Board of Trustees
Members of the Grand Rapids Christian Schools (GRCS) Board of Trustees are elected by the GRCS membership each year at the Annual Meeting of the membership. Board members are required to meet requirements in order to be elected to the Board of Trustees and may serve for a maximum of two consecutive three-year terms. Board member requirements include:
Membership in GRCS in good standing who subscribes to the doctrinal basis set forth in the GRCS bylaws;
Acknowledgement of Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord;
Commitment to the GRCS mission and is a proponent of Christian education shaped by a Reformed theological perspective;
Commitment to investment of time and energy necessary to ensure GRCS integrity throughout the community.
Board of Trustees
|Rebecca Jordan Heys
|Debbye Turner Bell
|Caleb Doezema, '94
The Board of Trustees humbly embraces its role and the trust placed in its care by the GRCS membership. It strives to advance the mission of Grand Rapids Christian Schools, which is to prepare students to be effective servants of Christ in contemporary society. In order to advance this mission, members of the Board pledge to live lives reflective of Christ’s character and seek God’s will in the decisions it makes regarding educational programs it provides children in Preschool-12th grade each year.
- Mission, Vision, Values
- GOAL A, PRIORITY 1: MISSION AND CORE VALUES
- GOAL A, PRIORITY 2: STRATEGIC BOARD GOVERNANCE
- GOAL A, PRIORITY 3: SUCCESSION PLANNING
- GOAL B, PRIORITY 1: FAITH FORMATION
- GOAL B, PRIORITY 2: BELONGING
- GOAL B, PRIORITY 3: FLOURISHING AND FEEDBACK
- GOAL B, PRIORITY 4: DISTINCT CAMPUS INITIATIVES
- GOAL C, PRIORITY 1: ADVANCEMENT MODEL ALIGNED WITH STRATEGIC PLAN
- PORTRAIT OF A GRADUATE
- PORTRAIT OF A PROFESSIONAL EDUCATOR
Preparing students to be effective servants of Christ in contemporary society
We are a community of Christ-followers who love God and our neighbors, cultivating Christian learning environments where students discover their potential, develop their talents, and passionately share their gifts with the world, leading lives of purpose as living testimonies for Jesus Christ in a broken but hopeful world, generation after generation.
At GRCS, everything is inspired by and anchored in the 3 C’s - Christ, Community, and Commitment. These three enduring pillars are our firm foundation, unifying lens, and cultural framework guiding us collectively and individually. They are not meant to be an extensive or exhaustive list of all the values we seek to live out, but rather the fundamental core values that we build upon. The 3 C’s challenge students and staff to keep God first in everything, love our neighbors as ourselves, and personally commit to leading lives of purpose and in alignment with what is taught in scripture.
To ensure that the Christian faith is woven throughout all areas of our school for the purpose of achieving the Schools' mission to prepare effective servants of Christ in contemporary society.
- Provide Clarity and communication around foundational faith documents
- Identify and incorporate Christian practices into all areas of the school community
- Infuse Christian perspectives into curriculum and assessment so that students grow in their knowledge of the Bible and Christian faith
To foster a culture of belonging in which the rich differences of God's creation are reflected in our curriculum and instruction, supported through institutional practices and systems, and reinforced through professional development.
- Implement evidence-based social and emotional learning practices as an integral part of education from preschool through high school.
- Promote the growth and cultural competence in students and staff so that they are able to follow Christ's example of knowing, loving, including, and serving one another.
- Create a culture of belonging, with the support of inclusion services, so that all students are welcomed, known, supported, and befriended.
To ensure a culture of feedback and growth in which all members of our community are provided a pathway to grow and flourish, and to maintain exemplary and aligned PS-12th grade Christian education across all schools so that all students learn at a high level.
- Further develop Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) and the Professional Learning Team (PLT) subsets to strengthen a staff culture committed to growth, collaboration, renewal, and academic excellence.
- Implement developmentally-appropriate assessment and grading practices to promote student growth and achievement.
- Cultivate a culture of feedback and growth to ensure all students are flourishing.
- Create a culture of authentic feedback, growth, and reflection for all staff.
To ensure continued investment in distinct campus initiatives that further each school's vision and theme and the Schools' mission.
- Grand Rapids Christian Elementary - Evergreen Campus
- International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary years Programme
- Rockford Christian Campus
- Nature-rich outdoor education model
Establish a comprehensive Advancement model focused on family relationship management and powered by end-to-end connected experience design that maximizes enrollment, deepens community, and cultivates generosity (time, talent, and treasure).
- Evaluating new marketing/admission/enrollment strategies
- Enrollment and retention goals for each campus
- Deepening family relationships
- 100 year celebration planning
- Student retention
When choosing a school, families have many things to consider: location, quality of education, safety, extracurricular offerings, and much more.
But what really sets one school apart from another? Through our mission statement, vision for the future, core value statements, and daily goals both in and out of the classroom, we aim to mold students into the kind of servants who will care for and restore God’s world.
Yes, we educate students at a high level. Yes, we coach them on the field, direct them on the stage, and travel with them around the world. Many schools do these things well. But what really makes a graduate of the Grand Rapids Christian Schools unique?
Our Portrait of a Graduate describes just that.
By using their unique gifts to glorify God, pursue personal faith, and bring about shalom in the world, graduates of Grand Rapids Christian Schools will be…
DISCIPLES OF CHRIST: Prepared to follow Christ with faithfulness, resilience, and humility in a broken but hopeful world.
- Affirm students, parents, and colleagues as children of God and servants in His kingdom.
- Contribute to the Christian community by sending their children to a Christian school and being an active member of a Christian church.
- Model biblical principles when working with students, parents, and colleagues.
- Encourage and nurture the faith development of the students.
- Share their faith articulately with students, parents and colleagues.
- Integrate faith and Christian values in instruction and curriculum.
- Motivate students to recognize and use their God-given gifts to work in God’s kingdom.
- Live a God-honoring life in keeping with the Basis of Grand Rapids Christian Schools.
CULTURALLY COMPETENT PROFESSIONALS: Prepared to engage with a diverse range of people and ideologies.
- Show awareness that the students in our schools comprise many different backgrounds that encompass our view of diversity. This includes, but is not limited to, race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, social class, physical ability or attributes, religious or ethical values, national origin, and political beliefs.
- Show awareness and understanding of how these differences are articulated in a school setting with different communication needs, learning styles and behaviors.
- Create a welcoming and inclusive campus and classroom for all students.
- Show respect for and, in turn, expect respect from all students, families, and colleagues on a daily basis.
- Work to create a learning space and experiences that will motivate and engage the abilities of diverse learners.
- Model cultural respect in interactions with students, families, and colleagues.
COMMUNICATORS AND COLLABORATORS: Prepared to work in a team environment, articulate ideas, and consider multiple viewpoints.
- Effectively communicate with colleagues, administrators, and parents in person, in writing, and using various media.
- Communicate effectively students with respect in ways that build and promote growth and maintain appropriate student-teacher relationships.
- Maintain a positive, collaborative, and responsible partnership with parents.
- Handle confrontations and disagreements sensitively and respectfully.
- Support colleagues personally and professionally, consistently following through with collaborative decisions.
- Collaborate with colleagues to implement curriculum that is aligned to standards.
- Treat confidential information sensitively..
- Show respect for and sensitivity to others when using social media.
THOUGHTFUL NEIGHBORS: Prepared to practice hospitality, compassion, service, and empathy for those around them.
- Demonstrate a pattern of behavior which reflects a Christ-centered life both inside and outside of school.
- Present a public presence (e.g., social media, neighborhood functions, church, clubs, associations, etc.) which is widely recognized as positive, open, warm, and respectful of others.
- Positively engage with community organizations, serving as salt and light.
- Dedicate themselves to the Golden Rule and Christ’s command to love our neighbor.
- Demonstrate an attitude of humility, integrity, and grace.
- Show respect and sensitivity when handling a confrontation or disagreement and analyze issues from a variety of perspectives.
- Interact positively with colleagues and demonstrate positive attitudes
- Assume positive intent in interactions with the entire school community
JUSTICE SEEKERS: Prepared to actively pursue greater wholeness in the world by working for justice and practicing stewardship.
- Aid our students to view themselves as builders of God’s kingdom here on earth.
- Allow students to understand and practice action-oriented tasks that are associated with justice and inclusion in their daily lives at school and in their communities.
- Instruct students on the different ways to appropriately resolve conflict with others, and model appropriate behaviors as faculty and staff in day-to-day interactions with colleagues..
- Show a commitment to justice through actions taken inside and outside of the classroom through resolution of issues between students.
- Show students how to recognize and understand injustice as they work through the curriculum, and help them to find ways to address injustice through community engagement.
- In conflict situations, listen to parents and students from all sides, and try to resolve injustices in a way that best serves all students.
CREATIVE SOLUTION FINDERS: Prepared to identify issues, engage in critical thinking, and persistently work toward solutions.
- Understand that every student is uniquely created by God, fearfully and wonderfully made, and constantly look for ways to make learning authentic for all students.
- Respond to students’ needs in a timely manner, varying teaching methodology in a way that benefits all learning styles, and offering opportunities for all students to enhance learning outside of the traditional classroom.
- Approach the act of teaching as a way to provide students with the ability to continue educating themselves through discernment and discovery, not just as a means to deliver content.
- Constantly look for ways in which they can communicate God’s truth through their curriculum and encourage students to apply these truths to their own learning and lives.
- Work well in a collaborative setting, sharing and learning from each other and taking advantage of diverse viewpoints to solve and address issues in the school environment,
LIFELONG EXPLORERS: Prepared to live a life of discovery and wonder in God’s world.
- Demonstrate a realization that learning is a lifelong journey for both students and teachers.
- Engage in regular reflections and self-assessments, both personally and professionally.
- Critically evaluate new methods of teaching and learning to best engage with their content.
- Create professional learning environments that promote active engagement, participation, and collaboration
- Continue education and training to remain current and meet State certification requirements.
BIBLICAL FOUNDATIONS FOR A PORTRAIT OF A PROFESSIONAL EDUCATOR
Romans 12: 6-7
We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift . . . is teaching, then teach.
1 Corinthians 12: 27–29
You are the body of Christ. Each one of you is a part of it. First, God has placed apostles in the church. Second, he has placed prophets in the church. Third, he has placed teachers in the church. Then he has given to the church miracles and gifts of healing. He also has given the gift of helping others and the gift of guiding the church. God also has given the gift of speaking in different kinds of languages. Is everyone an apostle? Is everyone a prophet? Is everyone a teacher? Do all work miracles?
The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.
Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity, and sound speech that cannot be condemned, so that an opponent may be put to shame, having nothing evil to say about us.
Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body.
You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
2023 - 2024 Board Meetings
- Monday, August 21
— Board Retreat
- Monday, October 9
- Monday, December 4
- Monday, January 15
- Monday, February 19
— Annual Meeting
- Monday, March 18
- Monday, April 22
- Monday, June 3
The Board of Trustees welcomes your comments and suggestions. Please address your e-mail communications for Board members to firstname.lastname@example.org.