Parent Communicator

                                                                                           MR. RICHARD NOORMAN, PRINCIPAL
June, 2018

Dear Parents,

As another year comes to a close we would like to say thanks to you for helping to make this a great year.  It becomes apparent in many ways that you support and appreciate the work that goes on here.  Our task as parents and as a school would be very difficult if we could not work together and have an understanding of our separate, yet supportive, roles that we each have.  So thank you for all that you do and for keeping us in your prayers. 

Following are some noteworthy things for you to consider.  I hope that you all have a good summer and we look forward to have the students back in school at the end of August.  We also look forward to welcoming our new Freshman class and their parents have been sent this information as well.

ANNUAL SCHOOL SOCIETY MEETING—At our annual School Society meeting we elected new school Board members and passed the proposed budget for the 2018-2019 school year.  The new Board members that were elected are Rick Elzinga (Faith PRC, Heritage area,) Jonathon Kamps (Hope PRC, Hope area,) and Brad Bruinsma (Grandville PRC, Adams area).  Nick Kleyn remains the Board President.  Tim Pipe is the new Vice-president and Chairman of the Education Committee.  The new Treasurer and chairman of the Finance Committee is Rick Elzinga.

The budget for operations next year is $2,916, 400 and the base tuition amount is set at $6,420.  The amount of the Annual Support Drive was increased to $385,000.  We are thankful that God continues to provide for the financial needs of the school through faithful supporters and parents who are willing to make the financial sacrifice to make it possible for our school to continue its work.

FIFTIETH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION—The anniversary events held at the end of April this year caused many people to reflect back on the events of the past involvement at Covenant Christian.  The commitment and work that our founding generation put forth for the cause of this school should never be forgotten; nor should we discount the continued commitment and support of all those who are involved today.  It takes the contributions and work of many people each year for Covenant Christian High School to be the great blessing that it is to our families and our churches.  There were many people that worked on many aspects of that two day event.  Our thanks goes to those who were directly involved in planning and working in the programs and to those who helped out by contributing memorabilia and memories.  It was a good time and I hope that, if the Lord tarries, the 100th Anniversary will be as meaningful.

STAFF CHANGES FOR 2018-2019--There will be a good number of changes in our teaching staff when the new year starts up in August.  There are five teachers who will not be returning next year.  We thank them all for their faithful service to the parents and students of Covenant Christian High. 

Farewell and thanks to:
Miss Jennifer Knott--After faithfully serving in the English Department for the last 16 years, Miss Jennifer Knott has decided that it is time to explore other fields of work.  She has not yet determined what that work will be and she is leaning on the Lord to show her how she can continue to use the talents that she has been given.  In addition to her work in the English classes, we will miss her very capable leadership of the Student Council.  Our entire school has been blessed by her involvement in this program for many years.  Thank you Miss Knott.

Mrs. Sue Looyenga—Mrs. Looyenga has applied her talents to the work at Covenant for the past 11 years.  She has taught in the English Department and has been our Latin teacher over those years.  She has served as head of the English Department for several years and was instrumental in the development of the English Literature and Composition course that we use to prepare students to take the Advanced Placement exam.  Mrs. Looyenga has taken a position at Heritage Christian School in Hudsonville where she will be teaching part-time and doing curriculum work part-time.  We wish her God’s blessing as she moves to Heritage.

Mrs. Kristin Crossett—Mr. and Mrs. Crossett are expecting their second child very soon.   After serving as our Spanish teacher, both in house for one year and via distance learning for 3 years, Mrs. Crossett will not be returning next year.  We have great appreciation for her willingness to take on the unique task of teaching via a Skype connection from a location five time zones away from ours.  There were certainly obstacles that had to be faced to make this work, but Kristin has persevered and worked very hard to make this be a great experience for our students.  Thank you Mrs. Crossett for the great service given to the students at CCHS.

Mrs. Dorothy Vander Schaaf—Mrs. Vander Schaaf began her work at CCHS 21 years ago.  This was the small and modest beginnings of our Academic Support Program.  Over these years, she has helped school be just a little easier for many students who have had academic needs.  She has developed a good insight into how these students learn best as well as a good knowledge of what each of our teachers requires for students to be successful in their classes.  From all of us at CCHS and those whom you have served here, we say thanks.

Miss Mary Mahtani—Miss Mahtani has only been with us for one school year, but she will be greatly missed in our Academic Support program.  She has acclimated very well to the work of assisting students with their test preparation and homework assignments.  Miss Mahtani will be getting married to Sean Furgeson in August and moving to the Redlands, California area where Mr. Furgeson will begin teaching at Hope Protestant Reformed Christian School.  In addition to teaching, Miss Mahtani has also worked in the athletic program as the Freshman Volleyball coach and as a Varsity Assistant for our Girls Soccer team.  We pray for God’s blessing on Sean and Mary in their new setting in sunny California.

Next year we will welcome four new full-time teachers and two who will be with us part-time.  All of our new teachers are CCHS alumni and we are glad to welcome the following:

Miss Jori Wierenga—Miss Wierenga is a 2013 graduate who completed her teacher preparation at Calvin College in the spring of 2017.  She worked last year in the Special Education program at Heritage Christian in Hudsonville.  Miss Wierenga is an English major and will be teaching American Literature, English 9 and Senior English.

Mr. Jared Noorman—Mr. Noorman also graduated from CCHS in 2013.  He completed his teacher preparation at Grand Valley State University with a major in Chemistry and a minor in Mathematics.  He will be teaching in our Math Department in Algebra I, Algebra II, and Geometry.

Mr. Dylan VanDyke—A 2014 graduate, Mr. Van Dyke did his college work at Dordt College in Souix Center, Iowa.  He graduated this spring with a teaching degree and a major in History.  He will be teaching World History, U.S. History, and Senior English, and Computer Applications.
Miss Macy Schimmel—To find a qualified Latin teacher is not an easy task for any school.  We are very thankful to be able to have Miss Schimmel coming in to take up the work of our Latin program.  She will be teaching our Latin II classes next year.   In the first semester she will be teaching only two classes of Latin II while she completes her education requirements at Calvin College.   For the second semester she will be doing her student teaching in the English department while continuing to teach the Latin classes.

We will have two new teachers in the Academic Support program.  Miss Caitlyn DeVries will be teaching full-time.  She is a 2017 CCHS graduate and has completed two years at Davenport University in the Para-legal department.  Our most recent returning alumnus is Miss Danae Van Overloop who graduated with the class of 2018.  She has worked as a student aide in Academic Support for parts of two years and has thoroughly enjoyed working with students.  She will be here on a part-time basis for next year.

We look forward to welcoming all of these new teachers to the Covenant team next year.

HONORED STUDENTS—This year we had 6 students who completed the four years of high school with a GPA of 4.0.  They served as co-Valedictorians for the class of 2018.  The honorees are:
Nathan Minderhoud, son of Joel and Valerie Minderhoud
Tori Mowery, daughter of Heather Mowery and Ryan Mowery
Joseph Overway, son of Rev. David and Rebecca Overway
Olivia Pipe, daughter of Timothy and Julie Pipe
Jalen Van Dyke, son of Timothy and Linda Van Dyke
Emily Vink, daughter of Dale and Vicki Vink

Nathan Minderhoud also received recognition as a Commended Student in the National Merit Scholarship Competition.  Nathan’s SAT score was ranked in the top 3% of 1.6 million students who took the test.  We congratulate all of these fine students for their work over the last four years.

TUITION ASSISTANCE FUND—Last summer a letter was sent to all of our supporters asking for help with providing funds for our Tuition Assistance Grant program.  Due to a generous response to this request, enough funds were received to keep this program going for another year.  The Board continues to seek support for this program and will continue to distribute whatever funds are made available to those families who meet the guidelines of the program.  If you wish to apply, you can obtain an application from our Board Treasurer or from the school office.

ATHLETICS AND COACHES—We are always very thankful for those who give of their time to coach in our athletic program.   It can be very demanding work and sometimes difficult to schedule, but it can also be very rewarding as they take opportunities to help our students use and enjoy their gifts and talents in these areas. 

We will have a few coaching changes for next year.  We are still seeking a replacement for Mary Mahtani who coached Freshman Volleyball.  Mr. Kyle Bruinooge will be stepping away from the JV Girls Basketball post.  We thank him for two years of service to that team.  He will be replaced by Mr. Doug Kaptien who will be leaving the Freshman Boys’ team which means we now have an opening for that position.

Thanks also to Travis Van Bemmel, our Athletic Director, for all of his work in the Athletic Department.  Through his efforts and the work of our coaches, our student athletes are given great opportunities to play in memorable facilities against quality opponents.  The effort put into making the Fifth/Third Ballpark baseball game a great event is appreciated by our players and our families.  We also say thanks to all of our sponsors who make this night possible.  It was a great night for baseball and for families to come out and watch the Chargers in action.

SCHEDULING—We now have most of the information that we need to begin our scheduling process.  We have assigned all of our courses to teachers.  We have received course selections from our students.  Our next step is to put together a master schedule of when classes will be taught during the day so that we can assign student to the classes.  We are hopeful that by mid-August all students will be receiving their schedule for the year.

--FRESHMAN ORIENTATION—I want to remind parents of all incoming 9th grade students that we will hold our Freshman Orientation on Monday, August 20, beginning at 1:00 p.m.  Parents are invited to join us at 7:00 p.m. to finish out the day.

--DRESS CODES REMINDER—It is always good to review the dress code before making purchases for school clothing.  There is a current fashion trend that we will have to deal with that you should be mindful of as you and your daughters shop for school clothes later this summer.  The early trend last fall for some of our women’s tops was for there to be an open shoulder yet still have a sleeve.  This seemed to meet the dress code rule that all shirts must have sleeves.  However, the designers and clothing manufacturers are now producing tank tops and shirts, with very little on the shoulder, which still have sleeves.  Please take note that our dress code also contains the statement, “Students may not wear clothing that exposes the trunk part of the body.”  As the top of the shirt gets narrower, more of the “trunk” of the body is exposed.  For next year all shirts must extend to cover the shoulder.

August 27—First day of school
August 31-September 3—No School for Labor Day break
October 6—Fall Festival
October 18-19—Teachers’ Convention @ Heritage (Hudsonville)
October 27—Craft Show
November 22-23—Thanksgiving Break
December 24-January 1—Christmas break (Last day is Friday, December 21)
January 18—Records Day (No School)
March 29-April 5—Spring Break
May 3—Junior/Senior Banquet
May 16-17—Senior Class Trip
May 27—No school for Memorial Day
May 31--Graduation

In the Service of Christ, our King,


Rick Noorman