Issue: #17 February 2017
In This Issue
Quick Links
Annual Fund
This year, TRCS will be working to raise more than $70,000 towards our annual fund that helps with program costs, financial aid and technology.  

Your giving makes a huge difference in this community!   Click here to give online.

Gold Sponsors

Silver Sponsors

Bronze Sponsors

Jog-a-Thon is coming! 

Sponsor sheets and event details went home with children on  Wednesday, April 12th. (Look for the bright orange (K - 7th) and brig ht green (Pre-K) papers for details.) You can help by aiding your children in getting sponsors and having money and pledge forms retur ne d to the school on April 17th, May 2nd, May 16th, or the final turn-in on May 26th. Prizes will be  awarded for highest sponsor doll ars raised and highest number of laps per grade groups. And for every $5 your K - 7th child turns in, they'll receive an Eagle Buck to spend at our Jog-a-Thon store! We'll need volunteers too! You can sign up in the elementary office! We're excited for an amazing event!

 A Few Dates to Remember:
April 11 - 13: Eagles Got Talent: Auditions after school in the elementary 
April 17 - 21: Testing
April 24 - 28: Teacher Appreciation Week
May 10: Invite a Friend Day
May 19: Jog-A-Thon
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Administrator's Message
A New Vision

 The title of my article this month makes me think of the subtitle of a new Star Wars movie - but it kind of fits, because there's been a lot of creative, forward-thinking stuff happening on the TRCS campuses. I'm going to be sending a letter home announcing some changes and new hires for next year very soon, but in the meantime, I'd like to talk about the new vision statement we're adopting.

You've seen our Mission Statement all over campus: "To prepare students through Bible-based education to impact the world for Christ." Between that and our core values of being "Academically Excellent, Culturally Relevant, and Joyfully Christian," we have a solid foundation to make decisions and decide on what programs are services make sense for us. The desire to "impact the world for Christ" is what has made us increase our missions-related programs. The need to equip our students with a sense of "cultural relevance" is why we are creatively incorporating technology throughout curriculum. We've pushed hard to show the "academically excellent" quality of programs, achieving dual accreditation through both ACSI and AdvancEd.

But what's next?

Our old vision statement spoke a lot about what we already provide to the community, instead of being a statement that aspires to the organization we're becoming. 

After discussion, here's the school board's vision for the near future of TRCS: 

"In alignment with Jesus Christ, TRCS seeks to become the school of choice for families in the Three Rivers region."

It's much shorter than the last one, and greatly simplified - but it speaks to the heart of this 
organization. Our goal is the be the number one place in our area that people want to entrust the  education of their children. To that end, we want to be creative, innovative, secure, relational, and  joyful in everything we do.

Our recently completed family satisfaction surveys point to the fact that we're moving in the right direction. Here are a few things we heard from you:

"I love TRCS so much. I feel it is a place where the kids are allowed to be who God intended them to be without a lot of peer pressure and staff that truly cares for the kids. Knowing that teachers are praying for their students is priceless. The friendships my daughter has made here at TRCS are other kids with strong Christian values. As a parent, that is so important to us."

"I love, love, love TRCS. My husband, child and myself have all had a great experience with the teachers and staff. My kindergartener has learned so much this year and comes home each week having learned something new and exciting. I love that he is taught about God at school, Spanish and sign language in his class. I love the type of discipline he is taught by his teacher as well, and that he is learning the type of behavior and attitude that we, not just as adults should learn but also Christians. Thank you to all of the staff at TRCS for making us feel so welcome and creating a wonderful environment."

Of course, we know there's always room for improvement, and we're continuing to strategically look at all of our programs and services to keep them in alignment with our mission - but rest assured, our vision is to be the "school of choice" for you.
A Message From The 
Early Learning Center
Exciting News for Our Parents and Families

James Murphy
ELC Director
I am proud to announce that the  Early Learning Center has  reached Level II  in Early Achievers!  We are now in the process of getting our program ready to be rated by Early Achievers data  collectors from the University of
Washington. Early Achievers is the State of Washington's child  care quality rating system. It is a researched-based program that is leading the way
for  providers like ours to be among the best. By participating in Early Achievers, we can continue to  provide care to children whose families receive Working Connections Child Care subsidies.

As we prepare for rating, you will notice some changes. Staff has already been attending  trainings which we've started incorporating throughout the facility. You will begin to notice  some visible changes in the classroom environment all designed to improve learning. We will  have an Early Achievers specialist onsite more often to help us prepare for our rating. The goal  of all the changes is to improve the overall quality of care we provide.

Sometime in the next 12-15 months, the Early Learning Center will be rated on our quality. The  result will be an Early Achievers quality rating of between levels 2 and 5. A rating of 3 or higher  is considered to be high quality.

After our rating, we may be eligible for further financial incentives that we will re-invest in our  program. Also, we will continue to work with our Early Achievers coach in order to keep on  making improvements.

Thank you for trusting us with the care of your child.

James Murphy
Director Early Learning Center
Principal's Message
Elementary School Update
Jeanne Nortness
Elem. Principal

Our elementary students definitely knew something was different about the week.  Tom Stiltz led us in special mini-chapels last week during Passion Week (Holy Week).  We met each morning to sing "That Sweet, Sweet Song of Salvation" and reflect on the amazing love and work of our Savior, Jesus.  The special week ended with a school-wide celebration during the last hour of the day as our seventh grade students led different parts of the Seder Service.  Thank you seventh graders, Bug Baker, Kyler Davis, Alex Hammond, Christopher Hastings, Noah Kloppman, Mabrie Richards, Cole Shipman, Braden Wallace, and David Woodman for leading your part of the Seder.

Sixth and seventh graders also participated in the community-wide Good Friday Service at Longview Community Church.  I love the fact we're able to learn about the Seder and Passion Week in a "hands-on" way.  What a wonderful school this is!

Standardized testing using the TerraNova test begins with practice tests today.  The TerraNova is a nationally-recognized, norm-referenced test that evaluates reading; word analysis; vocabulary; language usage, mechanics, and spelling; mathematics computation, problem solving, and concepts; science; and social studies.  This test takes five mornings over the next two weeks and helps us evaluate our curriculum and see student growth.  In our desire for academic excellence, an assessment of this type is imperative.  Scheduled test mornings are April 18, 19, 20, 25, and 26.  We hope to have results back before the end of the year.  

Mrs. Norton, our beloved librarian, has to leave the day-to-day teaching due to some health issues.  If you've seen the library this year, you know she has transformed it into a delightful place.  She also started a couple book clubs for our oldest readers.  We understand her need to be in a place where she can enjoy better health, but we will certainly miss her.  God was working, though.  Just at the right time a volunteer stepped up to take Mrs. Norton's classes through the end of the year.  Ann Gerick, an educator with library experience, loves books, reading and connecting the right book with the right student.  Mrs. Gerick will shadow Mrs. Norton this week and then take her classes beginning next week.

Jeanne Nortness
Principal's Message
High School Update
Brice Richards
HS Principal

Spring is such an exciting and busy time of year. The students have arrived back to campus fresh off of Missions Week and Spring Break.

Our missions teams had successful experiences and the students really represented themselves at all locations as hard workers. The local missions team was able to prepare 8 local parks for the summer. The grounds were cleaned and fresh play chips spread to provide a beautiful, clean, and safe environment for area children to play. 

The New Orleans team was able to help minister to the homeless by working with a food bank. They also participated in some great educational opportunities by going to a World War II museum, taking a swamp tour, and sampling local cuisine.

The Ecuador team demonstrated the quality character of the TRCS students. We were able to go above and beyond the work that our host had planned. We helped multiple churches with projects, a camp Young Life uses for retreats, landscaping at a local elementary, and our mission money also helped fund completion of a floor at the local Young Life house. This floor will be used as a future rental to provide a sustainable source of  income to run their local youth ministry.

Another big change at the high school occurred over the break. We have removed walls between two sets of classrooms on the west side of the building. We changed four small classrooms into two large classrooms. This will provide a much better space for learning, and allow for more collaborative activities.

Terra Nova testing will be the week of April 24th through April 28th. Please make sure that your student eats a good breakfast on testing days!

On the sports front, tennis is having its annual challenges with weather but the girls are doing great. We have also started golf, and have 11 high school students currently participating.

God Bless!
Brice Richards
Athletic Director's Message

tim carns
Often in life it's easy to simply "settle". It's easier to settle for fast food over a home cooked meal. It's easier to watch TV and not exercise. It's easier to get the "B" instead of doing the extra for the "A". It's easier to not give your all and settle for second place. C.S. Lewis said " humans are not guilty of seeking pleasure so much as they are guilty of settling to soon." I want to encourage you to do your best, be your best, and expect the best! We serve a God who always has our best if we are willing to wait and trust Him. Ephesians  3:20  " Now unto Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto Him be the glory..." Be patient. Take your time. Don't settle. He will exceed your expectation if you wait for His timing.

Tim Carns
Do You Goodsearch?
This is EFFORTLESS Fundraising!
If you're not already doing it, take a minute to change your internet search window to default to , and select Three Rivers Christian School as your charity of choice.  Did you know this simple act brings in hundreds of dollars to TRCS every year?