- Sponsorship -

Church “Adoption” Bonds School & Community

When members of Wyoming-based Christ Lutheran Church approached Gladiola Elementary School Principal David Lyon about “adopting” the school, Lyon filled out a wish list of possible ways the church could support them. Instead of choosing one community service project, they wanted to fill all the requests, which were as diverse as helping out at Math Night to providing emergency buckets for classrooms in case of a long-term lockdown event.

“It really gives us a sense of community and of someone understanding needs that are not necessarily apparent,” Lyon said. “They asked, ‘What do you need done?’ and said, ‘Let’s make that happen for you.'”

Now church members regularly volunteer to help students in reading and math; they shelve books in the library. Their presence is felt throughout the Wyoming Public Schools building.

Church member Nancy Heidrich, a retired Grandville High School teacher, helps second-grader Zoey Winship with math
Church member Nancy Heidrich, a retired Grandville High School teacher, helps second-grader Zoey Winship with math

“We wanted to reach out to our neighbors and be of assistance,” said church member Kathy Reister, a retired pastor.

Church members of all ages have contributed. Middle school members assembled “Germ-free Buckets” for classrooms so students can easily access hand sanitizer and tissues. A Boy Scout troop made up of church members plans to spruce up the school courtyard. Members made homemade bags filled with school supplies and donated them.

On a recent Tuesday in the school hallway, church member Nancy Heidrich, a retired Grandville High School teacher, showed second-grader Zoey Winship cool addition tricks. She often reads to the students and offers a listening ear when they want to talk. “I enjoy it. I enjoy coming. I enjoy the kids,” she said.

Zoey likes it too. “She helps me with my work,” she said.

Being Prepared in Case of Emergency

The emergency buckets were recommended during a training offered by the Wyoming Police Department on emergency preparedness. They are something the school probably wouldn’t have purchased on its own, Lyons said, but they add a safety measure he’s thankful for.

In response to national school shootings, Gladiola, like schools nationwide, have lockdown drills, during which students practice what to do in case of an emergency.

The buckets, stocked with first-aid equipment, a flashlight, toilet paper, snacks, bandages, drinking cups, water and a fire extinguisher, will be stationed in all 24 classrooms for use in case of a real lockdown.

“It’s not a critical need until it’s a critical need,” Lyon said. “Hopefully we will never need to use them,” he said.

CONNECT

Christ Lutheran Church

Example of Classroom Lockdown Kit

- Sponsorship -
Erin Albanese
Erin Albanese
Erin Albanese has worked as a journalist in the Grand Rapids area since 2000. A graduate of Central Michigan University, she has written for The Grand Rapids Press, Advance Newspapers and On-the-Town Magazine. She has been covering the many exciting facets of K-12 public education for School News Network since 2013. Read Erin's full bio or email Erin.

LATEST ARTICLES

District welcomes new administrators, ready to ‘lead through uncharted waters’

New administrators share their thoughts on starting their posts during a pandemic...

Teacher and coach applies lessons in classroom and on field

New Kelloggsville head football coach Brandon Branch also teaches science and math at the high school and looks to bring academics and athletics together whenever he can...

Two high schools, newly renovated, await return of students

Two major renovation projects at Ottawa Hills and Union high schools are part of a 30-year, $175 million school improvement bond approved November 2015 with the majority, $155 million, earmarked for construction...

Avid reader, Petoskey-stone hunter, lover of great outdoors

Melanie Hoeksema is the new Ada Elementary principal. SNN gets to know her in this edition of Meet Your Principal...

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Related Articles

‘A positive in a time that’s somewhat negative’

The new two-story Wyoming High School building opened to 10th- through 12th-graders, who were happy to settle into their new digs for the first week of in-person classes...

Student athletes glad football is back, after trying other sports

Some student athletes briefly competed in other sports, such as tennis and cross country, after fall football was canceled. Now they’re happy to be back on the gridiron...

Making the best of it

Students, parents, teachers and others share their feelings about the start of this unprecedented school year...
- Sponsorship -

HOW'S SCHOOL TODAY?

Engagement: The Most Important Measure of Student Success

Polls find that students’ engagement in their school work declines as they ascend the grades. Tests that don’t relate to their real-life experiences exacerbate the problem...

RADEMACHER & FRIENDS

Food ‘angels’ support hungry kids through pandemic

They work all across Kent County, guardian angels with peanut butter on their hands and crumbs on their shirtsleeves...
- Sponsorship -

MEDIA PARTNERS

Maranda Where You LiveWGVU

SUSTAINING SPONSORS