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Northwest Christian School
Dear NCS family,

This is this year--the 'nothing if not eventful' year of 2020/2021--that we are celebrating the school's fortieth anniversary.  As we reflect on God's faithful provision over four decades, I would like to take a small detour that might help to illuminate the means by which God's provision has come to fruition.  Just a small detour though:  to Barcelona, Spain.

As impressive as forty years is, music aficionados will recognize that 2020 is also a year in which we can celebrate another anniversary:  the 300th anniversary of the recovery of Bach's Six Cello Suites.  Widely recognized today as one of the most prolific composers in all of classical music, when he passed, he was not recognized for composition.  Johann Sebastian Bach was known as a God-fearing man, a competent musician, and a strong musical teacher.  It wasn't until nearly one hundred years after his death, when another composer, Felix Mendelssohn, resurrected Bach's St. Matthew's Passion and enthralled his audiences with the epic reach of that beautifully religious work, that praise for Bach's compositional prowess began.  The Bach Revival was underway and all things Bach captivated audiences for the decades which would follow.

What may constitute Bach's arguably strongest work of composition repined silently within a musical thrift shop in Barcelona, Spain until an aspirational cellist, 13-year-old Pablo Casals, stumbled upon the work, purchased it, and practiced it privately for nearly two decades before playing it publicly for the first time.  At that point, the genie was out of the bottle and this timeless work has been performed time and time again.

Fast forward to August 1, 2018, when famed cellist Yo-Yo Ma sat solo upon the stage in front of a sold-out crowd at Colorado's renowned Red Rocks Amphitheater.  Nine thousand concert attendees watched as Yo-Yo Ma, unaccompanied, played for two-and-a-half hours, through all six cello suites by memory.  And, given my appreciation for the work, I was there too...via online radio, I listened live as the work was played, start to finish.  At the end of this virtual recital, I'll never forget how Yo-Yo Ma's rendering of the Six Cello Suites left me feeling.  Unimpressed.

Now, if you know Mr. Ma, please do not forward this particular edition of the Spotlight to him.  It's nothing personal.  But, I've listened to dozens of versions of these suites and I have come to realize something.  Even though it's the same sheet music, with the same notes in the same order, with the same time signatures, everything is the same, there is something different.  How does that work?  The same?  But different?  I do not know.  But, I know that if I listen to certain versions of these suites and compare them to others, even though they are the same, they are different.  Somehow.

Recently, I have had dozens of conversations with parents that have suffered with their students through the spring school closure of 2020 and have had to occasionally quarantine this fall.  Within these discussions, we all recognize something:  the material that they try to present to their own students while at home, somehow, it's just different.  That very same material, in the hands of a master teacher, comes alive, leaping off the page, and quickening the understanding of the students.  I cannot explain it and with the sincerest of gratitude, publicly articulated to our amazing Crusader teachers here within this newsletter, I am glad that I do not have to explain it.  Teachers, somehow, you take the same lessons, the same simple arithmetic rules, grammar guidelines, dates in history, and you make them come alive for our students.

I join my thanks to the hundreds of families and students that you serve and say, "Thank you".  Thank you for enduring a difficult spring, summer, and fall and working so hard to make learning come alive for our students.

(P.S. Mr. Ma, seriously, no offense intended. You're good. Really, really good!  Keep practicing!)

Grateful for the opportunity to serve this school and your family,
Geoff Brown
Northwest Christian School
(623)225-5573 (cell)
The Crusader Classic Football Game:  Friday, October 30th

Our own Classic Crusaders: you will notice familiar faces such as: Debbie Noland, Debbie Franz, Diane Collicott, Garry Kaiser, Colleen Pftizinger, David Inness, D Inness, Mark Young, Ellen Millard, Cheryl Mitchell, Sandy Fraser, Deb Waymire, Mary Hall, Kathy Gonzales, Daryl Slaviero, Pam Tarbutton, Jim James, Dawna Underwood, and Diane Shulda!

As we look forward to the Crusader Classic football game on Friday, October 30th against Peoria High School,  please join us before the football game for the Crusader Classic Car Show! For anyone who refers someone with a classic car and they participate in the show, you will receive a $25 QT gift card! The owner of the car who participates will also receive a $25 QT gift card! Make sure to sign up here!

For more information on the fall athletic season and how to get tickets to home events, please click here.

Record-breaking Generosity within the Arizona State Tuition Tax Credit Scholarship Program makes NCS more Affordable than Ever

You can use the information here to make Christian education more affordable for your students starting today

Arizona's Low-Income Corporate Income Tax Credit Scholarship Program passed into law in 2006 and it launched in the same year. This tax-credit scholarship program allows corporate taxpayers to receive tax credits for their donations to nonprofit organizations that provide school scholarships to K-12 students from low-income families. Many families are familiar with the Individual State Tuition Tax Credit Scholarship Program but less may know about this potent opportunity.   What makes this scholarship program exciting is that 60% of Arizona-based families with school-aged children are eligible. Annually, the program awards an average of nearly $2,500 per student to nearly 25,000 recipients within over 250 schools.

What makes this information even more compelling is that Northwest Christian School recently received its single largest corporate tax credit designation from an anonymous Arizona corporation through School Choice Arizona (  Although most corporate tax credit scholarship opportunities apply to K-12 students, this recent, record donation applies just to high school.  In order to be considered, an application, through School Choice Arizona, needs to be completed by December 1st, 2020. To apply, click here now.  (Elementary and middle school families, keep reading!  There's good news for you too!)

All students who receive scholarships under the corporate tax credit scholarship program must come from families whose household incomes are equal to or below 185% of the federal-free-and-reduced-price lunch program guidelines. For example, the gross income limit for a family of four is $89,670, or refer to the far right hand column of the chart available at this link.  Additionally, students must either be (1) enrolled in private school kindergarten, (2) enrolled in a private preschoolprogram for students with disabilities, (3) a public school enrollee for at least 90 days in the previous year or one full semester of the current school year, (4) a dependent of an active-duty member of the military stationed in Arizona or (5) a prior scholarship recipient under this program or the individual tax-credit scholarship
program.  It is very likely that most NCS families are eligible and once they qualify and are awarded these scholarship funds for the first time, the student remains perpetually eligible through graduation.

Participating within a state tuition tax credit scholarship program has been an amazing resource within the scope of the ministry of Northwest Christian School:  between 1998 and 2019, Crusaders families have received $37.8 million in support.  In 2019 alone, 1,420 scholarship awards were offered to Northwest Christian School students, more than any other school in the state.  In addition, 566 corporate tax credit scholarships went to low-income-qualifying Crusaders.  This amount meant $1,062,541 in awards.  Across the school, the average award was just over $1,600 dollars with many students qualifying for multiple awards.  To learn more about about getting involved in this program, please visit the Arizona Tuition Organization and view the video below.

Spotlight on Students

On September 25th, the last Friday night before we flipped the switch on for Friday night lights, one-hundred-and-fifty high schoolers turned out for an on-the-field, under-the-stars showing of "Remember the Titans".  The event was sponsored by the NCS chapter of Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

Spotlight on Students

On Thursday, October 8th, the high school's Adventure Cru club took advantage of the half-day and hit the lake.  The group did H2-WHOA, the world's tallest, free-standing, floating water slide.

For more info on secondary clubs like Adventure Cru, click here!

Spotlight on Forty Year's of God's Faithful Provision

We are thrilled to announce that between sponsorships, the raffles, donations, and the silent auction we raised a total of $41,225!

Thank you NCS families and friends for showing such amazing support. We couldn't do it without you! See you in person, April 17 with Bob Goff!
Spotlight on Students

Following the first home football game on Friday, October 2nd, the high school's Adventure Cru club sponsored the 2nd Annual Fifth Quarter Camp Out.  Forty-five students set up camping gear on the field and enjoyed campfires, praise and worship, games, and way, way too much junk food.  The next two Adventure Cru activities have just been announced...sign up quick!
Spotlight on Students

Crusader Nation, if you did not get tickets to any of the sold-out home games, you can still stream the games via the NCS Social Media Youtube channel.  Above, check out the Crusader JV football victory over Greenway High School JV on Wednesday, October 7th.  Still looking for tickets to home games not yet sold out? 

Crusaders Looking Forward to Fall 2020, Full of Fun and Tradition

As we work to dodge the Covid bullet, events may look a bit different but the school remains on a course for fun and is charging ahead

After a Covid-19 campus closure mandated in March 2020 for schools across the state, the road back to "normal" has been a bit tenuous.  Spring 2020 saw cancellations run rampant across the school calendar and, inevitably, Crusaders may be a bit gun shy as they look forward to the traditions that have historically marked the ramp up of a school year:  Friday night football games under the lights, Homecoming, band concerts, the fall film, and much more.  "Our faculty and families have been both prudent and patient," says Superintendent Geoff Brown.  "They have modeled the prudence and caution necessary to keep our calendar and kids safe and on course.  I really cannot overstate how much I appreciate that!  And, they have been patient as we have worked to set this school year's events calendar on a course that both meets the safety objectives we are obliged to meet while also preserving the Crusader traditions we know and love."

Looking forward to the balance of the 2020/2021 school year, there is much to which we can look forward:

High School athletic events.  Of necessity, in accordance with guidance mandated for participating schools by the Arizona Interscholastic Association, families and fans should expect for reduced event capacity as well as the implementation of a number of safety protocols.  AIA scheduling has also been adjusted but, while subject to change based on decisions made by opposing schools, game schedules have been released for football, volleyball, and cross country.  Because guidance stipulates that the school needs to limit the capacity available to spectators both in the Don Sanderson Gymnasium and within the football stadium, Northwest Christian is using a ticketing system to control the number of individuals on campus for games.  You can get your tickets to home games here!

Middle School athletic events.  Although the Campus Readiness Plan's guidance will be in play for home games, there will be no restrictions on attendance for middle school football, soccer, and volleyball games.  The schedules for the seasons can be found here:  football, soccer, and volleyball.

Homecoming game.  Historically, the annual Homecoming game has been a real highlight of the fall season:  epic football, carnival rides, fair-like concessions, midway games, fireworks, and a few traditional surprises.  This year's event, scheduled for Friday, October 30 and which has been dubbed the "Crusader Classic" to avoid confusion, will be scaled back quite a bit.  And, the traditional Homecoming trappings (the rides, the midway, etc.) will be moved to "Hoopcoming" which is slated for January 15, 2021--a date that will likely enable greater event attendance capacity on the campus.  However, those that do get tickets to the game will enjoy the half-time crowning of the Homecoming royalty.

Homecoming dance.  The Homecoming dance will also look a bit different in that High School Student Council will be taking over the field right after the Crusader Classic football game and hosting a Fall Festival for high school students.  The festival will feature line dancing, games, and some great concessions.  But, students need not worry about the opportunity to enjoy traditional high school dances.  The Winter Formal remains on course for Friday, December 4, 2020 in a local outdoor venue, Sadie Hawkins is scheduled for Saturday, February 27, 2021, and Spring 2021's Prom will be back with a vengeance on April 10, 2021.

Crusader's Got Talent, Season 2.  June 1, 2020 saw the launch of what may very well become a new Crusader tradition as over 5,000 views hit Facebook Live to watch "Crusader's Got Talent".  Riffing off the reality TV show of a similar name, the event allowed secondary students to send it talent submissions in many different categories.  The top talents were showcased during the show and then voted on through text messaging with finalists earning real cash prizes.  November 23, 2020 will see the return of CGT with season 2.  This time the event will also serve as a virtual replacement for the traditional Grandparents Days as talent submissions will come in from Crusaders of all ages:  elementary, middle school, and high school.  Get more info here.

Choir Coffeehouses.  The traditional "Choir Coffeehouse", introduced by high school choral director Mrs. Melissa McGuire, is already Covid-proof.  With middle school choir performing on October 27th and high school choir performing on October 29th, these coffeehouse take place outside and on campus.  The outdoor venue, obviously themed to induce a coffeehouse vibe, is perfectly prepped to allow families and friends to enjoy some phenomenal group, duo, and solo choral performances.

NXNW Film Festival and the 2020 Student Film, "Do-Gooders".  Have you seen any of the fall student films from Northwest Christian?  You have to see these!  Check out our last film, Scapegoat, here!  Now in its seventh year, the NXNW High School Film Festival solicits digital short film submissions from aspiring high school film-makers across the state.  Past participants have featured film-makers from as far away as Tucson and Southern California as the student's films are shown on the big screen at the AMC Deer Valley Theaters and the audience votes live via text messages.  The cornerstone of the evening has been the annual student film, a production partnership between Cabin Fever Films and Northwest Christian School.  This year's film, called "Do-Gooders", follows the misadventures of teen compatriots who discover that one of their own possesses super-powers.  The film festival and student film premiere are going to take place on January 8, 2021.

Hoopcoming 2021.  Hoopcoming has always been Homecoming's little brother...but not this year!  Hoopcoming is all grown up in 2021 as all of the festivities traditionally reserved for Homecoming are moved to January 15, 2021.  The event is a bit of a misnomer in that the school's athletic department is presently working to land a full-day of both basketball and soccer games on the campus.
Spotlight on College

Spotlight on Students

The middle school's Exploding Kittens tournament came to a conclusion this week with Carter C. winning at this hilariously rude card game.
Spotlight on Parent University

On Tuesday, October 6th, Northwest Christian's sold-out Parent University session featured Cathi Herrod from the Center for Arizona Policy.  The event was also live-streamed--you can view the video here!

Spotlight on Chapel

Chapels look a bit different in the first part of the 2020/2021 school year as we accommodate Covid mitigation.  Themed as "Kingdom Culture Conversations", each week we feature a conversation with a recognized leader/expert in an area of "Kingdom Culture"--the approach to hot topics within this season of cultural upheaval--through the lens of Biblical worldview.  This past week, we featured a conversation with Mark Burmich, a Northwest Christian alumni and president of the Choices Pregnancy Centers.
Spotlight on Students

The Middle School Chess Club wrapped up its first tournament in a five-tournament chess tourney series unfolding this fall.  Congrats to Luke M. for claiming the top spot in this first tournament.  Each of the five tournaments will focus on a different style of chess play--with the individual accumulating the most points throughout the fall winning the new Sony Playstation 5 in December.
October 9, 2020
Vol. 11, Issue 3
Isaiah 46:4

"Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you."
Fellowship and Food!
Partnership with Ottawa University
means huge college savings!

Generous Supporters of Northwest Christian


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Grand Canyon University

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State Tuition Tax Credit Opportunity
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