8/3/18 Rose Park Newsletter – August Back-to-School 2018 News

Dear Rose Park Parents and Friends,

Welcome to  August, and the quickly coming 2018-2019 school year!  I trust that God has been good to you and your families during this summer season. Even though summer is not over yet, and there is more vacation to enjoy with your families, we at Holland Christian Schools and Rose Park have an eye on the horizon with eager anticipation for another new school year of learning, growth, life together, and all that God has in store for us. With eager and joyful anticipation, we look forward to being with our students again very soon! As we prepare for school, we ask that you be in prayer for the year, and all of our students, especially those who are new to our building, as well as for our staff members. As a matter of fact, as of this moment, we have 21 new students at Rose Park, K-6, for next year! Bless God with us for these new students and families! Look for them, please, and extend a warm welcome to them. Invite them over for coffee or dinner, get to know them, and enfold them into the Rose Park Christian Elementary School family. In so doing, you will live out our theme for this year.

HC 2018-2019 Theme

Our theme this year is “Preparing a Table.”   Do you hear a distinct hospitality note to this theme? Think about any positive experience of a table you have sat around with family, coworkers, neighbors, or even strangers. What was it that made is so special? What were the activities? Who was present? What was the conversation like? How did you feel at that table? Why? Whether figuratively or concretely, how will we set tables this year for each other at Rose Park and Holland Christian Schools, for those who may be new to our community, and for those who are yet to come? How will we overcome perceived and actual differences between us in order to experience a fuller communion with others despite the things that would divide us. This seems like such a timely theme for us to explore together as a school community, and we are eager to see where God will take us with it. For now, is there a table you need to set literally in order to welcome someone new to Rose Park? What a great place to start. Wouldn’t it be cool to fill the Rose Park Parent Community Facebook page this year with pictures of parents and families gathered around tables together and with others? Certainly, there will be more to say and learn around this powerful theme. Please join us on this journey. 

Speaking of our theme, we also will  join together again this year, if you choose to participate, in another all HCS community book study around Everybody Always, by Bob Goff. In this his follow up to Love Does, our community book study from 3 years ago, Bob shares more engaging, inspiring, compelling, and convicting stories of “becoming love in a world full of setbacks and difficult people.” If you do choose to read with us, you will be blessed for sure to live out your faith, preparing a table full of love for your neighbors, coworkers, and even strangers you may meet. 

Kiddush Hashem

Kiddush Hashem is an ancient Hebrew concept that our Superintendent, Dan Meester, fleshes out beautifully in this letter which you may see again sometime this year in other publications. I encourage you to read it, because, as Dan says, as an Admin team this summer discussing a variety of policy and practice issues at Holland Christian, Kiddush Hashem became a compelling framing for so much of what we do and desire in the day-to-day at Rose Park and Holland Christian Schools. Simply, as Dan writes, “In every interaction, choice, and relationship, we have an opportunity to either add meaning to the very name of God or to show the world that he’s a phony. With that mindset, we shift our thinking from “How far can I go and still be ‘in bounds’?” to “How can I speak or dress or interact with others in a way that will show people what God is all about?” We encourage you to read Dan’s letter, and continue to reflect on how we can embody this in our words and actions this year.

Elementary Handbook

Whether you are new or experienced at Rose Park, for your convenience, here is a link to our Elementary Handbook found on the HC website. Please refer to the handbook for general information, or with specific questions you may have about life at Rose Park.

Supply Lists

If you are still doing some back to school shopping, here is the supplies list by grade level that you can also find on the HC website.

Important To Do Today

It is imperative that you update your demographic information in PowerSchool now with your latest and most accurate contact information. Simply go in your browser to ps.hollandchristian.org, and, if you are a returning parent, log in with your personal log in and password. If you have difficulty, click the “If you are having trouble…” link to retrieve your log in information. If you are a first-time parent, create a login for yourself. Then, either an “update demographic screen” will automatically pop up, or simply click the “change demographics” button on the left of the screen. This information is necessary for field trip participation, emergency response and treatment, student photo permission, and for the office to easily be able to contact a parent or guardian as needed or desired. When listing your child’s emergency contacts, please be sure to list two contacts other than yourself. Again, please do this today to ensure that your child’s teacher has the most accurate contact information for you. The teachers do a lot of communicating with parents especially at the start of the year, and we want to make sure that you receive all of this communication. Thank you!


Just a reminder that all Kindergarten, Junior Kindergarten, and Preschool students need to have a copy of the health information and immunizations turned in at school. These need to be done BEFORE the first day of school (please turn them in next week – August 7-11) or your child will not be able to start school due to Michigan Law. Thanks so much for your help on this!

Rose Park Needs You! 

We rely on a wonderful volunteer base to assist the staff as needed. We have a need for help in our library this year. We are looking for parents or other volunteers to help us and our librarian shelve returned books, process new books for cataloging and shelving, and check books out for students throughout the day. Come for an hour a week, or hour a day. We would love to have you join us in our library. Please email rp@hollandchristian.org, or call Diane or Carla in the office at 616-820-4055 if you are able to support our literacy program in this way.

We also need lunch recess volunteer supervisors on the playground to join with a couple of staff members, from 12:00-12:50 each day. Even if you can’t commit to every day, if you would like to learn more, or know that you would like to help out in this capacity, again, please email rp@hollandchristian.org, or call Diane or Carla in the office at 616-820-4055.

We are also looking for a volunteer to occasionally change the lettering on our sign by the road. The messaging is provided for you. You simply manage the actual lettering on the sign. This usually takes a 1/2 hour or so every few weeks. Please contact Diane or Carla if you are willing and interested to help out with the sign.

Back-to-School Events

We have some wonderful events planned for you in August.  Please find information below regarding these dates and additional items related to the beginning of school:

Ice Cream Social / Open House: Thursday night, August 16, from 6:30 – 8:00 PM

  • “Socialize” with old friends and meet new families. (Challenge: Talk to at least three parents with whom you are not very familiar! Also – help your child meet the new students in their class. See names with an asterisk on the class lists posted by the classroom doors.)
  • Visit classrooms, introduce yourself to the teacher, find your child’s locker and desk, bring in school supplies.
  • Pay for busing, or put money into your child’s lunch account – having your child’s account number will be a huge help. Assistance will be available to new families wishing to fund lunch accounts.
  • Inform the teacher about your child’s transportation to and from school – needed information before the first day of school.
  • Enjoy some ice cream!

K-6 Parent Night: Thursday, August 23, at 7:00 PM 

  • Meet collectively as a Rose Park parent and staff community.
  • Spend time with your child’s teacher and learn about the year ahead.
  • Sorry, no ice cream. 🙁
  • IMPORTANT NOTE: Preschool Parent Night is Tuesday, August 14, 6-7PM. (See Preschool News below.)

School begins on Tuesday, August 21, for all students in Preschool through 12th grade. Our first K-6th school day will run from 8:10 AM (first bell) to 3:15 PM. The first day is a full day.  Office hours are 7:45 AM – 3:45 PM.

Welcome New Staff to Rose Park!

Please join us in extending a warm welcome to these new staff members at Rose Park this year!

Mrs. Hillary Klipp Lopez will be teaching our Spanish Immersion Kindergarten class. Mrs. Lopez came to HCS last year teaching a variety of Spanish classes elementary through high school. We are excited to have her join our Rose Park staff this year.

Mrs. Dinah Pereira is our Spanish Immersion Coordinator, and will also teach our 3rd-6th grade Spanish classes. Mrs. Pereira comes with a lot of teaching experience, most recently in Spanish Immersion at another local West Michigan school. She has jumped into her new roles with great enthusiasm, expertise, and excitement, and we are grateful.

Mrs. Jenn Smith, and Mrs. Jamie Isanhart will be working as parapros in our Education Support Services program at Rose Park. Mrs. Smith and Mrs. Isanhart are also parents of students here at Rose Park, as many of you know, and bring many gifts and passion for working with students in their roles.

Again, please join in welcoming these new staff members to Rose Park, and pray for them as they begin these new roles!

Important Busing and Carpool Information

Due to our different start dates between our local schools, West Ottawa busing will not begin until Tuesday August 28. This means, obviously, that you will need to provide all transportation for each student to and from school. A shuttle bus will run between Rose Park and the high school and middle school beginning our first day of school, August 21, 2017.

If you desire busing for your student but have not yet signed up through West Ottawa transportation, you are technically past their June due date. However, if you register now, your student may be able to begin riding later in September. To sign up, go to the HC Transportation page under West Ottawa busing on West Ottawa’s site.

This also means that we have more car traffic and carpool activity at the start than any other time of the year. Please remind yourself of our communal expectations regarding Carpool, Parking Lot, and Driveway at Rose Park.  Here are a few highlights:

  • When your car is in the loading zone area – please turn on your hazard lights UNTIL you have all the children in your carpool, then turn lights off.
  • If you are in the loading zone, and your child does not see you or has not come to your car, feel free to ask the person on duty to help your riders find their way to your car. Please stay inside of your car.
  • Do not allow your children to come to your car if you are not yet in the loading area.
  • Please use the carpool plan whenever possible.  If you must come and get your children from the sidewalk, please park in the designated parking spots and walk in front of the loading zone area, not between cars that are waiting in the carpool lanes.

To alleviate the extra traffic we will experience that first week of school, please stagger pick-up times at the end of the day:

  • If you are the driver of a carpool and your last name begins with A-I, please try to be in carpool line at 3:15 PM.
  • If you are the driver of a carpool and your last name begins with J-P, aim for 3:20 PM.
  • Drivers with a last name beginning with Q-Z, please arrive closer to 3:25 PM.

HCS Back-to-School 2018 Convocation for all Preschool-12th grade students and all who are part of the HCS community: Wednesday, AUGUST 29, 9AM, HCHS Gymnasium

You are invited along with the entire Holland Christian Schools community to our annual Convocation Ceremony to kick-off our 2018-2019 school year. Whether you are a parent, grandparent, alumnus, friend, or supporter, we would love to welcome you along with all of our Preschool-12th grade students in a time of celebration, prayer, praise, and listening to God’s Word at the beginning of this exciting new year. Various Holland Christian students, staff, and community members will lead in song, prayer, and devotion. Come and join us Wednesday, August 29, 9AM in the high school gym for this very special convocation service. You will be blessed!


For those of you really planning ahead, Rose Park’s picture days are Wednesday, September 19, and Thursday, September 20. More specific information and scheduling will come once we are underway through classroom and the Rose Park blogs.

HC Batons

We hope you have treasured the note written to your child from last year’s teacher and tucked inside the special HC baton. It’s not too late to write your own note to your child, or ask a close family friend, leader, or mentor to write their encouragement to your child about what they see as God’s gifts in your student at this point in their growing. We ask that each baton be returned to school in time for our convocation on August 29. Your child’s teacher has a special devotional planned during which batons will be passed from your child to his or her new teacher. You are welcome to bring these batons to the Ice Cream Social event, during Parent Night, or on the first day of school, whichever is most convenient for you. Please keep in mind we need to have them here at school by Wednesday, August 29.

Before/After School Programs

We offer a before school program for families that need to drop off students as early as 7:30 AM, as well as our after school program starting at 3:15 until 5:30.  Families need to pre-register prior to using these programs to allow us time to provide adequate supervision.  We will allow drop-in’s as long as space allows. Please give the office a call at least 24 hours in advance. Click this online registration link  to begin the registration process for either of these programs.  If you have any questions regarding these programs please contact program director Tammy Grassmid at 616-820-3535.


While we will still send home the occasional email, weekly information from the office (Fridays), as well as the weekly notes from classroom teachers, will be posted on each teacher’s blog page, as well as Rose Park’s blog page. We will send out the links for blog pages for you to bookmark in your browser very soon. If and when papers that need to be returned to school are sent home, we will notify you of this in our blogs, as well.

Moms in Prayer

MOMS IN PRAYER- Looking so forward to praying with you on Fridays again this September!  We will

begin our season on September 14, in the library, at 8:15 running until 9:05.  Childcare will not be

offered this year.  If you have any questions please contact Kathy Schut at 616-875-8912.  What could
be better than time spent on your knees for your kids?  Come check it out!  Moms, please insert your

name in the following verse.
LORD, may I, ________, tell my children about Your glorious deeds, Your power and Your mighty wonders.
From Psalm 78:4 (NLT

Contact Person:  Kathy Schut, 616-875-8912, schutkathy@gmail.com

Preschool News

Preschool Paperwork is now available on-line here. Please download and print all forms and return to the school office before August 9, 2018.

Our Preschool Parent Meeting is Tuesday, August 14, 6-7 PM in your child’s classroom.  This meeting is for parents only.  You will hear more from the teacher regarding the year and your student’s experience.  You don’t want to miss this!

Preschool families join the whole Rose Park Christian School family on Thursday, August 16 from 6:30-8 PM for our annual Ice Cream Social.  This is a great night to come out and visit your student’s classroom, meet the teacher, and enjoy fellowship with other Rose Park families.

Thank You!

Join us in thanking our custodian Rob Westfall, and his team of Nona Westfall, Michelle Kuipers, Jillian and Tillie Dokter, for all of their work to ready our building for students, staff, and the new school year.  They washed, scrubbed, and waxed during our summer vacation, getting the classrooms and halls ready for us to use and enjoy, and they look great!

That’s all for now…

Please feel free to call or email our school secretaries–Diane Steenwyk and Carla Chase, or me with any questions you may have regarding this upcoming school year.  If you know any families who are still making school decisions for their children, and are interested in learning more about HC, please give them my number.  I would love to show them around and tell them about the great things that happen here!

I am looking forward to seeing you all, again, very soon. I am eagerly anticipating a great year experiencing what God again has in store for us at Rose Park!  Please continue to join me in prayer for this coming school year.


Rodney Brandsen




Upcoming Dates:

14 – Preschool Parent Night, 6-7PM

16 – Ice Cream Social, 6:30-8PM

21 –  First day is a full day, 8:10AM-3:15PM

21 – Preschool Starts

23 – Parent night 7:00-8:30

29 – Convocation, 9AM


22 – Kids Stuff Resale

19 – Picture Day

20 – Picture Day

26 – Walk-a-thon Fundraiser


4 – Grandparents’ day

25 – CEA – No School

26  – CEA- No School