Hudsonville Christian School Marks 100th Year With Bright Future

Written by Paul R. Kopenkoskey on . Posted in Local

Hudsonville Christian School Cutline No. 1Superintendent Dan Pott stands among artifacts collected in Hudsonville Christian School’s 10-decade history. Hudsonville Christian School (HCS) is in the throes of celebrating its 100th year of educating students from a Reformed perspective. Enrollment numbers and parents' comments indicate the preschool through 8th school's future will continue to shine brightly, said Superintendent Dan Pott.

"There's a real resurgence in people wanting a Christian education," said Pott. "We want to be an academic school and we want to be a school that does best practices, but we also want to make sure this is distinctively Christian."

Special events planned

Special events are planned in 2018 to mark HCS' 100th year include a worship celebration in February, as well as opening a time capsule buried 25 years ago, with the likelihood of burying another one to be opened in a quarter century; a community worship service in March; and students participating in a parade in May.

Hudsonville Christian School Cutline No. 2Students’ rainbow of answered prayers. HCS, 3435 Oak St. in Hudsonville, does not belong to a specific denomination, and thus, its enrollment is open to anyone regardless of denomination, said Pott.

"Anyone who believes and accepts their children will be taught from a Reformed perspective are welcomed here," said Pott. "The families who whose children attend here may or may not be from a Reformed church. Some Christian schools say you have to belong to a denomination to attend, but we are what we call an open school."

Strong community support

Tuition for one child is just over $7,000 with a sliding scale should a family have additional children they wish to enroll.

"The cool thing about this school is if a family truly wants a Christian education, they will not be denied that and that's because of the huge support from this community," said Pott. "If someone walks in here, I will work with them and figure out a way, but it (tuition) is not free. We will work them and partner with them."

The majority of students live within a 15 to 20 mile radius of HCS, said Pott, and about 90 percent of them transfer to Unity Christian High School (UCHS).

While the two schools operate independently, there is a symbiotic relationship between them.

Hudsonville Christian School Cutline No. 3Pott: “There’s a real resurgence in people wanting a Christian education.” "We make sure our curriculum aligns and transitions children well with the high school," said Pott. "We're about as close as you can be while still being a separate system."

Three years ago HCS purchased UCHS's former building for $500,000, which resulted in an expansion that connected the two buildings.

"Five years ago we had no thoughts of buying it," said Pott. "We didn't know we needed it but then we saw a huge increase in enrollment and instead of having no need we needed classrooms."

With a staff of 90 that includes teachers, paraprofessionals and administrators, Pott attributes the increase — it currently has around 1,075 students — to parents who believe wholesale in the value in immersing God's Word in the school's curriculum.

Immersed in God's Word

"They want their children immersed in a Christian school, they want everything they do integrated in God's Word," said Pott. "I think people realize the importance of that.

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"That helps to create the solid community we have here. This community is special. We talk about it as family. If we have a need to help support a family, people step forward to give. They don't even want to be known or recognized. People pull in the same direction."

Eye on the ball

A desire to teach at HCS also is keen, said Pott, adding he receives dozens of resumes for one teaching position.

"I never hurt for people who want to work here," said Pott. "I want someone who loves the Lord and can impart their love for the Lord to the children."

All of which helps to keep HCH's mission in focus.

"We have to be distinctively Christian but we also have to be academically excellent and I would say it in that order," said Pott. "We can never take our eye off that ball."


Author Information
Paul R. Kopenkoskey
Author: Paul R. KopenkoskeyWebsite:
Paul R. Kopenkoskey is a full-time freelance writer and editor for an assortment of publications including Grand Rapids Magazine, Grand Rapids Business Journal, and Faith Grand Rapids magazine. He has completed his first novel with the working title, Karl Beguiled. He and his wife, Barb, live in Wyoming, Michigan. They have three children and five grandchildren.

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