Exciting Educational Delivery Options for Academic Year 2020/21!

July 28, 2020
Dear North Shore Christian School Families and Friends,
We are excited to announce that NSCS will be providing two Educational Delivery Options this fall!  Please click here to view and learn more about these options as well as other educational supports we have set in place to partner with parents in their child’s educational journey!
NSCS needs your help in spreading the word that we will be providing these options of learning in 2020/21.  As a way to say thank you to our families for referring friends, this year we are offering tuition credits to any family who refers a friend who ends up enrolling and attending for the school year, whether full-time or part-time, On-Campus or At-Home Learning!  You may click here to view the Referral Program form.
Lynn Campus sign

Reopening School Doors

Dear NSCS Families,

I trust that you have all stayed healthy and safe during the first part of summer break. It has on many levels been a different kind of summer with the many restrictions we have had to work around.  If you are anything like me you are feeling like you have had enough COVID-19 focus.  It dominates almost every conversation and dictates almost every decision, and at times there seems to be no end in sight.  It can in deed be wearisome.  

In spite of the Coronavirus, the Senior Administrative Leadership Team (S.A.L.T.) at NSCS, along with our Reopen School Doors Task Force, have been busy preparing for the fall, and the reopening of school, and in doing so, I was reminded of a verse from Isaiah 40:31.  I am certain that it is a familiar verse for many, in fact, I’d bet many of you have it memorized.  It reads, …but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not be faint (New International Version).  According to other Bible translations, the word hope can be interchanged in this verse with the word wait.  Consider the translation from the English Standard Version (ESV).  Ok, so why does it matter if one translation uses the word hope and another uses the word wait?  We can conclude that earlier translations of the Bible used these two words interchangeably or, that these two words were so closely interdependent on one anther that they were viewed as having a connected activity.  In other words – waiting in Isaiah 40:31 wasn’t merely a mindless activity, sort of how you might feel waiting in the Dunkin’ Donut drive-thru lane.  This sort of waiting was a hope-filled waiting, one that was infused by a realistic sense of anticipation that carried an inward sensation that something was pending, and that one needed to begin preparations.

To put Isaiah 40 into historical context, for several decades the Israelites were under Babylonian captivity and rulership.  Life was hard.  The Israelites were restricted in their daily living and were hard pressed on all sides.  Life wasn’t normal, nor did there appear to be an end in sight.  Remind you of anything?  Then one day it is told to the Israelites that their waiting was over and it was now time to get moving…literally!  To put this announcement into perspective, it would be a 700-mile journey from Babylon to Jerusalem…remember there were no cars, and so this walk would be the equivalent to walking from New York City to Atlanta, Georgia, with your kids in toe!   A whole lot of preparations had to happen to make this trip a reality!  

The same is true for NSCS!  We recognize that while we might feel that we are being held captive to the Coronavirus as we wait for restrictions to ease, we also know that a day is coming when restrictions will ease and life will return to near-normal.   As difficult as it may be to imagine that this time is coming, we must begin to prepare for this day, and we must do so with a good measure of hope.  

After careful evaluation of the information we have to date from both the CDC (Center for Disease Control) and DESE (Department of Elementary and Secondary Education) NSCS has made the decision to begin preparations to reopen our school doors to receive students on-campus this September.  This decision was made with a sincere sense of hope and with a level of great anticipation that the same faithful God who led the Israelites out of captivity many, many years ago, will prove faithful to His people today.

Our Reopen School Doors Task Force has been meeting over the summer, with another meeting scheduled for the end of the month.  I could not be more appreciative of our volunteers.  It is an assembly of highly gifted and dedicated individuals who are invested in helping our school’s S.A.L.T. (Senior Administrative Leadership Team) make the most informed decisions that are in the very best interest of our students, families, and teachers, as we seek to reopen our school doors to educate our students on-campus, and in-person during the Academic Year 2020-21.

Our Task Force hopes to have a Town Hall Meeting of sorts later this month, at which time you will have the opportunity to ask questions of our Task Force members, as well as share your concerns or desires for the start of the new school year.  Please be on the lookout for a date of this Zoom Town Meeting.  Additionally, please also be on the lookout for Parent and Student surveys that our Reopen School Doors Task Force has created to better understand and gage our continuants feelings around reopening school in the fall.  Your feedback is hugely important in this process.  

 

Please use the link below to learn more about our reopening of school doors for the Academic Year 2020-21. https://drive.google.com/file/d/13ytFbhA_IOB9zT2f-TcOePn87yYsycSq/view?usp=sharing. This model was communicated with our families on June 8th.  Also included in this attachment is our Hybrid Model, which was also communicated to our families at the same time.  A hybrid model will be considered as a viable option should the CDC and DESE deem it necessary to begin the school year in this manner, or initiate this model at any point during the school year should it be deemed necessary to do so for a variety of COVID-19 related reasons.  

Please take note of the two sections, one entitled, Additional Health & Safety Precautions, and the other one entitled, Additional Information, on the Reopening attachment.  As is the case with all information that we will share throughout the summer, it is subject to change as we receive additional guidance from the State.  We anticipate adding to these two lists of important information as we continue to shape our reopening of school. 

I hope that you will be encouraged as you read through both the Press Release from DESE, https://mailchi.mp/doe.mass.edu/press-release-dese-releases-initial-back-to-school-guidance, and the Near-Normal Model for the fall, as they paint a very realistic, and doable model for safely reopening our school doors in September.  We of course recognize that there are a fair amount of hurdles to jump, and that we as a community, are all at varying degrees of comfort-levels as we live in a world of COVID-19, and so all the more I urge you to send your comments along to me directly, and I will be sure to share them with our Task Force.  I also want to encourage all of us to be patient with one another as we navigate a time in history that has no script.  While we cannot control the fluid nature of this Virus, we can control how we respond and interact with one another, and it is my sincerest desire that we would do so with a measure of grace and understanding, remembering that ultimately we all have one shared goal in mind, and that goal is to educate our students in the safest manner possible.

As always. I cannot express to you enough my deepest gratitude and appreciation for being an amazing community of parents and caregivers.  Your devotion to and care of our learning environment is a source of deep blessing.

With Love and on Behalf of the Reopen School Doors Task Force,

Pam Heintz, Head of School 

Reopen School Doors Task Force Committee Members Renee Southard, Director of Development; Patti Cook, Business ManagerChristine; Saia, Director of Admissions and Community Outreach; Kathy Ely, NSCS Chaplain & Teacher; Jenna Joseph, NSCS Teacher; Nicole and Elias Pearson, Parents; Melissa Reaume, Parent; Chapin Jacob, Parent;  Navid Mahooti, Parent/MD; Sandi Hickey, Parent/RN, MSN, ANP-BC; Chuck Downing, School Counselor 

 

Statement of Solidarity

Dear NSCS Community,

Like many individuals around the country, the past couple of weeks have been filled with significant emotions.  Coronavirus is one thing, but intentional racism and hatred is another.   These sorts of activities conjure up an altogether different emotion.  The events that took place around police activity in Minneapolis that led to the death of George Floyd, and the subsequent protests, riots, and hate crimes since Floyd’s death on May 25th, have been difficult to watch.  How sad our Heavenly Father must be.  He created all men and women as His special image-bearers who are highly valued among all of His creation.  God created each individual unique, and each person possesses specific characteristics, talents, and ideas.  In His infinite creativity, God also has allowed each of us to interact in a world that is filled with diverse people, and like all of His creation, we are to celebrate this fact, embracing it as God’s good and perfect plan for His creation.

Almost 70 years ago NSCS was established by an assembly of diverse persons who envisioned an evangelical Christian school on the North Shore that would open its doors to children of all colors and races, and in doing so the staff would value each child seeing them as perfect and holy representations of God’s creation.

We acknowledge that NSCS has been silent up until this point on  this matter.  We also recognize that silence speaks volumes in a time like today, and for that we apologize – we want our voice heard and we desire to listen, to understand, and to do better as we strive in our participation with others to be instruments of peace.  More than ever before in our school’s history, we have before us an opportunity to demonstrate the original attitude in which our school was established many decades ago.  To remain silent around these sorts injustices will mean to miss the opportunity to demonstrate our outrage, and our desire to see hatred and racism eradicated from our society and vocabulary.  As believers in Christ, the time is now to take a stand and allow Christ’s example to permeate our thinking and doing.  What is Christ’s example?  Christ showed no favoritism.  There is neither Jew or Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:28).

True justice is taking on the mindset of making someone’s problems our own problems and doing something about it.  Racial injustice in our country will never go away on its own.  It will require the involvement and collaboration of all of us working together.  We will need to listen to each other, observe, and learn how inequity is not only wrong, but it is outside of God’s plan for humanity and has limited the ability of many black individuals to rise above the many obstacles that have been laid in their path for centuries.

The North Shore Christian School will not condone racism and blatant injustice, and we, like many others in our county, desire to have our voices heard as we seek to demonstrate our solidarity and support of the black community.  As a participant of a committee of educators from Lynn called, The Lynn Education District Partnership, NSCS has also supported the published statement produced by the LEDP.  You may view this statement by clicking here.

Below is a list of truths from God’s precious Word that bears reminding now, more so than ever before in our country’s history.  These non-negotiables are what have made NSCS distinctive among schools all these years, and they will be the truths that continue to guide us for decades to come.  These truths are available to all our learning community:

– The Bible says in James 1:19 – My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry. Therefore, NSCS commits to listening more to our students, faculty, and community.

– In Luke 15:3-7, Jesus tells us a parable of how we should leave the 99 sheep to find the 1 lost sheep. We should then rejoice when the one lost sheep is found. With this, NSCS commits to loving and supporting those in our community that are struggling due to racial injustice, cultural insensitivity, or other issues.

– NSCS commits to loving each individual as an individual part of our body; our family.

– As stated above, NSCS will not condone racism, prejudice, and injustice in any form.

– NSCS encourages our constituents to participate in being problem-solvers in their respective communities, and as the Lord leads them to do so.

– Finally, in Matthew 22:37-39, Jesus instructs us of two greatest commandments: Jesus replied, Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it, Love your neighbor as yourself. With this NSCS commits to loving God first and loving each other with humility and grace.

Our Administration and Board, along with our school family, thanks you in advance for your support as we seek to leave a footprint in our country that leads down a path of fairness and justice for all people and for future generations.  Please feel free to reach out to one of us at any time with any questions or concerns. We stand together as brothers and sisters in Christ with the NSCS community.

Sincerely,

      Jerome Thomas  Miriam Thomas

On Behalf of the Administrative Team, Board of Directors, and our School Families

Pam Heintz, Head of School and Jerome and Miriam Thomas, Parents of NSCS Students

Pam Heintz – pheintz@nschristian.org

Miriam and Jerome Thomas – miriammarie1979@gmail.com

How is North Shore Christian School Educating Students During This Crisis?

On Friday March 13, 2020 the teachers at North Shore Christian School sent their students home with textbooks in hand, equipping them with the materials needed to be taught remotely for two weeks. Little did they know that our exodus from our school buildings would last much longer than 2 weeks.

Our desire throughout this prolonged closure is to continue to provide our students with the best form of the distinctive NSCS education that we can. We do this by teaching our students, Preschool to grade 8, in creative and effective ways, using a variety of platforms.  

Since Monday, March 16,  NSCS teachers have been conducting live meetings with Zoom Math classindividual students, small groups, entire classes, and combinations of grade levels, primarily using the Zoom platform.  Additionally, teachers are providing instruction using platforms such as SeeSaw, FlipGrid, SrWooly, PhET Colorado & Inq-ITS (KnowAtom), Lexia, ReadWorks, Reading A to Z, Sadlier Connect, and much more!  There are so many options that have become available to us. Each of our teachers have chosen the platform that is most useful in allowing them to continue engaging with students while completing the NSCS curriculum.

NSCS is continuing to educate the whole child by offering academics as well as the arts and physical education. Our specialist teachers are connecting with students by posting videos and enrichment activities in our weekly newsletter. Individual music lessons and play practice take place over Zoom on a weekly basis. In fact, the theatre group is preparing to perform their show, with actors performing in their own homes, by creating a video performance that can be shared with family and friends.

percussion class       

Our primary teachers are involving our students in extracurriculars as well. They are providing fun activities to keep students connected using social media to host middle school socials, movie nights and game gatherings! We also have an opportunity for all of our families to gather and worship together at our All-Campus Chapel, every Friday, over Zoom. This is a first for us at NSCS, as we have never before been able to gather all of our campuses to worship as one.

Zoom Pictionary      Chapel 

Sweetening the pot even more, several teachers from both campuses have visited student homes. Practicing social distancing, teachers have stopped by students’ homes to drop off supplies, deliver Birthday greetings or just to say hello. 

In addition to our teachers remaining involved, our Deans on both campuses have been meeting regularly with one another and with their faculty to support, encourage, and lead them through these weeks of At-Home school. Likewise, our Administration has continued to remain connected over phone calls and Zoom meetings, both schoolwide and on our individual campuses. Board members have been known to make an occasional appearance, as well.  

While this At-Home schooling experience is difficult on families and schools alike, we are confident that the time and effort NSCS teachers and administration have put into its students during this prolonged closure is making a significant difference in our students’ education.

Social Distancing Mobile

NSCS Social Distancing Teacher Visits

In this time of zoom classes and school from home, the teachers at North Shore Christian School have been getting creative by surprising their students with socially distanced visits! Kathy Williams, the 1st and 2nd grade teacher at the Beverly campus, decorated her car, calling it her “Social Distancing Teacher Drive-By Mobile”. She visited all 15 of her students with her daughter Ariana at the wheel. Corrine Previte, a teacher at our Lynn campus, made quite an impression with her 5th graders as she stood outside each house holding signs that read “I miss you” and “You’re a Champ!” (a phrase she uses often with her students).  Jenna Josephson, from our Lynn campus, wanted to wish her 4th grader, Isaiah Balaba, a memorable Happy 10th Birthday, so she organized a car parade with Isaiah’s classmates!

           

The Early Childhood teachers from North Shore Christian School’s Beverly and Hamilton campuses surprised their youngest students as well. Betsay Van Cleef, Kristy Camp, Sharon Kim and Lilly Heintz all made separate visits to their students at home. Mrs. Kim travelled from house to house with her own children and her guitar, encouraging her Pre-K students to sing along. Ms. Heintz visited her preschoolers with her dog Ishmael in the car because the letter of the week is “I”!

   

These teacher trips are no small feat! With each of these teachers stopping in 6 to 7 towns to make sure all of their students receive a personal visit, these drive-bys are well worth the effort as they bring on big smiles, lots of laughter, singing voices, barking dogs, cheers and even tears. These visits brought true joy during this time of isolation!

   

MARCH 23, 2020 COVID-19 LETTER FROM HOS

Dear NSCS Families,

As many of you already know Governor Baker has issued a stay-at-home advisory to begin Tuesday, March 24th until Tuesday, April 7th, and as the Coronavirus continues to make its presence among us known in new and more significant ways, we will continue to trust God with all things. Trusting God doesn’t mean we ignore what is happening around us, but it does mean that we deliberately choose to put our hope in a living God whose promises are amen and amen in Christ Jesus.

As NSCS looks at current trending in our nation, it is realistic to say that it is highly unlikely that we will be resuming school on April 8th as previously stated. I will communicate in greater detail any further prolonged school closures as soon as a concrete decision has been made. Additionally, our Deans will also clearly communicate to our parents what the implications of a further prolonged school closure will entail in way of at-home school. We recognize the challenge that at-home schooling may cause for some of our families, especially those parents/guardians who are also trying to balance working remotely from home, as well as overseeing their child/ren’s school work. I want to reiterate again that all of our teachers are here to support you and your particular needs to the very best of their ability. Please keep the lines of communication open between you and your child/ren’s teachers – we are all on the same team!

Please continue to send pictures and videos of your children so that we can post them in the newsletters and on our Facebook. Seeing the children’s faces in the newsletters has brought me such joy! While we are apart physically, you and your children are never far from my thoughts.

To the right is a picture from this morning. I had the pleasure of sitting in our Lynn Campus’s Teachers Meeting via Zoom. As is the case for each meeting, our teachers end their time in prayer. We prayed for the school, one another, our communities, our country, and the world. We prayed that God would use all things, including the Coronavirus, for His glory!

Continue to trust God, be good to each other – love big, forgive often, and encourage always.

Love,
Pam Heintz, Head of School

March 20, 2020 COVID-19 LETTER FROM HOS

Dear NSCS Parents,

We have made it through Week #1 of At-Home School. It is hard to believe that just one week ago we were at school, and life for the most part seemed normal. My how life has changed, and continues to change. It seems that changes are happening by the minute!

I have to admit that this morning I woke up feeling a bit…sad. I hate to admit that, because I am by nature a very upbeat, positive, and high-energy individual. But I am also human, and you know what? You are all human too! Because we are human, our minds may respond to this pandemic in unanticipated ways, maybe even ways that go against our usual natures and personalities. That’s OK. We need to all give ourselves that license to be sad, mad, depressed, confused, and even scared. These emotions are normal and human emotions, and we cannot stuff them deep down and act as though they do not exist. If we do, we may create even greater problems. We need to allow ourselves the freedom to feel.

Like I said I am a high-energy person. I thrive on collaboration and human interaction. Sitting still and being home is hard for personality types like me! But this morning I felt like God was asking me to just sit, and wait, and rest. So, I got my coffee, and asked Alexa to play some praise and worship music, and I just sat. As I did my soul became renewed and encouraged. I began to commune with God and I asked him to replace my fear and anxiety with hope and peace. I asked Him to take the cloud of sadness that seems to be lingering overhead, and toss it far away from me. I asked God to fill me with himself. Soon, tears of joy filled my eyes and my spirit was lifted in spite of what is still happening around me. At one point, there was a bird outside my kitchen window who seemed to be singing along with the worship music. This bird was a loud! I wondered if this bird was worshiping God too!

This little bird, so unaware of the pandemic and all the implications it carries, was just doing what it was designed to do. This got me thinking; we as God’s precious creation have been designed to trust him and to praise him. I read Psalm 148 and was reminded of the reality in which we are called to live as God’s people. His entire creation, which includes birds and people, has been called to praise him! If you have the time to check this chapter out. You will be encouraged! In spite of this pandemic, we are still called to praise and worship God, and as we do we will rise high above this current situation as we are filled with peace and hope.

Please know that our students and families are being prayed for daily. In yesterday’s Beverly Campus Teachers Meeting on Zoom we spent some time praying for one another and our school. One of our Board Members, Sharon Carlson, was in our meeting. Our Board is thinking about you all too!

With Every Blessing,

Pam Heintz, Head of School

Praise the Lord from the earth, you great sea creatures and all ocean depths, lightning and hail, snow and clouds, stormy winds that do his bidding, you mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars, wild animals and all cattle, small creatures and flying birds, kings of the earth and all nations, you princes and all rulers on earth, young men and women, old men and children.

Psalm 148:7-12

With Love,

Pam Heintz, Head of School

MARCH 18, 2020 COVID-19 LETTER FROM HOS

Dear NSCS Families,

We are halfway through our first week of at-home learning. This week has been met with many adjustments as we all figure out how to “do school” and settle into a new normal. 

During these unusual weeks, and especially while we are apart, it is important that we all remember we are on the same team, and desiring the same outcomes. Among those outcomes is that our students will continue their learning, albeit in a different setting. We do recognize that for some parents/guardians this has required more hands-on participation. We appreciate your partnership in this area. The goal for all of us, NSCS school faculty & staff, and parents/guardians & students is that we all remain flexible and forgiving with one another as we continue to navigate the situation and make preparations and plans accordingly. It is my hope that God will be glorified in the process, and by the ways in which we have all supported and responded to one another in love and with patience.

As our Board and Administrative Team continue to watch the trending of schools and other public institutions we will provide our families with updates regarding any additional prolonged school closure that may be warranted. The decision has been made, however, to forgo our scheduled Spring Break (week of April 20th) and school will be in session that week, barring the Governor permits such gatherings. We fully recognize that this may interrupt some plans that families may have already set in place, and so we will offer excused absences on these cases. This week should not be viewed as “optional”, but we do want to be mindful that some families may have plans that cannot be altered.

As we continue to make decisions that are in the very best interest of our students and families, we ask for your patience and understanding. Tremendous care and consideration has been put into each and every decision that has been made thus far. As always, we will continue to closely monitor updates from our local, state and federal officials as we seek to remain in full compliance with guidelines and advisories and will most certainly keep you updated with new information as it becomes available and affects NSCS.

Today I was speaking with a teacher, and during our conversation we both agreed that more than ever before our school needs to pull together in new and exciting ways as we seek to uplift, encourage, and mutually bless one another. It is my prayer that God would be glorified as we interact with one another in gracious and supportive ways, recognizing that together we are writing the script in live time, as to how to best respond to COVID-19.

It will be in our responding to this pandemic, and how we interact with others, that God will be most glorified. May we remain a school community that loves big, forgives often, and encourages always.

With Love,

Pam Heintz, Head of School

March 16, 2020 COVID-19 Update

The North Shore Christian School made the decision on Friday, March 13, 2020 to move to a home-based learning model until Tuesday, March 31 on our three campuses (Lynn, Beverly, and Hamilton).  However, in response to Governor Baker’s mandate on Sunday, NSCS will be closed for on-site learning until April 7th as we support initiatives to flatten the curve of the pandemic.

We hope that during this unprecedented time in history, God will allow his people to be used to bring a sense of hope and peace to those that we come in contact with.  This is a tremendous opportunity for God’s people to rally together for the common good as we seek out intentional ways to uplift and encourage one another.  It is the sincerest prayer of NSCS that God would ultimately be glorified as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

May our song be like that of the Author of Psalm 91, as we trust God to be our source of refuge during this pandemic, and as we trust Him with all things.

“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.[
a]
I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.’”

 Psalm 91:1 & 2

March 12, 2020 COVID-19 Letter from HOS

Dear NSCS Families,

I want to keep you all apprised of recent decisions and considerations that have been made by the Board and Administration.  Please keep in mind that the COVID-19 pandemic is dynamic, and things can change hour-to-hour, so please check your email frequently for updates.

As of Thursday evening, March 12th, all three of our campuses will remain open tomorrow, March 13th.  Tomorrow the administration, along with Board approval, will make a decision as to future school closings, and we will inform families either by Friday night or Saturday morning of our decision via email.

With that said, teachers will be sending school-work home tomorrow with students in grades K through 8.  This work will be enough for about two-weeks.  NO DECSION has been made yet about a school closure, however, should one be made over the weekend we want to be prepared.  Additionally, any parent/guardian who desires to keep their child/ren home from school tomorrow, or at any time during the pandemic, may do so without having the absence recorded on their child/ren’s school records.  All absences will be considered excused.

As always, please never hesitate to reach out to me at pheintz@nschristian.org with any questions or concerns you might have.  We are all committed to working through this together as we mutually support each other’s efforts.  This is a difficult time for all of us we navigate a situation that has no script.  However, we move forward trusting that God is in control.

Below is a letter that I had written to all our families this morning, with the intention of emailing it out by noon today, but my day ended up holding many distractions and conversations around this pandemic.  I have decided to send it out anyhow hoping that it will prove to be a source of encouragement to you.

With Blessings,

Pam Heintz, Head of School

——————————————————————–

Letter to Families- March 12, 2020

Dear Families,

I was driving to school today and feeling a bit scared.  There, I’ve admitted it.  I was feeling scared, insecure and uncertain.  I was tired of turning on the radio or TV and hearing about the Corona Virus and its far-reaching effects, its unknowns, and the chaos it seems to evoke.  I was feeling like the whole world had gone mad!

As is my routine to pray during my commute to work, I said a quick token prayer out of obligation.  I asked God to bless and protect my family, our school, and the country, and then I said, amen.  Following this prayer, I immediately turned the radio on to hear the news, and learn about what might have changed in the past three minutes since I last tuned in.   As I listened my mind traveled to all the what-ifs.  Letting one’s mind travel to the what-ifs is always a dangerous place to go.

I arrived to our Beverly Campus and Chapel soon started. I really wasn’t up for Chapel today.  Please don’t judge meJ  It was simply that my head was filled with other thoughts and distractions.  I was self-focused thinking about how I needed to manage things at school and at home in the midst of a pandemic.  As I walked into Chapel my spirit immediately soared. Our Student Worship Team was already singing, and what a melodious sound it was!  I took my place and stood in a pew with some older students, and was swept up in the moment of being present before the Lord.  As I looked around the room, I saw students worshipping a mighty God.  I witness children unabashedly singing out in confidence to their Savior.  Teary-eyed I asked God to forgive me for being so fearful and to fill me with His peace which passes all understanding.  I asked God to take my feet and plant them securely upon the rock, that is His Son Jesus.  I asked God to allow me to be a witness to those around, and especially during this time.

As I left Chapel, I felt uplifted and ready to face life’s challenges.  I soon stepped into a meeting with Christine Saia, our Director of Admissions.  We made small talk, which included a brief conversation about the Corona Virus, as every conversation these past several days has.  Mrs. Saia shared with me that while she was praying with her own children this morning, who had questions and concerns about the pandemic, the Holy Spirit spoke to her heart.   Mrs. Saia was able to share the most insightful and wonderful message with her children. She explained to them that the word corona is a Latin word meaning crown.  Mrs. Saia proceeded to tell her children that only our God wears a crown worthy enough for the King of kings.   She expressed that only our King has control over all things.

It is our crown-wearing King that holds all the whole world in the palm his hands, including the Corona Virus.  God knows all things and there is not one tiny microscopic germ that he does not have full authority over.  We can trust God with this pandemic and with all things.  He is a Faithful God.

I want to encourage you to remain calm and hopeful as we trust God to help us ride out this storm.  We have a tremendous opportunity to respond differently than the world.  We can respond with peace, and offer reassuring words to those around us, particularly to our children and students.

I was reminded today, that our students, even the younger ones, sense that something is amiss.  They are feeling the strain of what is going on right now in our world, and unlike adults, they have not fully grown into the capacity to layer what they hear with reason and logic.  As the adults in their lives we must be the voice of reason.  Some healthy behaviors that we can adopt at home, and around our children would be to limit the amount of news that children have access to.  While it is good for them to be aware of what is going on in the world, the content of information needs to be age-appropriate and monitored.  It is also good to connect regularly with your child/ren and asking them if they have specific concerns about the Corona Virus.  Consider making a family contingency plan in case there is a prolonged school closure, and reassure your child/ren that if you still have to go to work that they will be well-cared for by someone else during the day.  Remind your child/ren that they are safe at home and at school, because the adults at these places are doing all they can to make sure these environments are kept clean and safe.  Be sure that your child/ren receive plenty of sleep and maintain a healthy diet – these are good practices for healthy living!  Above all, spend time with your child/ren doing “normal” everyday things like, baking cookies, playing games, doing chores around the house, or reading a good book together.  Life must go on in spite of this pandemic and our children need to see the adults around them still engaging in every day affairs.

I have attached the lyrics to a song that our Student Worship Team sang today, and I encourage you to listen to it when you have the opportunity.  It is a powerful reminder that there is victory in Jesus!

With Love,

Pam Heintz, Head of School

See a Victory, Elevation Music

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YNd-PbVhnvA

The weapon may be formed, but it won’t prosper
When the darkness falls, it won’t prevail
‘Cause the God I serve knows only how to triumph
My God will never fail
Oh, my God will never fail

I’m gonna see a victory
I’m gonna see a victory
For the battle belongs to You, Lord
I’m gonna see a victory
I’m gonna see a victory
For the battle belongs to You, Lord (oh yeah)

There’s power in the mighty name of Jesus
Every war He wages He will win
I’m not backing down from any giant
‘Cause I know how this story ends
Yes, I know how this story ends

I’m gonna see a victory
I’m gonna see a victory
For the battle belongs to You, Lord
I’m gonna see a victory
I’m gonna see a victory
For the battle belongs to You, Lord
I’m gonna see a victory
I’m gonna see a victory
For the battle…