The Mustang Spirit

The Principal's Newsletter - October 23, 2020

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From Principal Hills

Dear Mustang Families,

Happy Friday! We hope you have been enjoying the warm weather the last couple of days.

Parent-Teacher Virtual Conferences will be held on Monday, November 2. All parents/guardians will be receiving an email on Wednesday with their child's teachers' Calendly links. Please use these links to schedule your virtual conferences.

As Dr. Noonan mentioned in his Friday letter, we are in the process of planning for a hybrid return of our Mustangs. Here are preliminary updates for our Seniors and the rest of our students in Grades 9-11:

  • Our Senior Class of 2021 will begin their year on Tuesday, January 5th in the new high school building. (More details will be shared regarding the days and times as our planning moves forward.)

  • They will continue their online learning during this “Senior Week” (Tuesday - Friday) and will access their curriculum in the new space utilizing appropriate health mitigation strategies.

  • The Seniors will be able to use this opportunity to navigate the new facilities and focus on their leadership as we prepare to usher in the rest of our secondary students.

  • Their first week will involve fully online instruction but they will be able to engage in their new school building!

  • Seniors will then transition to a hybrid model beginning Tuesday, January 12th attending school in person 2-days per week and receiving online instruction 2-days per week.

  • Students in Grades 9-11 will begin their hybrid learning model (2-days in person and 2-days online with their teachers) on Tuesday, January 12th.

  • Students will receive 2-days of in-person instruction and 2-days of online simultaneous instruction with their teachers in the secondary hybrid model. (More details regarding which days students will attend will be shared as our planning moves forward.)

  • Approximately half of the students will attend in-person learning at a time to ensure adequate social distancing is in place.

  • Mondays will be reserved for independent learning, intervention and other opportunities provided virtually, while also allowing for teacher planning time.

Please stay tuned as we continue to work on ensuring the safe return of our Mustangs.


Team Mason


George Mason High School will be ordering AP exams the first week of November for the May 2021 AP examination session. If your child is currently enrolled in an AP class at GMHS, the appropriate AP exam will be ordered for her/him/them and the cost of the AP exam is paid for by FCCPS. There is nothing further you or your child needs to do.

However, if your child is NOT enrolled in an AP course, but would like to take an AP examination, they may do so. In this case, you are responsible for paying the $95 AP exam fee for each AP exam ordered. Here is what needs to be done by Wednesday, November 4:

  • Your child should send an email by November 4 to the IB Diploma Coordinator, Mr. Coast, and her/his/their counselor and let them know which AP exam(s) they would like the school to order.

Mr. Coast:

Ms. Chesley:

Ms. Quirine:

Mr. McAdam:

Ms. Snyder:

  • Deliver a check by November 4 to the GMHS main office to be placed in Mr. Coast’s mailbox. The check should be payable to FCCPS and the student's name and the name of the AP exam(s) should be written on the subject line of the check.

Our English Learners Are Back!

On Monday, October 19, we welcomed back 17 of our high school students receiving English Language services. We're so excited to see and work with students face to face, in a safe and physically-distanced way!

For Senior Parents/Guardians Only

The last session of Senior Portraits will be taken on Thursday, October 29, and Friday, October 30 in the Mustang Cafe. This will be the last opportunity for your student's photo to be taken for the 2020-2021 Yearbook at the school. You can still book private settings with Victor O'Neill Studios (VOS) directly.

Please book your appointment quickly by clicking here. These dates will definitely fill up.

If your senior would like to take a RETAKE during this time, please send an email directly to to arrange for one.

Seniors will enter the building from the Main Entrance (Door 19) and be required to practice safe social distancing, including wearing a mask at all times when in the building. Please be advised that VOS will NOT be offering Cap & Gown or Tux & Drape photos until Spring 2021.

If your child is feeling sick, has a fever, is coughing, has difficulty breathing, or if in the last two weeks your child has been in close contact with a person with a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19, please ask your child to stay home. We strongly encourage you to reschedule your appointment if your senior or anyone in your family is feeling unwell.

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Victor O'Neill Studios directly at

Volunteer for Virtual Career Chats

George Mason High School's popular Career Chat program is going virtual this year. Volunteer presenters from every career are needed to chat with students as guests on the Schoology platform. Students will be assigned to interest groups, so you will be chatting with students who want to know what you do. It's a lot of fun!

The dates are still to be determined, but please indicate your interest today by submitting this form, and BIE will get back to you with specific dates. Thank you!

FCEF Online Auction*


The online auction will be open for mobile bidding on Friday, November 13 and close at 9:30 pm on Friday, November 20.


Registration is free and all are welcome to join in on the fun! All participants need to register to receive their bidder number.

"Party in a Box" Registration

Instead of a party on the dance floor, we are bringing the party to you! Make your evening - or a teacher's evening - more fun. Your $100 donation to FCEF will register you for the online auction and you'll receive a special "Party in a Box" delivery.

What's in the Roaring Twenties "Party in a Box", you ask? We won't give away all the surprises, but you'll get a gift card for dinner, and items to make the evening lively and fun. "Party in a Box" registrations must be completed by Wednesday, November 18th for delivery.

* All proceeds from the auction go back to our schools to benefit students and teachers.

Let's Go Mustangs!

Winter is Coming...Visit the Mason Fan Shop for hoodies, pullovers, sweatshirts, winter hats, flannel pants, and much more. Everything your Mustang will need for the winter in one place.

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