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Commending Bel Air Elementary School.


Agreed to by the Senate, February 22, 2018


WHEREAS, in 2018, Bel Air Elementary School in Prince William County celebrates 50 years of educating and nurturing the children of Woodbridge; and

WHEREAS, named for a plantation that once occupied the area, Bel Air Elementary School opened its doors in November 1968 after its construction on 15 acres of land donated by real estate developer C.D. Hylton; and

WHEREAS, Bel Air Elementary School includes over 80 faculty and staff who serve 420 preschool through fifth grade students; the diverse student body is 53 percent Spanish speakers and 41 percent English speakers and also includes children who speak Arabic, Cambodian, Mandarin Chinese, Farsi, Krio, Lao, Nepali, Pashto, Thai, Twi, Urdu, and Vietnamese; and

WHEREAS, committed to academic excellence, Bel Air Elementary School makes use of Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports techniques and the Responsive Classroom model, which set high standards for learners while also fostering a schoolwide sense of community and safety; and

WHEREAS, Bel Air Elementary School encourages professional development in its dedicated faculty members and emphasizes best practices for English Language Learners as well as cultural competency, inclusive practices, and the integration of technology in the classroom; and

WHEREAS, Bel Air Elementary School maintains close ties to parents through its Parent Teacher Association, career days, and multicultural nights; the school also hosts English language acquisition and Parents as Educational Partners classes; and

WHEREAS, in 2007, Bel Air Elementary School underwent a full renovation that included construction of an eight-room addition; in 2009, the school added an activities room; and

WHEREAS, students at Bel Air Elementary School can participate in numerous extracurricular activities, including strings, chorus, robotics club, photography club, book club, music and drama club, Math 24 club, safety patrol, Green Team, student council, and after-school enrichment programs; and

WHEREAS, Bel Air Elementary School actively supports the American Heart Association, the American Cancer Society and Relay For Life, the Autism Society of America Northern Virginia Chapter, and Pennies for Panthers, which supports Bel Air families in need; and

WHEREAS, in 11 out of the 14 previous years, Bel Air Elementary School has received the School of Excellence award, the highest school distinction awarded by the Prince William County School Board; and

WHEREAS, through its innovative and student-focused curriculum, Bel Air Elementary School has enhanced the education of numerous children and helped prepare them for future success; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED by the Senate of Virginia, That Bel Air Elementary School hereby be commended on the occasion of its 50th anniversary; and, be it

RESOLVED FURTHER, That the Clerk of the Senate prepare a copy of this resolution for presentation to Antoinette J. McDonald, principal of Bel Air Elementary School, as an expression of the Senate of Virginia’s admiration for the school’s commitment to its students and the surrounding community.