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Deputy superintendent Moniuszko steps down

Richard Moniuszko is retiring from his position as deputy superintendent of Fairfax County Public Schools, ending his seven-year tenure in Fairfax.

Moniuszko was honored by the School Board last week for his service to the school system in the lead-up to his January retirement.

However, Moniuszko still will maintain a presence both in education and in the county, though in a very different capacity. He is joining the faculty of George Mason University in Fairfax as an education professor starting in the spring semester.

For the past six months, Moniuszko has helped Karen Garza acclimate to her new position as superintendent of one of the largest school systems in the country.

Leading up to the introduction of Garza as new schools chief, Moniuszko served as interim superintendent from May through July of this year. Moniuszko took over for retiring Superintendent Jack Dale, who had to leave office earlier than expected due to a medical emergency.

The Baltimore native graduated from the University of Virginia and earned a doctorate degree in education from the University of South Carolina. He started his career as a school psychologist before moving into administration. Moniuszko served as the deputy superintendent in Columbia, S.C., before coming to Fairfax in May 2006.

Efforts from Moniuszko during his time with Fairfax schools saw an increase in high school students taking Advanced Placement courses and wider availability of college-level classes. Moniuszko also focused on honing the school system’s discipline policies and boosting graduation rates.

PTAs facilitate tech discussion with new website

The Fairfax County Council of PTAs has launched a website on use of technology in schools, hoping to create a dialogue between teachers, parents and school administrators on technology in the classroom.

The website,, was created with the purpose of providing information to parents and instructors especially on technology use in county schools. However, FCCPTA wants the website to become not only a source of information but also a venue for conversation.

With the website, the FCCPTA shines a light on the county school system’s current technology program and policies. Classroom teachers are meant to integrate technology into their instruction, and the county has implemented a “Bring Your Own Device” program to encourage technology use among students and teachers. The FCCPTA plans to use the website as a chance to explain these policies and address community questions and concerns.

Watch Westfield’s marching band in Rose Parade

The Westfield High School marching band will march in the Rose Parade in Pasadena, Calif., on New Year’s Day.

The band will become the first Fairfax County public school to participate in the renowned parade, which celebrates its 125th anniversary this year. The nationally televised parade is part of the lead-up to the Rose Bowl college football game.

The Rose Parade starts at 11 a.m. Eastern Standard Time, and will be broadcast locally on ABC and NBC.

Plan to catch the Westfield band, the Marching Bulldogs, during the second hour of the parade, at around 12 p.m. They will stop during their 5.5-mile march for a one-minute performance.

— Kate Yanchulis