Smiling headshot image of Reed Gillespie with short brown hair and glasses and a red shirt collar

Reed Gillespie has been appointed principal of the Virtual Learning Program for Grades K-8 in Prince William County Public Schools (PWCS). Gillespie joins PWCS from Albemarle County Public Schools, where he served as principal of the Virtual K-12 School.

"As principal for the Virtual K-8 Program, I will have an opportunity to provide leadership in maintaining a vision, direction, and focus on student achievement," said Gillespie. "I will create a culture where students are academically challenged by teachers who are encouraged to innovate."

Gillespie comes to PWCS with 28 years of experience as an educator, 13 of those serving in administrative roles. Most recently, as the principal of Albemarle County's K-12 Virtual School, Gillespie was responsible for leading and developing a fully virtual school that served 375 students. Gillespie's career in education began in 1994 as a teacher of students with special needs at the Cedars Academy in Delaware. He came to Virginia in 1995 as a social studies teacher at Rappahannock County High School in Washington, Virginia, and then at Kettle Run High School in Fauquier County Public Schools. In 2015, Gillespie became associate principal at Monticello High School in Albemarle County and then in 2020 at Western Albemarle High School. In 2021, he became principal of the Albemarle Virtual School.

Gillespie holds a bachelor's degree in interdisciplinary social studies from Wittenberg University and a master's in educational administration from Shenandoah University.

Following is a letter from Mr. Gillespie to students and their families previously admitted to the Virtual Academy:

Welcome to Prince William County's K-8 Virtual Academy!

We look forward to providing your child with an outstanding student-centered educational experience. Our goal is to provide all our students with a challenging, engaging, and supportive learning environment that will enhance their self-confidence, personal growth, and academic achievement.

Over the next few weeks, we hope to connect with you on a more personal level through Zoom gatherings, personal emails, and phone calls. We are always available to our students and families. We can be reached at 571-261-5376.

I am excited to begin my first year in Prince William County Public Schools. This past academic year, I served as Albemarle County's K-12 Virtual School Principal. I saw firsthand the value of virtual school for students and families as students thrived academically, emotionally, and socially. In traditional schools, some students are overwhelmed with social, behavioral, and health issues. Virtual school allows students to take ownership of their lives and to become more independent. We are excited to offer your children this great opportunity!

One of the greatest benefits of virtual learning is it allows for greater family engagement. Parents and guardians become partners with our virtual school educators, often having daily interactions with teachers and immersing themselves in their child's learning. As a virtual school parent, you can help your child achieve and grow by making it feel like your child is "going" to school by establishing routines, setting up a learning space, and administrating and monitoring their attendance and participation. One of the most critical roles of a parent is to encourage and motivate your child to do their best.

I come to Prince William County with 28 years of experience. Before serving as Albemarle County's Virtual School Principal, I was an associate principal in the county for six years. Prior to that I was an assistant principal at Kettle Run High School in Fauquier County, where I also taught and coached for 10 years. Earlier in my career, I taught in Rappahannock County and at a private boarding school for students with special needs in Delaware.

I grew up in Montgomery County, Maryland, love all the DC sports teams, and enjoy outdoor activities, reading, and cooking. Finally, I have daughter who is beginning her senior year at James Madison University.

Over the next few weeks you can expect to receive more information regarding the start of school, including student schedules, supply lists, and more.

I am honored to be your child's virtual principal. My team and I look forward to hearing from you as we work together to create a virtual community that meets the needs of each child.


Reed Gillespie