Fairfax County

Fairfax County, with 407 square miles, is directly across the Potomac River from Washington DC. The growth of the federal government in the years during and after World War II spurred rapid growth in the county causing the once rural county to become the suburban area it is today. The county is among the highest-income counties in the country and was the first county in the country to have a median household income over $100,000. The economy of Fairfax County revolves around professional services and technology with many residents working directly for the government of for government contractors. Fairfax County is also home to a number of major employers.

The Fairfax County Public Schools system has a budget in excess of $2 billion and spends approximately $13,000 on each student. The Thomas Jefferson high School for Science and Technology consistently ranks at or near the top of all US high schools. All FCPS schools were in the top 6 percent of all American high schools. For the 2010 Standards of Learning tests, 92 percent of FCPS students passed mathematics and 93 percent of FCPS students passed reading. FCPS had the second highest graduation rate among the nation’s 50 largest school districts.

The county has many protected areas, a total of over 390 county parks on more than 23,000 acres. There are also two national protected areas inside the county: Elizabeth Harwell Mason Neck National Wildlife Refuge and Wolf Trap national Park for the Performing Arts.

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