HORIZON

CHRISTIAN SCHOOL

Archived News

06-08-15 - Box Tops and Campbells Soup Labels
Horizon will now be accepting Box Tops and Campbell’s Soup Labels for the 2015-16 school year. There will be a prize for the student who collects the most Box Tops and/or Campbell’s Soup Labels over the summer and returns them in September. Ready, set, go!

06-08-15 - Horizon Elementary Students Exceed Writing Goal
Our students writing skills are important to us here at Horizon so, as a school we set a goal this year to help improve our elementary students’ writing in the area of organization. Our Kindergarten through 6th grade students wrote essays or stories last Fall, after our teachers received extra training in workshops, focusing on writing organization. Our students practiced during the school year with organization as a focus in their writing. Our improvement goal was set for 20% at the beginning of the school year. We double scored the students final writings during our Teacher Inservice day in May and the elementary students showed an improvement in their organizational writing skills by 30%!! Great work Staff and Students!

06-08-15 - Stats for Class of 2015

Graduates with GPA of 4.0 and higher — 18%
Graduates with GPA of 3.0 and higher — 82%
Average GPA of Graduates — 3.43
Future Plans:
University/College — 65% (73% of those to Christian University)
Trade School — 18%
Missions — 6%
Working (followed by trade school) — 12%

06-02-15 - Congratulations to the Class of 2015
You are invited to the Class of 2015 Commencement on Saturday, June 6 at 2:00pm in the Mark Boyden Gymnasium. Their plans are highlighted below.

Ryan Aldrich — WyoTech; Diesel Mechanic
Nick Andersen — Grand Canyon University; Physical Therapy & Business
Mason Bloomster — Oregon State University
Jared Davis — Play basketball then go into Marketing
Soledad Finn — Grand Canyon University; Psychology
Kelsey Floyd — Volunteer/Internship in San Francisco, CA with City Impact
Trista Hicks — Columbia Gorge Community College — Associate’s Degree
R.J. Hicks — Lineman and Rodeo
Wes Johnston — Electrical Apprenticeship with Glacier Electric
Hannah Kempf — Grand Canyon University; Biology
Hannah Lingel (Student Speaker) — George Fox; Business Management
Grant Lynn — Hillsboro Aviation; Helicopter Pilot’s License
Reuben Moegster — Going to the Middle East or back to Africa as a Missionary
Anna Robison — Grand Canyon University; Business Management
Payton Torrez — Work, followed by school and becoming an electrician
Shaun Wang (Student Speaker)— Grand Canyon University; Computer Science / Theology
Sarah Wesner — Corban University; Music Education
Nick Zerkel — Grand Canyon University

Hannah Lingel and Shaun Wang were nominated by teachers as this year’s student speakers. A student speaker must exemplify what a Horizon graduate looks like based on our mission:

Our mission is to build a solid foundation for life by providing students with an excellent education that integrates academic achievement, biblical truth, and character development.

A student must score high in all areas of academic achievement, biblical truth, and character development to be nominated as a speaker These categories are further defined in the “What a Horizon Christian School Graduate Looks Like” document (attached). Congratulations, Hannah Lingel and Shaun Wang.

05-28-15 - GaGa Pic Dedication

1 Timothy 4;12 "Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.”
In the GaGa Pit dedication last week, 6th grade teacher Sheila Sletmoe pointed out that success doesn't happen automatically. It's a result of habits and choices you make every day. First there was an idea (Nolan Ryan), then a proposal (Kai Robertson, Katie Porter, and Luke Rinella), and then the entire 6th grade class made a lot of choices that resulted in a finished project, which a lot of people are enjoying. Thank you to the 6th grade class for seeing an idea to completion and to Eric Sletmoe and Ricky Howard for coordinating the construction phase of the project.
If you are on campus, you quickly see that the GaGa Pit is getting kids to play together and is off the charts in fun!

05-28-15 - State Track Results

Congratulations to Coach Emma Petshow, assistant coaches Joe Petshow, Faith Kempf and Ray Kempf, and all the athletes that competed at the State Championships this past week-end! Special congratulations to senior Hannah Kempf and junior Salvador Ramirez, who earned the State Championship titles in the triple jump and 1500m respectively. Also, our boys team placed 8th and our girls team placed 9th overall, which was the best team placing our school has ever had in the state track and field meet.
Other results:
Hannah Kempf, senior — Triple Jump (1st), 200m (2nd), 100m (3rd)
Paulina Finn, freshman — Triple Jump (6th)
Savannah Hawk, sophomore — Pole Vault (9th)
Haley Becnel, Kloee Brown, Paulina Finn, Hannah Kempf — 4 x 400m (8th)
Haley Becnel, Kloee Brown, Miranda Roberts, Paulina Finn — 4 x 100 (9th, missing the medal by .01 of a second)
Salvador Ramirez, junior — 1500m (1st), 800m (4th)
Jony Nelson, sophomore — 3000m (4th)
Mason Bloomster, senior— Discus (4th)
Ryan Aldrich, senior— Discus (7th)
Quinn Roetcisoender, sophomore — Triple Jump
Jared Davis, senior — High Jump
Quinn Roetcisoender, Jared Davis, Luke Holste, Andrew Rinella — 4 x 100

05-19-15 - HCS Boys Team Places 1st and Girls Take 2nd in Big Sky District Track Meet
Horizon Christian School Boys and Girls Track Team had an outstanding weekend in Moro, OR where the OSAA District Track Meet was held. The Boys team outscored the 2nd place Sherman Huskies by 19 points and the Girls team was only two points from the 1st place Griswold/Helix Grizzlies. Senior, Hannah Kempf scored 26 individual points for the Hawks, making her the 4th highest scoring individual athlete at the District Meet. Hannah will compete at the State Meet in the triple jump, 100m high hurdles, 200m and the Girls 4x400m relay (Haley Becnel, Kloee Brown, Paulina Finn, Hannah Kempf). Senior, Mason Bloomster scored 24 individual points for the Boys team and qualified for the State Meet in Discus and 100m. Senior, Ryan Aldrich qualified for State in the Discus. Junior Salvador Ramirez was the District Champion in both the 800m and 1500m and will compete at State in both events. Sophomore, Jony Nelson placed 2nd at Districts and will compete at State in the 3000m. The boys (Quinn Roetcisoender, Jared Davis, Luke Holste and Mason Bloomster) and the girls (Haley Becnel, Kloee Brown, Savanna Hawk and Miranda Roberts) 4x100m relay teams, Savanna Hawk (Pole Vault), Paulina Finn (Triple Jump), Quinn Roetcisoender (Triple Jump) and Kloee Brown (800m) all qualified for the State Meet as Wild Cards.

05-19-15 - Horizon Varsity Golf
2015 golf teamThe Horizon Hawk Varsity Golf season ended after Districts were held on Monday and Tuesday of last week at the Quail and Merriweather courses. Individually, Ian Walker (10th grader) placed 13th overall with a score of 178. Ian was recognized on the Honorable Mention District Team. For the girls team, Anna Robison (12th grader) shot a 250 for her total at Districts. Coach Stenberg said of the season, “We saw a tremendous improvement in the team. We shot in the 400’s throughout the year and brought it down to a 399 on Tuesday. Our best was a 392, but overall, I am very pleased with how the team responded this year.”

05-19-15 - Remembering Nhu Update
In the past Horizon Christian School has supported the Remember Nhu mission. A sophomore here at HCS, Andrew Rinella will be joining a group heading to Thailand with Nhu, June 27 — July 8. The group will be visiting Myanmar where three new homes for young boys and girls will be opening. They are looking for new or gently used children’s clothing to take with them. There will be a clothing box located in the front lobby area where you can drop off clothing to be donated. Appropriate clothing for these children includes shirts (long & short sleeve), hoodies, capris and leggings, and basketball type shorts (knee length). Please no revealing clothing or clothing with skulls or ghosts on them, as this would be offensive in their culture.

05-12-15 - Annual Fundraising Breakfast
Horizon’s annual Fulfilling the Vision fundraising breakfast will be Wednesday, May 20. This breakfast is to update the members of Horizon’s Vision Builders Society about our school and to encourage others to become part of our sustaining donor base. The focus this year will be on teachers and their contribution to the program through their service. If you, or someone you know, such as a grandparent or potential donor, would like to attend or would like more information, please contact Ken Block or Carol Yates.

05-12-15 - Highlighting the 2nd Grade Class
The 2nd grade class has been particularly busy lately. The Poetry Café, a special evening of reading poetry they wrote, was followed by a special treat for moms last Friday that included lunch together and a performance of The Little Red Hen, complete with masks they created. Today the class enjoyed a tour of the new FISH Food Bank facility. There are also some exciting things happening in their science unit — their caterpillars turned into chrysalises over the weekend! Teacher Renée Rieke says they should be seeing the third stage of this life cycle in 7-10 days. Finally, a peek at their spelling list revealed some challenging words this week like “eight” and “prey”. And for those who want to be stretched, they can spell “neighborhood” and a few other more difficult words for extra credit. Way to go, 2nd graders!

05-12-15 - Lessons Taught in Class Prove to be Valuable Life Lessons
In Miss Shannon’s (Wenz) Pre-K class, students are taught many educational lessons as well as life lessons. One Bible lesson on “God’s Armor” was recently very helpful to one of our Pre-K students. The following is a portion of an e-mail sent to the teacher from the student’s mother. Mom was writing to inform Miss Shannon that the stomach bug had struck at their house. Sometimes lessons taught are applied in very creative ways!

“Your “God’s Armor” lessons were helpful. As we sat and prayed last night between his bouts of sickness, he started using “God’s Armor” to protect him from the flu. It was a great distraction and helped calm him down. Maybe not the perfect usage of the lesson but, hey, when it was midnight and I had already been through that routine a couple of times, I’ll take anything.”

05-06-15 - GA-GA Pit Plan
GAGA PitThe Ga-Ga Pit Fundraiser is underway. By asking other Horizon students to place money into a jar and “voting” for their teacher to play a game of Ga-Ga Ball against the Class of 2021, the 6th graders are hoping to raise money for the project. Once the pit is built, the teachers with the most money raised will play against the 6th graders (a.k.a. “Class of 2021”). Their goal is $800 and the deadline for voting is May 15.
A Ga-Ga Pit is the type of game everybody can play together. Sixth graders experienced it at the outdoor camp they attended last fall. and enjoyed it so much they would like to share the fun with others at Horizon They also believe it will be a great activity to bring people together, mixing up students, teachers, and classes of all ages.

05-06-15 - Track & Field Update
The track and field team continues to shine and score personal bests in their meets as they look towards the District Meet on May 16 at Sherman High School. First place winners last week included Kloee Brown (400m), Paulina Finn (high jump), Hannah Kempf (100m), and Haley Becnel, Chantelle Carter, Miranda Roberts, and Kloee Brown in the 4x100m relay. There were also lots of 2nd, 3rd and 4th-8th place winners. Congratulations!
Note: Pictures will be taken on Wednesday, May 6 immediately after school. Picture packets were handed out and are also available at the front desk.
05-06-15 - Golf Update
The golf team played at Quail Valley last week, a different course than they have played in the past and the same course where the Districts will be on May 11 and 12. Coach Oscar Stenberg says the guys, (Ian Walker, Alex Tran, RJ Hicks, Mason Bloomster, Zack Walker, and Shaun Wang / Christian Cunningham and Andy Wang) are hitting well and will be ready for Districts.

05-06-15 - Scholarships Awarded to Horizon Students
The Rotary Club gave away a total of ten scholarships this year and three of those went to Horizon seniors — Hannah Kempf, Hannah Lingel, and Shaun Wang. Each student will receive $4,000. Congratulations, students!

04-28-15 - Dual Enrollment Courses for College Credit Offered
Through Horizon Christian School and Grand Canyon University (GCU), HCS students are able to take up to a total of 32 credits (8 courses) at $52.50 a credit plus the cost of their e-book for each course. This is a great opportunity for students to receive college credit at a discounted price. To qualify, a student must be a Junior or Senior with a 3.0 cumulative GPA and motivated to complete a college level course. Juniors and Seniors who are interested in taking GCU courses over the summer should contact Nancy Rinella. In order for summer classes to be dual-enrollment they will need to be started before school ends, but can be completed after school is out for summer break. A list of classes is available at http://www.gcu.edu/Documents/OnlineDualEnrollmentCourses.pdf

04-21-15 - Horizon Student Takes First in State
Salvador Ramirez, a Horizon Junior, made the 1500m look almost easy and came away with the win, a new school record, a personal best, and a first place ranking in the state. The weather was perfect for the Apple Blossom Invitational Track Meet and there were lots of Horizon fans there to enjoy the competition. Horizon had a total of 16 personal bests at the meet, which included three school records. Even though there were larger teams and bigger com-petition, Horizon still placed in many different events, including Salvador’s outstanding run. For the complete results go to athletic.net (http://www.athletic.net/TrackAndField/MeetResults.aspx?Meet=223475#46268).

04-21-15 - Science Fair Update
Horizon participants in the ACSI Regional Science Fair achieved the highest honors - superior! Brennan Drach and Marisa Rigert traveled to Eugene to present their projects and enjoyed seeing the creativity among all the participants. Sixth grade teacher Sheila Sletmoe accompanied them and noted that these students really understand the scientific process, are very thorough in their work, and present well. Their reports, presentation boards, and presentations clearly represented their projects, making it a pleasurable learning experience for the reviewers and participants.

Thanks again to all of our students who put so much work into their projects and to the parents who support them in their endeavors!

04-21-15 - Scholarship Opportunity
Oregon Sports Hall of Fame and Museum is offering the MacTarnahan Scholarship Program 2015. The scholarship is due May 8, 2015. This organization awards up to six $3,000 scholarships to Oregon high school seniors graduating in the year 2015. Recipients are chosen on the basis of financial need, athletic accomplishments, academic achievement and community involvement. For more details or to receive an application contact Mrs. Kempf at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

04-21-15 - Activities Abound in the Horizon Elementary Classrooms!
The students in Mr. Nagreen’s 4th and 5th grade classroom have been working together creating model go-carts that roll down a ramp. In the coming days, they will be adding self-propulsion to the carts that will enable them to travel two meters on their own without a ramp or outside help. The 4th and 5th graders will continue working on projects similar to the go-carts for the next two weeks as they study Models & Design.

Second grade students have been studying insects. They are currently working with mealworm larva that is morphing into pupa, which will eventually become darkling beetles. In the future the students will be working with wax-worms, silkworms and butterflies. (That’s a lot of bugs!)
The 1st and 2nd grade students are getting ready for their Poetry Café Night being held on April 30. The students have been practicing several different styles of poems (haikus, odes, acrostics, etc.) They will be reading them at their Poetry Café Night celebration.

04-14-15 - Vision Breakfast Moved to May 20
The annual Vision Breakfast has been moved to Wednesday, May 20 at 8:30am. The breakfast was originally scheduled for Wednesday, May 6. The teachers will be involved with this event, so we will have a two hour late start for school on Wednesday, May 20.

04-14-15 - Horizon Students Participate in Speech and Debate
Eight students from Horizon’s Speech and Debate Team participated in the OSAA District 9 Tournament in Hermiston on Saturday. It was a great learning experience for all. Seniors Reuben Moegster and Shaun Wang took 3rd place in Public Forum Debate, which makes them alternates to the State competition to be held at Western Oregon University April 23-25. These two will also be participating in the Student Congress at State. Sophomore Amy Requa took 4th in Poetry. With a team of mostly sophomores and freshmen, we have great potential for the future!

04-14-15 - ACSI NW Regional Science Fair
Two Horizon students, Marisa Rigert (5th grade) and Brennan Drach (6th grade) will be traveling to Eugene on April 17 to compete in the Regional Science Fair. Marisa’s project is “Fighting Back Against Weeks” and Brennan’s is “Model Airplane Propeller Performance”.

04-08-15 - Basketball Coach Stepping Back - Position Available
After 10 years of serving the student-athlete boys basketball program, Darrin Lingel is looking at stepping back from the Head Varsity Boys Coaching position. Darrin has played a vital part in building a very successful basketball program. Words are not enough to thank him for his sacrificial service. Also stepping out at this time is Mike Totaro, assistant coach who has worked faithfully side by side with Darrin. Again, we are grateful for his sacrificial service and will miss him.

As a result, Horizon is seeking a Varsity Boys Basketball Coach. The individual would be an individual in full agreement with the Horizon Christian School statement of faith and must regard Christian character development as the most important. element The individual must have a positive attitude, model Christ on and off the court, have experience as a player either at the high school or college level, and have prior head coaching experience. The mainly volunteer position pays a stipend at the end of the season. For more information contact Ken Block at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or at (541) 436-3208.

04-08-15 - Field and Track Team Place Well at Sherman Invitational
The track & field team had a phenomenal first team meet on Saturday at the Sherman Invitational. The boys team took 2nd place overall out of 15 teams and the girls team beat out 14 teams to win! There are over 25 student-athletes turning out for track and field this year. Many had a person record, several set a new school record, and many posted 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place wins. To see full results, go to athletic.net (http://www.athletic.net/TrackAndField/School.aspx?SchoolID=46268). Congrats to all!

04-08-15 - Golf Results
The Horizon golf team beat Columbia Christian in their first match-up on Monday. Ian Walker, Shaun Wang, and Alex Trans came together for a total score of 152 against Columbia Christian’s 182. Other golfers included Zachery Walker, Christian Cunningham, Andy Wang, and Andy Hung. Congratulations team!

03-17-15 - Horizon Open House
Horizon Christian School will host an open house on Saturday, April 11th from 9am to 3pm. This is a great opportunity to learn more about Horizon Christian School, plus talk to teachers, view the curriculum, and hear about the Horizon Program.

03-17-15 - Horizon Student Wins DOAR Essay Contest
Senior Hannah Kempf won a writing contest sponsored by the local Daughters of the American Revolution and competed in a one hour essay contest on History & Civics. Her winning essay was submitted to Regionals where it was evaluated and again won. It has now been forwarded to the State level. With a win at that level, Hannah would be the recipient of a trip to Washington D.C., where she would read her essay aloud to Officials and receive a cash award. Hannah will be doing a reading of her essay to the Local DOAR, Celilo Chapter on March 18.

03-10-15 - Hawks Take 3rd in State!
The Horizon Hawks Boys Varsity Team earned 3rd place in the 1A State Basketball Tournament held in Baker City, OR over the weekend. The Hawks displayed why they are one of the top teams in the State with a commanding win over the Siletz Valley Warriors, 63-42. Our Senior Boys came out on Saturday with determination and fortitude after a difficult loss to the Nixiyaawii Eagles the day before. The Hawks took the lead against the Warriors and never looked back. The whole team showed amazing sportsmanship and maturity throughout the tournament’s ups and downs and made their Families and Fans very proud. In a unanimous vote, Mason Bloomster was selected for the tournaments 1st Team honor and Jared Davis was voted to the tournaments 2nd Team. Congratulations to our HAWKS on a spectacular SEASON!!

03-10-15 - Horizon Students Compete in Skiing
Carter Rigert, eight grader, was selected for the U16 Western Regional Team by the Pacifica Northwest Ski Association and will attend the U16 CanAm Ski Championships. The 8 girl and 8 boy team will be heading to Apex, Canada on March 10 for the races, which include Slalom, Giant Slalom and Super G. Freshman Mattea Schwab competed in the Oregon Interscholastic Ski Racing Association State Competition held at Mt. Hood Meadows over the weekend. Mattea finished 19th out of 97 in Girls Giant Slalom and 6th in League for Girls Giant Slalom and 8th in League for Combined Slalom and Giant Slalom. WAY TO GO HAWKS!!

03-10-15 - Discover More About the Board of Trustees
You are Invited: Have you ever wondered about the role of the Horizon Board of Trustees? The Board of Trustees and Superintendent would like to invite you to one of two meetings to help you be more informed. You will get infor-mation as to the organizational overview of Horizon, the role of Trustees, the role of management, the qualifications of a Trustee, overview of typical Board meetings, and examples of emerging topics discussed at Board meet-ings. The first meeting will be Monday, March 30 at 5:45 PM at the Hood River Inn in the Riverview Room. The sec-ond meeting will be Tuesday, April 7 at 5:45 PM at the Hood River Inn in the Mountain View Room. Hors d’oeuvres will be served. Sorry, no child care provided. Please let the school office know if you plan to attend. Feel free to invite a friend to join you. If you have any questions please contact Ken Block, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (541) 436-3208.

03-10-15 - GA-GA Pit Plan
Horizon 6th graders would like to build a Ga-Ga Ball Pit. It will add a missing piece in the puzzle of Horizon Christian School’s outdoor activities. The project should be undertaken because it would develop friendship and character. It is fun and has the opportunity to build character for anyone and everyone.” This is the proposal from the 6th graders who were able to experience this game at Camp Yamhill and enjoyed it so much they wanted to have the opportunity to share it here at their school. Their goal is to raise $540 for the Ga-Ga balls and pit. The 6th graders have been and continue to run several fundraisers to accomplish this goal. There will be opportunities for those interested in supporting their efforts in the days to come. A donation box will also be at the Scholastic Book Fair being held this month in the elementary commons.

03-05-15 - Graduation Meeting
There will be an organizational and planning meeting for the Class of 2015 on Thursday, March 12 at 5:30 pm in the cafeteria. At least one parent plus the graduate should attend. Important dates and an outline of responsibilities for students and the class will be shared. Please come prepared to indicate how many announcements and/or name cards you would like to order. Questions? Contact Mrs. Kempf or Mrs. Yates. We look forward to honoring the Class of 2015! (Note: This is a change from the original date set on the 2014-15 Calendar.)

03-05-15 - HCS Sophomore Andrew Rinella and Junior James David Ryan Place in Swimming & Wrestling
Swimmer Andrew Rinella competed in the 5A Columbia River Conference Districts for the Hood River Valley High School Swim Team two weekends ago. Andrew placed 3rd in the Butterfly, 1st place in 200 Free Relay, and 1st place in 400 Free Relay. State competition was held at Mt. Hood Community College this past weekend where his 200 Free Relay Team placed 8th. James David Ryan competed at Districts in the 1A Trico League for Stevenson High School, in wrestling. James David earned 5th place which qualified him as an Alternate for Regionals. 

02-25-15 - Hawks State Play-In Game
Friday, February 27 at 7pm (doors open at 5:30pm)
The Horizon Hawks host the Triangle Lake Lakers on Friday evening at 7:00pm in the Hawks’ Nest for the next round of state play-in games. A win by the Hawks on Friday evening will result in a trip to Baker High School for the State Tournament. The Lakers, who finished 2nd in their District Tournament, eliminated their opponent on Tuesday evening and advance to the play-in game against the Hawks, #1 District Champions and ranked #1 in the state. This will be the final home game for seniors Ryan Aldrich, Nick Andersen, Mason Bloomster, Jared Davis, RJ Hicks, and Wes Johnston.

Tickets to the Friday evening game may be purchased in advance at Horizon Christian School, or at the gate on Friday. Ticket prices are $6 for adults and $4 for students (any child age 5 and up through a senior in high school). Doors will open at 5:30pm.

Within the Big Sky District, both Sherman, #2 at District, and Dufur, #3 at District, won their Tuesday evening play-in games and will also be playing on Friday evening. (As a #1 District Team Horizon did not have to play on Tuesday.) Go to the OSAA website: http://www.osaa.org/activities/bbx/brackets?year=2014, if you are interested in looking at the state brackets for the play-in games.

 02-25-15 - High School Summer Internship Application Due March 9
Are you a 9-12th grade student who is interested in a career as a scientist, doctor, engineer or computer scientist? If so, you may want to apply for Saturday Academy’s Apprenticeships in Science & Engineering (ASE) Program. ASE matches scientists, engineers and technology innovators with motivated students for an eight week internship over the summer. ASE is a great way to improve your college application, and students can get school credit and a $1,000 stipend. More information is available at http://www.saturdayacademy.org/ase/student-information. The three part application is due March 9 so students should start today. For questions, contact Mattie Courtright at 503-200-5861.

02-25-15 - Grand Canyon University Informational Meeting
Monday, March 2 at 6:30pm there will be a Canyon 101 informational meeting. This meeting will highlight Grand Canyon University and our consortium agreement with them. Parents of students of any age are welcome to at-tend, considering one of the benefits of this consortium is a $5,000 per year GCU scholarship for each year a stu-dent attends Horizon Christian High School. The first part of the meeting will be general information, followed by a second part that is mandatory for the parents and students who are attending the fully paid GCU college tour trip for Juniors and Seniors. The meeting will be in the sanctuary. Please contact Mrs. Kempf or Mr. Block with any questions.

02-23-15 - Hawks Take District Championship for 5th Straight Year!!!
The Horizon Hawks became District Champions this weekend after ousting South Wasco Friday night, 58-23 then advancing Saturday night with an outstanding performance against Sherman, beating the Huskies, 48-47. The winning free throw was made by Senior Nick Andersen in the final second of a very competitive, exciting game. Congratulations to all our boys and coaches who played their hearts out and earned the Championship Title.

Saturday continued to be a big night for our HCS athletes with Mason Bloomster being awarded the Jason Halvorsen “Spirit of Basketball” award, Leagues MVP, and 1st team honors. Jared Davis also earned 1st team and Ryan Aldrich 2nd team honors. The Varsity Girls Team was awarded the Leagues’ Sportsmanship award and Jodee Hicks was named All-League Honorable Mention. Way to GO HAWKS!!
The Varsity Boys will host a State “Play In” game on Friday, March 27, time and opponent TBD this Wednesday. With a win on Friday, the boys would advance to the 1A State Basketball Tournament being held in Baker, OR on Wednesday, March 4 through Saturday, March 7.

02-17-15 - Horizon Hawks Headed to District Playoffs
The 1A District Basketball Playoffs will be in Hermiston, OR on Friday, February 20 and Saturday, February 21. Our Varsity Boys Team will be playing on the 20th at 7:30pm. The tournament is double elimination, so depending win or lose Friday, they will play again on Saturday at either 1:30pm or 4:30pm. If you are planning to spend the night in Hermiston you will want to call as soon as possible for reservations. If our boys finish 1st or 2nd at Districts we will host a state “Play In” game on Tuesday, February 24th or Friday, February 27th. The State Tournament will be held in Baker, OR on Wednesday, March 4 thru Saturday, March 7, 2015. GO HAWKS!!

Our LadyHawks are now tied for 6th place and will have a District “Play In” game, should they remain in 6th place or better. Where this “Play In” game takes place will be determined on Wednesday, February 18th.

02-17-15 - Creation Scientist Bruce Malone Speaking at HCS
“Every culture of the world displays the incredible intelligence of mankind from it’s very foundation. This talk ex-plains how historical mysteries of the past confirm key biblical events such as the creation of mankind, the fall of creation, the worldwide flood and the dispersion from Babel.” Creation Scientist Bruce Malone will be speaking with our HCS Students on Monday, February 23rd at 1:10pm. This lecture is an overview of the strongest evidence for Biblical creation through science and key historical events.

02-17-15 - 2014-2015 Yearbook On Sale Now!
It’s time to order your 2014-2015 Yearbook– and it’s easier than ever! We’re taking all orders on-line this year, through our school website. Click here to go to the Josten's website. Type in Horizon Christian School and choose the one that’s in Hood River from the list. There you will see your options, which in-clude having your book personalized with your name on the front. The cost for the yearbook is just $33.00, again this year. Don’t wait! Order now!

02-11-15 - HCS Athletes Displaying Admirable Character
For all of us who watch our Horizon Christian School Athletes, we see how much each and everyone of them has matured and grown as they learn to perform their best. But, it’s extraordinary to hear that even our competition can see what great people our athletes are becoming. Here is a recent email from an Arlington Honkers parent who wanted to pass this along:

“They were a class act playing our school (Arlington Honkers) on Friday night. We all know they could have run the score up as high as they wanted against our kids, but they did not! We know what Horizon was capable of. For all the criticism Horizon gets in this league simply because they are the best and have a great program, I must say I have new found respect for the way they played us in our home gym. Pure class! Our coach and our fans took note! As a parent of a player I appreciate it!! They were a class act!!”

02-05-15 - Elementary Principal to Resign At End Of School Year
Mrs. Kim Spotts, elementary principal, will be resigning at the end of the school year. In her letter of resignation Mrs. Spotts stated,

I have thoroughly enjoyed my tenure at Horizon. I have been stretched and blessed on many days and have clearly known that this is where God wanted me to be. I also believe that my time as a principal at Horizon Christian School is coming to an end. Horizon is a great school and I believe that God is going to continue to bless the school, the families that attend, the staff of the school and the Board of Trustees. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of this team.

Mrs. Spotts has served as elementary principal for seven years. She and her husband Bob, who is retired, look forward to enjoying more time with their grandchildren.

“Kim will be greatly missed,” commented Superintendent Ken Block. “She has taken our school to the next level and built a very strong team of wonderful Elementary teachers who will carry on with the Horizon mission.”

In a follow-up announcement, Mrs. Renée Rieke, has been named as the new elementary principal. Mrs. Rieke has been in the teaching field for 14 years and at Horizon for six of those years.

“We are excited to see the baton passed on to the very capable hands of Mrs. Renée Rieke,” said Ken Block. “Horizon Christian School will continue to move forward in pursuing excellence in Academic Achievement, Biblical Truth and Character Development with Renée’s leadership.”

2014 MissionsTeam

Baja Mission Trip
Click here to watch a YouTube video clip created by students who traveled to Baja during Christmas break.

The group included teacher Susan Wade, Kay-lee Farring, Brittney Renner, Rachel Warneking, Anna Robison, Hannah Lingel, Hannah Kempf, Eric Hoeffner, Reuben Moegster, Salvador Ramirez, Carter Rigert, the Miller family, and the Bagg family.

12-16-14 - First Lego League Robotics Team
The First Lego League (FLL) Robotics Team did great and represented Horizon well in their first meet over the week-end at WyEast Middle School! The team received the Spirit Award, a special trophy awarded to one of the 18 teams who demonstrated a great attitude and positive team spirit. The team includes Amy Drach, Brennan Drach, Luke Kristmann, Alex Lowell, Marisa Rigert, Kai Robertson, Miyana Robertson, and Colby Sommerset. They are coached by Jason Sommerset. Well done, team!

12-16-14 - Spelling Bee Winners
There are some great spellers at Horizon Christian School and they rose to the top in last week’s class Spelling Bees. Winners from each grade will represent Horizon at the District Spelling Bee to be held at Crosshill Christian School in Turner, Oregon on January 16. Congratulations, students! Now study hard and be prepared!

1st Grade: Jennica Rigert (1st), Daniel Niculescu (2nd), Aiden Krieger (alt), and Serena Sullivan (4th)
2nd Grade: Adam Hardin (1st), Josh Kristmann (2nd), Kaitlyn Leeson (alt)
3rd Grade: Colby Sommerset (1st), Dakota Maichel (2nd), Sophia DaLuz (alt)
4th Grade: Miyana Robertson (1st), Ellie Rinella (2nd), Caleb Pichura (alt), Alex Lowell (4th)
5th Grade: Ashley Clausen (1st), Luke Hardin (2nd), Emma Cervantes (alt)
6th Grade: Nolan Ryan (1st), Kai Robertson (2nd), Faith Pichura (alt)

Still to be determined - 7th and 8th grade.

12-02-14 - Scholarships Available for Seniors
The Elk’s Most Valuable Student Scholarship (December 5) and the Big Sky Scholar-Athlete Scholarship (January 30) are available to all graduating Seniors. These deadlines are approaching and certain criteria has to be met for each individual scholarship. Click here for the Big Sky Scholarship information. For more information on the Elk’s scholarship contact Mrs. Kempf.

12-02-14 - Baja Mission Trip Fundraisers
The Pita Pit in Hood River is sponsoring a fundraiser for our Baja Mission Team starting this week! We will be distributing Pita Pit Dollar Donation coupons to students and the community. Just take your coupon in to the Pita Pit in Hood River any day between Friday, December 5 and Sunday, December 14, order a regular pita and Horizon will get a dollar to support the Baja Mission Team’s trip to help in an orphanage during Christmas break. Help out further by distributing coupons to friends and family. Coupons will be available in the office starting on Wednesday, December 3rd.

12-02-14 - Swing Project Near Completion
New swings have been put up and are almost ready for use! All that remains is spreading the bark mulch and some assistance is needed with that. We are inviting students and parents to help on Saturday, December 6 at 10:00am. Bring a shovel and rake, even a wheelbarrow if you have one. The swings are the result of a grant from WalMart, a donation, and budgeted money. Thank you to Bob and Kim Spotts for overseeing the project!

12-02-14 - Band Night for New Band Students
A band orientation and rental night is scheduled for Wednesday, December 3 for new band students who don’t already have an instrument. A representative from Columbia River Music will be here to demonstrate the instruments and helps students select an appropriate one. The meeting will be in the music room. Come check it out! (Note - Horizon has a few rental instruments available for $15/month.) Beginning band sectionals will be starting on January 6.

11-20-14 - Hawks Madness and Cake Auction
Bring the family and friends to a crazy night of basketball madness this Friday evening! Activities include boys and girls varsity scrimmages, 5th & 6th grade team competition, a 50/50 raffle, 3-point soda shoot, and a cake auction. This exciting evening of activities kicks off the basketball season. (Note: If you are can provide a cake for the auction, please call Angela Bryan at 541-490-6740. There will be prizes for the best cakes.)

11-20-14 - High School Elective Overview
Money Management is about saving for college, staying out of debt, budgeting, bargain shopping, investing and building wealth - all while giving generously. Do these sound like skills we could all use? High school students at Horizon learn all of these and more in this class. Students read and discuss case studies, calculate interest on investments, compare potential earnings from investing now versus waiting 10 years and learn how not to become a slave to debt. Intertwined in all of this are class discussions about what the Bible says about wealth and giving, caring for the poor, serving God and where our priorities should be. The class uses Dave Ramsey’s Foundations in Personal Finance curriculum and is taught by Susan Wade.

11-20-14 - National Honor Society Fundraiser - Kiss a Cow!
The Horizon National Honor Society group is sponsoring “Kiss a Cow!” - a fundraiser for the Baja Mission Trip. Designated elementary and secondary staff will be in the running to “Kiss a Cow”, a delightful (clean?) calf. Students will vote for the staff person of their choice through their monetary support. The individual with the most votes/money will get to kiss that calf on December 19.

11-20-14 - Library News
Librarian Nancy Rinella gave a report at the recent Board of Trustees meeting about the progress in the library. Much time has been spent in sorting, adding and deleting books (net gain of 633 books), updating the computer system to reflect media currently in the library, and updating the list of students and other patrons in the computer system. Elementary classes visit the library each week and are treated to story time with Nancy. With the library open more hours, secondary students are also checking it out more. Total circulation from September through November was 1,046 as compared to 686 last year. Other projects include the Scholastic Book Fair, which was the best Fall book fair and the second best overall, and overseeing students who are enrolled in online classes.

11-20-14 - New and Improved Report Card for K-2nd Grades
Last year a committee researched excellent report cards for our primary students (K, 1, & 2). As a team, we developed a new and improved report card to use. Parents of these children received our “new” report card this week with the fall semester progress. With this new report card, we will no longer be using Gradelink for our younger students. Due to this change, parents will no longer need access to Gradelink. As always, we want to have good communication with our parents. If you have questions regarding your child’s classwork you may contact the teacher.

11-12-14 - Horizon Students Perform Well for Peace Poster Contest
The Lion’s Club recently held their annual peace poster contest. The theme for this year’s contest was “Peace, Love and Understanding.” Fourteen Horizon students entered original artwork, which is hanging in the 6th grade hallway.

The winners for this year’s peace poster contest are: 1st Place – Nolan Ryan (6th Grade); 2nd Place – Faith Pichura (6th Grade); 3rd Place – Ellie Bounds (6th Grade). Each student will win a cash prize and their work will be displayed with other Hood River County entrants at the Hood River Library. Congratulations!

11-11-14 - Snow Days - Safety First!
Wintry weather is headed this way! Horizon will post information for school closures and delays using several methods, but the best way to be prepared is to sign up for Flash Alert. Horizon students travel from many locations and only you know what the conditions are like in your area. On bad weather days, please use your best judgment to determine if your child (children) should come to school or sports practices. If the weather turns bad during the day and you want to pick up your child or ask that he/she come home early, please contact the school office.

  • Flash Alert – This allows you to receive an automatic text and/or email when there is an alert There is also an app available for smart phones. To sign up, use the shortcut on the Horizon Christian School website homepage.
  • Horizon Christian School Message Line — Call (541) 387-3200 and select option #4 for information on delays and closures.
  • Radio — KIHR AM 1340 / 98.3 FM will run announcements.
  • www.gorgeradio.com — Information is posted at this site when there is a reported school closure or delay.

11-11-14 - Moda Center Game for Girls Varsity Basketball Team!
The girls basketball team has watched as the boys played in the Moda Center for many years, but never experienced it themselves. This year that is going to change! On Monday, January 5, the Hawks girls team will play South Wasco in the Moda Center at 1:30pm. The Blazers will be playing the Los Angeles Lakers at 7:00pm that evening. Support the girls and order your tickets now! Ticket prices are $27, $68, and $100. ($5 per ticket comes back to the girls program.) Click here to download order form.

11-04-14 - Band Teacher Hired
Dale Hammock has been hired to teach band. Dale can perform on multiple instruments, has a broad understanding of music, and is an experienced church worship leader.
“My vision is to provide students with a well-rounded and thorough ability to perform and understand music,” commented Dale. “I look forward to teaching a proper biblical perspective and an emphasis on how the learned skills can be used to love God, love others, and bring glory to God.”
He would like to see student able to perform higher level band pieces, play in smaller groups such as quartets, be capable of creating unique music, and eventually contribute to the music scene in the area. Dale has an Associates in Computer Network Administration from Clark College in Washington and attended Pensacola Christian College in Florida for a short time where he studied Pastoral Ministries.

11-04-14 - Calendar Sales to Benefit Baja Missions Trip
Beautiful Columbia Gorge Calendars, with photography by local artist Peter Marbach, are being sold by the Baja Mis-sion Team (students heading to Mexico during Christmas break to help in an orphanage) and National Honor Society members to raise money for the mission trip. The cost is $12.50, with 50% or more going to the mission team. Help sup-port the team and take care of your Christmas shopping at the same time! Calendars can be purchased at the office or from any NHS or Baja Mission Team member. Checks may be made out to Horizon Christian School. ContactThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you would like to offer some for sale at your place of business.

11-04-14 - Team Does Well at Forensic Tournament
Amy Requa, Micah Pichura, Reuben Moegster, William Decker, Salvador Ramirez, and Savanna Hawk traveled to Tilla-mook, Oregon for the speech and debate competition on Saturday. The Forensic Team swept the public forum event at the Oktoberfest Tournament with 1st and 2nd place wins in both the open and novice events. Congratulations, team!

11-03-14 - Hawks #2 in Special District 6
The soccer team gave it their all at the championship game on Friday evening against a “Goliath” team.  At half time the Hawks were on top 2-0 but the depth of the Life Christian team wore down the Hawks in the second half and they scored twice, tying up the game.  In overtime, the Hawks hung on with grit and determination, but Life scored in overtime making the final score 2-3 in a very hard fought battle. Several Hawks were named for District awards - Grant Lynn (1st Team), Salvador Ramirez (2nd Team), Luke Holste (Honorable Mention), and Wes Johnston (Honorable Mention).

10-27-14 - Soccer Awards Dessert
The Soccer Awards Dessert will be Monday, November 3 at 6:00pm in the sanctuary. Please bring your clean uniform and a plate of finger foods to share.

10-27-14 - Hawks Volleyball
Horizon Varsity Girls volleyball brought their season to a conclusion with pizza and awards last week. Awards went to:

  • Most Valuable Player - Brittney Renner
  • Coaches Award for Leadership - Anna Robison
  • Christian Character - Hannah Lingel and Sarah Ryan
  • Most Improved Player - Soley Finn

10-27-14 - High School Elective Overview
Jesus in the Movies is a class that primarily consists of watching films about the life and story of Jesus Christ. Many of these movies feature key scenes and instances from the synoptic gospels Matthew, Mark, and Luke. The students watch and compare the films through note taking, essay writing, and collaborative projects. The class is also intended to teach students more about cinematography and the art of movie making in addition to the life of Jesus. The Christian perspective is integrated through discussion and reflection of how the various movies portray Jesus and describe His life and ministry during His time on earth.

10-27-14 Scholastic Book Fair Coming to Horizon
The library will be hosting a Scholastic Book Fair November 3-7 in the elementary commons area. The school will receive 50% of the profit for everything that is purchased and those funds will go directly to buying books for Horizon's classrooms and library. This is a great chance to get some Christmas shopping done early! There will also be an “All for Books” donation box. Students or parents may donate money to buy books for the kids at the Foundation for His Ministry Mission located in Baja, Mexico where Horizon students will be ministering during Christmas break.

10-21-14 - Mission Trip to Baja Scheduled in December
Junior and Sr. High School students have an opportunity this December 28 thru January 3, 2015 to visit and serve at an orphanage near Vicente Guerrero, Mexico, located on the Pacific side of the Baja. The students will take part in different work assignments at the orphanage, child evangelism, devotions and much more. The group will be accompanied by adult chaperones, and are looking for an additional adult male to join the team. The ministry, which started as a small orphanage, was founded by Chuck and Charla Pereau in 1966 and has grown to become a multi-faceted ministry. The organization, Foundation for His Ministry, is a mission society whose purpose is to glorify God by making disciples of Jesus Christ. To this end they share and demonstrate God’s love by meeting basic spiritual, emotional, physical and educational needs of those in and around Vicente Guerrero. For more information go to www.ffhm.org. Shannon Miller and Susan Wade are team leaders and can be contacted at the school for more information.

10-21-14 - Horizon Staff Commended
In a special tribute at the staff in-service on Friday, Fire Chief Devon Wells from the Hood River Fire Department commended Horizon Christian School staff for the actions that were taken during Jim Brown’s heart attack. Certificates were presented to the team that provided direct assistance and an “Award of Exemplary Action” given to Horizon Christian School. The paramedic team that responded to the emergency was also present. Chief Wells noted that in most situations, those individuals on site are actually the first responders and knowing what to do can save a life.

10-21-14 - Sports News
It was a good week-end for the Hawks! The soccer team beat City Christian in a decisive game on Friday. Final score: 6-3. On Saturday night the volleyball team beat Firm Foundation Christian School – 3 sets to 1 set in their final match of the season. Congratulations, teams!

10-21-14 - Winter Sports Meeting
Tuesday, October 21 at 6:30pm
All students in grades 5-12 have an opportunity to play on a Hawk basketball team this winter. Students who are planning to participate or considering it, should attend the Winter Sports meeting on Tuesday, October 21 at 6:30pm along with at least one parent. Interim Athletic Director Ken Block and coaches will discuss expectations, schedules, and other important information. The meeting will be in the gym.

10-14-14 Annual Moda Center Basketball Event on December 15th
The game this year is early! Order your Tickets Now!
The Horizon Hawks will face off against the Nixya’awii Eagles in this year’s game at the Moda Center (Rose Garden). Cheer on the Hawks as they play in the Moda Center at 1:30 PM and then enjoy a Trail Blazer game that evening. One ticket gets you in to both games and $5 will come back to the school from each ticket sold. Choose the level of your ticket – from $27 to $130. Order forms are attached and are also available in the school office. The Portland Trail Blazers will play the San Antonio Spurs in the evening at 7:00 PM. This is a special Horizon Christian tradition and school will be dismissed for all students at 11:30 AM. Click here to download order form

10-14-14 - Fire Safety Day
Students in kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd grade were visited by Sparky the Firedog and several firemen today. They saw a video about fire safety and discussed it, practiced the drop and roll, then crawled through a “tunnel”. They also saw the equipment that a fire truck has and then climbed through it. But the best thing - they manned the water hose and put out a “house fire”! Great fun for all! (click on thumbnails below to view full images)

10-14-14 - Scheduled Conferences
Elementary teachers have scheduled conferences with families on Wednesday and Thursday. If you don’t have a scheduled time, please call your child’s teacher. Parents of students in grades 7-12 have two options. Arena style conferences will be on Thursday from 3:00 - 7:30. Teachers will be available in the cafeteria where you and your student may meet briefly with each teacher to review your student's progress. The other option is a scheduled appointment with a teacher or teachers on Thursday from 1:00 - 3:00.

10-04-14 - PSAT for 10th & 11 Graders
The Preliminary/SAT, which measures critical reading, mathematical reasoning and writing skills will be administered to Horizon’s 10th and 11th grade students on Wednesday, October 15. The PSAT prepares students for the SAT, a test required by most colleges and universities. The exam will begin at 8:00am at the Hood River campus of Columbia Gorge Community College.

10-07-14 - JV Coaching Position Filled
Chris Wells has accepted the JV boys basketball team coaching position. He has experience as both a player and coach, and a continued commitment to the success of Horizon and the basketball program.

10-07-14 - Jr High Students Explore Geology and History
Nearly 30 junior high students participated last week in a four-day, three night camping trip in eastern Oregon where they explored geology and history. There was lots of learning about the Noah flood, the ice age, and the Missoula flood from actual geological evidence. They compared that evidence with secular, traditional theories and the con-clusion from all 27 students - the evidence points to a young earth. Students saw clam shells and other sea life at a 5,000 foot elevation, fossils and quartzite, visited the Painted Hills, saw history in museums and working historical ranches. They built student to student, student to teacher relationships, and grew in their understanding of a powerful and mighty God.

09-25-14 - Jr High Four Day Retreat
Grades 7th and 8th will be traveling to John Day where they will explore and learn about creation through geology and biology. For additional information, please call the school office.

09-25-14 - 6th Grade Outdoor School
Sixth Graders will be traveling to Yamhill, Oregon for an outdoor school adventure, including activities in science and exploring the great outdoors. For more information, please call the school office.

09-16-14 - Love & Logic® Opportunity
Horizon parents have been offered an opportunity to receive training in the internationally acclaimed Love and Logic approach. This training will help us provide an even better orderly and caring school environment that helps students reach their highest potential.

09-09-14 Library News
Nancy Rinella, our new librarian and hired as a result of the School Improvement Grant, has been making some great progress in the library — cataloguing new books, getting up to speed on the computer system, sorting, organ-izing, and making it an even better place for students to visit. She has put together a list of books that we would like to have (see attachment). This particular list is for our high school students and we are, therefore, looking for full versions and not an abridged version.

Nancy got a peek into the joys of being a librarian during last week’s 2nd grade library time. While reading a book that mentions a big whale, but isn’t the focus of the story, the students had an impromptu discussion about who was in the belly of the whale in the Bible. Fun stuff!

09-09-14 Staffing Update

Due to family circumstances, our long term music teacher is unable to continue. We are advertising and pursuing several options.  However, if you know of someone who is a music teacher, please let them know of this opportunity.
In the interim, jazz band students are under the direction of Faith Kempf and elementary band is postponed until we have an instructor who can teach the fundamentals well to an excited, new group of band of students. Shannon Mil-ler, school counselor, is excited about using some of this time to teach elementary students. Shannon will be teach-ing solid, Biblical life skills to elementary students — something that she was looking forward to doing, but didn’t know how or when. Students will be learning about emotions (through Legos), how to be a good friend (Being Buck-et Fillers), conflict resolution (with Despicable Me minions), anger management (with Angry Birds), anti-bullying, and apologies, They will also be discussing body safety, appropriate touch, and about “sticky people” and what to do about them. If you have any questions or would like to see any of the literature Shannon is using, please feel free to contact her.

09-09-14 Robotics Time
It is Robotics time — time to start programming and building again. Last year was Horizon’s first ever Robotic team and they competed well! The group will kick off on Sunday, September 14 from 5pm — 7pm at the Rigert’s boat garage. Email Trey Rigert at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call him at (541) 490-1122 if you would like more infor-mation. This group is for students ages 15 and older.
For younger students there is First Lego League (FLL), a team engineering and science program for kids ages 9-14 that culminates in an international robotics tournament. The first competitions that local teams participate in are the Columbia Gorge FLL Qualifying Tournaments in December. We have a parent forming a team this year and he is looking for 2-3 more interested students and parents to participate. The team will meet twice a week to work on their project together, leading up to the December event. If you are interested, please contact Jason Sommerset, through email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or feel free to call him at (503) 260-2838.

07-24-14 Athletic Director to Retire
Oscar Stenberg is hanging up his athletic director's hat and will focus on teaching and his grandkids. Filling those shoes has been difficult and two people are going to do it. Faith Kempf, secondary principal, will be taking over along with Emma Neiworth-Petshow, who will assist her.

When you think of Horizon Christian School sports, it is natural to think of Oscar Stenberg. He and a couple other athletic directors before him, developed the program from a bunch of kids playing basketball (or bump!) on the blacktop to a thriving, competitive athletic program that includes six sports - soccer, volleyball, basketball, baseball, golf, and track and field. Oscar has done it all - set up the schedule, attended the meetings, worked with the refs, chalked the soccer field, pulled out bleachers, cleaned up the locker rooms, coached, cheered, and mediated. Oscar's wife, Helen, even washed all the towels after each game. Athletes have been coached not only in skills, but in behavior and character. They read the OSAA sportsmanship banner together before each game and knew the expectations were high. Oscar's theme has been that the soccer pitch, basketball court, and baseball diamond are all "classrooms" where relationships are formed, character is developed along with skills, and God's love is shared with all.

The team of Kempf and Neiworth-Petshow share that same commitment to a program that honors the mission of Horizon. Faith Kempf will be the athletic director and Emma Neiworth-Petshow the athletic coordinator. Emma has been the track and field coach for the past three years, so is familiar with Horizon and the sports program. She competed at the collegiate level in pole vaulting and enjoys sharing her knowledge of track and field as a coach. Emma received a Bachelor of Science degree from Portland State University in Health Studies: Health Science and General Science and is currently pursuing a doctorate in naturopathic medicine at the National College of Natural Medicine. She also has strong computer and organizational skills along with people skills, which she has used with her health and science knowledge as a research assistant and an intern at both the Clackamas County Health Department and Oregon Health and Sciences.

06-04-14 - New Pre-Kindergarten Director / Teacher Selected 
Shannon Wenz has been hired to replace Christy Berthold for the position of Pre-Kindergarten Director / Teacher. Ms Wenz would love to meet her future students at the upcoming elementary concert on Thursday, June 5th.

05-28-14 - Horizon Student Awarded Ford Foundation Scholarship 
Austin Requa, a senior, has been awarded the Ford Foundation Scholarship. The renewable scholarship, which was given to 120 students this year out of more than 5,000 applicants, covers 90% of each student's unmet financial need for each academic year. The selection process involved both an application and an interview.

Austin's resume starts with a 4.0 GPA. He is National Honor Society President, on the Student Leadership Team, is an Eagle Scout and volunteers throughout the community. He is an athlete, competing in basketball, soccer, golf, and track & field and has been team captain and received numerous awards as an athlete. He is an accomplished pianist and four-time State Gold Medalist in Piano Baroque Competition. He was Elks Student of the Month in October 2013 and earned several teacher awards. Austin's parents are Shaun and Brett Requa and his sister, Amy, is a freshman at Horizon Christian. Austin will be attending Linfield College in McMinnville, Oregon with a major in pre-med and a minor in music. He plans to go on to medical school and become a surgeon.

05-16-14 School Improvement Grant Received
Horizon Christian School applied for, and received approval of a School Improvement Grant which will allow us to increase our teaching staff, thereby offering more opportunities for existing students and make Horizon even more attractive for potential new students. Funds from the grant are over and above our current budget levels and will allow Horizon to do the following:

  • Add one new full time faculty member with a math and science specialization
  • Add a half time Computer Science professional to the staff
  • Add a half time Library professional to the staff
  • Offer additional Student Financial Aid

The School Improvement Grant combined with our recent Capital Campaign to reduce debt further strengthens the program at Horizon for the future. The grant is an annual grant, eligible for annual renewals as long as Horizon re-mains true to its existing mission of teaching students from a Biblical world view perspective which includes biblically related instruction at every grade level.

05-16-14 - Pre-Kindergarten Director/Teacher Retires
Christy Berthold, pre-kindergarten director and teacher, will be joining her husband in his retirement at the end of this school year. Christy has been giving children that first taste of "school" for eleven years and will be missed!

05-16-14 - Girls Basketball Coach Steps Down
Chad Leeson, girls basketball coach, is "stretched a little too thin" and has announced that he is stepping down. Chad is pastor of a church in Stevenson and has at least one other job. In addition, he and his wife, Leslie, have a young family they are parenting. All that keeps him very busy, so as much as he enjoys coaching, he has determined that it is something he will have to give up for right now. 

02-26-14 - Robotics Team Advances to State Competition
Horizon's robotics team advances to state competition this weekend n Portland. The first-ever Horizon robotics team qualified by finishing in first place at a 23-team competition held at Hood River Valley High School in January. It was the first-ever tournament for the Horizon team, consisting of eighth-grader Zach Barbour, and seventh-graders Carter Rigert, Andrew Wells and Alex Petshow - and they were competing against older, more experienced students. The team has been working since fall under the direction of coaches Trey Rigert and Chris Barbour to design, build, and program their robot.

02-17-14 - Rick Aldrich Coaches Award
In 2009 Rick Aldrich joined the Horizon coaching staff as the junior high boys basketball coach. Three years later, in October 2012, the Horizon family lost Rick in a tragic work accident. During his time as a coach Rick passed on to his players much more than basketball. He knew that there were other important lessons that could be learned through the sport — things like integrity, work ethic, selflessness, dependability, self-discipline, a positive attitude, and being engaged in the ever ongoing process of becoming like Christ.

To honor Rick Aldrich and to continue to promote the character qualities he stood for, Horizon Christian School instituted the Rick Aldrich Coaches Award to be presented each year to a male and female basketball player who best represents the qualities that were so important to Rick.

At Friday evenings basketball games two individuals were recognized as the first recipients of the Award, Katie Tolbert and Matt Totaro. Katie is a 2013 Horizon Christian graduate and is currently a freshman at Oregon State University. Matt Totaro is a Horizon Christian senior. Making the presentations were Rick's wife Tonya and his children, M'Randa, Ryan, and McKenna.

02-04-14 - Hawks Win It!
Friday night was a big game - and the Hawks came through in a big way against #1 in the eastern division of the Big Sky League, the Ione Cardinals. The Hawks took control from the beginning although the Cardinals challenged them with a couple streaks of sizzling three-point shots. The Hawks took it 88-57. It was some great fun in a packed Hawks Nest.

01-22-14 - Debt Reduction Campaign a Success
Horizon is pleased to announce the results of the first phase of our capital campaign to eliminate the debt on the campus. The campaign raised a total of $2.7 million dollars of current and future gifts, which has resulted in the elimination of $2.2 million dollars of current debt and a reduction in annual interest expense of $138,000 per year. Nearly one third of the gifting came from holders of our member notes who collectively reduced the rate of interest they had been receiving either retroactively or prospectively, and made gifts of principal for a grand total of $800,000 dollars. The balance of the gifting came from donors and members of the Board of Trustees as challenge gifts, which helped encourage member note holders make gifts to the school.

"This has been an incredibly successful campaign to reduce the school debt!" commented Superintendent Ken Block. "We are very grateful for the generosity of these individuals who partner with us. We are praising the Lord and look forward to the day when the member note debt is fully paid.

12-11-13 - Spelling Bee Competitions
Grade level competitions will be held this week. The top two winners at each grade level have the opportunity to compete at the district level on January 17th at Crosshill Christian School in Turner, Oregon. Tues, Dec 10 - grades 1-4 Wed, Dec 11 - grades 5-6

11-19-13 Bridgetown Service Project Follow-up
Many Horizon Christian students experienced how truly upside down our world is at Night Strike last Thursday night. Organizing and traveling with 124 people, 102 of them 7th-12th graders, is no small task. Throw in the fact that the group would be traveling into a setting substantially outside their comfort zone, and it becomes even more challenging. Students, parents, and staff did just that, traveling to Portland to serve the homeless with Bridge Town Ministries under and near the Burnide Bridge in downtown Portland. The goal of the service project - that the seeds of compassion and gratitude that were planted will grow into maturity in the hearts of each participant. (read full article)

A few highlights and observations:

  1. Students first experienced a worship, orientation, and training time along with other volunteers.
  2. All agreed the people and conditions they encountered were outside their comfort zones.
  3. Many were truly thankful they are not personally homeless!
  4. Many said they really hope they are able to remember beyond this particular weekend just how blessed they really are.
  5. Many thought it was both simpler and more difficult than they expected, challenging, awkward, fun.
  6. The observation from one group leader - "Sometimes it takes being completely removed from your comfort zone to develop the root of compassion Jesus wants us to have."

10-08-13 - Victorian Values for the 21st Century 

We all know that character matters. Developing good character is one of the educational pillars at Horizon Christian School, along with academic excellence and Biblical worldview. The attached article published in The Globe and Mail articulates just how important discipline, conscientiousness and diligence really are in today's economy. The article contends that individuals who are self-regulated and have good work habits will rise above others who may have credentials or connections. Read more...

09-23-13 - Board of Trustees Report
Semi-monthly except during the summer and include: Don Hoffman (chair), Dan Boyden (vice-chair), Nancy Rinella (secretary/treasurer), Dennis Bokovoy, Ron Jensen, Darrin Lingel, Paul Mansur, and Bob Spotts. School chaplain Bruce Parker, is also an ad hoc member as are Ken Block (superintendent), Carol Yates (business manager/ devel-opment director) Kim Spotts (elementary principal), and Faith Kempf (secondary principal).

Highlights from the recent Board of Trustee meeting:

School Safety & Security (Sean Spellecy, NewDawn Security) — Horizon Christian School was commended for achieving Level II "Excellence" in safe school operations. The school began working with NewDawn security in March 2012 to improve safety and security including prevention, policies and procedures, and school operations. The current rating for Horizon Christian these areas is 3.53 compared to a 1.6 average score among other schools.

Teaching Position Project - The board of trustees is in the initial stage of developing position statements on several subjects (e.g. biblical marriage, mysticism, etc)

Enrollment - Current enrollment is 219 students (budgeted for 206 students). This is a 7% increase from June 2013 and a record starting enrollment. There are 57 new students as compared to 46 in 2012, with two new international students. A higher percentage of new students are from The Dalles — 32% as compared to an average of 10% in previous years.

Dress Code - The standardized dress code remained unchanged, but was condensed and the implementation pro-cess is more performance based for students.

Teacher Observation/Evaluations - HCS will be using the Danielson Framework for measuring teacher effective-ness. The process will take place over the entire year and involves observations (pop-ins and formal with specific areas to observe), peer observations, evaluation, and patterns of student achievement. The aim is to provide con-structive feedback that will create opportunities for the teacher to develop and grow.

Elementary Principal - All teachers returned, but there was a change in the teaching aide position for the 3rd / 4th grade blended class both in time allocated and individual. Some science curricula was upgraded. In chapel they are taking a key word from Philippians 4:8 and discussing it with this year's theme in mind, "Living right side up in an up-side down world."

Secondary Principal - De-blocked math and English so there is now a mix of students by grade in those classes. Added a forensics class and club (speech and debate), which will be competing throughout the state. Enhancing the internship program to include more students, additional quality opportunities, and increased expectations. In chapel staff is developing a format which will meet the needs of a range of spiritual maturity levels.

07-16-13 - Horizon Hires Principal for Grades 7-12
Horizon Christian School is pleased to announce that Faith Kempf has been appointed as secondary principal. Kempf has been teaching for 22 years with 12 of those years at Horizon Christian School. She has a Bachelor's Degree in General Biology from Washington State University and a Washington Teaching Endorsement – All Sciences.

"We looked far and wide," commented Superintendent Ken Block, "and then realized we had God's person for the job right here in our midst. Faith has demonstrated her leadership and team building skills over and over. That, along with her love for the students and passion for education, make her the right person for the job."

During her time as a teacher Kempf has led the way in several innovative programs that are designed to take advantage of the flexibility that a smaller school environment allows. The result is a more individualized approach to education that better meets the needs of each student. She is also trained to administrate Advanced Placement programs in schools and coordinates AP classes at Horizon.

"We believe that Faith is well qualified to take Horizon to that next level of excellence with her knowledge of the school, strong team skills, and a wonderful heart for the students and the Lord," noted board chair Don Hoffman. "Faith will be building on what is already in place, fine-tuning our strengths, and making those improvements that will result in a truly fine Christian school in the Columbia Gorge area."

Kempf and her husband, Ray, have three children. They attend Grace Baptist in White Salmon where they are involved in discipleship and outreach. Her other interests include reading, gardening, and raising chickens and peacocks.

Horizon Christian is an inter-denominational school, regionally accredited by the Northwest Association of Accredited Schools, educating more than 200 students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. Horizon's students, teachers, professional staff and board of directors attend over 25 churches throughout the Columbia Gorge. Horizon is committed to providing a "Second to None" education taught from a Biblical worldview. Horizon Christian School is located at 700 Pacific Avenue, Hood River. For more information about enrollment, contact the school at (541) 387-3200.

02-20-13 - Teacher In-service Report

Teacher's heard an interesting presentation from Bob Spotts, Board Trustee - Excellence Committee, on the topic of introverts and extroverts in the classroom at last week's in-service training. Teachers were encouraged to recognize the differences, their strengths, and needs. Bottom line - "Everyone shines given the right light. For some, it is a Broadway spotlight, for others, a lamp-lit desk." Elementary teachers also continued work on aligning their curriculum with the state core standards specifically in the areas of writing and language arts. In addition, they lined up curriculum thematically with other grade levels so that Horizon teachers are teaching similar topics at the same time and can therefore better collaborate with each other. Secondary staff explored options through the Association of Christian Schools (ACSI) online training program.

01-29-13 - Horizon Receives Grant
Horizon Christian School received it's third grant in three years from the Stover Foundation. The $10,000 grant is for the development of tools and curriculum for teaching a biblically based forum on the US Constitution. The goal is to increase the impact to a greater number of schools in Oregon by providing tools and curriculum to help a student learn about the Constitution and it's biblical foundation. Teacher Jared Nagreen, who wrote the grant, noted, "This grant will allow us to compile a wealth of resources in a 'market ready' boxed curriculum set to be distributed to Christian schools in Oregon. This is a great opportunity!" A total of $30,000 has now been received from the Stover Foundation.

01-29-13 - Christian School ASCI Facts
The attached fact sheet is a summary of a recent survey that includes statistics on the number of students who attend private school, and compares the responses from Christian and private schools to others schools in the areas of safety, graduate preparedness, spiritual and cultural issues, academics, and top priorities of the school. The survey was conducted by Cardus Education Survey (CES) and was the topic of an article in Christian School Education (CSE), a magazine published by the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI). Click here to read the Facts (PDF)

01-29-13 - Horizon Receives Grant

Horizon Christian School received it's third grant in three years from the Stover Foundation. The $10,000 grant is for the development of tools and curriculum for teaching a biblically based forum on the US Constitution. The goal is to increase the impact to a greater number of schools in Oregon by providing tools and curriculum to help a student learn about the Constitution and it's biblical foundation. Teacher Jared Nagreen, who wrote the grant, noted, "This grant will allow us to compile a wealth of resources in a 'market ready' boxed curriculum set to be distributed to Christian schools in Oregon. This is a great opportunity!" A total of $30,000 has now been received from the Stover Foundation.

01-14-13 - Board of Trustees Meeting Highlights (from January 7)
Counseling update (Shannon Miller) - Shannon Miller, a qualified and experienced counselor, has taken on the role of working with students who have been identified as needing some special focus. She meets with those students to determine whether they are just having a bad day or need some additional intensive help that can be directed to par-ents, a pastor, and/or Christian counselor. Mrs. Miller indicated that she always notifies parents when she meets with students. She described how working with kids looks different depending on their age. Looking forward she would like to develop a newsletter for families with parenting tips and website resources, and work with elementary students on dealing with emotions. Her intervention has proven to be a real help to students.

Reflections from a new teacher (Betsy Roberts) - Mrs. Robertson, 1st grade teacher, is new to Horizon this year. Before moving to Hood River she was a teacher in the Beaverton school district. She compared being a teacher in a public school and a Christian school — she really appreciates the opportunity to teach the Bible and integrate biblical concepts into all classes. She also enjoys the flexibility that she has and the opportunity to talk and pray with stu-dents, making a connection between Bible stories and real life settings. Betsy and her husband have two children at Horizon and as parents, they are grateful for the wholly integrated training their children are receiving and the oppor-tunities for discussion that creates at home.

Firearms at Horizon for emergency response - Trustees shared thoughts and discussed options. Staff shared the lockdown procedure that staff and students are being trained in: avoid, deny, and defend. Further discussion was tabled until the next meeting.

Affordable Health Care law - Trustees discussed the impact of the law as it relates to the school's stand on abortion. Several organizations have conscientiously decided not to participate and are involved in federal suites because they cannot support the law as a result of the contraceptive clause. Trustees determined that these issues would be ad-dressed through school policy rather than direct opposition to the law.

ACSI annual survey results - Each year the Association of Christian Schools, International surveys their member schools in several areas including salaries and tuition. The average tuition increase last year for northwest ACSI schools was 3.24% compared to 3.0% at Horizon. Starting teachers at Horizon make 126% of ACSI schools and 91% of public schools. A Horizon teacher with an MA and experience is making 113% of ACSI schools and 61% of public schools.

Board Challenge grant gift update - Horizon received a $100,000 gift in October along with a challenge to match it. The donation was matched through gifts from trustees totaling $115,000 and year-end giving of $13,500 for a total of $128,500.

01-09-13 - HCS Joins National Honor Society
The purpose of the National Honor Society is "to create enthusiasm for scholarship, to stimulate a desire to render service, to promote leadership, and to develop character in the students of secondary schools". Horizon is in the process of accepting information from qualified students to select the charter members for this new chapter. . Membership is for 10th-12th graders who demonstrate excellence in the areas of academics, service, leadership, and character. Students with a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher received an invitation and information packet recently and are encouraged to complete the information form in order to be considered for membership. Forms should be submitted to Mrs. Wade, our NHS faculty advisor, by end of school day on Friday, January 11. The faculty council will then review the information and identify those students who meet all of the criteria. Names of those selected for membership will be announced on Friday, January 25. If your 10th, 11th, or 12th grader received an invitation to pursue membership, please encourage him or her to complete the form right away as signatures from current and past bosses, coaches, and other supervisors may be needed.

03-05-12 - 1A State Champs!

Congratulations to the Hawks Basketball team as they won their final game of the 1A basketball tournament against the McKenzie Eagles with a final score of 58-46. Individual awards included Jake Wells, First Team; Sam Anthony and Matt Totaro, Second Team; and Max Totaro, Player of the Game. It was an intense, action packed, fun filled week-end. Thank you to Coaches Darrin Lingel, Mike Totaro, and Joe Petshow, and the team. They worked hard for many months and the results reflected all that hard work and their God-given gifts. Thank you also to all the people behind the scenes. It is quite a commitment of time and energy!

Horizon Again Receives Highest Approval Rating from Accrediting Organization

Horizon Christian School once again received the highest approval rating possible from the Northwest Accreditation Commission. The annual rating is based on a report that was submitted in the fall. The report focuses on eight standards including mission and expectations for student learning, curriculum, instruction, assessment, leadership and organization, school services, facilities and finance, and culture of continual improvement. Horizon Christian was specifically commended for upgrading instructional technology, efforts in leadership and organization, and continued work in the curriculum review area.

02-21-12 - Board of Trustee Meeting Highlights

  • Superintendent Ken Block and teacher Jared Nagreen reported on the You Lost Me! conference they recently attended. The conference focused on the culture shift and how to better meet the changing needs of our youth.
  • Superintendent Ken Block reported on the school safety and security program being considered. In the initial evaluation, Horizon Christian rates high in the "school climate" category. Current policies, processes and priorities are being reviewed.
  • Report on Network Management Strategy – with the growth of technology and the use of laptops, tablets, and smart phones the needs are shifting. Staff has received recommendations and is reviewing options.
  • Preliminary report on Customer Survey – final results will be available soon
  • Working on an intentional plan for developing leaders beginning at the 8th grade level that involves committed mentors over several years including summers.

11-29-11 - Board of Trustees Meeting Highlights

  1. Presentation - College and Career Planning program being developed by high school staff (see our website)
  2. Discussed input from school architect group regarding the feasibility of an on-site baseball field - voted to not develop baseball field.
  3. Character Development pilot program - Heard plan for intentionally mentoring students beginning in their 8th grade year and continuing through their senior year with a goal of developing servant-leaders. The concept partners with Young Life and would include a camp experience during each summer first as an attendee and finally as part of the work crew. Needs - committed mentors, funding.
  4. Dress code with Student Leadership group - Board Chair Don Hoffman reported on his meeting with the secondary Student Leadership group and advising them on how to address a board policy such as dress code. The group has some thoughts about possible changes that they would like to present. Administrative staff noted that the students are doing well in complying with the current dress code.
  5. Enrollment - 215 students (started the year with 212 students); the budget is based on 204 students.
  6. Standardized achievement testing - After reviewing data, the excellence committee has recommended a change to the Terra Nova 3 standardized test beginning this next spring.
  7. Cafeteria Completion Plan - Estimate that it would take $30,000 in materials to get limited conditional use for lunches only. We do have some sheet rock and suggested that volunteers could help get that up.
  8. Spring Formal Policy Discussion - Approved off campus formal dance at the Spring Formal. Content and format must reflect Horizon standards as noted in the Visual and Performing Arts Policy (see Policy Manual). Dancing instruction may occur on campus during after school hours at designated times with a faculty sponsor in attendance during the instructional period.

11-01-11 - He "Got it!"
One of our goals at Horizon Christian School is to integrate a Biblical worldview into what we teach, say, and do. But a teacher often wonders — "Do they hear it? Are they learning it? Is it making a difference?" Two teachers were recently rewarded with a little glimpse of success. After studying verses in his kindergarten classroom about all things being possible with God (Phil. 4:13), a student later shared in his art class, "Things are only impossible in your mind."

09-28-11 Character Development at the Secondary Level

The Horizon Christian School Board of Trustees has three strategic goals for the school. One of those goals is Character Development including: a) facilitate positive mentor relationships, both adult to student and peer to peer, b) engaging and effective Chapel and Bible curriculum, and c) develop life enriching activities outside the classroom with an emphasis on servant leadership in the community.

It is one thing to say that character development is part of our mission, but what does that really look like? Secondary staff discussed that question in their in-service time prior to the beginning of the school year. In their discussions, they further defined and developed elements of the Character Development Plan.

The Jonah Ministries Fall Retreat is an example of one opportunity that is designed to facilitate positive mentor relationships. Several mentors and alumni were involved in the event this year and each grade level gender group was assigned a counselor. Pastor Tommy Moon from Shepherd of the Valley led a series of chapels on Romans 12, which has been selected by the Student Leadership Team as the theme for the year. Throughout the retreat there was an intentional focus on encouraging students to connect and place their lives before God. This resulted in a very positive and worthwhile experience.

Each Friday students are involved in chapel (two times/month) and a small mentoring group (two times/month). Chapels are led by school and community leaders and some will be gender split. Mentors work with a group of three to four gals/guys during small group time. In preparation for this time, the mentors participate in training and follow-up discussions in which they share and discuss their plans, concerns, and challenges.

Each student in grades 7—12 is also in a homeroom which meets on Fridays. Teachers designed this time to implement a three-fold purpose including knowing their students personally, and where they are academically, emotionally, and spiritually. Students will also use this time to develop service learning opportunities. They will review various non-profit organizations they might work with, and each homeroom will identify class projects and develop a plan for the year. Homeroom time will also be used for post secondary planning and training (e.g. PSAT and SAT information, the college application process, etc).

The New Parent / Student Orientation was newly implemented this year. One purpose is to clearly articulate the school's mission, vision, and expected outcomes and how that relates to students in a day-to-day practical way. "Connection points" — teacher to student, teacher to parent, student to student, and parents to parents — also help develop strong relationships.

The Student Leadership Team also mentors and assists other students, particularly new students. One of the goals of the staff is to implement a student leadership training curriculum program with application for secondary students.

The goal of these activities is to connect with students in a meaningful way, knowing them, challenging and encouraging them in their development. The Character Development Plan is an on-going plan which the staff will continue to discuss, revise, and implement.

09-20-11 - Board of Trustee Meeting Highlights The recent Boart of Trustee meeting was held September 12th with the following results:

  1. Considered background and application of potential new board trustee – committee to meet with candidate
  2. Considered recommendations from past teacher and progress in those areas (e.g. technology plan, attendance/ tardy policy, dress code, teaching Spanish at the elementary level)
  3. Reviewed proposal for on-site baseball field – decided to obtain input from school architect group regarding feasibility of using school field space.
  4. Heard report regarding the elements of the Character Development Plan (story to follow)
  5. Admissions Policy – reviewed recommended changes that continue to set the standard high, but makes it possible for a student who doesn't meet the standard to be admitted on probation when approved by board trustees
  6. Enrollment – Current enrollment is 212 students, up 3% from last year; 51% from Hood River County, 33% from Skamania Count, 9% from Wasco County and 7% from Skamania County; classes with most new students – pre-kindergarten (18), kindergarten (8), 1st grade (6)
  7. Financial Summary – Budget based on 201 students, therefore will make operating budget; still short of making member note interest payments in June 2012, but best financial position in several years
  8. Highlights from Staff Reports
    • To stay close to budget and yet ensure a strong educational experience, some grades were blended for part or all of their day (Gr 1/2 for all subjects except Math, Bible and Spelling / Gr 5/6 in the afternoon only)
    • Teacher Retention – one resignation (career change), all other teachers returned
    • Completed alignment of policy manual, parent/student handbook, and processes; reviewed and clarified absentee policy, tardy policy, dress code policy and the processes involved
    • Training and development – classroom management training conducted, learning communities (read, review and discuss professional articles and books)
    • Technology – computer lab update completed including new furnishings, flat screen monitors, and projection system; library computer lab completed including six computers stations for online classes

09-20-11 - Google to Fund Horizon Robotic Teams
Research, critical thinking, problem solving, teamwork, and imagination are important skills for students to develop. One fun way to teach these principles is by building robots out of Lego pieces. Robots are used in every major industry and robotics programs offer opportunities for students of all ages to learn about the world of technology and science. Locally, experience with robotics is recognized and encouraged by Insitu.

Google, the search engine company, is committed to the expansion of learning through robotics and is sponsoring student teams at Horizon by paying for kits and training. Students do not need any special skills to participate, just an enthusiasm for trying to figure out how things work, and a willing adult to show them the way. The need — adults to head up those teams at all grade levels. If interested, call Horizon Christian School at (541) 387-3200. Go to www.gorgerobotics.com for more information.

09-14-11 Horizon Receives Constitution Grant
Horizon Christian School has received a $10,000 grant from the Stover Foundation. The grant money will be used to provide students with focused attention on the Constitution of the United States. be involved in a Constitutional Conference that will expose them to the Constitution from a Biblical view. The emphasis will be on how Christian values are the bedrock for the document. Materials will be provided to history teachers which will help facilitate further in-depth student. The grant also includes an educational trip to Washington, DC. Interested students will submit essays on the Constitution with the top ten students each receiving a scholarship to apply towards the cost of the trip.

"We believe this kind of focus will awaken students to the importance of what our founding fathers had in mind when they wrote the Constitution and the importance of upholding it," commented Superintendent Ken Block.

The Stover Foundation previously awarded a $19,500 grant to Horizon Christian School for the development of the library.

03-29-11 - Board of Trustees Meeting Highlights

  1. Scheduled a summer board retreat to include trustees and teachers. On the agenda is discussion regarding: 1) Further maximizing board effectiveness, and 2) Additional strategic planning for student development.
  2. Enrollment – 204 students. The number of inquiries for fall 2011 is up from previous years, with much of the interest at the elementary level.
  3. Trustees discussed the goal of maintaining a solid Christian core. For further discussion and development: 1) Several orientation sessions for new families in which core values and expectations are discussed, 2) Scope and sequence of Bible classes – offer an introduction to basic Christian faith class, 3) Develop a Christian counselor position to oversee Christian development including discipling students, working with them relationally, and developing Christian leadership, 3) Continue to develop mentoring groups, 4) Continue to encourage biblical worldview integration in all classes, and 5) Continue to review and develop curriculum which meet excellent teaching criteria and have a biblical worldview perspective.
  4. Committee Reports
    • Audit – completed
    • Excellence – In the recent staff in-service, five articles on excellence in education were summarized and discussed. It was noted that excellence in education revolves around excellent teachers.
    • Strategic Planning – Our strategic goals include: 1) Financial stability, 2) Excellent staff, and 3) Character development. The trustee/staff retreat will further discuss how to attain these goals.
  5. Refinancing of building loan – The building loan has now been refinanced through the Horizon Campus Investors, LLC group. This is a group of several individuals who now hold the loan and will receive the interest payments. Refinancing of the building loan resulted in a lower interest rate on the loan.
  6. Bullying Policy – Currently in the editing process; to be voted on electronically.
  7. Next Meeting – Monday, May 9; the 2011-12 budget will be on the agenda.

03-29-11 - Student Referral Incentive Program
Horizon Christian School is once again offering a Student Referral Incentive Program. The purpose of this program is to provide a monetary incentive to existing Horizon Christian School families for promoting the school to their friends and encouraging their application for admission to Horizon. We are looking for qualified new families, but we also care about our current families as we strive to grow our school. The Incentive Program is open to all Horizon Christian School families. Referring families will receive a $500 tuition credit for each full-time referred student that is accepted and enrolls. Please see the Referral Incentive Program Guidelines and Referral Form. Check it out and if you have questions, contact Carol Yates by email or phone (direct: 541-436-3207).

02-01-11 - Horizon Strives for Continued Excellence
Based on feedback from a team of educators who completed an on-site evaluation of our program in spring 2010, Horizon has moved forward with the commendations for the 2010-11 school year.

  1. A Lion's Club grant and a donation allowed us to move ahead with three "smart rooms" including dedicated computers with internet connectivity, projectors with full video and audio output as well as large permanently mounted wall screens and document cameras. The result is additional resources for our teachers as they teach and opportunities for students to learn this technology. Another donation was given for the purchase of 20 flat screen monitors.
  2. Twenty computers donated by Providence Memorial Hospital were placed in the computer lab, classrooms, and computer stations for online classes.
  3. Elementary science curriculum three year purchase was completed.
  4. Secondary History books were purchased for one grade level.
  5. Teacher in-services were planned to provide opportunity for more collaboration among teaching staff.
  6. Teachers were trained in "hands on science teaching" by a representative from Delta Education, publisher of the elementary science curriculum.
  7. A representative from the Early Assessment and Support Alliance (EASA) made a presentation to the secondary staff on identifying psychosis in teenagers.
  8. The procedure for assisting a student who is struggling academically was discussed and refined by staff.
  9. The plan for completing our scope and sequence for all grade levels in all subject areas has been detailed.
  10. The technology plan has been update for annual progress including goals for updating hardware needs and acquisitions, expansion in the elementary wing, and training for technology integration in the classroom. A scope and sequence for technology will be added to the curriculum.
  11. Staff targeted "Language" from our SAT scores and has developed a specific measurable goal with an action plan.
  12. The crisis response plan for lockdowns and earthquake drills has been further developed.
  13. Plans for this school year also include: a speaker who will discuss meeting the needs of students with Aspergers, continued staff development in the area of Biblical Worldview Integration and technology integration workshops, and the development of test preparation and "school pride" goals.

01-26-11 Horizon Receives Highest Approval Rating from Accrediting Organization
Horizon Christian School once again received the highest approval rating possible from the Northwest Accreditation Commission. Each fall Horizon submits a report evaluating compliance with eight standards including mission and expectations for student learning, curriculum, instruction, assessment, leadership and organization, school services, facilities and finance, and culture of continual improvement. The information is reviewed by the Oregon State Advisory Committee, which then recommends a rating to the Commission.

The Commission proceeded to grant the highest approval rating possible to Horizon Christian School. As a member school of the Northwest Accreditation Commission, Horizon Christian School participated in an on-site review last spring. During this comprehensive evaluation, which occurs every six years, the review team observed, interviewed, and reviewed documentation to substantiate the information that is provided in the annual reports. At that time, the team recommended "full and continued accreditation".

The team commended Horizon in several areas including a very strong commitment to mission, an academically challenging curriculum, the integration of personalized learning, and the commitment and involvement of all members of the school in promoting the education and well being of all students, as well as other areas.

The team also provided guidelines which were considered by staff when they developed plans for the 2010-11 school year. The response to these recommendations and action taken is part of the annual review. (See attached document for recommendations and steps taken.)

From the Board of Trustees on down, Horizon Christian School is committed to the A, B, Cs of our mission – academics, Biblical worldview, and character development, and are in continual pursuit of those goals.

Our mission is to build a solid foundation for life by providing students with an excellent education that integrates academic achievement, biblical truth, and character development.

11-23-10 - Horizon Scores Well in Annual Accreditation Report
In the annual accreditation report submitted to the Northwest Accreditation Commission (NWAC), Horizon met the criteria in 97 of the 109 areas evaluated. The school “substantially met” the criteria in eleven areas and “partially met” the criteria in one area. The school is evaluated in eight areas including:

  1. Mission, Beliefs and Expectations for Student Learning
  2. Curriculum
  3. Instruction
  4. Assessment
  5. Leadership & Organization
  6. School Services
  7. Facilities & Finance
  8. Culture of Continual Improvement.

The School Improvement Plan was also outlined in the report. Those goals include improving technology, building school pride, increasing performance in language arts, further develop the crisis response plan, continue with curriculum review, scope and sequence, and weave standardized test prep into all curriculum and grade levels.

09-29-10 - Horizon Alumni Provides Feedback in Survey
Horizon Christian School is committed to providing an excellent academic and spiritual program with a biblical worldview integration. That requires on-going review and assessment of the program. As part of our evaluation we recently asked alumni, “How well are we doing?” Ninety-six percent of the past students gave Horizon a passing grade – 63% were satisfied and 33% were neutral when asked if they were satisfied with the Horizon program. Graduates from the past five years who had been at Horizon for more than a year were asked to participate in the survey. Twenty-four of the 39 graduates responded (61%).

Other responses:
Well prepared for life after high school: agree (67%), neutral (17%), disagree (17%)
Post high school education: 92%

Areas where the Horizon contribution was:

Excellent
Strong
Good
Work well in groups (86%)
Write effectively (82%)
Be a leader (82%)
Build friendships (77%)
Develop self-esteem (77%)
Make positive decisions (77%)
Community involvement (73%)
Understand history (73%)
Read critically (68%)
Find information (68%)
Understand self (68%)
Appreciate diversity (63%)

Average: understand math (59%), understand science (54%), appreciation of the arts (50%), connect across subject areas (50%)
Below average: computers/technology (46%), speak effectively (45%), time management / study habits (36%), understand social issues (32%), foreign language (27%)
Spiritual Preparation: well prepared (43%), neutral (39%), not well prepared (17%)
What helped you most at Horizon: 1) caring teachers, 2) trusting relationships, 3) strong work ethic, and 4) many other comments
What one thing could Horizon have provided: 1) higher expectations, 2) tougher academics, 3) realistic picture of the world, and 4) many other comments.

Horizon staff and board of trustees will use the data to make program decisions.

04-13-10 - Reasons Why to Enroll Your Children to Horizon Christian School
Students were recently asked to answer the question, “What do you like about Horizon?” The answers revealed some main themes including people are nice, the teachers care, and Horizon prepares you for the future.

Here are just a few examples:
1st Grade - I like Horizon because we learn to be nice. We learn to pray and worship God. We learn math and we have fun. We sings songs and I love God. He teaches us to be good friends with a good smile.
4th Grade - Horizon is a school that loves kids. Nice teachers, nice friends, and lots of fun. We have the nicest gym in Hood River. We have lots of sports for you to play. My favorite is basketball. One of my favorite things is that I get to see all my friends every day. I love that we get to worship the Lord. I also like that the teachers are always willing to let you learn more. I love Horizon.
6th Grade - My school is a very wonderful school and I have a ton of reasons why I like it. One thing I like is that the teachers are so nice! (And they try to make learning really fun!) They will talk to you and enjoy a nice conversation but are still strict enough to control classes. Also I like that the students are respectful and kind. They won’t bully people and it is rare to hear any unwholesome language. And lastly, my absolute favorite thing about Horizon is that I am able to express my love for Jesus and pray in class! Now you have it, the reasons why I love Horizon Christian School so much!
7th Grade - I love Horizon Christian because of the devoted teachers and the time they spend with the students. I also have spiritually changed because of the people here. They have shown me how to be a better person. Chapels are my favorite part. We have awesome people come and talk about God. Through chapel I have discovered a lot about myself.
12th Grade - Being a student at Horizon Christian School means you are going to be given the best education possible. It means being challenged to reach your full potential, realizing talents you didn’t know you possessed. It means you will be surrounded by friends who will encourage and guide you. It means becoming a firm Christian surrounded by opportunities to serve God and your community. In other words, it means a home.

04-05-10 - Letters About Literature Contest
Two Horizon students were selected as semi-finalists at the State level in the national 2010 Letters About Literature contest. Students were asked to read a book, then write a letter to the author of that book about how the book touched their life, how the writing made a difference in their perception of the world, and how the words actually changed them. About 55,000 students enter the contest each year. Both students received a $10 gift certificate to a bookstore. Congratulations, Heather Hastings (8th grade) and Payton Rigert (6th grade)!

03-16-10 - 6th Grade Student Nominated for Junior Natoinal Young Leaders Conference
Payton Rigert, a 6th grade Horizon student, has been nominated to attend the Junior National Young Leaders Conference to be held this summer in Washington D.C. The nomination was based on her academic achievements and leadership potential. Payton was recognized as one of a select group of students with the scholastic merit, maturity, and strength of character to represent Horizon at the conference, which focuses on developing leaders. Congratulations, Payton!

03-30-10 - Highlights of the School Evaluation from NAAS
A four person Response Team from the Northwest Association of Accredited Schools (NAAS) visited Horizon Christian School to evaluate the education program being offered. They reviewed documentation and interviewed administrators, teachers, parents, and students. The in-depth assessment occurs every six years as part of the on-going accreditation process. In their follow-up report, the Response Team recommended full and continued accreditation.

Commendations:

  1. Horizon is a strong school with a very strong commitment to their stated mission which is clearly evident throughout the school and in the minds and hearts of the students, staff and parents. It was clearly evident that everyone at the school is living the three pillars of the mission — academic achievement, biblical truth, and character development. The staff is clearly extremely proud of the school, its mission, the students and their accomplishments.
  2. Horizon provides an academically challenging curriculum to students. The school takes teaching, learning, and ongoing improvement seriously within a Biblical view of the world. Horizon staff, working as a team and “striving for excellence” characterizes the professional nature of the staff.
  3. Personalized learning is integrated into the daily practice of every staff member at Horizon. The small size of the school and the incredible caring nature of the teachers assures that every student receives adequate attention and support to be successful.
  4. It is evident that all members of the school (superintendent, board chair, administrators, teachers, and support staff) are involved in promoting the well-being and education of all students. The atmosphere is welcoming and nurturing. Students expressed great appreciation for how they are treated and cared for. Students are respectful, staff is courteous and welcoming.
  5. Horizon provides a wide variety of outreach, service, and travel opportunities and experiences that provide world experiences to the student population.

Recommendations:

  1. Maintain current resources, texts, and technology for learning with a greater focus on developing technology resources.
  2. Provide additional resources and support for the professional development of staff.
  3. Consider creative ways to develop a stronger elective program to meet the diverse interest and goals of the students.
  4. Continue or consider recruiting services of local community college to provide college advising, participation in college fairs, and recruitment of college graduate mentors to assist with scholarship and application processes as needed.

03-02-10 - ACSI Christian School Comment
In this month’s Christian School Comment, a dad talks about how he has been given charge and entrusted by God for things — and more importantly — relationships. Read the attached Christian School Comments for his perspective on his responsibilities as a dad.

Christian School Comment - The Best Means for Growth
Students in Christian Schools drink freely from streams of liviing water as they are taught by teachers who love Jesus. Read the ASCI Newsletter (PDF).

10-05-09 - Horizon Student Wins Award
Andrew Stenberg, a junior, didn’t just work on skills at the basketball camp he attended last summer. He took it to a higher level — he competed, and won, the Golden Ruler Award. basketball camp he attended last summer. He took it to a higher level — he competed, and won, the Golden Ruler Award. The award is the highest award you can receive at NBC Camps, a large, worldwide basketball camp program. The Golden Ruler Award is designed to “teach an individual how to become a person of depth and reflection, while instilling the importance of community service, discipline, and accountability in to their life”. Andrew kept a personal daily journal, wrote essays on perseverance, forgiveness, service, and wisdom. He designed a work-out plan, read assigned Bible verses and memorized them, and met daily with a mentor. He did this while participating in long, grueling days of drills, practices, and games. Of more than 100 students at the camp, ten started the process, two completed it, and only Andrew finished and passed the test. He took the challenge, pushed himself to the limit, achieved his goal, and grew as a result. Congratulations, Andrew.!

 


06-02-09 - From the Board Chair
Operating a high quality Christian school at an affordable cost is a continuing challenge. Read more... (PDF file)


04-28-09 - Horizon Athletic Director Receives Award
Oscar Stenberg has been named Athletic Director of the Year for the 1A division, by the Oregon Athletic Director Association. Stenberg, who has been with the Horizon and its predecessor schools since 1977, has been instrumental in developing the sports program. Athletics is viewed as an important element of the school’s mission for developing strong academic students who are servant/leaders with outstanding character.

As one of the founders of the school, Stenberg aggressively pursued the development of a sports schedule that included competition with other Christian schools in volleyball, basketball, track & field, cross country, and table tennis. In 2000 the school began competing in the OSAA 1A league and currently offers soccer, basketball, and golf.

“My philosophy is that each sport provides unique opportunities for developing not only skills, but character. I want these kids to understand that they are playing with a bigger purpose in mind – one of honoring God. What happens out on the basketball court, soccer pitch, or the golf course is another ‘classroom’ teaching opportunity. ” commented Stenberg. The attitude of character first is now part of the DNA at Horizon and has filtered down to the coaches who take skill building and character development as the core reason for their participation in Horizon’s sports program.

“We all have a great deal of respect for Oscar and the work he’s done at Horizon,” noted Superintendent Ken Block. “Ask any coach, ours or other schools, referees, athletes, or parents, and you hear nothing but respect and gratitude for the work that Oscar does. He genuinely cares about these kids and they know that. As a result, he has deeply impacted the lives of many students and their families throughout the Columbia Gorge for more than 30 years. Oscar is a worthy recipient of this award.”

Stenberg, who teaches in the Junior High program, has spent many years coaching community education, Little League, and Dynamo teams. He was a nominee for the Hood River County Excellence in Education/Outstanding Teacher Award, received the 2004 Wal-Mart Teacher of the Year, and the 2005 Hood River Dynamos Soccer Club “Golden Boot Award.”

Stenberg also credits his wife, Helen, as being his “right-hand person.” They have nine children who have participated in the athletic program and continue to enjoy sports.

 

 


02-25-09 - An Update from Don Hoffman, Board Chair
We live in interesting times. The Front page of the Oregonian proclaims “Oregon heading ‘into a pit”. The Dow Jones Industrial Stock Average recently sunk to a six year low. New claims for unemployment reached a 26 year high last week. Not for profit organizations are reporting declines in giving, coupled with an increase in the need for service. Churches are seeing a decrease in contributions, pay cuts, and some are reducing staff. Oregon public schools are discussing a reduction in the number of days for this year, and significant program cuts for next year in light of the new tax revenue forecast that was recently released. It is safe to say that the current economic situation has impacted every person in the U.S to some degree.
Read more... (PDF file)


 

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