Dear HCHS Families,
In the month of December, our school community will only be together for 16 of the 31 days of the month. What should be considered to be just shy of a Christmas miracle is the number of community events that will be taking place within those mere three weeks: the Mocha and Merch Christmas Open House, the opening athletic events for basketball and swimming, MIFA Theater auditions, Christmas Spirit week, and the High School Christmas Concert, and this only includes high school-related activities. During this season, all of these events can serve as a powerful reminder of the time of the year we are entering; however, sometimes, I must admit, the fullness of the schedule can also distract me from the reason for the season.
When I was in high school, I was part of a small choir called the Seventh Avenue Singers, and during the Christmas season we would travel to private residences and nursing homes to sing carols for anyone who made the request. One of my favorite ones was the Coventry Carol, written by an unknown English author in the 16th century. Though a bit somber, the elegant elongation of sound and the melodic hills and valleys always provided a powerfully distinguished feel to the Christmas season. With how beautiful the piece is, I found it surprising when reading the lyrics that the song was actually written as the mothers’ lament for their sons who were victims of King Herod’s attempt to eliminate Jesus as a child.
The Israelites experienced similar hostilities from Pharaoh when, in response to Moses’s request for their freedom, he demanded more bricks without supplying them with straw (Ex. 5: 6-8). The Israelites then harshly reprimanded Moses and Aaron for increasing their suffering, and Moses cried out to the Lord, “Why, Lord, why have you brought trouble on this people? Is this why you sent me?” (Ex. 5: 22-23).
On the journey toward freedom and a life of flourishing, oftentimes the past can seem more comfortable and appealing than the unforeseen, yet greater reality of God’s promise for his people. And in the midst of suffering, we are rendered forgetful of the promise; thankfully, God is not forgetful.
In response to Moses’ plea, God declares to him, “I have heard the groaning of the Israelites, whom the Egyptians are enslaving, and I have remembered my covenant” (Ex. 6: 5). God remembers the covenant he made with Abraham when God passed between animals that Abraham cut in half, declaring that if either party were to break the covenant, that person would become like the sacrifices (Gen. 15; Jer. 34:18-19). What is obvious is that we have broken this covenant time and time again—in the very next scene, Abraham breaks his marital covenant by resorting to Hagar for an heir instead of his wife Sarai (Gen. 16).
But what is incredible is that God not only remembered his covenant with Abraham, but also set out to take on Abraham’s and our well-deserved punishment through the amazing act of Kenosis: voluntarily humbling himself to be born in a manger, which, I learned when traveling to Israel, was most likely a feces-laden cave. He entered into the life of a child refugee, was hunted by the local authorities, was accidentally left behind in Jerusalem as a twelve-year-old, lived as a nomad for two years teaching a small group of young men who flunked out of school, and was unjustly killed with some of his last words being, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34).
Oh, how he loves us.
As we enter this Christmas season, our hope is that our students may never forget how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Jesus (Eph. 3:18). May the weeks ahead be filled with reminders of God’s recklessly extravagant love for us.
With Great Thanks,
Miles Colago, HS Principal
Maroon and White Shop Open House
Mark your calendars for Wednesday, November 29 from 4:00pm – 8:00pm. You are invited to The Maroon and White Shop’s Second annual Mocha and Merch Christmas Open House! Come browse our new store at HCHS while enjoying the provided refreshments, listening to Christmas music, and start your Christmas shopping! We will have the latest HC gear available, and the first 15 people to make a purchase will receive a complimentary gift! Each item bought directly supports the Special Olympics Unified Sports program at the high school. It’s an event you won’t want to miss!
The High School office will be closed during the Christmas break from December 25-January 5. The administration office will be closed for the holidays from December 25-January 1 and will resume normal office hours on January 2.
24-25 Class Signup
Students will be signing up for their 24-25 classes beginning in late January. Students will receive information about course scheduling and registration for next year during Family Flex:
- Current Juniors – Wednesday, January 24
- Current Sophomores – Monday, January 29
- Current Freshman – Wednesday, January 31
All parents are encouraged to discuss with students the opportunities that are available. Current students will submit their course selections online by February 16, 2024. Registration information will be updated on the Registrar page prior to January 24.
First Semester Exams
- Students are not required to be at school unless they have an exam.
- Students will not be allowed to take exams until all lunch detentions have been served, and will not receive credit for first semester courses until exams are taken.
- All lunch account negative balances must be paid before exams may be taken.
- All books must be returned and fines paid in the Media Center before exams may be taken.
- All students should check with the bus driver to find out the bus schedule for exam week.
- Tuesday, January 16, 2023
- 8:45-10:15am 1st-hour exam
- 10:30am-12:00pm 2nd-hour exam -Tech Center required. Students may leave 2nd hour exam when finished; Tech will be notified that you may be late.
- Wednesday, January 17
- 8:45-10:15am 3rd-hour exam
- 10:30am-12:00pm 4th-hour exam – Tech Center required
- Thursday, January 18
- 8:45-10:15am 5th-hour exam
- 10:30am-12:00pm 6th-hour exam – Tech Center required
- Friday, January 19
- 8:45-10:15am 7th-hour exam
- 10:30am-12:00pm Make-up slot – Tech Center required
The 2024 CHAMPS Coupon Book is new and improved! You can view a sample of the completed 2024 book by clicking this link. The production of the CHAMPS Coupon book is now contracted through a national fundraising company, SaveAround, so in addition to the lakeshore discounts, there are regional and national coupons as well. Each purchased book comes with an activation code for 12 months of mobile app coupons for the greater Holland area, as well as across the US based on your location. Both the book and mobile app coupons all for $30!
CHAMPS Coupon Books are available at Quality Car Wash and Russ’ Restaurant locations in addition to school offices and Ditto. You can also purchase your CHAMPS Coupon Book through HCS or ZCS TRIP to receive 10% back on your tuition. 2024 coupons are valid from when the book is purchased through December 31, 2024. The coupons pay for themselves after only a few uses, but raise significant funds to directly benefit our middle school and high school student-athletes. Thank you for supporting athletics at both Holland Christian and Zeeland Christian Schools through the purchase of a 2024 CHAMPS Coupon Book!
All Athletic Information
All information about athletics can be found on the Athletics page of the Holland Christian website. Learn more about our registration process which is the best way to register for athletics, see schedules, and purchase tickets or passes.
The High School Music Department invites you to its annual band, orchestra, and choir Christmas concert on Tuesday, December 19 at the Jack H. Miller Center for Musical Arts, located on the campus of Hope College. This year we will be offering only ONE performance time at 7pm. We look forward to sharing in the celebration of our Savior’s birth through our music.
24-Hour Theatre is a celebration of theatre, with four teams of students writing, memorizing, and producing a show in just 24 hours. It’s fun, a little crazy, and a great way to support the Theatre program! Join us for these fun final performances on Saturday, December 2 at 7pm in the HCHS auditorium. Tickets are $5 cash at the door fundraising for the HCHS Theatre Department. If you would like to participate in 24-Hour Theater, contact Zach Rumley for details.
Living Hope Showcase 2024: Showtime!
SAVE THE DATE! Join the Living Hope Singers as they present a fun evening of music from Broadway, the movies, and television! Showcase 2024 will be held on Friday and Saturday, March 15 & 16 at 7pm in the HCHS Auditorium. Tickets will go on sale in February. Stay tuned for more information!
Parents of Sophomores & Juniors
We will have representatives from the Careerline Tech Center presenting virtually to our students about what the Tech Center has to offer, should they be interested in attending the Tech Center beginning junior or senior year. All sophomores and any interested juniors will be able to watch this presentation during a Family Flex in January. Students who are interested will receive a link to the virtual presentation.
In early November, an email was sent to all parents of full-time juniors inviting you to sign up for a junior + parent meeting. Please follow the links in the email if this is of interest to you.
- All 11th grade students will take the SAT during the school day on Wednesday, March 20, 2024. Students do not need to register for this test, and there is no cost for students.
- Upcoming Saturday SAT dates are available in December, March, and May. HCHS is a testing site for the March date. You can search for other testing sites in our area when you go to the SAT website to register.
- Upcoming Saturday ACT test dates are available in December, February, and April. HCHS is a testing site for the December and February dates. You can search for other testing sites in our area when you go to the ACT website to register.
- Here is a chart of the upcoming ACT and SAT dates, including the registration deadlines. This covers the 23-24 school year, so we hope you find this helpful as you look ahead for possible testing dates that work for your student.
Throughout the school year, various scholarship opportunities will be posted online through the Counseling Department. A listing of outside scholarships, both regional and national, is updated as we receive notices of scholarship opportunities. Beginning in January and early February, there will be information online about the Community Foundation of Holland/Zeeland scholarships that are open to Holland Christian students, and also internal HC scholarships, which are for full-time Holland Christian students only. Be sure to check the Scholarship portion of the Counseling Department webpage.
All students seeking financial aid (institution-based, state & federal funds) must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online via the FAFSA Website. The FAFSA will be available for you to complete beginning in December. Be sure to check the financial aid link on each college website for specific information on their timelines. For helpful information on the FAFSA, check out this resource.
There is a federal student aid estimator that can provide you with an estimate of your Student Aid Index (SAI). This index is used by colleges to determine what types of student aid you may receive. Again, the financial aid office of the college(s) you are considering is a great place to start if you have specific FAFSA or financial aid questions.
- 1-2: 24 Hour Theatre
- 19: Christmas Concert, Jack H. Miller Center for Musical Arts 7pm
- 25-January 5: Christmas vacation
- 5: School resumes
- 15: No school
- 16-19: Exams
- 22: Second semester begins