Principal's Message - May 2009

posted May 8, 2009, 6:01 PM by HSS PTSA Webmaster   [ updated May 8, 2009, 6:17 PM ]
Dear Hayfield Secondary Families:

As we move closer to the end of the school year, our traditional school year closing activities are well planned and in some cases already occurring. High School Advanced Placement course testing started this morning, soon to be followed by the End-of-Course (EOC) SOLs, and then finally middle school team and high school class activities. Please check the Hayfield Secondary web site often for informational updates, www.fcps.edu/HayfieldSS.

With Prom and Graduation activities right around the corner, the Safe Youth Coalition and I ask parents to talk to their teens about substance use, risky behaviors, and the consequences of their actions. In terms of Virginia state laws attributed to underage drinking, our state legislators are really cracking down. If an underage drinker tests for a breath alcohol concentration (BAC) of .02 or higher, they will lose their license to operate a motor vehicle for 12 months and they will be fined minimally $500 or required to perform 50 hours community service. If caught purchasing, possessing or attempting to purchase or possess an alcoholic beverage, the underage drinker will face up to 12 months in jail, a fine of up to $2,500, and he or she could be assigned 50 hours of community service and/or have their driver’s license suspended for up to one year. Young people who have parents that model good decision-making, moderate alcohol consumption, and communicate parental expectations make better, informed choices.

Just in time, both the Federal and State stimulus monies are shoring up what would have been catastrophic program and personnel cuts directly affecting Hayfield Secondary, although additional resource and staffing reductions are being implemented due to FY10 budget constraints. Last year, FY09, we eliminated our Time Out and Summit Alternative programs, increased class size by .5 also known as pupil-teacher-ratio (PTR), and we received a smaller per pupil instructional allocation. This coming year, we will need to close one of our high school subschools due to a reduction of one assistant principal; the PTR will again be increased by .5, thus creating an average general education ration of 29.5:1; per pupil instructional allocations will again be reduced; all employees are having their salaries frozen with no cost-of-living increase; and several custodial and administrative assistant positions have been eliminated. We will need to do some restructuring of how we provide services to the community. Additional information will be forthcoming in early summer.

For all seasons there is a ti -- I publicly wish to thank the following staff members who will conclude their careers in FCPS by retiring this coming June 30 (as of the writing of this letter): Ms. DugganTurhune, Mr. Bill Engels, Ms. Arleen Jeszenszky, Ms. Patricia McIntosh, and Mr. Richard Wiley. Cumulatively, nearly one hundred and twenty years of experience in public education will be moving on. I will have more formal opportunities to convey the school system’s appreciation, but if one of these staff members has made a positive difference for your student, please thank them.

As we approach the final exam/cumulative project season, please encourage your student to focus, and take the exams seriously. Summer vacation time will soon be their reward. Go Hawks!

P.S. A reminder, FCPS does not recognize any “senior skip” days.

William L. Oehrlein, PhD
Proud Principal of Hayfield Secondary
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