VIRGINIA (DC News Now) — On Tuesday evening, several parents rallied outside Thomas Jefferson High School in protest of the school’s actions — and in support of the ensuing investigation.

Then, Fairfax County Superintendent Michelle Reid held a town hall inside the school’s library. The first-year superintendent answered questions and listened to comments from parents and students.

There was a discrepancy over the importance of the issue, as some students downplayed the impact of the National Merit Awards. One cited how college applications have a limited number of awards you can include, and that this accomplishment might not make the top five.

“In terms of whether or not it helped me get into a college, I really don’t think it had an effect on it,” said one TJHS senior.

Another TJHS student called the issue “overblown,” saying it was a “small oversight on part of the administration.”

Other parents were more concerned. 

Shawna Yasha, who said her child was one of the recipients who was not notified in a timely manner, requested more information from the school.

“Maybe you don’t need to have a party, you don’t need to have a banner up in the school, you don’t need to send out a blast to all the parents, but I’d like to know,” she said.

Ranoj Ranjan, a parent to one TJHS alumni and one current student, praised the school.

“Thank you, TJ,” he said. “You’re doing amazingly well. Keep doing it. If there’s something we can improve, we as parents will work it out.”

But Glenn Miller worries this is part of a larger, more concerning trend.

“The number of kids getting into the top schools is dropping and parents are not happy about it,” he said.