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February Headmaster Highlights

Dear Parents,

February was a month of many exciting events and programs. I would like to give a “shout-out” to the many teachers, judges and volunteers, under the leadership of Ms. Amy Casto, who have made our Fine Arts Competition the success it is. It was also a pleasure to personally be present to hand out awards during the Declamation Competition. We thank the scores of parents who attended while also providing food for our judges.

Please also pray for our senior mission trip to Nicaragua March 2-12. Under the adept leadership of Mr. Brian Kelly, fourteen seniors will encounter life changing opportunities. Thanks to all the families who are supporting the trip. May our Lord impact the hearts of our young men and women.

We congratulate Principal Alex Lehman and his lovely wife Boky on the birth of their third child— their first baby girl— Eden Seohyun Lehman.

Our faculty has been equipped with portable first aid kits and emergency response booklets.  We have begun a second phase in equipping our teachers and administrators with an effective response to various emergencies that may arise at the school. This will continue through the spring and summer so we are ready to go for Fall 2017.

Special thanks go out to Mr. Jack Kesselring.  Jack provided a temporary AED as we re-serviced our Defib unit which is located near the trophy case in the front foyer of the building.

We continue to work with Hagerstown Community College for student cybersecurity training.  More information on scholarships will be forthcoming before the school year is completed. In the works is commercial drivers’ license training and drivers’ education.

Speaking of the upcoming academic year, Mrs. Amy Valentine Walker will soon be informing families of a transition information night during which she will review for prospective middle and high school families the expectations into a new phase of academic life.

Please respond to an e-mail sent by our IT Director, Jason Ledney on your input to obtain an e-rate grant; the monies of which will be used to provide faster, private and more reliable IT infrastructure service to our school.  Mr. Ledney has just completed an upgrading of our server system to provide more access and availability with less down time for our students.

Keep an eye out in the local media around the tri-state area for our Grace Academy promotions! We have placements in the Hagerstown Magazine, the Herald Mail, the Echo Pilot, the Record Herald, local billboards and more. We specifically look forward to our Spring Open House on March 28, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, please contact our director of marketing and development, Mrs. Kimber Morgan.

Our Spiritual Emphasis Week from February 13 to 17 was outstanding.  The challenge has allowed our students to do some personal reflection of their life choices. Over the past week, we have had almost two dozen students who have graced our offices seeking atonement and guidance. God was at work on the hearts of these young men and women which should prove dividends down the road.

We are still in search for a Golf Coach. Applications for this new Fall Sport will be accepted until the end of March 2017. Additionally, we are looking for volunteer coaches to help our new Running Program. We hope to compete in events this spring. Girls Varsity and MS soccer teams compete this spring under the capable direction of coaches Mr. Buser and Ms. Stewart. If anyone is interested in assisting any of the teams please contact the Athletic Director, Mr. Zack Morgan at 301-302-3255.

With the Baseball Team traveling south for pre-season play from April 10-14, we are accepting donations to help in the journey. This includes gas cards, Gatorade, Walmart cards, snacks, etc. Please bring your gifts to the main office. Pray for safe travels and spiritual fellowship and growth.

Trout Update! Mr. Mandracchia and his biology class learned the effects of overfeeding and the impact of biological waste with the trout.  Suddenly, the fish started to die and the cause was too much food! “Sounds a lot like today,” one student noted. Lesson learned. With a few adjustments from the DNR and Mr. Mandracchia, the trout are rebounding and growing in a healthful fashion.

Please congratulate Julie Snyder, a junior, who was selected by the American Legion Maryland Auxiliary to be a Maryland “Senator” at this year’s mock legislature. A week is spent creating a legislature, submitting bills and resolutions, participating in senate sessions, holding a national convention and electing officials such as president and vice president. Special field trips include visits to the White House, Arlington National Cemetery, monument tours, and a day on Capitol Hill meeting with state senators and representatives. While the event may happen once in a lifetime, the memories made last a lifetime.

Grace Academy is collaborating with the Pediatric Movement Center of Hagerstown, to offer Speech Therapy for select elementary, middle and high school students, commencing this Spring 2017. You will receive information in the next few weeks by Ms. Sharon Britner on student eligibility.

Thank you always for your prayers and support for our students. Your prayers are felt and much appreciated.

Many thanks,

Dr. Mathew McIntosh
Headmaster