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New schools chief worked his way up to leadership

Craig Hoekstra is set to begin in his new role July 1, following Superintendent Thomas Reeder, who announced his retirement last month after serving in the position for seven years...

Mariachi band adds festive cultural tradition to music program

With a plan to someday play in the community, the new Wyoming Mariachi Band is lifting up Hispanic Heritage through music

Statewide reading decline: how some high-poverty schools buck the trend

Principals in Wyoming and Grand Rapids identified how to use data to improve instruction, build teacher leaders and zero in on reading instruction practices

Wyoming, EGR and TK superintendents announce retirements

Tom Reeder, superintendent of Wyoming Public Schools, and Sara Shubel, superintendent of East Grand Rapids Public Schools, announced their retirements last week, after Tom Enslen of Thornapple Kellogg announced his last month

School shooting protests provide teachable moment on touchy topic

Wyoming Junior High eighth-graders read and discussed different perspectives -- right, left and center -- on the Second Amendment, gun rights and what measures should be taken to stop mass shootings

New play includes many firsts

Student cast members say the play has allowed them to go deep into character development, while recognizing strong themes of isolation, anxiety and abandonment

Teens gather messages for Parkland peers, say they must speak up

The Wyoming High students said they wanted to reach out to Florida peers who experienced the Feb. 14 mass shooting at their school

Technology turns biography reports into multimedia efforts

After researching and writing about historical figures and famous people, third-graders recorded their work like mini-broadcasters
Godwin Heights is among four high schools where Chief Carmody meets with students

Retiring police chief says teen sessions will continue

James Carmody has made it a priority to give high school students a voice at the table. Every week he meets with students, rotating between Wyoming, Godwin Heights, Lee and Kelloggsville high schools
Teacher Jennifer Blackburn joins the fun with her students as a Jenga tower falls during indoor recess

There’s No Place Like Home, Except School

First-grade teacher Blackburn became inspired to make her classroom more like home, from colors to furniture to lighting and decor. She felt traditional classrooms were too sterile and institutional, and wanted a more inviting atmosphere.

Teachers Tell Their Stories, to Help Other Teachers

"What inspires you to come to school every day and teach children?" interviewer Rosie del Valle asked Gladiola Elementary intervention math coach Kristi Baumbach. Baumbach, who had answered previous interview questions without hesitation, paused. "Now, I'm crying," she said, as...

Noshing Through Novels

It was a tranquil, cafe-like setting: a darkened media center illuminated by an image of a fireplace on a projector screen. Soft jazz music played and artificial candlelight glowed atop tables covered with red-and-white checkered cloths. Students enjoyed the...

‘You gotta be there every day’

Parkview Elementary students shined, smiles spreading from ear to ear, as they walked down the red carpet laid out for them during a celebration of their success in getting to school nearly every day, all day. Along with the grand...

She Collects Books, and Lets Students Choose Them

English teacher Katie Sluiter's Wyoming Junior High classroom is a testament to the power of words, in the books eighth-graders eagerly grab from her library and in the writing she did to get those 1,000 popular works onto her...

Class Pushes Students Out of Comfort Zone, Into Community

Students trickle in after school, one or two at a time, into a Wyoming High School classroom. They grab a slice of pizza and sit down to discuss issues that affect their lives and community: school, jobs and ways...

In Honor of Those Who Served

Editor's note: Schools across Kent County observed Veterans Day with a variety of events. Here is a sampling. Byron Center Boys Scouts brought up the flag; "My Country, 'Tis of Thee" was sung; red, white and blue were worn; and...