Welcome to the 2022/23 school year! We are so excited to have your students in the building on August 22nd between 1 and 4pm to check in and get ready for the start of school. This year our school theme is “Living Water”. John 4 brings us to the story of Jesus talking to a Samaritan woman at a well where they have the following exchange:
9 The Samaritan woman said to him, “You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?” (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.) 10 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”
11 “Sir,” the woman said, “you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? 12 Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did also his sons and his livestock?”
13 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
As we begin a new school year I pray that we are all thirsty for the “living water” or Holy Spirit. Pray that we have a year where each person’s relationship with God grows deeper, and that the Holy Spirit guides our days and convicts us to continually make wise choices.
This upcoming year we will continue to improve our house system as we look for ways to promote community in our school. Each student and staff member will belong to a house and do house competitions and bonding experiences. Additionally, the staff will hand out house points for students who are doing the right thing. We also will start year two of our PBIS (Positive Behavior Intervention System). This has already had a positive impact on our school culture as students and staff all know the expectations for behavior as we do life together at school.
You may notice a couple of changes to our schedules for the upcoming school year. We will have Band, Orchestra and Choir classes as regular classes in all three grades. This will give students more time to excel in the arts. In addition, 8th grade students will take Spanish 1 as a regular class which will replace having our two day/week Spanish classes in 6th – 8th grade. Dr. Doug Greer, Director of Learning, shared, “As we looked at other area schools and discussed success rates as an internal team, we came to the conclusion that more students will meet the academic expectations of Spanish 1 by having a more concentrated effort in 8th grade rather than spreading out the instruction over three years. This should allow more students to earn high school credit which, in turn, allows them to take more advanced classes, such as AP Spanish their senior year.”
Overall this will create a schedule that has more flexibility, consistency and is user-friendly for our students.
After much discussion and planning we decided on the following changes:
- 6th grade – Add 9 weeks of English, add more BOC (band, orchestra and choir) time, Art will be a semester rather than 9 weeks, align to the high school with only one semester of Bible, and no longer offer our two day Spanish class.
- 7th grade – Add 9 weeks of Math, add more BOC time, and no longer offer our two day Spanish class.
- 8th grade – Add Spanish 1 for HS credit, align to the high school with only one semester of Bible, PE & Art will remain semester classes but they will meet less times per week.
We are adding a trip to South Africa this school year. This was introduced in the May Newsletter. The South Africa Application should be completed by August 19th if you would like your son or daughter to be considered for the trip. The following forms also need to be filled out by August 19th if you would like to be considered for financial aid: Recommendation form for financial aid and financial aid form. We are blessed to have enough available staff this year that we are not in need of chaperones. The dates for the trip are February 8/9 – 20, 2023. The cost is roughly $3,000.
On behalf of our staff, we are excited to partner together in the journey of your students’ education.
First Day/Week of School
Orientation day is Monday, August 22nd at the middle school from 1-4 pm. Come have your picture taken for your student ID, walk around the building and find your locker, pick up your schedule, and meet your teachers. You can also turn in any completed physical forms during this time. If you would like to order photos, go to this website and enter your name and email address. Please note, the Middle School yearbook is included in the yearly activity fee and does not need to be ordered separately. Each student will receive one at the end of the school year.
Picture Make-up day (if students miss Orientation Day) will be Thursday, September 8th; retakes and BOC pictures will be taken Monday, October 10th.
Tuesday, August 23rd: We start school this year with a half day starting at 8:00 am and ending at 11:15 am.
Class schedules will be given to students on Orientation day, August 23rd.
Before August 24 please read and fill out our Check In and 1:1 Laptop Document that contains information about technology policies and agreements, concussion awareness, field trip permissions, and more.
Middle School Schedule
The Middle School runs a modified block schedule. This means students take seven classes on Monday, Thursday, and Friday, and fewer classes on Tuesday and Wednesday, but for longer blocks of time. What used to be called “Achievement hour” will now be called “Homeroom”. All of our Grade Level Daily Schedules are available here.
Students start school a few minutes later each Wednesday so middle school staff can attend meetings from 7:30-8:15 am.
Starting on August 31st, the start time on Wednesdays is 8:30am (no late start the first week of school; class will begin at 8:00 am all week).
Please take a look at our Middle School Handbook for middle school policies and expectations. Note that we have updated policies regarding attendance, tardies, and personal technology (changes are in maroon text in the Table of Contents of the handbook).
- Attendance changes are only modifications to our wording. Attendance continues to be the greatest predictor of academic success, and we expect students to be here when they are able. The wording in our policy outlines steps taken when students are absent often.
- The wording for tardies was also tweaked for better clarity on the policy
- Our Personal Technology Policy has been updated to include all smart-devices. As technology morphs, so do opportunities for distraction. We want students to be present both in body and mind during the day.
Drop Off & Pick Up
Parent Carpool will take place on the North side of the building. In the single-lane carpool drop off, pull up as far as you can to drop off your child. If you are first in line, pull up to the orange cone that is past the north entrance on the sidewalk. This allows room for the cars behind you to pull up as well. Have your students exit the right side of the vehicle.
The bus loop at the front of school is not open for parent drop off during the hours of 7:30-8:15 am and 2:45-3:15 pm. School doors will be open at 7:30 am for students’ arrival and students need to be picked up by 3:30 pm.
You can find the supply list for your student’s grade on Google Drive.
Please note: it is recommended that students have an NIV Study Bible for their Bible class.
Please contact your health provider to be sure your student’s immunizations are up to date. All students’ immunizations must be up to date before the first day of school. In compliance with the Michigan Department of Health, Holland Christian Schools will not allow students whose immunizations are not up to date to attend school. Thank you so much for your help with this. Again this year, as per the Public Health Code, each student must have a copy of their most current immunization record and/or copy of their current waiver in their student file for as long as they are enrolled in school. You may email a copy to email@example.com.
We realize some students need to take or have medication with them at school. All medication, both over-the-counter and prescribed, must be held in the front office in its original container. If your student needs medication at school, please have your doctor fill out and sign the Administration of Medication Consent Formand bring that form with the medication to school.
Final Forms is our hub for “All Things HC Athletics.” You’ll find physical forms, sports sign ups, all forms needed to play sports, and can even pay your Pay-to-Play fee from this site. Please make sure your student athlete is registered and all forms are signed before their first day of practice.
Our Fall sports season begins Monday, August 22nd (with football beginning August 15th). Dates, times and locations of practices will be communicated from coaches in the next week. Our Middle School Athletic Page has all of our athletic information. This will show you how to register your athlete in Final Forms, which sports are offered when, the sport specific practice/game calendar, and our Athlete Handbook. The physical form, completed by a physician and signed by a parent, is required by the state in order to participate and must be on file in our office before practice begins.
Eventlink Athletic Scheduling and Ticketing – Most families are now familiar with Holland Christian’s athletic registration and compliance system, FinalForms. Recently we began a new relationship with a scheduling and ticketing platform called Eventlink. Like FinalForms, Eventlink streamlines many of the behind-the-scenes processes for us including team practice & game calendars and game tickets & season passes. If any of your 6th-12th grade children are involved in athletics, please take a few minutes to begin connecting with starting with our Eventlink Blog Post.
Athletic Parent Night – If you are the parent of a middle school or high school athlete, you are invited to our annual athletic parent night on August 16th at 7pm in the high school auditorium. You can read about our opening 7pm keynote address to all parents in our Athletic Parent Night Blog Post. High school fall team meetings will follow the keynote at the high school building.
Hey Parents! Want to stay connected with what’s going on in the middle school?! Join our parent team! We will be meeting once a month on Friday’s at 8am, plus a social outing or two. The time commitment is flexible throughout the year with what works with your schedule. Heading the team this year: Kerri deVries (firstname.lastname@example.org), Peggy Gorno (email@example.com), and Kate Holloway (firstname.lastname@example.org). Contact one of us if you are interested in joining! We look forward to a great school year with planning fabulous activities for the kids and teachers!
Join us for our Middle School Parent Night, which will be held on August 30th from 6:30-8:00 pm. You’ll receive more information after the school year begins.
Moms in Prayer
Moms in Prayer is a great way to connect with other moms, pray for your child, and have an impact on the middle school. Please join us on Fridays, starting September 19th, at Providence Church from 8:30-9:30pm. Contact Nicole Shook with questions at email@example.com
If you have your baton at home, please make sure you bring it to the office or your first hour teacher on the first day of school. Thanks!
- 22 – Orientation 1-4 pm
- 23 – First day PK-12 (½ day; 11:15 am dismissal)
- 29 – 7th Grade Vision Screening (am)
- 29 – 8th Grade to Camp Roger (more information coming soon)
- 30 – HCMS Parent Night 6:30-8 pm
- 31 – District Wide Convocation
- 2 – No School
- 5 – Labor Day
- 8 – Picture Make-Up Day