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Teacher of the Year Named

May 6, 2012 by Contributor News, Schools Be the first to comment

Shenandoah University will present its Teacher of the Year Award to Shannon Allen, a keyboarding teacher at Blue Ridge Middle School, at the meeting of the Loudoun County School Board on May 8, at 6:30 p.m., at the Loudoun County Public Schools Administration Building, 21000 Education Court, in Ashburn, Va. Allen will be honored for her commitment to her students and to the community. … Continue Reading

Loudoun School Bus Running?

April 26, 2012 by Blue Ridge Leader News, Public Safety, Schools 3 comments

One of our readers submitted this video to the BRL after stumbling across it on YouTube.

We invite your comments.

Five Loudoun Country Day School Eighth Graders Shine at State Competition

April 25, 2012 by Contributor News, Schools Be the first to comment

On Saturday, April 21, members of the eighth grade class joined hundreds of students across the state of Virginia in Williamsburg for the state finals of the 2012 National History Day Competition. Five students from Loudoun Country Day School, in Leesburg, won prizes. Lindsey Rust and Olivia Lattanzi won a third place medal for their group documentary on child labor laws. Tyler Nightingale won first prize in the category of individual documentary on how Jackie Robinson revolutionized sports for African Americans and was a true leader and hero in the Civil Rights Movement. Omar Ahmed and Chris Miller won first place for their group live performance that addressed how Brown v. Board of Education ignited the Civil Rights Movement. … Continue Reading

Admissions Open Houses in April at LCDS

April 9, 2012 by Contributor News, Schools Be the first to comment

On Thursday, April 12, and Thursday, April 19, Loudoun Country Day School Headmaster Dr. Randy Hollister will present an overview of the LCDS mission and educational program in the school library at 9:00 a.m. while school is in session. A question and answer session will follow. Dr. Hollister will lead a tour afterwards. Please join us April 12 and April 19 to learn more about our prekindergarten through eighth grade coed program. We offer a robust curriculum, full-day kindergarten, small classes, field trips and hands-on activities in a nurturing environment. … Continue Reading

Northern Virginia Community College Loudoun Campus Hosts Open House

April 3, 2012 by Contributor Schools Be the first to comment

Northern Virginia Community College’s Loudoun Campus will hold an Open House April 18, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Prospective students will learn about NOVA’s guaranteed admission agreements that allow graduates to transfer seamlessly to dozens of four-year colleges and universities. They will also receive financial aid advice and have the opportunity to talk to deans, faculty and current students. Refreshments will be served on Wednesday April 18, 2012 from 6:30-8:30pm. Contact Jolie Perara at jperara@nvcc.edu.

LVHS Principal and Student Council Receive Awards

March 27, 2012 by Contributor News, Schools Be the first to comment
Ms. Ross and the student council join Mr. Dick while he announces the awards to the student body

Principal Sue Ross was named the Virginia Student Council Association (VSCA) Secondary Principal of the Year at the VSCA Convention March 23- 24, 2012 in Williamsburg, Virginia. Nominated by the Viking Student Council, the surprise announcement was made at the convention’s March 24 banquet. Ms. Ross will receive the award at the spring conference of the Virginia Association of Secondary School Principals, the co-sponsor of the award. … Continue Reading

Loudoun Valley Yearbook Wins National Award

March 20, 2012 by Contributor News, Schools Be the first to comment
At the 2012 Columbia Scholastic Press Association's (CSPA) Scholastic Crown Awards Convocation Saga 2012 members pose with C. Bruce Watterson, Chair of the Columbia Scholastic Press Advisers Association's (CSPAA) Committee on Judging Practices after receiving a Gold Crown for the 2011 Saga. They are Saga staff members Rebecca Soloranzo, Jackie Hoffmann, Waterson, 2012 Co-Editor Kristina Anderson, Hope Wiseman and Adviser Martha Akers.

Loudoun Valley High School’s yearbook staff, The Saga, received a Gold Crown for the 2011 yearbook. The Columbia Scholastic Press Association announced its top awards for the scholastic publications at the 88th annual Scholastic Convention, March 14-16, 2012 at Columbia University in New York City. … Continue Reading

County Supervisors Move $2.64 Million To School Capital Fund

March 9, 2012 by Blue Ridge Leader News, Schools Be the first to comment

On Wednesday, March 7, Vice-Chair Janet Clarke (R-Blue Ridge) led a motion for the “acquisition of land and preliminary engineering for a future school site.”

The Board of Supervisors approved reallocating $2.64 million from the County Land Acquisition Capital Fund to the Loudoun County Public Schools Capital Fund Project Account. The vote was 6-1-2 with Delgaudio (R-Sterling)voting no and Reid (R-Leesburg) and Higgins (R-Catoctin) abstaining. The vote came after an executive session that lasted over an hour at the end of the morning business meeting.

Although not much information was given, the money will be used to purchase a new school site in the Blue Ridge District. Clarke said that the property was a “bargain” and if the school is not needed then the County can sell the land.

The issue came to the Board early Wednesday morning. Delgaudio said that there could be other locations suitable for the school and that the Board should first look at other property owned by the County. “This is in the middle of a budget season and this is rash, rash, rash,” he said.

Lovettsville, Purcellville Students Participates in Alternative Spring Break

March 4, 2012 by Contributor Schools Be the first to comment

James Madison University’s Alternative Spring Break program is celebrating its 20th year by doing what it does best, sending teams of students to locations in the United States and abroad to immerse themselves in a different community, live simply and offer service. … Continue Reading

When Does School Discipline Policy Discretion Become an Overreaching Abuse?

February 7, 2012 by Contributor News, Schools 1 comment

By Bob Ohneiser

Over my eight years on the school board I’ve always wondered how fundamental contradictions in law versus school practice never seem to get resolved. I don’t remember ever hearing a candidate for office run on the platform of expelling children from school when no emergency was occurring, no imminent harm was caused and in some cases no intent on the part of the student to violate any rule whatsoever. Do you check the contents of your car trunk before allowing your child to drive your car to school on a weekend? The Virginia Board of Education seems to focus its guidelines for codes of conduct on “preserving a safe, non-disruptive environment for effective teaching and learning”. Locally we’ve all heard the over stated prologue to almost every school activity especially during budget time that “It’s all about the children”. … Continue Reading

Woodgrove High School’s Music & Arts Association (WMAA) 2nd Annual Mardi Gras Auction & Showcase

February 7, 2012 by Contributor News, Schools Be the first to comment

Woodgrove High School’s Music & Arts Association is hosting the 2nd Annual Mardi Gras Auction & Showcase on Saturday, February 18 from 6:30 – 9:30 p.m. at Woodgrove High School, 36811 Allder School Road in Purcellville.

The local business community is stepping forward to support this great event. Donations are being received daily for the Live Auction, hosted by Tillett and Damewood Auctioneers. There will be about 30 quality auction items up for bid. … Continue Reading

Emerick PTO Purchases iPads for Teachers

February 7, 2012 by Contributor News, Schools Be the first to comment

The Emerick Elementary School PTO recently purchased 10 iPads for teachers at their school as part of a pilot program. The teachers were asked to submit an application if they were interested in being considered for this award. An overwhelming number of teachers applied making the application process a difficult (and exciting) one for the selection committee. The ten teachers selected are thrilled to implement the use of this technology in their classrooms in new and innovative ways. Already, one second grade classroom has been using Skype on an iPad in conjunction with the Promethean board to communicate with a father who is in the Army, deployed in Afghanistan. The students have learned a tremendous amount about the country and the military through this application. The PTO is excited to see all of the other ways that learning will be advanced by this technology. Due to the enthusiasm from the teachers during this pilot program, the PTO is hoping to raise additional funds to provide an iPad for each teacher in the school. Donations are being accepted in honor of or in memory of an Emerick teacher who has made a difference in the lives of children in the Purcellville community. If you would like to contribute, e-mail Sarah Weller, Emerick PTO President at emerickptoprez@hotmail.com.

School Budget Cuts Subject of Public Hearing

February 2, 2012 by Blue Ridge Leader News, Schools 2 comments

Citizens Speak Out Against Closing Small Western Schools and Bus Driver Benefits Cuts

The Loudoun County School Board room was packed with Loudoun County Public School (LCPS) employees and residents who spoke during the public comments on January 31, 2011. Many of the more than eighty citizens and employees who signed up to speak were concerned with the proposed budget cuts that would, among other things, affect part-time employees. Still others were concerned about the possibility that budget cuts would force the closing of western Loudoun County’s four small public schools – in Aldie, Middleburg, Hillsboro and Lincoln. … Continue Reading

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Sustainable Planet

Pungent Curry

9 Apr 2014


The latest version of the IPCC report is published and once again it will go unread by the great masses of climate science deniers and unreported by the media. So it might be useful to revisit the fundamental physical realities …

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Ask Dr. Mike

Understanding Teen Suicide

1 Apr 2014


By Michael Oberschneider, Psy.D. Northern Virginia has recently experienced several teen suicides. Last month, two Langley High School students took their own lives just a day apart from one another, and this month it appears two students at Woodson High …

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Virginia Gardening

Spring Is Coming

4 Mar 2014


By Donna Williamson March is an in-between month – some cold and the return of glorious warmth now and then. One way to bring some delight inside is forcing spring-blooming branches. You can cut branches of forsythia, cherry, crabapple, kerria, …

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Sushi's Corner

An Easter Swim

1 Apr 2014

Screen Shot 2014-04-01 at 11.10.56 AM

I felt like a silly nim “cow” poop with these Easter bows in our hair. Okay Nelly, maybe you didn’t because you’re a girl. But me, a Mighty Cairn Terrier male? – PLEASE! Pleasing Mrs. B for Easter pictures was …

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Amy V. Smith's Money Talks

What Baseball Can Teach You About Financial Planning

1 Apr 2014

Amy Smith-BRL

Spring training is a tradition that baseball teams and baseball fans look forward to every year. No matter how they did last year, teams in spring training are full of hope that a new season will bring a fresh start. …

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Go Take a Hike

Blandy Experimental Farm

6 Jun 2012


By Molly Pinson Simoneau It’s no secret that I love a challenging hike. I’ve written here about hiking sections of the Appalachian Trail and Shenandoah National Park. I’ve taken vacations with my family to Colorado where I’ve attempted to conquer a “fourteener” (a summit that is higher than 14,000 feet), …


Real Estate Ticker

A Buying Opportunity?

6 Nov 2013

Carl Fischer headshot

By Carl Fischer As a direct result of the uncertainty that has arisen from national and regional politics, with its unsettling effect on the Northern Virginia area, for the past two months there has been a market slowdown which has …

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From the Farm

From the Farm

5 Jul 2012

From the Farm

When the heat index reaches 110 degrees, as it has been doing recently, I try to keep in the shade, or stay indoors. But my lavender, about halfway from full bloom, seems to thrive in it. Hot and dry, I …

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April 2014
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: Art Gallery Reception for Featured Artists -- Abstract painter Evelyn Lopez de Guzman and contemporary painter Sandra Iafrate


April 12, 2014N/A

Meet Evelyn and Sandra and other gallery artists during a free, open to the public reception for this month's Featured Artists' exhibit "Living Color,” showcasing two accomplished painters Evelyn Lopez de Guzman and Sandra Iafrate, in a vivid and dynamic presentation of color, shape and our surroundings.

Evelyn Lopez de Guzman’s vibrant paintings awaken the viewer to connect with nature and the modern world through an interplay of shape, color, and textural materials.

Sandra Iafrate’s combination of realistic and surrealist interpretation of flowers, foliage and landscapes on spacious canvases convey a sense of movement and playfulness.

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Easter at "The Park"


April 19, 2014

Celebrate Easter at historic Morven Park with crafts for kids, an egg hunt in the formal gardens plus a traditional egg roll on the Davis Mansion lawn. Have a family photo taken with the Easter Bunny. Children should bring a basket for the hunt and a large spoon for the egg roll. $10/participating child (ages 2-12), $3/adult. Register at www.MorvenPark.org.

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VAL's Pals Kids Club


April 30, 2014

Join Inova Loudoun Hospital as the present their Beamer the Dog Program.

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May 4, 2014

Scouting for Bricks is an exhibit showing the Love for everything LEGO® . Come see amazing LEGO® creations by Fans of LEGO®, LEGO® trains, Mindstorms robots. We will also have live Star Wars Stormtroopers and an interactive play area with over 100,000 LEGO bricks. Scouting for Bricks is fun for the Whole Family! Visit us at www.ScoutingForBricks.com.

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View From the Ridge

Rural Loudoun Is Different, and We Say Dark Skies Do Matter

4 Mar 2014


In February of this year a sell out crowd gathered at the county public seat in Leesburg to provide feedback to the Loudoun County Planning Commission on the idea of adding additional sports lights to the upper athletic fields at Franklin Park. Franklin Park includes a really wonderful performing arts …



Steady and Nobull

4 Mar 2014

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Park and Ride Lots for Western Loudoun

4 Mar 2014


In 2003, the county purchased 22 commuter buses to serve a growing demand for bus service to Washington D.C. The demand has grown exponentially ever since. The county now owns or leases 65 large commuter buses (with plush seats and on board restrooms) and more are being added every year. The buses are often filled to standing room only as …



Sadie’s Race 5K and Fun Run Scheduled for Sunday May 18

9 Apr 2014


Sadie Smile Foundation is putting on the third annual Sadie’s Race/Walk and Kids Fun Run to Benefit Smile Train in Purcellville Sunday, May 18th this year. The race starts at 8:00 a.m. at the train station at 200 N 21st Street in Purcellville. Sign up at Active.com. When Sara Ablard lost her five year-old daughter, Sadie, two years ago, she …

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Dr. Joseph Rogers Dies at Family Farm

1 Apr 2014

Dr. Joseph Megeath Rogers, 90, died on Saturday March 8, 2014 at his Hillbrook Farm near Hamilton following a stroke. Physician, farmer, businessman, rural land conservationist, philanthropist and expert horseman, Dr. Rogers was a tireless advocate and practitioner of country living whose contributions in a broad range of interests were made quietly and with little fanfare. His public persona was …

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Zoldos Presented Citizen of the Year Award

1 Apr 2014


At the biweekly March meeting of the Lovettsville Town Council, Mayor Bobby Zoldos was presented the 2013 Citizen of the Year from the Lovettsville Waterford Ruritans. Presenting the award was Rick Adams, current president along with Board Member Peter Mullally and  Vice President Jeff Boogaard. Adams said, “On behalf of the Lovettsville Waterford Ruritans, we would like to present the …

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Around Virginia

Wolf Won’t Seek Re-election


Rep. Frank Wolf (R-10th) today announced that he would not seek election to an 18th term in 2014. He released the following statement announcing his decision: “I have decided not to seek re-election to the U.S. Congress in 2014. It has been an honor to serve the people of northern …

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Virginia Can and Should Work Harder to Combat Hunger


By Congressman Frank Wolf Last year, the USDA reported a record number of Americans are struggling to put food on their tables. Across the nation, 49 million people – including 17 million children and six million seniors – are going hungry, a number that has grown substantially over the last …

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Kaine Statement on Navy Yard Shooting


U.S. Senator Tim Kaine released the following statement on today’s shooting at the Washington Navy Yard: “My thoughts and prayers are with everyone impacted by today’s tragic shooting at the Washington Navy Yard. As we learn more about the horrific events that unfolded this morning, my deepest sympathies go out …

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Nominate Your Hometown Hero

9 Apr 2014


Upper Loudoun Little League’s Hometown Heroes scholarship closes on April 21, 2014. The application is available online at ULLL.org. The scholarship is open to all graduating seniors who played baseball for ULLL at some point in their growing up years.

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Lady Vikings Give Back

10 Feb 2014

The Loudoun Valley Girls basketball team held an event on Friday, February 7 at LVHS. The Lady Vikings celebrated “Pink Night” by honoring those who are battling breast cancer or have been affected by breast cancer. The event was held in conjunction with an event held at Woodgrove earlier this …

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Medicaid Expansion Battle Heating Up

4 Mar 2014


Did you know that there’s a very real possibility that a DC-style budget battle and government shutdown could come to Virginia? The Medicaid expansion battle …

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Endorsing for Profit Businesses?

4 Mar 2014

town of purcellville sign

I recently received an automated email message from the Town of Purcellville soliciting nominations for volunteer award recipients in cooperation with the Purcellville Business Association …


Another Vote To Overrule Purcellville’s Board of Architectural Review

4 Mar 2014

town of purcellville sign

The Purcellville Town Council, foolishly, in the view of many and perhaps most, has overruled its Board of Architectural Review and approved Mark Nelis’s and …



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