Principal's Note - Oct 14, 2022

By Margaret Barnes
Principal's Note
October 17, 2022

Good afternoon, Holmes Families!

Happy Friday!  Next week is our one and only 5-day week this month, and it is the second to last week of first quarter!  This is a good time to sit down with your students to go through SIS Student Vue and Schoology together and talk through the steps that they can take to make up work or get some extra help from teachers if needed.  This is also a good time to explore through Schoology (see below) as another resource for getting some extra help.

It will be a beautiful night for a football game!  If you permit your Holmes Middle School student to attend the football games at Annandale High School, please see the message below from the Administrative Team. 

Expectations while Attending Annandale Home Football Games

If you or your student plans to attend, please take the time to discuss the relevant information below:

  • No backpacks or other bags will be allowed in the stadium.  (Students and Adults)
  • No outside food or drinks are allowed. The concession stand will be open.
  • Students must plan to have their rides waiting for them at 9:30 pm.
  • The purpose for attending our football games is to watch the game, cheerleaders, band and dance team.
  • We cheer for Annandale and not against our opponent. All cheers should be positive.
  • Students planning to attend a game need to leave campus upon school dismissal and return to cheer on the Atoms.
  • The gates to the stadium will open at 6:00 pm.
  • All students must pre-arrange for transportation and plan to leave immediately after the game.
  • Students are expected to be in the stands and not hanging out by the concession stand, bathrooms or other areas; all elementary-aged children must always be supervised by an adult.
  • Anyone who leaves may not re-enter, even with a ticket stub or pass.
  • Whistles and similar noisemakers are prohibited.

All elementary and middle school students need a parent/guardian to enter and need to be supervised by an adult while at the game.  Any elementary or middle school student in violation of this policy will have parents called immediately and are subject to being excluded from future extracurricular events and ticket money will not be refunded. through Schoology

Soon, in SOAR we will review with students how to access for help. So families are aware, with students can get an expert help in a safe, secure virtual learning space—anytime, anywhere, on any device. Students access through Schoology. Tutors can help with reading, math, and so much more! Students can connect by voice or text-chat and work together in an online classroom. For more information, visit our website. For information on opting out, click here.

Tier 2 Intervention Starts on Tuesday, 10/18

One of the primary reasons that we changed our bell schedule for this year was to ensure that we build time into the school day to provide Tier 2 intervention for those students who need some extra time to master grade-level standards.  3 or 4 times throughout this year, teachers in certain subjects will meet with small groups of students to ensure they get the time and support they need.  Students had a SOAR lesson about this yesterday, and received an email if their classroom will be changing as well.  Here are the main things you need to know:

  • This intervention session coming up will begin on Tuesday, October 18th, and end on Thursday, November 17th. 
  • Intervention will be in English and Math only this time, and will only be on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. 
  • ALL students will go to their regular SOAR class (the class listed on their schedule during 4th period) on Mondays and Fridays. 
  • Some students will go to their Math & English teachers for intervention instead of SOAR on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. 
  • Some students whose SOAR teachers also teach Math & English will meet in a different classroom for SOAR on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. 
  • We are reminding students about where to go and what to do in a number of different ways:
    • Passes delivered to them in SOAR on Monday, 10/17
    • Reminder emails & announcements
    • Tuesday-Thursday SOAR assignments posted in hallways 

Response to Incident

Thank you for your message that you've sent in my response to my community letter about the altercation that occurred during the 12:40 class change today.  The students involved have been identified, have received disciplinary consequences, and their parents have been notified.  As far as we know right now, there were no other students involved, but if your student was involved or hurt in some way as a result of the incident, please let us know.  

Digital Resource Consent

Click HERE to sign or check the completion status for your student's Digital Resource Consent as soon as possible. Many digital tools require parent permission this year and students are opted out by default. By completing this form, you will help provide teachers with the necessary information they need to plan impactful lessons using digital media.  

Contact Mel Mollick, School-Based Technology Specialist for Holmes, at @email if you have any questions or concerns.

Free Student Bus Pass Program

There will be communication coming from FCPS and the Fairfax county government regarding the free student bus pass program.  Please watch this VIDEO for more information. 

Food delivery for students

We have noticed this year that a number of students and their parents are ordering lunch through GrubHub, UberEats, DoorDash, etc., and having it delivered to the school.  That is NOT permitted.  Please do not have food ordered and delivered to the school for your student.  Our office staff cannot manage that.  Students should either eat the lunch provided by the school or bring a lunch from home.  Thank you for helping us with this.  

Fall INSPIRE 2022 Conference

As we progress through the start of the 2022-2023 school year, we have some exciting news for all students currently registered at Glasgow, Holmes and Key Middle Schools. To truly kick off the year, these three schools have partnered together to host a Fall INSPIRE 2022 Conference. This event seeks to promote health and wellness AND provide parents and students with the tools they can use to advance their thinking and learning. This event will be held at Glasgow Middle School for more information on sessions click here

For questions regarding the program, please contact: Alex Anderson  @email 

Date and Time: October 15, 2022 from 8am - 1pm.  

To attend you must register using this link: (one form submission per student)

Due to limited spacing, we must cap this conference registration to the first 300 registered participants. 

We look forward to seeing you and your child there! 

Fall Inspire Conference


Inspire Flier

Online Application for Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology Opens October 24; Deadline to Start Application is November 16.

The online application for students interested in applying for admission to Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (TJHSST), a Regional Governor’s School in Fairfax County focused on science and technology, will be available beginning Monday, October 24th. The application will be posted on the TJ admissions website

Please view the TJ admissions video with your child.  It is also located on their website with other relevant application information.

Here are today's newsletter topics:

Holmes Updates

  • Student Services Information
  • 2022-23 Blue/White Schedule
  • 2022-23 Bell Schedule
  • After School Schedule Next Week
  • Holmes MS PTA
  • From Ms. Oncho, Our Family Liaison
  • Testing Information & Quarter 1 Testing Windows
  • Holmes Book Drive
  • Important Upcoming Dates
  • How to Stay Connected to Holmes MS

FCPS & Community Updates

  • Feedback on ESSER III Funding
  • Hispanic Heritage Month Community Health Fair & Fall Festival at the Willston Center - October 15
  • Stay Connected with FCPS

Please feel free to reach out and let us know what questions you have.  Thank you, and have a wonderful weekend!


Margaret Barnes

Proud Principal, Holmes MS




Student Services Information


2022-23 Blue/White Calendar



From Mr. Kruk, our After School Specialist

ASP Students of the Week – Abdulrazaq Bedru

  • Abdul was nominated by several staff members for our Student of the Week because of his resiliency, commitment, and positive attitude.
  • Abdul is involved in many of our after school clubs and is quickly becoming an integral part of the program.
  • Congrats Abdul!

Cursive Club – Students had a great time finding new fun ways to learn cursive.

Cursive Club

Podcast Club– Students explored innovative ways to conduct interviews in podcast club.

Podcast Club

After School Schedule Next Week

ASP Program Oct 17-21

Students Leaving After-School before 4:45

    • Any student staying after school must be signed out of the main office by a parent or guardian if leaving prior to 4:45.
    • Walkers may sign themselves out any time after 3:30 when first block ends.


Contact the After-School Specialist, Matt Kruk, @email

Holmes MS PTA

We invite EVERY family at Holmes to participate in the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) because we can do more together! Advocate for your child, and for all the children at Holmes.  Connect with other parents, so that we can build a stronger community for ourselves and our children. This year, the Holmes PTA is planning on holding in-person meetings again, so you can meet face-to-face with other parents and with Ms. Barnes.  We're also planning restaurant nights, Bingo Nights, a Fun Run, Teacher Appreciation Week, and so much more!

  • Join the PTA on MemberHub
  • Are you able to volunteer?  Submit this Google form
  • Want to order Spiritwear
  • Join us for our next meeting at Holmes on Wednesday, October 26th, at 7:30!

From Ms. Oncho, Our Family Liaison

Change Your Career. Change Your Life

Training Futures



Computer Classes for Job Seekers

Computer Core

Public Input Requested

Public Input

Testing Information & Quarter 1 Testing Windows

State assessments measure the extent to which students have learned the content and skills reflected in state standards and may also be used to measure growth in learning state standards. The format and timing of state assessments vary by grade level and content area, as noted in the table below. These include:

  • Fall and winter Virginia Growth Assessments (VGA) standardized tests in reading and mathematics. More information is available on the VGA webpage (;
  • Spring Standards of Learning (SOL) standardized tests in reading, mathematics, and science. More information is available on the SOL assessments webpage (;
  • Ongoing local alternative assessments (LAAs) including performance-based assessments (PBAs) completed as part of classroom instruction in science, writing, and social studies; More information is available on the LAA and PBA webpage (

The Grade Level Tests webpage ( provides information by grade level about the general assessment schedule and reporting method for each required assessment type in Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS). School staff will contact you with the specific dates your student is scheduled to take the standardized VGA and SOL assessments. If you have questions about state assessments, contact your student’s teacher or Christopher Kamar, our test coordinator, at @email   

Testing Windows

Holmes Book Drive

Book Drive

Important Upcoming Dates

  • Monday, 10/24 - NO SCHOOL / Diwali
  • Wednesday, 10/26 - PTA Meeting, 6:30 PM, Holmes Library
  • Friday, 10/28 - 1st Quarter Ends / 2-Hour Early Release
  • Monday, 10/31 - NO SCHOOL / Teacher Workday
  • Monday, 11/8 - NO SCHOOL / Election Day
  • Friday, 11/11 - NO SCHOOL / School Planning Day
  • 11/23 - 11/25 - NO SCHOOL / Thanksgiving

How to Stay Connected to Holmes MS

Please stay in touch with us throughout the year by:

FCPS & Community Updates

ESSER III Funding Supports Student Success: Your Voice Matters

In the fall of 2021, FCPS received $188.8 million in Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER III) funding to support the safe operation of schools and address the impacts of COVID-19 on students. 

ESSER III focus areas have included resources for prevention and mitigation of COVID, academic services, multilingual engagement, support for students’ social emotional needs, and professional development. 

Your Voice Matters!

A feedback form has been live on the ESSER III webpage Friday, September 23. Your input will inform the School Board and FCPS staff on the community’s view of our work. Watch this video to see the impact ESSER III funds are having in our schools. Learn more on FCPS’ website

Hispanic Heritage Month Community Health Fair & Fall Festival at the Willston Center - October 15

Hispanic Heritage Month

Hispanic Heritage Month_Spanish

Stay Connected with FCPS

Being connected to your school and division is important every year, and even more so now as we navigate our return to school. The best way to stay informed is to sign up for newsletters through News You Chose

Your school and FCPS have a variety of topics you can choose from, including:

  • School Newsletters- featuring everything you need to know about your child’s school
  • FCPS This Week- a weekly newsletter featuring news and happenings from across the division, published Wednesday mornings
  • School Board Meeting Update- a recap of important news coming out of school board meetings, published the Friday morning after the meeting
  • FCPS Employee News- weekly updates just for staff, published Tuesday mornings