SVHS Green and Gold

Dr. Cohen's Newsletter to the SVHS Community

October 11, 2020 Edition

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Acting Assistant Principal Appointment

As you all know, Mr. Davidson has been on leave since early September with symptoms related to COVID-19. Although Mr. Davidson is feeling relatively well, his symptoms have persisted. As a result, he has been approved for medical leave through December 4th. Earlier this evening, we received approval from the Office of Teaching, Learning, and Schools to appoint Ms. Katie Rahmati Acting Assistant Principal. We all know Katie as our amazing Staff Development Teacher, but she also has her Administrator I and her Administrator 2 certifications.

As Acting Assistant Principal, Katie will be assuming many of Mr. Davidson's responsibilities, while also continuing to support us all with her high quality professional development. These include supporting PE, Art, Music, CTE, NJROTC, Science, and Internship. She will also be supporting 12th grade academics and activities. because we are optimistic that Mr. Davidson will be able to return in December, Katie will not be conducting formal observations for the purpose of teacher evaluation. Resource teachers will be asked to conduct fall observations for teachers in an evaluation year in each of these departments. Mr. Davidson will conduct the 2nd observation for each of these staff members in the spring.

Welcome New Counselor

As we shared a few weeks ago, Ms. Moore has left Seneca Valley for a new professional opportunity. I am happy to share that starting Monday, October 12, Ms. Melissa McCarthy joins the SVHS counseling services team.

Ms. McCarthy was born and raised in Upstate New York, where she received her Master’s degree from the State of University of New York at Oswego. She has spent the majority of her School Counseling career in Syracuse City Schools. Her counseling experiences span the range from elementary, middle and high school and higher education and mental health settings. Ms. McCarthy will be taking over Ms. Moore’s caseload - Students with last names beginning with G - King, C.

Ms. McCarthy has shared that her role as a school counselor has truly been rewarding and she is excited to work with the SVHS students, teachers, administration and parents who are invested in ensuring student success. She encourages all students to strive to achieve their goals.

Please join us in welcoming a New Screaming Eagle to our Family!

Long-Term Substitute Teacher

As many of you may know, Ms. Noemi Santiago-Anaya, our World Languages Resource Teacher, will be on long-term leave for personal reasons. We are happy to report that Dr. Ariel Ferrari will be serving as long-term sub in her classes. Dr. Ferrari is no stranger to the Screaming Eagle family, having previously served as a long-term substitute last year when another Spanish teacher was out on maternity leave. He has a Masters Degree and a Ph.D., both in Spanish Literature.

Elizabeth Maxey has been approved to take on the role of Acting Resource Teacher. Ms. Maxey previously served as a Spanish teacher at Owings Mills Middle (in Baltimore County), Rocky Hill Middle, and Seneca Valley High School before taking on the role of coordinator for credit recovery. We are grateful to Ms. Maxey for her willingness to step into this role and we appreciate the support we know that she will provide the department. For now, we will not be making any changes to the master schedule. Ms. Maxey will continue to support credit recovery while Dr. Ferrari continues to provide instruction to our students. We are looking at the spring semester schedule to identify any long-term adjustments that may need to be made to reintegrate Ms. Maxey into the department. If we determine that we must fill the resource teacher position permanently, we will advertise the position for all interested candidates and hold formal interviews.

Important Update on MAP-R and MAP-M Testing

We have completed the fourth day of administering MAP testing and want to thank parents, students and staff for patience and your diligent efforts to resolve issues that arose during testing. We realized for various reasons, there were many students who still needed to complete either MAP M (Math) or MAP R (Reading) tests after the four days of testing administration. In an effort to accommodate the need, we are extending our testing window and providing additional make-up sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday from 9:00 - 10:00 a.m. and 2:45 - 3:30 p.m.

Students will receive an email of the designated test(s) to complete, and specific times, and the ZOOM links for make-up sessions by Monday evening at latest.

Please help us by encouraging your child to participate and complete MAP Test sessions. If your child was not able to begin a test due to technical issues, please review the Troubleshooting Guide and notify me directly via email at:, no later than Monday at 4:00 p.m. if the issue has been resolved. We will add students to testing rosters once this is completed.

Thank you for your continued support.

Town Hall on Preventing Sexual Harassment and Assault Set for October 13

Let’s Talk Respect: Preventing Sexual Harassment and Assault, a student-led town hall, will be held via Zoom webinar at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 13.

MCPS is collaborating with the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office, the Montgomery County Police Department, the Victim Assistance Sexual Assault Program, Choose Respect Montgomery, Coaching Boys Into Men, EveryMind and Identity to provide a forum for students and the community. Additional details will be shared with the community and posted online soon.

Math Honor Society

Ms. Fass is accepting applications for the Math Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta. These applications are due by October 16th. Here is the link for the flyer.

Project LIT Book Club

We are proud to announce the establishment of a Project LIT Community Chapter at Seneca Valley High School this year. Project LIT is a grassroots literacy movement through which hundreds of schools & communities across the country are encouraging readers and leaders to read, discuss, and celebrate books that make us feel seen, heard, affirmed, and valued. You can learn more on Twitter @ProjectLITComm and Instagram @projectlitcomm

This year, the SVHS Project LIT Chapter will read and discuss at least four Project LIT book selections (one each quarter). Our first book is Dear Martin by Nic Stone, a powerful story about race relations and social justice. Watch and listen to the author talk about her motivation to write the book HERE.

This book is currently "always available" to read online in Sora, our online reading app/platform; directions about accessing Sora are available in the myMCPS Classroom Virtual LMC. "Borrow" the book, start reading, and plan to attend our book discussion Zoom on Wednesday, October 28th, at 2:00 pm. Interested students should sign up to participate here or by emailing Ms. Little, Library Media Specialist.

Virtual Open House for SVHS Regional College and Career Programs - Oct. 19

On Monday October 19, 2020 at 6 PM, we will be holding a virtual open house to showcase our Regional College and Career Programs. We are excited to talk about the five Regional College and Career Programs available at SVHS: Construction Design and Architecture, Health Professions, Hospitality and Tourism Management Program, IT/Cybersecurity, and PLTW Engineering . They are designed to offer high demand, high skilled pathways that meet the needs of today’s economy while attending a Wall to Wall IB School (Middle Years Program, Diploma Progam, and Career-related Program). You can find more information on our Google Site:

All students interested in the five programs need to apply through their Synergy ParentVue account, even if Seneca Valley High School is your home high school.

Directions to support parents and students in completing the application will be available on the MCPS Special Programs website:

The Zoom information for our Open House is:

Passcode: 333085

We look forward to meeting you and answering any questions you may have about SVHS and our community.

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IB Spotlight

This month we are focused on the ATL category THINKING, specifically of the MYP cluster of CRITICAL THINKING. Our Learner Profile attribute will be RISK-TAKER. We can see thinking skills as critical thinking, creative thinking, and transfer.

CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS focus on analyzing and evaluating issues and ideas whereas creative thinking focuses on generating ideas and considering new perspectives. As students learn transfer skills, they can use their skills and knowledge in multiple contexts. These skills enhance students’ inquiry skills and allow them to look at information objectively as they evaluate it.

When we help students look at ideas with ‘critical eyes,’ we help them observe beyond logic and employ broad criteria such as clarity, credibility, accuracy, precision, relevance, and depth. By helping students do this, they will be able to see the real significance of information and help them evaluate the information.

As RISK-TAKER individuals, we “approach uncertainty with forethought and determination; we work independently and cooperatively to explore new ideas and innovative strategies. We are resourceful and resilient in the face of challenges and change” (The Learner Profile. International Baccalaureate Organization, 2013). As we help students become RISK-TAKERS, we encourage them to step out of their comfort zone and become courageous in their choices and actions.

Students‌ ‌are‌ ‌‌RISK-TAKERS‌‌ ‌when‌ ‌they‌ ‌challenge‌ ‌themselves‌ ‌to‌ ‌use‌‌ ‌CRITICAL‌ ‌THINKING‌ ‌SKILLS‌ ‌‌to‌ ‌evaluate‌ ‌their‌ ‌own‌ ‌assumptions‌ ‌and‌ ‌bias‌ ‌to‌ ‌objectively‌ ‌craft‌ ‌a‌ ‌claim‌ ‌and‌ conclusion‌ ‌from‌ ‌evidence.‌ ‌‌OPEN-MINDED‌‌ ‌‌RISK-TAKERS‌ actively‌ ‌listen‌ ‌to‌ ‌the‌ ‌perspectives‌ ‌of‌ ‌others‌ ‌to‌ ‌revise‌ ‌their‌ understanding‌ ‌and‌ ‌to‌ ‌propose‌ ‌solutions.‌


Celia Bidwell has been staying on top of all of her work AND providing stellar analysis in IB Language and Literature- talk about being BALANCED!


Shaun Crouse is a rockstar in organization and SELF-MANAGEMENT. He's taken on a HUGE workload this year and is doing such good work.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Natasha Ezerski (IB DP/CP Coordinator) or Kim Becraft (MYP Coordinator).

New Student Lunch Bunch

Are you new to Seneca Valley HS and looking to meet other students? Please join us for a virtual lunch bunch to get to know other students. We will meet once per week during lunch (Tuesdays 11:30-12:00) and complete ice breakers, play games, find things we have in common, and hopefully develop new friendships.

For more information, please reach out to your child's counselor.

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 941 9602 4922

Passcode: Lunch

This Week's Notes from the College & Career Center

SVHS Important Message for Seniors about the SAT! (Reminder)

PLEASE READ CAREFULLY - Quick Response Needed!!

For Seniors who have not yet taken the SAT and wish to do so, MCPS will be providing additional support with test fees and transportation for the November and December SAT. Please click on the link below to access the document with more information. If you are interested, please fill out the Google Form (included on the link below) by 12pm (noon) on Monday, October 12.

· SAT Opportunities for Class of 2021

College Applications

Attention Seniors!!

Seniors - Please keep working on your College Application Packet. Everything you need to do for submitting college applications, including instructions, is on this document. Please review the steps outlined on this document to make sure you are organized and on track to start submitting applications.

Last week, I mentioned Letters of Recommendation. This week, I would like to remind Seniors to work on matching their Common App to their Naviance account. We still have many seniors who have yet to do this. You will find instructions on how to do this in the College Application Packet.

Upcoming Scholarships

· October 15 - NSHSS Foundation STEM Scholarship - $1,000 awards; senior; min 3.0 GPA; desire to major in or pursue a degree one of the following (or closely related) STEM disciplines (see link); personal statement about STEM (500 words or less); list of STEM Activities; headshot; transcript; resume; 1-2 educator recommendations.

· October 17 - College JumpStart Scholarship - 1-$1,000 award; grades 10-12; U.S. cit. or legal res.; attend 2-year, 4-year or trade school; committed to using education to better your life & that of your family and/or community; answer 1 of 4 questions in 250 words or less.

· October 25 - Horatio Alger Scholarship - 06-$25,000 (Nat’l) & 17-$10,000 (DMV) awards; senior; U.S. Cit.; min 2.0 GPA; for high school students who have faced and overcome great obstacles in their young lives; enter a 4-year degree program in the fall after graduation; critical financial need ($55,000 or lower adj. family income); community service; integrity & perseverance in overcoming adversity.

Click here to see the SVHS Scholarships Page for more opportunities.

Next Week's College Visits - Juniors & Seniors

College of the Holy Cross 10/12/20 8:00 AM

Bryant University 10/12/20 11:30 AM

St. John's College 10/13/20 8:00 AM

St. Bonaventure University 10/13/20 11:30 AM

Juniata College 10/13/20 3:00 PM

Columbia University in the City of New York 10/14/20 8:00 AM

West Liberty University 10/14/20 9:00 AM

Pace University-New York 10/14/20 10:00 AM

University of Missouri-Columbia 10/14/20 11:00 AM

Boston University 10/14/20 12:00 PM

Radford University 10/14/20 1:00 PM

Arizona State University-Tempe 10/14/20 2:00 PM

Lincoln University 10/14/20 3:00 PM

Emmanuel College - Boston 10/15/20 8:00 AM

University of North Carolina at Asheville 10/15/20 11:30 AM

Salisbury University 10/15/20 3:00 PM

Emory University 10/16/20 8:00 AM

The University of Alabama 10/16/20 11:30 AM

To participate in college visits, students must register in Naviance. To see a full list of College Visits, see click the link below. Visits and other events can also be found on the College & Career Calendar.

· List of College Visits

Upcoming Virtual College Fairs - Juniors & Seniors

NACAC Virtual College Fairs

§ Monday, Oct 12 - 1pm to 9pm (click here for the flyer)

§ Sunday, Oct 18 - 12pm to 8pm

Click here for more info & to register

Common Black Application Free HBCU Worldwide College Fairs

§ Next Fair Date: Saturday, Oct 17 - 1pm (Click here to see the flyer)

§ Click here to register

FAFSA - Seniors

The FAFSA is now open for eligible seniors to start filling out! The FAFSA is the financial aid form to request financial aid to go to college. Please see the SVHS College & Career Financial Aid Page to for more information about the FAFSA:

MC is also hosting FAFSA completion events. You can read about these in the Newsletter or see more information in the links below:

For those not eligible to complete the FAFSA, you may be able to complete the MSFAA:

SENIORS (& their Families) - FAFSA & Financial Aid Events

Virtual Financial Aid Workshop - en Español

  • Martes 20 de octubre a las 6:30 pm. Información sobre ayuda financiera, FAFSA y pago de la universidad.

Virtual Financial Aid Night

Our FAFSA & Financial Aid Night Webinar is Wednesday, October 21, 2020 at 6:30pm. Please register using the link below. Registrants will receive the Zoom link on the day of the webinar.

Inside Look at College Admissions - Seniors

This event for underrepresented minority high school seniors and college admissions officers, who are responsible for admitting students of color, is being held in recognition of the unique challenges facing underrepresented minority students, during the college admissions process. Click below to learn more.

  • Thu,October 22, 2020, 6:00 PM – 8:30 PM

§ Click Here for More Info and to Register

Latest College & Career Center Newsletter

SVHS October College & Career Newsletter

Chromebook Damage Financial Responsibility Information

Students and their families are now financially responsible for any intentional or accidental damage of any Chromebook loaned out to the student. The Office of Technology and Innovation has created a technical document outlining the Chromebook obligation process. This document identifies the costs associated with each type of repair or replacement, as well as where students and families can go to have a repair performed. While 45 West Gude is the only available repair site at this time, additional sites will be identified and added.

To see the Chromebook Obligations document, please click here.

This document links out to four relevant articles.

  • Chromebook Repair Sites. See here.
  • Chromebook Repair Costs: See here.
  • Chromebook Acceptable Use Policy: See here.
  • Regulation IGT-RA: See here.

Student Chromebook Issues? Need a Wifi Hotspot?

Students/Families in need of a WiFi Hotspot can go to 45 W. Gude Drive in Rockville between 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. any weekday to pick one up.

If students have a broken chromebook, they should also be brought to 45 W. Gude Drive in Rockville between 9:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. any weekday.


Our PTSA board of directors invites you to visit the link below and join! They are already hard at work planning for the 2020-2021 school year and cannot do it without your membership.


Who do I go to for help?

If you need assistance or support with anything leading up to the school year or once virtual learning has begun, please do not hesitate to reach out to any of the following staff. They are here to support you in any way they can.

Main Office Telephone Number: 240-740-6400 (This is a new number)

Student Support

Ms. Crawford

  • Social Emotional Support - Students with last names beginning with A - C
  • Class Support - Class of 2022

Mr. Davidson

  • Social Emotional Support - Students with last names beginning with D - J
  • Class Support - Class of 2021

Mr. Smith

  • Social Emotional Support - Students with last names beginning with K - P
  • Class Support - Class of 2024


  • Social Emotional Support - Students with last names beginning with Q - Z
  • Class Support - Class of 2023

Ms. Riddick

  • Business, Finance, and Operations

Counselor Student Support Assignments

Counseling Website

Counseling Telephone Number: 240-740-6420

Ms. Fellows - Students with last names beginning with A - Card

Ms. Patel - Students with last names beginning with Cardi - Del Mar

Ms. Murray - Students with last names beginning with Del Pilar - F

Ms. McCarthy - Students with last names beginning with G - King, C.

Mr. Matthews - Students with last names beginning with King, D. - Nunez Enriquez

Ms. Teixeira - Students with last names beginning with Nunez Rodriguez - Shad

Mr. Yarmus - Students with last names beginning with Shah - Z

Ms. Rina Chaves ESOL Transition Counselor

Ms. Rosa Santos ESOL Parent Community Coordinator

Ms. Rogena Parrish Secretary

Ms. Linda McCabe Registrar

Mr. Carlos Nalda College-Career Information Coordinator

Mrs. Margaret Drew School Psychologist

Mr. Tony Maturana Pupil Personnel Worker (PPW)

Mr. Daryn Moore Aces Coach (11th-12th grade)

Class Sponsors

Class of 2024 - Freshman Class

Class of 2023 - Sophomore Class

Class of 2022- Junior Class

Class of 2021 - Senior Class

Wellness Resources

The safety and wellness of our students remains a top priority. Below are resources to support the physical, social and psychological well-being of our community. If you believe your child is in crisis, please contact the Montgomery County Crisis Center at 240-777-4000. Students can also reach out to their counselor and school psychologist to set up a confidential appointment.

Waymaking Video Series

Mindful Moments Video Series
Tips on Addressing Student Grief
Tips for Preventing Youth Suicide

Community Resources

Below is information regarding food/grocery access beyond the MCPS school meal sites:

Food Assistance Resource Map: The Montgomery County Food Council created an interactive map of food assistance providers and benefits application assistance sites in Montgomery County. It is searchable by location, food assistance type, accessibility and many other special features. This resource can give principals and families a quick view of local resources in their area. The information indicates where, when and how to access the resources. **We would caution parents and staff supporting parents to pay particular attention to how one qualifies to access food as some sites state requirements.

Weekend Bag Program: MCPS, Manna Food Center, and Women Who Care Ministries are distributing weekend backpacks with groceries to the families of MCPS students each Friday. The location of distribution sites and times are listed at the bottom of the webpage.













Are you #SVPROUD?

Are you proud to be a part of the SV community? We want to let everyone know how much we love being a part of the Screaming Eagle family. We have a challenge for you. Let's go viral!!!
  • Tweet, Snap, IB, FB, etc., a pic of you repping "The Valley" by wearing your Seneca gear.
  • And don't forget to use #svproud. Go Eagles!