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February 2016

Re-Frame: Work Groups

Community is a big deal at STCCS. In the Bible we read, "for just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others" (Romans 12: 4-5). We are called to provide quality Christian Education in St. Thomas and it requires all of us to do the best for our children.  That's why we work so hard to partner with our parents.  It's why we have a Board of Directors made up of parents and community members who are committed to Christ-centered education.  It's why we have volunteers who care deeply about our school and want to see it continue to flourish.

In order for volunteerism to thrive at STCCS, it needs to be sustainable.  It must work the way our community works.  In our strategic plan, we are building sustainability by moving from committees to work groups.  Work groups are goal-driven: they accomplish a specific goal in a set amount of time.  At STCCS, we don’t believe that volunteering has to lead to burn out and frustration.  It can be enjoyable and fulfilling as well as a blessing for our school community.  

If you are interested in volunteering at STCCS please contact us.

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Re-Think: Arrowsmith Program

God values each and every child. The Bible states that Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these" (Matthew 19:14). Incredibly, God leaves the responsibility of caring for His children up to us.  He has chosen to work through broken pots such as us to share His love. As you may recall, we have recently updated our mission statement.  Our mission is “to know and serve every student, encouraging them to reach their God-given potential.”  At St. Thomas Community Christian School, we take this mission and our responsibility to care for God’s children very seriously.  In fact, we have started a new program at STCCS as a result of the commitment that we have made to our mission.

We strongly believe that all students are unique.  They each learn differently.  Some students learn best through a hands-on approach, some in groups and some on their own.  Some students struggle with significant learning disabilities, which often means that a “regular” approach in a “normal” classroom may not be enough.  More must be done.  Much more.  God calls us to care for “all” children.  We believe that the Arrowsmith Program can be a solution.  It inspires hope to overcome severe learning challenges and can have an impact on the future for students with these types of learning disabilities.  Listen to what a child psychologist said about the program after visiting it earlier this year:

“I was very impressed by this program ...this is one of the first times that I have seen students who struggle with learning feel proud about their accomplishments and fully engaged in the learning process. While the program is designed to build the foundational skills for learning, the format of the self-guided learning modules also builds students’ confidence and motivation. The Arrowsmith Program is truly a ‘gem’ in our current educational resources and students benefit greatly in all aspects of their development!”  

Dr. M. Gilpin, C.Psych
Child and Adolescence Psychologist, Mt. Brydges, Ont.  

If you believe that the Arrowsmith Program could help someone that you know who is currently struggling with a learning disability, please give us a call or send us an email.  

If you think that you would like to attend or support a school that believes strongly in supporting every student, feel free to, check out our website, give us a call, or send us an email.    

 

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Re-Focus: Vision Statement

The description of the first church in the book of Acts is amazing. It says that "all the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had" (Acts 4: 32). You could argue that this sounds like a vision statement for the first church.  Recently, STCCS adopted a new vision statement that encapsulates what a school community should strive for.  Our new vision statement states that we want STCCS to be “an engaged school community that is led by a Biblical worldview where every student is discipled and educated.”  This means that we are committed to being a community that actively cares for each other and wants to see Christian education thrive in St. Thomas.  It means that we want our children to grow up in the Word with a deep knowledge of who our Creator is and how He “works for the good of those who love him” (Romans 8:28).  It means that we believe in educating the hearts of our students as well as their minds.  In the same way that the first church was an example to those living during that time, we believe that quality Christian education can demonstrate the glory of our God to the world around us in our time.  It is our hope that we will be a school that demonstrates love and a willingness to serve God through the education we provide to the children of our community.    

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Re-Focus: Mission Statement

St Thomas Community Christian School has adopted a new mission statement. Our mission is “to know and serve every student, encouraging them to reach their God-given potential." This means that our top priority is to recognize who our students are: their gifts and interests, their struggles and challenges, their personalities and their learning style.   As we work to understand our students better, we use that knowledge to serve them as best as we can, both academically and spiritually.  This is a lofty goal.  It demands that we strive to meet each of our students exactly where they are, in a way that is relevant and meaningful to them.  We put the curriculum, our time and our paycheques second to our students.  Jesus said "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." (Matthew 19:14)  It is clear that God loves each child who enters our school and has a purpose for their life.  We want to be an organization that helps students discover that purpose and reach their potential.

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