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School Supply Santa collecting again

School Supply Santa collecting again

The School Supply Santa all started eight years ago, thanks to Denise Kooiker of Byron Center, MI. Once again she is asking for your donations for kids in the Grand Rapids areas to start the upcoming school year.

Donations are distributed to administrators at schools in Byron Center, Kentwood, Wyoming, Kelloggsville, Godwin, Godfrey-Lee and Vista Charter Academy. Adding to the list this year are Rockford and Grandville schools.

Donations of backpacks and all school supplies can be dropped off at all the Kent District Library branches, local Starbucks and Biggby coffee houses, Talsma Furniture stores, Macatawa Banks, Byron Community Recreation and Gaines Township Hall. The drive runs from August 1 – 28. More information is available at the School Supply Facebook page at Facebook.com/SchoolSupplySanta.

Mark DeJong will lead Vanguard Charter Academy for 2015-2016

Mark DeJong will lead Vanguard Charter Academy for 2015-2016

Mark DeJong, who holds a Bachelor of Science in elementary education from St. Cloud State University and a master’s in educational leadership from Bethel University, will serve as the new principal of Vanguard Charter Academy for the 2015-2016 school year. Mark replaces Daryl Vriesenga who retired at the end of this past school year.

Mark is a familiar face around school, having served as assistant principal and academic dean since 2011. He has spent the past 15 years in education in the classroom and leadership. Before moving to Michigan he served as the superintendent and principal of an elementary school in Minnesota along with leading an elementary school in the Dominican Republic as their principal.

Kentwood High School to host Rainbow Run

Kentwood High School to host Rainbow Run

The Falcon Rainbow Run is scheduled for Sunday, May 31, 2015 at East Kentwood High School, 6230 Kalamazoo Ave SE in Kentwood, MI 49508. Registration at 2:00pm, Race Time 3:00pm.

Start this 5K in White and end in Color. We are promoting unity within the community with a noncompetitive, fun event anyone of any age can enjoy.

Registration Fees:

$30 for Adults

$25 for Firemen/Police/Military

$25 for East Kentwood Athletes

$20 for Kids (12 & under)

If an entire team is interested in participating, there will be a group discount rate-please contact Katelyn Hines at 616-443-9019.

A separate registration form must be filled out for each participant.

Please make checks out to East Kentwood Student Council and mailed to the school.

Additional information: Lauren Parker, 616-560-4234    Check this out on Facebook too!

My Town: Kent ISD Board names new superintendent

My Town: Kent ISD Board names new superintendent

KENT COUNTY, Mich.-- The search for Kent Intermediate School District's next leader is over.

Grandville Superintendent Ron Caniff will replace Kevin Konarska, who is retiring.  Caniff was the lone finalist left after West Ottawa Superintendent Tom Martin withdrew his application for the job.  Caniff's final interview with the Kent ISD Board was held Tuesday.

“The Board is thrilled to welcome Ron Caniff as the next leader of Kent ISD,” said Kent ISD School Board President Claudia Bajema. “He brings 15 years of experience and the strong support of his peers.

“We are confident that the transition from Kevin to Ron will be very smooth, and that Ron will lead with the talent, energy, and interpersonal skills that we have enjoyed for the past nine years under Kevin’s leadership. We also wish Kevin all the best in the next phase of his life,” she added.

My Town: Kent ISD superintendent candidate withdraws application

My Town: Kent ISD superintendent candidate withdraws application

KENT COUNTY, Mich.—The Kent Intermediate School District will continue screening its lone finalist for superintendent.

Monday, West Ottawa Schools Superintendent Tom Martin announced he is withdrawing his application for the job.  Martin was one of two finalists for the position with Kent ISD. 

In a statement released to WZZM 13 Monday, Martin said, “After talking with West Ottawa’s board president who urged me to stay and hearing the same support through numerous emails, notes and phone calls, I’ve decided to withdraw from the Kent ISD search. We have come so far in this district, and with the continued support of staff and community, we can and will build on that improvement for all of our students. College, career and life ready is a vision that’s becoming a reality, and I look forward to continue being a part of that success.”

My Town: Kent ISD throws support behind sales tax hike proposal

My Town: Kent ISD throws support behind sales tax hike proposal

KENT COUNTY, Mich.--- The Kent Intermediate School District is throwing its support behind a sales tax hike to fix Michigan’s roads and provide additional funding for schools and local governments.

Thursday, March 19, the Kent ISD Board approved a resolution in support of Proposal 1, which will be on the May 5 ballot.  In the resolution, the Board said Michigan ranks last in the nation in transportation spending per person.  The Board also noted money being siphoned from the School Aid Fund to higher education, since the previous sales tax proposal generating funding for schools did not include colleges and universities.

My Town: Your masterpiece could grace the walls of the U.S. Capitol

My Town: Your masterpiece could grace the walls of the U.S. Capitol

GRANDVILLE, Mich.—Congressman Bill Huizenga is looking for student artwork to adorn the U.S. Capitol.

Now through April 17, high school students from the Second District are encouraged to submit their entries in this year’s Congressional Art Competition.  Each student may only submit one entry to Congressman Huizenga’s office, located at 4555 Wilson Ave. SW in Grandville.

"The Congressional Art Competition is an excellent platform for young artists to challenge themselves and explore their artistic ability as well as their creativity,” said Huizenga. “Students from across West Michigan have impressed thousands of visitors to the U.S. Capitol with their artwork and I cannot wait to see what this year’s competition has in store.”