduates in Largest T.C. Class Ever

Alexandria dazzled in Titan colors of red, white and blue on Saturday to celebrate the largest class in recent history to graduate from T.C. Williams High School and honor their resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Class of 2020 saw 865 students receive diplomas in a virtual graduation ceremony that included Senator Mark Warner and Class of 2016 Titan and future Olympian Noah Lyles. The program of events featured a moving video tribute to our seniors who were asked to document their loves, their hopes and their fears during these unprecedented times.

For the first time in history the George Washington Masonic National Memorial spectacularly illuminated in school colors, recognizing the class of T.C. graduates, while across the city, homes were lit up as students celebrated with their families.

“This class of students has shown that they are able to seize the moment and shape their own futures,” said Peter Balas, principal of T.C. Williams High School. “Their resilience during the pandemic, combined with their desire to take a stand against social injustice has proved that this is the generation to change the world, and we need them now more than ever. This class dug in to graduate more students than ever before, at a time when life was not easy. I could not be prouder of them.”

Although most students had already achieved sufficient credits to graduate by the time school buildings closed on March 13, those who needed extra support were able to connect with their counselors and teachers to create individual plans to achieve the final credits required.

To date, a total of 569 of all new graduates have already indicated they will be attending college or university in the fall. A further 22 students have indicated their intentions to join the military and 39 have accepted jobs in the workforce. 

“This pandemic has created a moment in time — one where we have a chance to create a new normal. This may mean re-evaluating who we are as individuals, who you are as a student body, and who we are as a nation. There is no going back. We can only move forward,” said ACPS Superintendent of Schools Dr. Gregory C. Hutchings, Jr. 

This year, many of the rites of passage of the senior year in high school, including the T.C. Williams graduation ceremony, were adjusted to meet Virginia Governor Ralph Northam’s stay-at-home order. Instead of the usual event at George Mason University’s EagleBank Arena, ACPS produced a virtual graduation ceremony to acknowledge and honor the graduating seniors. T.C. Williams Class of 2016 alum Noah Lyles holds records in the 200 meter sprint and was preparing to compete at the Olympic Games in Tokyo when the global pandemic hit and the games were postponed. He understands more than most about drawing on reserves of resilience when faced with challenging times in life.

Lyles paid tribute to the “courageous” Class of 2020 that he described as “different” from the others.

Delivering the keynote speech, he said, “Some might say that accomplishments are everything, that accomplishments are what make you. But I want to challenge that thought. I’m here to say it’s more the journey and how you got to those moments that are what really make you. Well, what are those things that really get you there? And I’d say it was adversity.”

He added, “I heard that the Class of 2020 was different from the others. I heard the Class of 2020 was courageous. I heard that they were kind and I heard that they were relentless to do what was righteous.”

In a moving address, 2020 Class President Amiya Chisolm touched on the current race crisis in America and the hope that her generation would be the ones to break the chain “against unacceptable injustices.”

She continued, “Being in a swimming pool of different ethnicities, different cultures and many different backgrounds has given us the opportunity that many high schools cannot say they have had. This is adaptation and acceptance. T.C. gave us a united atmosphere where we can individually find smaller communities that tended to our personal similarities while still giving us the chance to teach, learn and understand one another’s differences.”

For more images and full video of the virtual graduation see the T.C. Williams Class of 2020 website.

Missed the Ceremony, or Want to Watch Again?

The graduation ceremony is available to view on the Class of 2020 website, which will now become a commemorative space for the ceremony video, pictures, and the documentary film created from hundreds of videos sent in by graduates. 

See Where Our Graduates Are Going Next

569 students from T.C. Williams High School will be heading off to college, and 22 will be joining military institutions. Several will be going to some of the top universities in the United States. We wish them all the best!

Jazmine Lee Baxter, Spelman College

Ethan James Steele Sample, Princeton University

Felicity Katherine Brock, U.S. Naval Academy

Sekou J Koram, Virginia Tech

Emile Sebastian Cohen Suárez, University of Virginia

T.C. Williams High School graduates are heading off to the following colleges and military institutions:

Academy of Art University (1); Bard College (1); Barry University (1); Bowie State University (1); Brigham Young University — Idaho (1); Brigham Young University — Provo (1); Catawba College (1); Christopher Newport University (3); Clemson University (1); College of Charleston (3); Columbia University in the City of New York (1); Concordia University — Montreal (2); Curry College (1); Davidson College (1); Daytona State College (1); Dillard University (1); Drexel University (1); Duke University (1); Eastern Florida State College (1); Eastern Mennonite University (2); Elon University (4); Ferrum College (1); FIDM Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising — Los Angeles (1); Florida International University (1); Fordham University (1); Fork Union Military Academy (1); Frederick Community College (1); George Mason University (44); George Washington University (2); Georgetown University (1); Georgia Institute of Technology (2); Georgia State University (1); Goucher College (1); Hampden-Sydney College (1); Hobart William Smith Colleges (1); Howard University (2); Ithaca College (1); James Madison University (14); Johnson & Wales University — Charlotte (2); Johnson & Wales University — Providence (1); Kentucky State University (1); Lafayette College (1); Liberty University (1); Longwood University (1); Marymount University (6); McGill University (1); Miami University — Oxford (2); Middlebury College (1); Missouri State University (1); Montgomery College (1); Morehouse College (1); Mount Aloysius College (1); New York Institute of Technology (1); Norfolk State University (7); North Carolina State University at Raleigh (1); Northern Kentucky University (1); Northern Virginia Community College (246); Oakland Community College (1); Oberlin College (1); Old Dominion University (8); Oregon State University (1); Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (1); Pennsylvania State University (1); Pratt Institute (1); Prince George’s Community College (2); Princeton University (1); Purdue University (1); Queen’s University (1); Radford University (2); Reed College (1); Richard Bland College of William and Mary (6); Rochester Institute of Technology (1); Savannah College of Art and Design (3); Seattle Central College (1); Shenandoah University (2); Shepherd University (2); Southeastern University (1); Southern University and A & M College (1); Spelman College (2); Stanford University (1); Tennessee State University (1); Texas Christian University (1); The Ohio State University (1); The University of Arizona (1); The University of Memphis (1); The University of Tampa (1); Trent University (1); U.S. Air Force (2); U.S. Army (7); U.S. Coast Guard (1); U.S. Marine Corps (3); U.S. National Guard (1); U.S. Navy (3); United States Coast Guard Academy (1); United States Naval Academy (1); Universidad San Francisco de Quito (1); University of California Los Angeles (1); University of Chicago (1); University of Delaware (1); University of Limerick (1); University of Mary Washington (7); University of Maryland — College Park (2); University of Massachusetts — Boston (1); University of Massachusetts — Amherst (1); University of Michigan — Ann Arbor (1); University of Mount Union (1); University of Rhode Island (1); University of Richmond (1); University of Rochester (1); University of San Diego (1); University of South Carolina — Columbia (1); University of South Florida (1); University of Southern California (1); University of St. Andrews (2); University of the District of Columbia (2); University of Utah (2); University of Vermont (1); University of Virginia (31); University of Wisconsin — Madison (2); Vanderbilt University (1); Virginia Commonwealth University (35); Virginia Military Institute (1); Virginia State University (22); Virginia Tech (36); Virginia Union University (1); Voorhees College (1); Washington & Jefferson College (1); Washington University in St. Louis (1); West Virginia University (2); William and Mary (9); Worcester Polytechnic Institute (1); Wright State University (1)

Food Access Updates 

ACPS’ current food distribution model will remain the same through August 21, 2020.

For all information on food distribution, see the Food Access page on the ACPS-at-Home website.

NEW! Beginning Friday, June 19, ACPS will be adding an additional weekend meal to our program. Meals distributed on Fridays at all meal distribution locations and pop up sites will cover Friday, Saturday and now Sunday meals.

Meal distribution locations and pop up sites will not operate on Friday, July 3, ahead of the Independence Day holiday. However, additional meals will be provided on Wednesday, July 1 to cover the following holiday period. The normal meal distribution service will resume again on Monday, July 6. 

New Hours for Bilingual Parent Information Lines

The FACE Center’s Bilingual Parent Information Lines will now all be 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

Watch Friday’s Board Meeting 

During the closure of school buildings, our School Board is meeting virtually each Friday at noon. 

If you missed it live, you can still watch it.

Watch the School Board meeting and see the agenda.

Information on how to give feedback to the School Board can be found on the School Board Meetings webpage.

On Friday, Board Briefs were published on the following topics:

School Board Resolution on Racial Justice

Friday’s Board meeting included a proposal for a School Board Resolution on Racial Justice (PDF).

This draft document is currently in the process of being translated and will be shared in full in ACPS Express and on the ACPS website on Wednesday, June 17. 

Food Distribution

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


Grab and Go breakfast, lunch and snack meals are available Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 9 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
  • T.C. Williams High School
    3330 King Street, Alexandria, VA 22304

And available at our “Pop-Up” sites located at:

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

NO SIGN UP OR REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED TO RECEIVE MEALS. Meals consist of breakfast, lunch and snack and include, for example, fresh fruits and vegetables and sandwiches for multiple days.

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 the pick-up days, (Monday/Wednesday/Friday).

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.


We want to hear from you! Send us a photo, video or story about your experiences while school is closed. Email us at


Learning Together: At-Home Tips from One ACPS Family to Another

Have a learning tip that works well for your child, or a particularly interesting project or story you think others would enjoy? We invite you to share it with the entire ACPS learning community!

Upload your video or audio story or post it to the ACPS Facebook page.

See this great example from one parent and her son.


The Teen Wellness Center at T.C. Williams is still open regular hours Monday through Friday for all Alexandrians ages 12-19. All services are provided in the clinic and if the teen is ill with an elevated temperature (100.0 or more) we will see them through our telehealth video format. Make an appointment over the phone by calling 703-746-4776.


The City of Alexandria and the Alexandria Health Department strongly urge everyone to follow state orders to STAY HOME except for essential trips such as food purchases and medical care, and keep 6 feet apart from others when in public. Your neighbors and loved ones are counting on you to stop the spread of COVID-19. For other questions about COVID-19, call the Alexandria COVID-19 Hotline at 703-746-4988, weekdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Additional updates can be found at

Coping with COVID-19 Fear and Uncertainty

Check out the City of Alexandria webpage Coping with COVID-19 Fear and Uncertainty which includes the COVID-19 Wellness Resource Guide.


Please consider donating through ACT For Alexandria and the COVID-19 Response Fund if you are able. 

Community members who would like to volunteer should reach out to or 703-836-2176 to register for any additional potential volunteer opportunities.


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.

Stay Healthy!
Wash your hands regularly. Regular soap is OK.

ACPS, Coronavirus