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College-Going Culture, Scholarships, Creating Pathways for West Side Students

When Gwen Heatley first started working as the career and college pathways coordinator at Harrison Park Elementary/Middle School in fall of 2011, she held a contest that required students to write down the name of a college. A few...

Designing a New Future, One App at a Time

Problem: Young people find downtown Grand Rapids boring and expensive. Solution: a smart-phone app that turns its stores and cultural attractions into a game featuring an evil mayor and zombies. Crazy idea or community asset? That's what some Grand Rapids...

Year-round School Calendars May Not Suit All Districts, Administrators Say

Michigan students have gotten used to clearing out lockers during the first week of June with a long summer stretching lazily ahead. A post-Labor Day return to school is not only the norm, but the law. While many students spend...

Junior ROTC Alive and Well at Innovation Central

Innovation Central High School is known for its Center of Innovation programs, but a new program, The Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) program, has been offering its own unique experience. JROTC is offered as a class during the school...

GRPS Students Stand Up as Student Leaders, Protest Bullying

Union High School senior Angel Barreto-Cruz isn’t afraid to speak up for a cause. Chosen to represent a leadership group including 11 of his peers, he laughed and said it’s because he likes to talk. But during a recent demonstration to...

Giving ‘Til It Helps: Tough Upbringing Inspires a Life Devoted to Serving Children, Families

John Matias was late for our interview, but something told me to hang in there. I'm glad I did. "I'm sorry, I apologize," he said, after breaking through the door of Wealthy Street Bakery, where I sat with a cold...

Universal Forest Products Engineer John Kozal Mentors GRPS Students

When people who know John Kozal consider the touchstones of his life so far, these are the elements that rise to the surface: Driven by faith, loving father, dedicated dad, conscientious worker, long-time relationship with the Boy Scouts of...

Getting their kicks

New neon pink shoes with orange laces put a smile on Godfrey Early Childhood Center student Dulce Venegas’ face, and she declares herself ready “to run.” Mom is happy too. “It’s a big help,” says Lucia Venegas, whose three children...

Students Study Whether City’s Rapids Should Return

Despite her numb fingers on the 28-degree day, CA Frost Environmental Science Academy sixth-grader Lux Howell shook a vial filled with river water for several minutes to measure the amount of oxygen in it, part of a process to...

Collaborative Youth Fair Showcases Student Work in After-School Programs

Grand Rapids Public Schools hosted the annual Collaborative Youth Fair this Spring at Creston High School. All GRPS schools with a LOOP after school program had a display table to showcase work, projects, and activities from the program. The student’s work was...

Be Nice Initiative Encourages Positive Actions in Schools

“Be Nice” messages recently made their way from student to student at East Grand Rapids Middle School; a bold-lettered banner in the EGR high school hallway reminds students to show kindness;  and signed pledges put the promise of niceness...

New Innovation Central High Mixes Connections with Business, Community and Education

Grand Rapids Innovation Central Senior Dustin Suchomski has only been enrolled in the school’s Academy of Design and Construction for a couple months, but he’s already made connections he hopes will come handy in his professional life. He counts...

Equipping Students with More than Academics

Gerald R. Ford Academic Center's Bengal tiger school mascot lets you know this school is different than the rest. It's not just an image of a tiger, but a tiger wearing glasses and a graduation cap. Besides preparation for college,...

Grand Rapids Student Showcase

Impacting America.. My Way

When I think about Rosa Parks and what she did, or how she impacted America, I begin to think of ways that I could possibly be an impacting person and be influential for people today. One thing that I...

My Hero, My Friend

Winners of the 2015 MLK Essay Contest A record 327 essays were entered for the 10th annual Warner Norcross & Judd LLP Martin Luther King Jr. essay contest earlier this year. School News Network is publishing the three winning submissions...

What Can You Do to Accomplish a Dream?

We all have a dream no matter where we live or who we are. Everybody DREAMS! Some people have selfish dreams like to win millions of dollars in the lottery, or to become a princess or a prince. But...
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