Third Thursdays

Almost seven years ago when I became the Administrator at Calvary Christian School, there were feelings among some of the school families that there was a lack of clear and open communication. I quickly knew that one of my major responsibilities was to rebuild trust and “flatten” communication. In order to solve this issue, various actions took place.

The first thing we did was start this blog as a way of sharing information about the school and my vision for the future of CCS. This also became a venue to promote the needs of the school and upcoming events. We have almost 200 subscribers and about 250 readers that visit the blog when a new post is published.

The second thing we did was move to open school board meetings. The first part of each Executive Committee meeting is open to the public. While we have opened these meetings in an effort to share information, few have taken advantage of this opportunity and that’s OK. This makes me believe that our families trust us, that’s our goal.

The third thing we did was the creation of the “20/20 Vision” Strategic Plan. This plan was created by a team of 20 people representing all of the school’s constituencies, from students and alumni to parents and faculty members. This strategic plan is guiding our decision-making and spending.   It was presented to the school family last April and is accessible on the CCS webpage.

Also, CCS has moved toward greater innovation and creativity. This year we added a video marketing class that utilizes technology and the creative juices of our students to create videos promoting CCS to the public. You’ve seen some of these videos on CCS social media sites. Additionally, we will be moving to a one-to-one technology program next year. Every 5th-12th grade student will utilize Chromebooks for their classes.  This will enhance student participation, address student with various learning styles, teach responsible use of technology and familiarize our students with computer usage in a safe environment.

Another exciting piece of this innovation is the creation of “Third Thursday,” a CCS podcast. Additionally, the podcast is another step in creatively increasing our avenues of communication. We realize people are busy and reading a blog may not always be convenient or possible. This podcast can be listened to in the car, on the treadmill or sitting at your desk. You will be able to access it from the CCS App.  The first episode will air on February 15th, the third Thursday in February. Subsequent episodes will air the third Thursday of every month.

I’m excited about the content. I will share some thoughts during each episode. I will also make you aware of news and upcoming events and deadlines. I am most excited about the interviews within each episode. There will be an interview with parents, alumni, faculty members and CCS students in each episode (with parental permission). There will be some serious content, but we will also have some fun.   I hope you will find this podcast both enjoyable and informative.

If you haven’t opted-in to our new Continuous Enrollment process, please do it soon. Enrollment will open to the public next week. To secure your child’s seat for the 2018-2019 school year, please complete the simple opt-in process ASAP.

Have a great week and we look forward to you joining us for the podcast on the 15th.

Consider the Cost

Sadly, Spirit Week ends this weekend. It has been a wonderful week! Students, faculty, and parents have enjoyed various Spirit Week events. We culminate this weekend with the Cougar Classic and Spirit Court. This time of year also leads us into the opt-in period for our new continuous enrollment and then open enrollment as we begin to look at the 2018-2019 school year.

The average American student who graduates from high school will have spent just over 15,000 hours in school (that represents over 2,200 days and about 6 full years). This does not include homework or extra-curricular activities. When it is all said and done, they will walk out of school with three lasting things: a diploma, memories and a way of viewing the world.

Education is a significant investment in the future of your child, both in time and expense. I know that there are many of you who make significant sacrifices to have your child(ren) at CCS. I also know that during this time of year, people weigh the cost of Christian education versus the value of Christian education. I would like to challenge you to not just see this as an economic decision. While economics play a role, please know the least expensive option isn’t always the best.

So, as we are in the middle of the opt-in time for continuous enrollment, I encourage you to look at what CCS provides:

  • a Christ-centered education
  • a nurturing and caring environment
  • a talented faculty and staff that loves and prays for their students and families
  • a complete college prep education from preschool through high school (over $600,000 in scholarships awarded to the Class of 2017)
  • small class sizes (12: 1 student to teacher ratio)
  • a variety of extra-curricular activities (service, academic, sports, arts, intramurals, etc.)
  • a strong arts program
  • an accredited institution (ACSI and SACS through AdvancED)
  • a fiscally responsible organization (very little debt and low dependence on donations – less than 5% of the school’s income)
  • a school committed to progress and excellence

The next question: Is CCS perfect? Absolutely not!! I can speak with complete authority that the Headmaster is a sinner. However, his desire and the desire of this faculty are to please God in every area of this ministry. So we are always looking for ways to respond in a more Christ-like manner.

As you consider opting-in to our continuous enrollment process, I encourage you to weigh the statements above against the financial sacrifice. I believe you will find the true value of Calvary Christian School and what we provide to our students and families.

Thank you for the investment you have made in your child’s education and future.

WELCOME TO 2018

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas break and happy New Year! We are entering the busiest part of the school year, so hold on.

CHRISTMAS GIFT FOR FACULTY AND STAFF

Many of your gave sacrificially in the month of December to bless our teachers with a Christmas bonus. Thank you for your generosity. Due to your kindness each of our faculty and staff members received a nice Christmas bonus before they left for break. Thank you for thinking of them.

 SPIRIT WEEK

One of the highlights for the year is Spirit Week, coming up at the end of this month. It is a wonderful time to celebrate school spirit with special activities during the school day, culminating with the Cougar Classic and Spirit Court on the weekend. This year, the games and opponents we have scheduled will necessitate a slight change in Spirit Court. Because our opponents will be traveling from Louisville, we will be having three games on Friday night. This would push Spirit Court until almost 11:00 pm. So to alleviate this situation the following changes have been made. First, Spirit Court will take place between the second and third game, right before our varsity boy’s play. Second the presentation of the Spirit Court will take place in the center of the basketball court closer to the audience and be a bit shorter. Any of our Boy’s Varsity Players will go to the locker room to change for the game, following the Spirit Court. Thank you for understanding these changes.

SNOW DAY AND DELAYED STARTS

One of the most difficult decisions we have to make at CCS is what to do when it snows.  We are up early looking at forecasts, looking at current weather, testing the roads, coordinating snow removal.  We have students and faculty coming from seven different counties in three states with a wide range of travel conditions. Student, faculty and family safety is our number one priority.  There are many things we take into consideration, including the temperature, a large percentage of student drivers who are traversing sometimes treacherous, windy roads in the dark, our ability to get our large lot cleared sufficiently (we are at the mercy of a service).  All of these factors are considered so please understand when the decision is made, it has not been made lightly.  Additionally, we try to make the decision early (even the night before), but this is not always possible.

In the event of a cancellation, you will be notified in the following ways:

  • The 4 four major Cincinnati news outlets
  • The CCS and Dr. Dickens Facebook Pages
  • The CCS and Dr. Dickens Twitter Accounts
  • The CCS and Dr. Dickens Instagram Page
  • An all-school email from Mrs. Switzer
  • An alert sent from the CCS Cougars App (be sure to download this App for your phone and turn on notifications under the settings)

If we do not cancel school and road/travel conditions are treacherous where you live, please contact the school and this will be considered an excused absence.  You may email teachers for any homework and they will do their best to email it to you.

CAMPUS PASTOR

Pastor Andre Rusch has served CCS for several years as our Campus Pastor, providing leadership for our Chapel program.  He has recently taken a position at Montgomery Community Church and is leaving the Campus Pastor position.  We will miss him in that role, however he and Charlotte will still be around as a school parents, as Mason continues at CCS.

We are excited to welcome Pastor Jason Walsh, the Calvary Baptist Church Youth Pastor as our new Campus Pastor.  I look forward to working with Jason as he ministers to our students.  Like Andre, he will be spending Wednesdays at CCS leading chapel, participating in co-gros and ministering with our students.  When you get a chance, please welcome Pastor Jason to his new role at CCS.

Thank you for your continued support of CCS. We covet your prayers as we move into this time of re-enrollment and the beginning of Continuous Re-enrollment. Be on the watch for an email in the next few weeks explaining the details.

Stay warm!!

Good Tidings

MERRY CHRISTMAS!! I trust your Christmas decorations are up and your surroundings are festive. Even though they are having a “less than stellar” year, I have my Chicago Bears Christmas tree set up in my office. IMG_0979As much fun as we have with friends, family, food and gifts during this season, I am always reminded of the love that God has shown to humanity through His Son Jesus Christ. Remember with all the trappings and distractions surrounding us this time of year, celebrate God’s love this Christmas season.

Faculty Christmas Offering – Please remember to give to our faculty Christmas offering. This will help to provide Christmas bonuses for our faculty and staff. Every little bit helps, so please consider giving. You can simply send a check to the school with Christmas Offering in the memo line and you can also use this PayPal link to donate. Thank you in advance for being a blessing to those who work at CCS.

Continuous Enrollment – You will be hearing more about this in the upcoming re-enrollment letter, but we are excited to begin Continuous Enrollment this year. Typically 93% or more of our students re-enroll each year, yet we have made these families do all the work. That is changing. Click here to enjoy a short video that will introduce you to the program.

Meeting with Teachers – We want our teachers to be accessible to parents, however we also need them to meet their before/after school responsibilities. Therefore, if you need to speak to your child’s teacher before or after school, please make a habit of scheduling an appointment. This will allow our teachers to meet their responsibilities and be prepared for your meeting. Thank you for understanding.

Accreditation – Some Christian school choose not to be accredited. Many years ago CCS decided that it wanted to move in the direction of accreditation. Accreditation tells the public that this school is meeting the academic and improvement standards for this recognition. Additionally, accreditation sets benchmarks for CCS. We have been working hard for the better part of a year preparing for our next ACSI/AdvancED accreditation visit in April 2018. We are looking forward to a positive response from the team and the 5-year renewal of our dual accreditation. Please pray that the faculty and staff, who has shouldered the additional burden of preparing the reports for this visit, can finish strong.

One-to-One Chromebook Rollout – One of the major initiatives in the “20/20 Vision” Strategic Plan was enhancing of the technology offerings at CCS. This is to be done through the development of a one-to-one device program for students 5th grade -12th grade. This will not only benefit these older students, but will free-up existing devices (iPads and Chromebooks) for our younger students. This will enhance classroom learning and better prepare our students for a future that is becoming evermore technological every year. Additionally, it will better help us teach our students how to respond and act in a Godly way in the ever-growing tech world. Our faculty members are spending several hours this year in Professional Development prepping for this change. Watch for more information as it becomes available.

No-Shave November Results – Now for a little fun. As a fundraiser for the Student Council, several of our male high school students participated in “No-Shave November”. Here are the before and after pictures. Congratulations to Jake Landers, this year’s winner.

IMG_0898IMG_0980IMG_0981

As we move closer to the Christmas break, my prayer for you is that your season is filled with joy, knowing that you serve a God who loves you so much that He took on human form to pay the penalty for your sin. NOW THAT’S A REASON TO CELEBRATE!! Once again, MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

Another Warning /-:

I’ve begun several blogs with the same phrase, “I can’t believe it’s already . . . .” But once again, I can’t believe we are already staring at the holidays, with Thanksgiving and Christmas, literally, right around the corner.

I want to spend a few moments talking about something that is becoming a greater and greater danger to the life and soul of your child. I could talk about guns, drugs, alcohol, etc. While these are still great dangers, I believe there is a greater danger. Most of your children carry it in their purse or pocket. It is their cellphone. Not really the cellphone per se, but the apps downloaded on their phone, the availability of their phone 24/7 and how they use their phone.

The cellphones we carry today are amazing. The one sitting in front of me is more powerful than the computers used to land a man on the moon and bring him back to Earth. It has also given us almost unlimited access to information. Additionally, it has provided multiple platforms for communication. However, it has also brought easy access to pornography; provided a new avenues to bully; hatched dangerous opportunities for people to share intimate pictures and thoughts; opened up new spaces for predators; and created a new way for our children to get into trouble . . . both spiritual and legal trouble.

The unrestricted use of these wonderful devices is leading to numerous life-altering and destructive addictions; the damaging of friendships, marriages and reputations; and the entrance into previously untalked-about perversions that are used by the Enemy to steal our joy and our souls.

As parents, we would never give a loaded gun to our child and simply say “Don’t shoot yourself.” But in many ways we have done that with cellphones.  Nobody intentionally seeks after addictions or ruined lives. It usually happens due to inattention to circumstances and unwise decisions. We are seeing more and more young people, who profess to be Christians and who come from strong Christian families and are very active in their local churches, walk down these paths of self-destruction.

Please take the time to address the use of cellphones with your child. Remind them that there is a lot of trouble they can get in both spiritual and legal with their phone.  Examine their phones for unhealthy and destructive apps. Put a block on their phone that only allows apps that you approve. (The first thing I would do is delete Snapchat!) Inspect their phone periodically. Check out the Family Technology video by Pastor Corey Abney in the August 22, 2017 blog for more details.

This may seem like a daunting task, but the lives of our children are that important. Thank you for reading. Please continue to pray with and our faculty regarding the purity and safety of our students.

Reflecting on the Future

This weekend I have the privilege of officiating our only child’s wedding. It has been a time of heightened emotions and reflection. As my wife and I have thought about the events this weekend, we reflected on the foundation we tried to build for our son, Joseph. What is important? What are the non-negotiables? What are the lessons we want remembered? It is good to take time to review these things. It keeps us focused. The Children of Israel often set aside special times to remember the mighty works of God. Every year, here at CCS we like to take a little time to review our foundational statements. They help us keep the most important things first.

Please take a few moments to read our Mission, Vision, Core Values, Expected Student Outcomes (based on our Core Values) and our Goal.

Mission: Equipping the Next Generation to Impact the World for Christ

Vision: Calvary Christian School students will use their minds and body to actively serve and glorify God with their whole life, wherever His Will leads them.

Core Values: Each student will grow academically, physically, spiritually and socially to be prepared to accomplish their God-given mission. – “Jesus grew in wisdom (academic) and stature (physical) and in favor with God and man (spiritual and social).” Luke 2:5

Expected Student Outcomes

1) Spiritual: We expect Calvary Christian School graduates to . . .

  • be fully devoted followers of Christ and active in His church.
  • love God and spend significant time reading the Bible and in prayer.
  • think Biblically when making decisions.
  • act with integrity and take responsibility for their actions.
  • “do justly, love mercy and walk humbly with God.”
  • understand the Gospel and articulate and defend their faith.

2) Academic: We expect Calvary Christian School graduates to . . .

  • be a problem-solver, thinking critically and creatively.
  • clearly articulate their thoughts, in both written and oral forms.
  • excel at math and science and appreciate literature, the arts and their heritage.
  • be academically prepared to attend the college of their choosing or enter the workforce.
  • understand and utilize technology responsibly and ethically.
  • appreciate the importance of life-long learning.

3) Physical: We expect Calvary Christian School graduates to . . .

  • treat their bodies as the temple of the Holy Spirit.
  • be gracious in winning and losing.
  • value hard work as pleasing to God.
  • be examples of moderation and self-control in all areas of life.
  • discern the difference between what is “permissible” and what is “beneficial.”
  • be a good steward of the world around them.

4) Social: We expect Calvary Christian School graduates to . . .

  • demonstrate the character of Christ in every area of life.
  • love and serve both Christians and non-Christians.
  • think globally, understanding and appreciating other cultures and their place in God’s Kingdom.
  • appreciate the importance of teamwork and practice Godly leadership.
  • engage in appropriate social and righteous civic activities.
  • think globally and practice Great Commission living.

Goal: To Develop the Mind of Christ – “Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,”Philippians 2:5

Thank you for taking the time to review these important statements. Have a wonderful October!!

Kicking Off 2017-2018

Welcome to the 2017-2018 school year. We have survived Orientation Day, the first day of school and the solar eclipse. The beginning of the school year is an excellent time to review our foundational statements and our progress toward improvement.

FOUNDATIONAL PRINCIPLES

Mission: Equipping the next generation to impact the world for Christ.

Vision: Calvary Christian School students will use their minds and body to actively serve and glorify God with their whole life, wherever His Will leads them.

Core Values: Each student will grow academically, physically, spiritually and socially so they will be prepared to accomplish their God-given mission. – “Jesus grew in wisdom (academic) and stature (physical) and in favor with God and man (spiritual and social).” Luke 2:52

Goal: To Develop the Mind of Christ – “Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, . . . ”Philippians 2:5

Expected Student Outcomes

  1. Spiritual: We expect Calvary Christian School graduates to:
  • be fully devoted followers of Christ and active in His church.
  • love God and spend significant time reading the Bible and in prayer.
  • think Biblically when making decisions.
  • act with integrity and take responsibility for their actions.
  • “do justly, love mercy and walk humbly with God.”
  • understand the Gospel and articulate and defend their faith.
  1. Academic: We expect Calvary Christian School graduates to :
  • be a problem-solver, thinking critically and creatively.
  • clearly articulate their thoughts, in both written and oral forms.
  • excel at math and science and appreciate literature, the arts and their heritage.
  • be academically prepared to attend the college of their choosing.
  • understand and utilize technology responsibly and ethically.
  • appreciate the importance of life-long learning.
  1. Physical: We expect Calvary Christian School graduates to:
  • treat their bodies as the temple of the Holy Spirit.
  • be gracious in winning and losing.
  • value hard work as pleasing to God.
  • be examples of moderation and self-control in all areas of life.
  • discern the difference between what is permissible and what is beneficial.
  • be a good steward of the world around them.
  1. Social: We expect Calvary Christian School graduates to:
  • demonstrate the character of Christ in every area of life.
  • love and serve both Christians and non-Christians.
  • think globally, understanding and appreciating other cultures and their place in God’s Kingdom.
  • appreciate the importance of teamwork and practice Godly leadership.
  • engage in appropriate social and righteous civic activities.
  • think globally and practice Great Commission living.

 20/20 VISION UPDATE

In April of 2017, CCS created the 20/20 Vision (a strategic plan to lead CCS into the year 2020). The plan outlined 21 objectives that would govern our focus and funding decisions. These 21 objectives were grouped into five major initiatives:

  1. Cultivate a biblically sound, Christ-like environment that encourages individual spiritual growth
  2. Improve Calvary Christian School’s financial foundation
  3. Expand educational space by adding to and improving existing CCS facilities
  4. Strengthen academic instruction
  5. Provide quality extra-curricular activities for all ages

To date we have already started to address 11 of these important initiatives. Thank you for your continued prayers and support as we try to make Calvary Christian School the best that it can be.

CARPOOL PROCEDURES

CCS has established carpool procedures to provide safe and efficient exiting of the CCS parking area. For the most part, the first few days have gone well. However, there are a few things that I must address for the safety of our students, the drivers on campus and faculty working the carpool lines.

  1. Please use the crosswalk when leaving the building and moving into the parking lot.
  2. Please follow the arrows that are clearly painted in the parking lot. This will provide for a smooth and safe traffic flow.
  3. If you do not go through the carpool line, please park in a parking space and wait for your child, or go in and get them. DO NOT STOP IN THE LANE AND WAIT FOR YOUR CHILD.
  4. Please do not talk on cellphones when pulling through the carpool lines (we have had near misses on faculty getting hit).
  5. Please park in parking spaces only.

If you abide by these simple instructions, we can help to insure a safe and speedy conclusion to the school day.

ORIENTATION VIDEO AND FACULTY DEDICATION SERVICE LINKS

Below are the links for orientation day videos. Additionally I have provided the CCS Faculty Dedication Sermon from Sunday, August 20, 2017. Dr. Eric Mounts, Senior Pastor of Calvary Baptist Church shared a challenging message on the importance of Christian education and the significance of Calvary Christian School. I hope you enjoy them all.

Continuous Enrollment video – https://vimeo.com/230155374

Family Technology Video – https://vimeo.com/183125464?ref=em-v-share

“Take Every Thought Captive” – http://www.cbcky.org/2017-sermon-audio

GRADUATION DATE FOR 2018-2019

Not this year, but for the 2018-2019 school year we will be moving our graduation date up one week. Typically, CCS graduates the senior class on the Friday before Memorial Day. Coincidentally, the United States Military Academy at West Point graduates that same weekend and commissions its newest “batch” of Second Lieutenants. Next year CCS will have a family with a senior at CCS and a 4th year student at West Point (also a CCS graduate). If it can be helped, no family should have to decide between one child’s high school graduation and another child’s college graduation and commissioning in the United States military. This exact situation occurred in 2008 and we made the adjustment. So, the 2018-2019 school year will end one week earlier, on Friday, May 17, 2019, with graduation that night. We wanted to let you know well in advance, so that this change would not be a surprise. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

ANNUAL CAMPAIGN & GOLF OUTING

Please remember the CCS Golf Outing on Monday, September 25th and register if you haven’t already. The Golf Outing helps to support the CCS Annual Campaign. Our goal for this campaign is $130,000. Please help us make this goal. Contact our Marketing Director, Rachel Cornell at rachel.cornell@ccsky.org for more information on each of these.

Wrapping Up One Year . . . Rolling Into Another

2016-2017

Well, as we wrap up the 2016-2017 school year, we can really see the Lord’s hand on CCS. We graduated a senior class of 39 students, the largest class in several years. These seniors were awarded over $750,000/year in scholarships!! We enjoyed a phenomenal Commencement Ceremony with Chaplain, Major General Dondi Costin, the U. S. Air Force Chief of Chaplains.

Our 2016-2017 Annual Campaign goal was $125,000. We exceeded our goal by $15,000 to date. The Annual Campaign (including the CCS Golf Outing and Cougar Fun Run) and the funds provided by the PTCA, will allow/has allowed us to accomplish the following:

  • Provide lunch for the faculty and staff during Teacher Appreciation Week.
  • Purchase four new Smartboards and two new projectors.
  • A couple of new AR computers for the elementary classrooms.
  • Place bids on three newer buses to replace our aging fleet.
  • Hardware and software for a music production lab.
  • Replace the carpet in three of our classrooms.
  • Re-key the building, increasing the safety of our students and staff.
  • Purchase new math curriculum for Kindergarten-6th
  • Purchase new science curriculum for the 9th
  • Purchase new anatomy & physiology curriculum.
  • Purchase new physical education equipment.
  • Update signage on the property.
  • Pay-off the preschool expansion
  • New backstops for both the baseball and softball fields.
  • New graphics for the softball home dugout.
  • New “jumbotron” in the CCS gymnasium.

Thank you for supporting the Annual Campaign, the CCS Golf Outing, the Cougar Fun Run and the PTCA fundraising efforts. In addition, we were able to acquire the property at the corner of Taylor Mill Road and Hands Pike, giving CCS an additional two acres that can be used in the future.

A team of 20 parents, students, alumni, faculty, staff and board members put together the “20/20 Vision” which will guide CCS planning and decision-making for the next 3 years.

2017-2018

We finished the year with 399 students, which is 13 percent enrollment growth over the last six years. We set the budget at 390 students for the 2017-2018 school year. Currently, we have a total of 384 enrolled students – only six away from our goal!! Also, we are 10 students ahead of where we were on this date last year.

While we lost several faculty members this year, the Lord has brought us high quality teachers for next year. I am excited about working with the new talent and seeing them invest in the lives of our students. These new faculty members are:

  • Cynthia Wiggins – 4th Grade
  • Laura Reed – 5th Grade
  • Bridgette Smith – Intervention Specialist
  • Jenny Borden – Elementary Instructional Aid
  • Le Hahn – Elementary and High School Computer and Technology
  • Liza Toro – Elementary, Middle and High School Spanish
  • Kristy Craven – Middle School History and 10th Grade History
  • Autumn Ferguson – High School Science
  • Luke Wagner – 10th and 11th Grade Bible, AP Government, AP Language Arts and Latin
  • Pastor Dan Stewart – 9th Grade Bible
  • Laura Kalfas – Testing Coordinator
  • Cris Sexton – High School Math
  • Mark Ross – Dean of Men, Drafting I & II and Photography

We are still looking for a part-time High School Math Teacher. So if you know a qualified individual, please let us know.

We are adding the following course offerings for the 2017-2018 school year:

  • Latin and AP Government as electives in the high school.
  • In a partnership with KONA Ice, we will be adding a videography and marketing class with state of the art technology and training from videography and marketing professionals.
  • More dual credit offerings for our high school students.

As previously mentioned in our “20/20 Vision,” we will continue to grow our technology options. This year we will begin training our faculty in the use of “one-to-one technology” in the classroom with our students. We will also be busy this year preparing for the renewal of our accreditation. A visit by the accreditation team is scheduled for the first week in May.

So to summarize, 2016-2017 was a FANTASTIC year and 2017-2018 is already shaping up to be a MARVELOUS year. It is never too early to start praying for God’s blessing on next year. As I say in every blog, thank you for your continued support for CCS.

SPRING BREAK!!!!!

It’s finally here!! Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama . . . all are wonderful Spring Break destinations. For others it is home to rest. For me it is Washington, DC for reserve duty. Wherever you go or don’t go, I hope you enjoy your break and return refreshed and ready for the last 6 weeks of school.

As we wind down the year, allow me to provide a little encouragement. Yesterday I interviewed a prospective teacher. I asked a question about his Philosophy of Christian Education. He answered by saying that the goal was to make good citizens. He continued to state that the Greek philosopher, Plato, saw responsible citizenship as the goal of education. As a Christian educator, his goal was to encourage responsible Kingdom citizenship. Brilliant answer!! This teaching goes beyond academic subject matter, it goes to the very core of a person’s soul. We not only teach content, but model behavior by our words and responses.

By this time of the school year, students, parents, teachers, and administration are getting tired. Sometimes when we get tired we respond to individuals and situations in not so patient and kind ways.

I do not agree with all points of C.S. Lewis’ theology, however, in Mere Christianity he makes a simple, yet profound statement:

“If Christianity is true then it ought to follow a) that any Christian will be nicer than the same person would be if he were not a Christian. b) That any man who becomes a Christian will be nicer than he was before.” (C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, p. 179)

The Bible tells us:

  • Psalms 19:14“Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.”
  • Proverbs 15:1“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”
  • Proverbs 18:21“Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.”
  • Proverbs 15:1“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”
  • Ephesians 4:29Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.”
  • James 1:26“If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless.”

Click Here to go to some short videos by Paul Tripp on the importance of our words.

As we finish strong, lets not allow differences, frustrations, and disagreements to damage our Christian witness.

ANNUAL CAMPAIGN

Our goal this year is $125,000. To date, we have received right at $124,000 (this includes pledges and donations from the fun run). If you haven’t contributed to this important campaign, I challenge you to help us reach our goal. Thank you for your support for the Cougar Fun Run and the Annual Campaign. Please contact Rachel Cornell at rachel.cornell@ccsky.org if you would like to donate.

RE-ENROLLMENT AND NEW ENROLLMENT

We have experienced a strong re-enrollment (over 90%) and we have numerous applications for next year. We are already 20 students ahead of where we were this time last year. Additionally we are only 20 new students away from making budget for the 2017-2018 school year. We have a waiting list started for one of our elementary grades and only 13 seats available PK3 – 2nd Grade. We have tours and shadows almost daily. Please pray that the Lord continues to bless CCS with Christian families who desire a Christ-centered, college-prep education.

20/20 VISION

You can access the CCS Strategic plan online at www.ccsky.org. You can also access it on the CCS App (search for Calvary Christian School in the App Store). Additionally, if you would like a hardcopy of the plan, you can pick one up in the school office.

Thank you again for your continued support of CCS. We covet your prayers for our students, families, faculty and staff. I hope you have a safe and relaxing Spring Break. See you on TUESDAY, APRIL 18, 2017!!

“In Like a Lion . . . “

They say that March “comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb.” This phrase is used in reference to the difference in weather at the beginning and end of March. I don’t know what the end will be like, but the beginning and middle are definitely like a “lion.”

This phrase can also be applied to the school calendar . . . with the following adjustment: “March comes in like a lion and May goes out like a lamb.” We are beginning the busiest three months of the school year. Just to recap, we began March with a Mission Day, Co-Gro Service Day and an outstanding Cougar Crop. We are currently in the middle of “play week.” (If you haven’t purchased your tickets to the play yet, please do so by contacting the school office . . . you don’t want to miss the CCS rendition of “Cinderella.”) Coming out of play week we have 6th Grade International Day and we begin the events surrounding the Cougar Fun Run, our spring fundraiser. The Fun Run will go a long way in helping us reach our Annual Campaign goal of $125,000. (We are about $29,000 away from our goal!!)

As we move into April, we go right into Terra Nova 3 testing. We finish our testing and then take a week (plus one day) off for Spring Break. We come back from Spring Break with the ACT test for juniors and the practice AP exams for all of our AP students. Then it is class trip time. Our seniors, 8th graders and 3rd graders all have overnight trips. Boom!! It’s May.

We all know what happens in May: volunteer appreciation, Jr./Sr. Prom, concerts, Salute to 6th Grade, Preschool End of Year Program, Kindergarten Graduation, Seniors Last Day, Senior Awards Banquet, Awards Day, Senior Chapel and Graduation. EXHALE!! Things are coming at us fast and furious, so hold on, it’s going to be a fun ride.

20/20 Vision: A Strategic Plan to Lead Calvary Christian School into the Year 2020

Our strategic plan is almost ready for release. You will be able to access an electronic copy of this plan from the school’s website on Friday, March 24th. Printed copies will be available in early April. I want to thank all of those individuals who gave their time to craft this vision for the future. I’m excited about what God has in store for CCS. Please pray that God will give us wisdom as we begin to prioritize our objectives.

Enrollment for 2017-2018

The Lord continues to bless us with strong re-enrollment and new enrollment. This year it looks like we will finish the year with 399 students. Our budget for next year is set at 390 students. We experienced a 91% re-enrollment rate (with a few yet to re-enroll) and have already received 35 new applications putting us at 361 students for next year. Over the last 5 years we have averaged between 80-100 new student applications. While not all of those applications matriculate as students, if we continue that trend, the CCS enrollment should eclipse 400 next year for the first time in 7 years. Classes are filling up fast. If you haven’t re-enrolled, or you know someone who is interested, please act soon.

Thank you for your continued support and prayers. Calvary Christian School’s continued success is due to God’s blessing and your gracious support.