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Mr. Reid Reflects on COMMUNITY

Karl Reid has been a large part of our school for the last 23 years.  We thank him for all of his devoted years at K.C.S. and the friend that he was to so many children that walked the halls over those many years.  We all miss him and wish him God’s riches blessings as he starts a new chapter in his life.

by Karl Reid

After 23 years as teacher and principal at K.C.S., I am now on the outside looking in, thinking about some of my most memorable times.  Of course it goes without saying that teaching is at the top of the list.  Having had the opportunity to be a part in shaping and developing young lives through Christian education was a great joy and blessing.  Other memories include Friday morning praise time; a  myriad of field trips; working with exceptional colleagues; very supportive parents and school community.  It was rewarding when I had students present me with hand-drawn pictures or a written note that simply expressed their love and appreciation the best way they knew how.  Those little anecdotes help to reaffirm my place at K.C.S. and my continued love of teaching children, with God’s help.  I will never forget the special presentation made to me on behalf of the entire student body and staff upon my retirement; the hand-made quilt brought tears to my eyes and I will cherish it for many years to come.  Also, I will always remember the open house planned to honour my years of service at the school.  These two events demonstrated how loving and caring this school community truly is.

Now that I have retired, there are many things that I miss. First and foremost I miss the children; their singing, smiles, hugs, and high-fives greeted me daily for 23 years.  They really know how to make one’s day!  Overall, I miss the sense of community within K.C.S.  The staff, the board, the various committees, and the many volunteers, all strive to do their best in working together to promote a vibrant, nurturing environment for children to become image bearers of God now and in the future.

Is K.C.S. worth investing in? You bet it is!  I hope everyone reading this feels the same way because K.C.S. is truly a great place to become.



Full-time Kindergarten a Big-time Success

K.C.S. welcomed a full-time kindergarten program in the fall of the 2011-2012 school year. Through the hard work of our excellent kindergarten teacher Mrs. Bull, an exciting, well-rounded, and dynamic program was developed. Below is a description of this program.

by Anita Bull

Exciting new things have taken place in Kindergarten lately.  A brand new classroom was planned out and set up, making room for our full time Junior and Senior Kindergarten program.  A grant from the OACS foundation provided the seed money needed to create a warm, inviting space for KCS’s newest scholarly treasures.  Each morning, core subjects are taught, such as, math, language and social studies in the form of monthly themes.  The afternoons consist of a different enrichment time each day, including music, baking, French, art and reading.  Students are happy and eager to come in to school each morning, looking forward to learning something new.  The consistency of a daily schedule has produced further learning.  Students in turn have adjusted to the full time program well.  It is exciting to see the eagerness of the students and I continue to thank God for the many blessings He gives me in being their teacher.

Alumni Profile:  Michelle Wyngaarden

Michelle Wyngaarden graduated from KCS in 1998. She currently lives in Victoria, British Columbia.  She works as a sports analyst for the Canadian Sport Centre (Pacific) and was at the London 2012 Paralympic Games.  We asked her for an interview.

KCS:  Hello, Michelle.  Thanks for agreeing to this interview.

Michelle:  No problem.  I’m glad to help out my old grade school.

KCS:  What do you do for a living?

Michelle:  I work for a company that supports a variety of Canada’s Olympic and Paralympic sports teams.  I analyze various aspects of their performance.  The things I analyze range from game analysis and stats during a wheelchair rugby game to body positions during starts and turns for the swimmers to sprint and tackling mechanics for the women’s 7s rugby squad.

KCS:  How did you get to be part of Canada’s team?

Michelle:  I have been working with the Canadian wheelchair rugby team for 5 years analyzing the tactical aspect of the game.  I provide the video analysis and performance measures for the Canadian team as well as the scouting performances of the different countries we face in competition.  I was fortunate to be a part of the team during the Beijing 2008 Paralympic games (bronze medal), the 2010 World Championships (5th place), and finally the 2012 London Paralympics games (silver medal).

KCS:  What does the Paralympic Games mean to you?

Michelle:  The games are an opportunity for our elite athletes to compete at the highest level and show the world the hard work and dedication they have put in to be the best in the world.  The Paralympics specifically prove that anyone of any ability can overcome the many obstacles they may face and compete at this prestigious event for their country.  In sport, it is an honour to compete for your country and these games signify that anyone is capable of experiencing that honour.

KCS:  What was the highlight of your trip?

Michelle:  The highlight of my trip was hands-down our semi-final win against the USA.  The USA has been our main rivals over the past 5 years I have been with the team, and they have remained undefeated for the past 8 years!  Returning to our change room chanting “Canada” and receiving congratulations from all the countries and rugby players was a very proud and amazing experience.  It was a great game to be a part of, and a moment I will remember and cherish for a long time.

KCS:  How does your time at KCS impact on what you do today?

Michelle:  My time at KCS was a while ago, and many things have changed along the way but I think KCS sparked my interest and love in sports and being part of the sport community.  When I think back on my time at KCS, my mind is always drawn to the various sporting teams and adventures I was involved in.  I loved being part of a team and although we may not have always been fierce competitors, we had a great time and played with heart.  Whether it was being part of the KCS team in the senior girls volleyball competitions, or now being part of team Canada at the Paralympics, the experience brings back the same feelings of pride for your home team and what you represent.

KCS:  What is one of your favourite KCS memories?

Michelle:  I have a lot of memories from KCS, but like I mentioned previously, I’m drawn to my sporting adventures while at KCS.  I particularly remember competing in an overnight volleyball tournament, I believe around Orillia Ontario, and staying at a host house.  I remember staying up late with all my teammates and competing against a bunch of girls from various Christian schools in Ontario. I don’t think our team won a game, but I remember painting our nails in blue and white, cheering loud, and playing as a team.  It was a great trip and a very fond memory!

Measuring Up Christian School Alumni

                        It is with great excitement that we welcome Jennifer Shoniker as the new principal of K.C.S.!  She is the answer to the many prayers of the K.C.S. community, and we are thankful that God brought her to us!  We would like you all to get to know her as she begins this journey with us.  Please keep her in your prayers as she settles into her role of principal at K.C.S.

by Jennifer Shoniker

When I began in Christian schools in 1994, we as educators knew in our heart of hearts that Christian education was worth the investment of time, money, and sacrifice.  At that time though, it was a leap of faith because there was no empirical data to back us up.  In today’s information age however, researchers in both the Christian and secular worlds are finding evidence that gives that faith a solid foundation in fact.

The Barna research group has determined that only 8% of teenagers are deeply anchored in their religious traditions and their faith communities, practice their faith holistically, and find coherence and significance in knowing they belong to God.

You could say teens have a lifetime to come to a place where they begin a discernible walk of faith.  Researchers, however, found that this is not the case.  72% of adults find their Christian faith by the age of 12, and only 6% after the age of 19.

Barna also found that adults who had developed a Biblical worldview by attending Christian schools demonstrate genuinely different behavior.

✦ 9 times more likely to avoid adult material on Web

✦ 4 times as likely to boycott objectionable companies

✦ 3 times more likely not to use tobacco products

✦ 2 times more likely as other Christians to read the Bible each week and volunteer time to help needy people

The Cardus research group recently completed the most comprehensive study of Christian school graduates to date.  It shows that whether it’s social engagement, donating to charity, or volunteering, the graduates are “achieving the objectives of public education at equal or greater proportions than the public school systems,” says Ray Pennings, a lead researcher at Cardus.

Christian school graduates took part in more neighbourhood and community groups, but more significantly, they were more likely to vote and participate in grassroots movements. They portrayed God as loving, powerful and active in the world;  they talked about their church communities as spiritually and relationally significant.  They sensed a divinely appointed purpose for their lives, and they bore witness to hopeful future.

I am new to KCS, but have been devoted to Christian education for two decades.  I knew long before researchers that KCS provides children with a creed to believe in, a community to belong to, a call to live out, and a hope to hold onto.  What an important task! and what an opportunity!