I figured that I hadn't written an article on any Reston schools as of yet on the Reston History Blog. I thought I would start with my home area, Hunters Woods Elementary School for the Arts and Sciences, which was built in 1969 and which is located at 2401 Colts Neck Road. It is home to the Mighty Mustangs and a great elementary school. I have a daughter that attended Hunters Woods from 2009 to 2015 and another daughter that is about to start at the school this coming Fall. It is an amazing elementary school with a long history in Reston over the past 49 years. Hunters Woods Elementary School was the second elementary school built in Reston, after Lake Anne Elementary School was built in 1966.
The first principal of Hunters Woods was O. Stuart Chaplain, Jr. who served for many years (over 12 years or more). According to the Reston Times, he began interviewing for the first Hunters Woods teacher positions on July 1, 1969. Former Principal Chaplain, by the way, recently wrote a new fiction book that is on Amazon.com.
|Dr. Chaplain, First Hunters Woods Principal|
|Hunters Woods 2018|
|Undated Photo, likely early 1971-1973|
|Anonymous 1971 Photos of HWES in Front of the School|
There are a number of ways that a family in Fairfax County can enroll their student at Hunters Woods; through living in the immediate area (our good fortune), through the Fairfax application/lottery system or through transfer to the Gifted and Talented student program from other local schools. When my oldest daughter started in 2009, the principal of Hunters Woods was Olivia Toatley, who retired after a 40-year distinguished career in June, 2012. In 2011, Hunters Woods welcomed a delegation from Taiwan so that they could see how the arts and sciences and arts could be integrated in their school system.
I believe Ms. Toatley was the principal at Hunters Woods from 2005-2012 and had served a previous stint as assistant principal at the school under former Principal Hockett. She was very nice. She was replaced by Principal Emily Cope, who is still principal and has always done a great job while being accessible to all families. It seems like everyone loves Ms. Cope and I know from first hand how well she runs the school.
Below are some more recent pictures of Hunters Woods Elementary School.
|Artwork - Class of 2010-2011|
|Hunters Woods Sign 2017|
|Front of School 2018|
|Hunters Woods PTA Symbol|
Hunters Woods has a number of amazing programs that most other elementary schools simply do not have. They have an artist in residence program every year. Each year a professional artist is invited to share their experiences with 6th grade students. The students, with the artists help, create a permanent work of art for the school. If you have time, it is nice to visit all of the art projects completed over the years. Hunters Woods also has a great musical program for students. They normally have over 40 teachers and 1100 or so students. They also have a very pro-active PTA that does a lot to help the school and teachers. Hunters Woods continues to excel today, some 49 years after it was built. We look forward to returning to Hunters Woods Elementary with our new daughter.