Posts Tagged With: Allendale Public Schools

Thank you Allendale, From Kat Ginn

Allendale Public SchoolsMy first day of high school was full of nerves. I had just moved to Michigan a couple weeks before and I didn’t know many people. I was scared to death and had no idea what to expect. I certainly didn’t expect that the next four years would be better than I imagined, and I have the faculty and staff to thank for that.

I would like to thank the teachers at Allendale for going above and beyond for their students. They were always willing to stay after school, or come early before school, if I need extra help. I have had teachers stay after school multiple times a week for hours re-explaining lessons that I don’t understand.  Apart from teaching the curriculum, the teachers also teach us life lessons. They made sure that we are well prepared to go into the “real world” by the time we walk across the stage at graduation. I couldn’t have asked for better teachers during my high school career.

Kat Ginn, Allendale High School, Allendale Public Schools, Summer SeriesI would like to thank the administrators at Allendale for having high expectations for us. The administrative staff expects nothing less than the best from us. We are not allowed to slack off on our school work, sports, or anything else. We are expected to do our best all the time. Mr. Remenap has two rules that we go over at the beginning of every year. Don’t do what is wrong, and do what is right. Those are his only rules and we are expected to follow them all the time.

My last thank you is to the whole staff. Throughout high school everyone goes through a lot of changes and some difficult times. Whenever I needed someone to talk to I knew that I could always go to anyone on the staff. Weather it was Mr. Fogel, or any one of the teachers I always felt safe talking to them. Not a lot of kids feel comfortable enough to go to one of their teachers to talk about issues that are going on in their lives, but at Allendale, its different.

I had a wonderful experience at Allendale High School. Every teacher and administrator goes above and beyond for their students. They not only make sure we are able to graduate, but they make certain that we are well prepared to go into the “real world.” I would again like to thank everyone at Allendale High School for their commitment to all the students.

 

Categories: Summer Series | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Allendale High School Graduation 2013

Graduation.

The word conjures many ideas about school and the future. It means that kids have grown up and are preparing to strike out on their own. It evokes strong feelings of hope and possibilities. But most of all, it signifies the end of end of one chapter and the beginning of another.

Allendale Graduation, Allendale Public Schools, Allendale High SchoolAllendale’s 2013 graduates were sent off with heartfelt words from Principal Remenap, who began his journey four years ago with this same group of students.

“We started this trip together — your first day was my first day. Tonight we have one final time to celebrate your accomplishments and say goodbye.”

Allendale Graduation, Allendale Public Schools, Allendale High School

Mr. Remenap highlighted attitude, honor, and scholarship as being his guiding principles for students, reminding them that while their GPA matters, it’s their attitude that will open or close far more doors than grades will. Loyalty, he said, will matter far more than an ACT score. He continued:

“…Your ability to love and appreciate people and beauty around you will determine your joy far more than any amount of scholarship. … Your education matters, but let’s place it in its right order.’

Allendale Graduation, Allendale Public Schools, Allendale High School

With Memorial Day on the horizon, Superintendent Dr. Dan Jonker brought the sentiments of love and honor full circle when he asked the crowd to join him in paying tribute to our veterans and those currently serve in the military.

“Our nation has been at war for most of your school years,” he started. “This Memorial Day, we salute those who have served, are serving, or will be serving our country in the Armed Forces.”

Allendale High School, Allendale Public School

Allendale High School band performing “The Lion of Lucerne” one final time.

These graduating seniors, Dr. Jonker pointed out, have seen much already in their short lives. They were newborns when Yahoo launched. Wikipedia was born when they were in kindergarten. iPhones changed the world during their middle school years, and the internet surpassed newspaper readership their freshman year.

And while it’s true that these students have seen technology revolutionize our nation, we come back to the simple truth that nothing is quite as revolutionary as love and kindness.

Salutatorian Katherine Sauter summed it up with a quote from Minor Myers Jr:

“Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.”

Allendale High School graduates of 2013, may you do just that! Embrace the past that has prepared you for this moment in history, but open your arms wide to the future and purpose to do good.

Ambition like that will change the world, and we’ll be here cheering you on as you go!

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The Future is Bright for 2013 AHS Top Ten Grads

As is our tradition, we’d like to take a moment to highlight the accomplishments of 2013’s Allendale High School Top Ten graduates. Their unstoppable effort and determination deserves our applause and admiration!

Kali Smolen, Allendale High School, Top Ten Grads 2013Kali Smolen, daughter of Colleen and Earl Smolen, is this year’s Valedictorian with an unbelievable 4.143 GPA. Kali has been on the Science Olympiad team for the past two years, competing on designer genes, forestry, and “write-it-do-it.” Kali served as vice president on our National Honor Society while also participating in student congress. She spent her entire high school career involved in 4-H, marching band, and concert band, and has also ridden for AHS’s equestrian team throughout high school.

Kali plans to pursue biomedical sciences and Spanish at GVSU’s Frederik Meijer Honor’s College in the fall.

We wish her the best as she continues to move toward her goals with diligence!

Katherine Sauter, Allendale Public Schools, Allendale High School***

Congratulations are also due to our Salutatorian, Katherine Sauter, daughter of Karl and Cristy Sauter. Katherine grabbed this lofty spot with an amazing 4.142 GPA. Her high school activities included student congress, National Honor Society, Quizbowl, Rotary Interact Club, drama club, concert, marching, and pep band, wind ensemble, volleyball, and softball (are you tired just reading this?)

Katherine plans to major in comparative cultures and politics at MSU’s James Madison College, with the hopes of one day practicing environmental law. Katherine has also offered to contribute to our summer series here on the blog; be sure to check back and read her moving letter on July 2!

Congrats, Katherine!

***

Rachel LaBrecque,  Allendale Public Schools, Allendale High SchoolRachel LeBrecque, daughter of Steve and Betty, snags our #3 position with a 4.109 GPA. Rachel was president of student congress during her senior year, capping off four years of heavy involvement in student government. She was also a member of NHS, marching and concert bands, and wind ensemble throughout her career.

An artist at heart, Rachel also participated in Kendall College of Art and Design’s dual enrollment program during her junior and senior years.

Rachel is interested in graphic design, advertising, and journalism, and plans to pursue her passions at Ferris State University in the fall.

We cheer her on as she continues to achieve great things!

***

Andrea BeitelAndrea Beitel comes in next with a stunning 4.089 GPA. Daughter of Bob and Colette, Andrea was involved in drama club, pursued music in both marching band and pep band, and was on the Quiz Bowl team. This past year she also volunteered her time on National Honor Society where she served as president.

Andrea is eager to serve others by working for human rights with organizations such as Amnesty International or in refugee centers. She will be attending Kalamazoo College in the fall with plans to study anthropology and Spanish. Congratulations, Andrea!

We wish you all the best in your future endeavors!

***

Smith, SamanthaSamantha Smith rounds out the top five with a 4.075 GPA. This daughter of Terry Smith and Theresa and Jeff Van Eck was a student-athlete who pole-vaulted for the Falcon’s track and field team while at Allendale High School. She also participated in band and performed at the District and State Solo Ensemble.

Samantha dreams of doing something in the medical field when she begins her career. Her plans include attending the University of Notre Dame in the fall where she would study pre-med.

We’re cheering for you, Samantha!

***

Michelle Austin, Allendale public Schools, Allendale High SchoolIn sixth place with a 4.069 GPA is the daughter of Robert and Hattie Austin, Michelle.  Michelle was involved in many activities during her time at Allendale High School, including four years of softball and volleyball. She additionally served on National Honor Society, the Rotary Interact Club, and the Spirit Club.

Next year, Michelle plans to serve either with Youth.With.A.Mission (YWAM), a Christian organization that impacts lives around the globe, or with 24/7 Academy Mission School on the west side of Grand Rapids. While she is still considering her long-term plans, her dreams include nursing, social work, or speech pathology with American Sign Language.

Go change the world, Michelle!

***

Paige Wells, Allendale Public Schools, Allendale High SchoolPaige Wells is our #7 graduate with a 4.062 GPA. Daughter of Troy and Allison Wells, Paige was involved in numerous on- and off-campus activities including Chamber Choir, National Honor Society, Rotary Interact Club, varsity track & field, volleyball, and Spirit Club. She served as captain of her volleyball team in 9th and 12th grades, and captain of her track & field team from her sophomore through senior years.

Paige is looking forward to beginning her college career at GVSU in the fall where she will study health and social sciences. While she is not certain of her vocational plans, Paige knows she wants to “work daily with people, making a difference in their lives in some way.”

We wish you the best, Paige!

***

Allendale Public Schools, Allendale High School, Brianna BoschComing in at #8 is Brianna Bosch, daughter of Dave and Pam Bosch.  Brianna is a member of National Honor Society and marched in the drumline for Allendale’s Marching Band. She also served on the yearbook committee this past year and is dual enrolled in two classes with Kendall College of Art and Design.

While undecided in her career plans, Brianna intends to study Spanish and hopes to be able to use the language in her future pursuits. She will attend Grand Valley State University in the fall.

Congratulations, Brianna! –Buena suerte!

***

Vereeke, TylerThis year’s #9 spot belongs to Tyler Vereeke, son of Douglas and Patricia Vereeke. Tyler earned a 4.052 GPA and participated in Science Olympiad, student congress, and National Honor Society while at Allendale High School.

Tyler hopes to eventually going into Neurology, and will attend Grand Valley State University next fall with a biomedical major. Upon completion, Tyler hopes of being accepted to medical school.

May all your dreams come true, Tyler!

***

Hoekstra, DanielDaniel Hoekstra, son of Todd and Wendy Hoekstra, rounds out our Top Ten graduates with a 4.047 GPA. Dan was the captain of the varsity hockey team and starting catcher for the Allendale High School varsity baseball team. Dan also served on National Honor Society.

This fall Dan will head to Hope College to play baseball and study pre-med. He hopes to one day become a pharmacist and live somewhere in sunny Florida.

Dan has also volunteered to join our Allendale Outlook summer blog series! Please check back on August 6 to read what Dan has to say about his time at Allendale High School.

Where ever you land, Dan, we know you’ll shine!

Please join me in applauding the hard work and tenacity of these special students and all of our graduates!

Categories: Allendale Grads/Graduation, Allendale High School, Allendale Public Schools | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

Allendale Robotics Team Members Reflect on a Winning Year

Robotics Competition, Trisonic, Allendale High School, Zach Holmes, Zach Jones

(L to R): Zach Jones and Zach Holmes are sad to see their season end.

For Allendale High School Robotics Team members, success in their spring competition was gravy on top of a season of friendship and intense bonding. Senior Zach Jones and Junior Zach Holmes were teammates who say that working closely together for hundreds of hours did more than create a winning robot: it created family.

This was Zach Holmes’ first year of robotics, getting involved only because he convinced his best friend to join him. He soon realized that there were new friends to be made over a table of math problems and engineering dilemmas.

“We worked in small groups during the season — we had a “design” group, a “build” group, and a “programming” group. But even though we were clustered with specific classmates, by the end of the season we were locking arms because we had gotten so close,” said Mr. Holmes who plans to join the Marines after his 2014 graduation. He intends to study mechanical engineering.

Unique to this team is the fact that it operates in partnership with other local high schools. This year students from Jenison High School joined, forming a team of fourteen young men: 9 from APS and 5 from Jenison.

Their goal, aside from crafting a winning robot, was to branch out into the community to garner support. By including local businesses, these students were able to make solid real-world connections to their work. For instance, this year’s robot frame was built by Laser Dynamics in Allendale. They also received sponsorships from numerous others.

In no less than six weeks, the team had their robot designed, assembled, and programmed to win. They spent over seventy hours of their mid-winter break perfecting the device, and said those long days solidified their personal connections.

“We really are one big family,” said Zach Jones, who also intends to study engineering after graduation. “We try to include everyone. At all times when we were working on something, we had at least five sets of hands inside the robot … it can be chaotic, but we all held it together.”

After an initial competition in Traverse City, the 2013 Allendale Jenison TriSonics team played “Ultimate Ascent” at the fieldhouse on Grand Valley State University’s campus in late March. In “Ultimate Ascent,” robots were challenged with collecting discs resembling frisbees, and then scoring goals with them. During the first 15 seconds of the game robots functioned in autonomous mode, relying on the students’ expert programming completed over weeks of preparation time.

Allendale Public Schools, TriSonics, Allendale Robotics Team

The next 15 seconds allowed for the robot to be driven by teleoperators. Finally, in the final 30 seconds of the game, robots actually had to climb a pyramid! Points were allotted based on how high the robot climbed.

We are proud of this group for being named a Finalist and receiving the Team Spirit Award at the West Michigan District Event. But more than anything, we celebrate with them that academics and extra-curricular passions have led to wonderful friendships and a determination to pursue excellence far beyond the TriSonics competitions of high school.

Categories: Allendale High School, Allendale Public Schools, APS Celebrations, Student Award Winners | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Butterflies and Bats Invade Allendale Public Schools

Nothing heralds spring quite like the flutter of butterfly wings in the daytime and the rhythmic beating of bats’ wings at dusk. They remind us that buds and blossoms and new life are parading back into our landscapes and bringing warmer weather with them.

backyard butterflies, Allendale Public Schools, Allendale Community Field Day

But aside from the beauty of butterflies and the oddity of bats, each of these creatures serves an important purpose in our ecosystem, and we are excited to share those roles with our students in a series of learning experiences planned for this upcoming week.

In preparation for next week Saturday’s Second Annual Allendale Community Field Day, we are honored to welcome Ms. Holli Ward of Michigan Butterflies LLC to Allendale on Thursday, May 9 from 11:30 until the end of the school day. Ms. Ward will be visiting our Springview and Evergreen Elementary Schools to teach students about butterfly larvae, eggs, general life cycle details, migration patterns of Monarchs, food requirements, and more.

Ms. Ward’s visit will take place in the school’s gymnasium and will allow her time to interact with all of our elementary students — that’s over 800 kids! Stations will be set up to offer an interactive and hands-on experience for everyone.

Mr. Peter Riemersma, co-founder of the Allendale Community Field Day with Mr. Piccard of Allendale Middle School, is overseeing much of the planning for the event and was able to secure grant monies to cover the cost of Ms. Ward’s visit. He hopes to inspire APS students to join our field day after working with butterflies and learning about the important role they play in our ecosystem. (Further details about the 2nd Annual Field Day will be published next week Tuesday).

Bat Conservation, Allendale Public Schools

Allendale Intermediate students will also have the opportunity to learn about winged creatures on May 13 during two assemblies put on by Bats of the World.  During these assemblies, fourth and fifth graders will explore the importance of bats, their habitats, thoughts on conservation, and will investigate some of the adaptations bats possess to help them navigate their nocturnal lifestyle. Students will additionally enjoy meeting an African fruit bat, a Jamaican leaf-nosed bat, and a local insect-eating bat.

Mr. Riemersma and Mr. Piccard express their gratitude to the Allendale Elementary School PTO whose support covered the majority of the expense of this visit. They hope that students will be eager to help install bat houses during the community field day on May 18!

Please check back next week for details about our Community Field Day!

[click here for this week’s photo credit}

Categories: Allendale Elementary Schools, Community News | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

AMS Students Celebrate Reading with Posters and Publications

Fact: according to estimates, some 81% of Americans say they would like to write a book, but few of them ever will.

With mounting costs associated with traditional publishing, competition between paper books and digital formats heating up, and the need for high-profile authors to garner sales, the publishing industry has hurdles at every turn.

Unless, of course, you’re a sixth-grader at Allendale Middle School.

Allendale Middle School, book publications, Allendale Public Schools

This semester, in honor of March is Reading Month, Mrs. Norine Fox made a way for each of her 170 students to write, illustrate, and publish their own book.

The process began in February, on a calendar dotted with snow days and late starts. Students read and listened to adventure stories to learn the components of successful storytelling. From zombie tales to kidnapping mysteries, Mrs. Fox’s readers paid attention to sensory images and the use of hooks to engage readers from the beginning.

Allendale Middle School, book publications, Allendale Public Schools

Drawing from this fresh well of examples, students let their imaginations loose by penning their own adventure stories. Working diligently on the craft of incorporating quality, realistic dialog, sixth graders brainstormed, wrote and re-wrote their stories with the help of peer editors and the collaboration that happens in writer’s workshop.

After their stories were solid, students moved to their school computers to type, format, and print them. They added illustrations, came up with cover designs, and handed their newly completed masterpieces to their teacher.

Using the services provided by “Student Treasures” (.com), Mrs. Fox sent each completed manuscript to be professionally published in a bound, hardcover book. Student Treasures offers one book per student for free, with the option to purchase additional copies if desired. The Allendale PTO graciously covered the cost of shipping and handling for the project.

Students like Mason Felicioni held their books with reverence and awe:

“I learned how the process of making a book works. We had to go through all the steps. I had three different beginning and I kept re-working them. I made them all a part of the story. It was very fun and very rewarding. Now I have a book! We learned a bunch!”

Allendale Middle School, book publications, Allendale Public Schools

Sixth grader Mason Felioni dives in to his shark attack tale.

In addition to all the publishing excitement in sixth grade, Mrs. Fox and Mrs. Bagley also sponsored the annual March is Reading Month poster contest for all students in grades 6-8. The goal of each poster must be to celebrate reading or to encourage others to read.

Mrs. Fox and Mrs. Bagley display all submitted posters in the library windows without names so that the entire student body could vote impartially. The first place artist’s work is framed and displayed in the school library for one year, and all three top finishers also receive a $5 gift certificate for use at the spring book fair.

Congratulations to this year’s winners, Jessica Chojnaki: 1st place, Taylor Adams: 2nd place, and Jarrad Guerrero: 3rd place!

Allendale Middle School, book publications, Allendale Public Schools

Pictured from L to R: Taylor Adams (6th grade), Jessica Chojnaki (8th grade), Jarrad Guerrero (6th grade).

We applaud the way these young readers have passionately embraced the power of the written word. To borrow Jessica’s winning poster title, life is magical “when books come to life!”

Categories: Allendale Middle School | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

AMS Marathon Club Racks Up Miles and Good Health

Most of us look forward to our lunch break as being a relaxing mid-point in our day: an opportunity to step away from work at hand, turn off our phones, and breathe a little deeper.

Ironically, this group of determined Allendale Middle School kids have found a way to breathe a little deeper, too, but it’s not because they’re sitting down and relaxing. Instead, they’re spending their lunch hours running laps in the hallway the minute they’ve finished their lunches.

photo of the Allendale Middle School Marathon Club

Pictured above: the entire group of marathon hopefuls. The pack has now slimmed to 27 dedicated runners.

The Allendale Marathon Club is currently open only to sixth-graders who are willing to sacrifice a portion of their lunchtime in order to meet a lofty goal: running enough laps over the course of several weeks to complete those elusive 26.2 miles.

Started by Mrs. Shelley Jourden in 2008, she said what motivated her to get kids running was the fact that she began competing in 5Ks herself. She notes that oftentimes her students begin with ambitious goals and then soon thereafter, fall away when the work becomes too difficult.

But this year has been different.

“I currently have 27 students running.  This is a first to have that many stick with it!  I truly enjoy seeing the students set a goal and achieve it.  Many think it is impossible to run a total of 26.2 miles, but it’s not!  It also brings joy to see them encourage others to finish,” she said.

Allendale Middle School, Marathon Club, Allendale Public Schools

(pictured L to R) Sixth graders Chloe Williams and Heather Koenig

Mrs. Jourden spends her lunch hour standing in the hallway with popcicle sticks used to keep track of laps completed. Each time students run past her, they collect another stick and then turn in their pile before heading off to afternoon classes. Mrs. Jourden keeps track of how many times they run the loop.

While some students are intrigued by the 26.2 mile goal, just as many are encouraged by the idea of getting healthy and feeling better. Chloe Williams and Heather Koenig both note that since most of the winter is spent indoors, the opportunity to get moving was appealing. Though they haven’t been runners in the past, they say that Mrs. Jourden’s Marathon Club has given them the push they’ve needed to begin.

The club will keep running all spring, finally wrapping up the same week as the 6th grade award ceremony. At that time, students will be recognized with a certificate of completion, a gift, and will see their names added to the AMS Marathon Club plaque that hangs proudly in the hallway by Mrs. Jourden’s classroom.

We applaud the efforts of these young athletes! They inspire us all!

Categories: Allendale Middle School, Athletics/Fitness | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Senior Kali Smolen Defies the Odds and Soars to Success

Allendale Public Schools, Allendale High School, Kali Smolen, Valedictorian

2013 Valedictorian Kali Smolen

When senior Kali Smolen first reported to her elementary kindergarten class, she never imagined that she would never miss even a single day of school in her entire educational career.

Ever.

And she certainly could not have dreamed that her pursuit of excellence would eventually pave the way for a perfect GPA and the title “Valedictorian.”  

But in fact, that is precisely what happened.

Kali is currently taking all three advance-placement (AP) courses offered at Allendale High School: AP Calculus, AP English, and AP Biology. In addition, she is enrolled in Spanish V, Wind Ensemble, and is taking Spanish 202 at Grand Valley State University. She is additionally involved in Science Olympiad and the Equestrian Team.

 “I have been involved with equestrian and MIHA throughout high school.  At the state competition of my senior year, I was the only member on the team.  The team was one horse, one rider.  I rode in all but two events.  I rode in 15 events and placed in the top five overall in division D at state.  The sheer fact that I made it to state was amazing.” 

Kali explained that her work ethic, intrinsic motivation, and the encouragement she’s received from staff members have propelled her through her difficult class load.

“I’ve truly adored all of my teachers — they’ve been willing to help and nice to talk to. Allendale teachers really support their students,” said Kali.

Though her senior year has been the most challenging by far, Kali has no regrets, even stating that she wishes she “…would’ve taken a harder curriculum from the get-go. I’m a pretty good time manager and I think I would’ve loved the challenge!”

Ms. Smolen has plans to attend Grand Valley’s Frederik Meijer Honors College next year to study Bio-Medical Sciences and Spanish. She dreams of interning at the Van Andel Institute and diving into the world of stem cell research to get to the heart of the issues.

“I attended the Sam Rhines genetic conference with my anatomy class during my junior and senior years.  Each time, I became intrigued with genetic sciences.  These conferences interested me in stem cell research.  I proceeded to do my capstone research paper on stem cell research.  I now want to go into medicine, with research as a high possibility. Instead of just treating the disease, I’d like to find the mechanism behind it.”

Kali’s mother, Colleen, points out that while there exists a scholarship for couples going to prom in a clothes made of duct tape, there is not a scholarship for perfect attendance. Still, her pride is obvious and we join her in congratulating Kali for her amazing accomplishments!

“I am proud of Kali’s academic success, but I’m even more proud of her good personal character.” she said.

Congratulations to Kali Smolen for an unbelievable school career!! You make us “Falcon Proud”!

Categories: Allendale High School, Student Award Winners, Students in the Spotlight! | Tags: , , , | 7 Comments

It’s Time for Family Fitness Frenzy!

APS, Family Fitness Frenzy, Allendale Public Schools, Allendale Elementary PTO

Photo taken at FFF 2012.

Allendale’s 5th Annual Family Fitness Frenzy is revving up to once again promote health, an active lifestyle, and general wellness in the community. With activities planned from 9 am – noon this Saturday, March 16, families will enjoy the freedom to come and go at a pace that best fits their schedules.

Parent Volunteer Coordinators Wendy Williams and Melissa Fennell have worked tirelessly for months, along with with a team of parent volunteers, to put together a memorable — and meaningful — event for all who attend. While executing a successful fundraiser for the Allendale Elementary PTO is at the top of their list, they say that offering a day filled with fun and games is a close second.

“We hope the students, families, teachers, and community enjoy the updates our planning team made this year. We have put in a lot of thought and time, and considered lessons learned from past events. … Our hope is to create an atmosphere that brings everyone together.”

APS, Family Fitness Frenzy, Allendale Elementary PTO

GVSU Lakers Football interacting with kids at the 2012 Family Fitness Frenzy. We’re thrilled to welcome them back!

Events planned for this Saturday are FREE, but you are asked to register upon arrival. Games and activities will include:

  • Laker Football
  • Go Lakers Cheerleading
  • “You Think You Can Dance?”
  • Eye Olympics
  • Simon Says & Rock, Paper, Scissors
  • Kick it! Kickboxing
  • “Get Your Move on!”
  • La Pita Fresh
  • Energy Explosion!
  • 2 Intense Gymnastics
  • Cup Stacking

Each of these activities was made possible by the generosity of our community sponsors, without whose help the event could not take place!  A complete list of our sponsors can be found by clicking HERE. Please remember to thank them!

As in the past, T-shirts were allocated based on students raising at least $30 toward the event and will not be available for purchase at the Family Fitness Frenzy. If your child has brought a T-shirt (or two) home already, please make sure to wear them to the event!

Saturday’s entertainment will also include drawings for many prizes. A pledge of $30 will get your student’s name entered into the raffle for one of these great prizes! (flyer courtesy of the FFF planning team). Pledge money supports all of Allendale’s K-5 classrooms and prevents our students from having to sell candy, wrapping paper, or cookie dough to raise money.

Melissa and Wendy look forward to another terrific event and wish to thank everyone who played a part in this yearly community event.

“We could not have done this without our amazing planning team! I believe we had the best team ever — everyone clicked and rocked their roles by going above and beyond!”

We hope you’ll be able to join us for another exciting Family Fitness Frenzy!

Details again are:

Saturday, March 16

9 am – noon

Allendale High School Gymnasium

FREE!

Categories: Athletics/Fitness, Community News | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

New Options Student Council Excited to Bring Prom Back to Their High School

Allendale Public Schools, New Options High School, Alternative EducationIf ever there was a group of kids determined to make a difference, this is it.

In their first year with a student council, New Options High School has elected members that shine with optimism, that display fierce loyalty to the “underdog”, and a resolve to create a brighter future for themselves and their classmates.

Alaina Reed, Mariah (last name withheld), Kelsey Turner, Jesse Gayle, Alexis Jimenez, Brittany Bos, Trey Tetro, Abigale Hunter, Robb Martin were elected to student council earlier this year. Those running for offices like president and vice president were asked to create a platform and deliver a speech before the entire student body, while the representatives were chosen by their teachers.

Alaina Reed decided to risk an election defeat for the chance to serve her classmates. Why? Because the idea of having a prom was worth it to her and so many others.

“I wanted to make the school more fun and more lively. Everyone deserves a prom. Just because we’re an alternative high school doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have the same experiences that other kids our age get to have.”

Jesse agreed:

“We’re known as the “outcast” school, but we still want to have a great high school career and enjoy the things that traditional high schoolers enjoy.”

Prom is a big deal for this group who has yet to experience the milestone event. They have reserved Lifestream Church on Lake Michigan Drive for the location of their big night and are relying on help from their classmates to select a theme for the dance.

Using new voting technology on Moodle, the representatives will ask their classmates to cast a ballot in favor of one of the following prom themes: Halloween, Old Hollywood, Night in the City, and the Beach. Unlike many high schools, this prom will be open to students of all grades.

Aside from planning prom, student council is making waves and creating smiles by running a school store that sells popular snacks at reasonable prices. The group is also looking forward to finding community service projects that allow them to connect to others and improve their surroundings. New Options has selected “pride” — as in “pride of lions” — as their mascot to show the world that there is strength in a tightly knit “family” of determined students.

Mariah, who is serving as student council vice president, was passionate that one message came through loud and clear:

“I failed one class and I’m here to make my credits up. I chose to be here and it’s been a great choice for me. I want to prove to the community that we can take responsibility and impact the community in a positive way.” 

Congratulations to this group of leaders and brave citizens who live each day intent on making it better than the one before. We applaud you!

Categories: Allendale New Options High School | Tags: , , , , | 45 Comments

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