First Quarter Recap

We have now completed our first quarter of the 2016-2017 school year. The kids have been working hard and learning new things. Soccer season has come to an end, as many kids have improved and mastered their skills. Way to go Eagles! The quarter ended on a high note with a wonderful Week of Prayer. The kids were blessed by messages every day from Pastor Marco. On Friday, all the kids took part in serving each other in a special Agape Feast. What a blessing!

First and Second graders have been studying farming. With Fall pumpkin season well underway, it was the ideal time for a field trip to the Baggenstos Pumpkin Patch. Preschool and Kindergarten also visited other pumpkin patches with their classes. All the kids came back with pumpkins and smiles (and maybe a little mud too).

The Annual Fall Festival was a big event. Each class raised money for their classroom by running a booth with different, fun activities and games. A new and exciting addition was a mad scientist booth where the kids got to do science experiments. There were prizes and candy to be had by all.

Please continue to keep Tualatin Valley Academy in your prayers. Pray for the students, the teachers, the staff, and all the families involved. 

Be Kind!

Last spring, in my blog post titled "To Be . . .",  I shared with you the four core values that we work on every day here at TVA.  They are:

Be Kind
Be Respectful
Be Responsible
Be Safe

Today, I would like to share with you some thoughts on what it means to be kind.  Our commercial society puts a lot of emphasis on fulfilling our wants.  Millions of dollars are spent on advertising to convince us that we want or even need items that are for sale and popular in our culture.  Unfortunately, this leads us to focus on self and the result is a tendency towards selfishness which is already the natural bent of humanity. 

In Romans 12:9-10, Paul the apostle says, "Let love be without hypocrisy.  Abhor evil. Cling to what is good.  Be kindly affectionate one to another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another;"  One of the basic acts of kindness is "giving preference to one another."  Whether we are getting in line for recess, or at the drinking fountain, or at any other time when we have to take turns, preferring one another is the kind thing to do.  Letting someone go first, allowing them to choose before us, or helping someone who needs an extra hand are all acts of kindness.  I like the idea of doing random acts of kindness for people who are not expecting it or may not even know us, but how much better would it be if we all consistently practiced kindness not just randomly but as a consistent part of our everyday approach to others? The value of "Be Kind" means that we are always looking for and finding ways to serve those around us.  It might be as easy as smiling and saying "Hi!" to people you meet.  It might be picking up things others have dropped or cleaning up a mess that no one knows who made it.  Being kind is showing love through serving others.

TVA has long emphasized the development of the "Fruits of The Spirit" as character traits we want to see in our students.  Kindness is the fifth fruit in the list of fruits of the Spirit outlined in Galatians 5:22.  We ask each one in our school community to personally commit to making kindness a daily value that we incorporate in our words and actions.  Be kind!

The Cell Tower That Funds Scholarships

Since last spring, we have had construction activity on our cell tower.  It's been hard not to notice it, especially when large cranes take up one end of the parking lot!  The last work they did this fall was to install a new antenna on the tower. This enables another phone company to send there signals through this location. This should be the end of major construction, at least for a while.  Maintenance crews do come by from time to time but usually it takes only a short time.

One of the questions I get from time to time, is "Why does TVA have a cell tower?"  Nearly twenty years ago, the school board approved a long term contract to lease a small plot of land on which the cell tower stands.  A right of way through our parking lot was included for access.  The money from the lease funds student scholarships at TVA and in fact is the only source that is entirely school based for scholarship funds.  We do have students who are awarded scholarships from local churches, the Oregon Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, and the North Pacific Union Conference of SDA.  All of these outside scholarships are not under school control.   Besides the payments for the lease, we also get paid an amount that is determined by the traffic on the tower.  Together these two forms of payment amount to about $25,000 per year.  For this year, all of this money has been awarded to students in the form of scholarships.  In fact, we have more requests than we can fully fund.  We would welcome other sources and contributions to our scholarship fund.

At times, a few parents express concern about the cell tower being on our campus and the radio frequencies used.  All the research that I have read indicates that any possible effects are very much less than we get on a daily bases from the sun's output of radiation. Additionally, any mass equal to or greater than a sheet of paper would block any high frequency radiation just like uv rays are blocked by a glass window.  You don't get sunburned through your house or car windows. 

Thank you for your patience during the times when work on the tower reduces our parking capacity!  I also appreciate those of you who have parked offsite during our major public events.  Your actions have reduced the congestion and parking limitations.

Providing students with a high quality Christian education is very important to us. There are many more students who would like to be here but have financial needs. If you have a heart for Christian education, we would welcome any contributions to our student scholarship fund. 

To Be . . .

One of our major goals here at Tualatin Valley Academy is for our students to experience a positive, accepting and supportive school climate. To accomplish this we actively work to help our students develop skills to treat their teachers and classmates in a caring and loving way. We believe our children need "whole person" development and, beyond academics, they also need character development. We believe this goal helps us accomplish our mission, which is to provide "a Christ-centered education that nurtures student individuality within a climate of academic excellence."

This school year we have focused on four areas of behavior that we want our students to develop in their everyday activities and relationships. They are: 

Be Kind
Be Respectful
Be Responsible
Be Safe

We have emphasized these behaviors in our classrooms, in our chapel programs, and on our playgrounds. With 200 students playing, studying and interacting there are bound to be times when incidents and friction arise, but there have been few serious incidents this year. Our school year has gone well and we have experienced a positive and happy atmosphere.

Our plan is to continue to make these four behaviors the focus of building and improving positive relationships among our students and staff. I would invite you to help us in this character building effort for our school community. If we can help our students to make good decisions about what is kind, respectful, responsible and safe, they will grow in their ability to be successful and build a quality character. 

Exciting Updates!

Welcome to our new website!  We are excited about our new design and hope that you find it easier to navigate and find the information you need.  A huge thank you goes to Rachel Blackburn, one of our parents for all the time and work she has put in to make this happen!

Marketing Grant: I am happy to report that we reached our matching goal for the Marketing Grant and are already placing advertising promoting enrollment for next year including our ninth grade program.  Thank you to everyone who participated in helping us match this grant!  Your support is greatly appreciated.

Repair Work: You will notice that we have had to do some repair work between the two buildings because of a water supply line that began leaking.  We will have to regrow grass around the flag pole area and there is a spot in the blacktop that we had to dig through.  I want to thank Ron Danielson, parent and board member, and his crew for their work in addressing this problem quickly and creating a permanent solution to this problem.  Ron has helped us with many maintenance tasks over the years including prep work for our recent security fence project. We really appreciate his help!

Re-enrollment: We have already done a lot of planning for next school year and we encourage you to go to your RenWeb account on ParentsWeb and complete the re-enrollment process for your student(s).  Some of our classes will fill up very quickly and I do not want you to be disappointed by having your student put on a wait list.  Also there is a $50 enrollment fee discount if you complete re-enrollment by April 29, 2016.

“Every Child” Scholarship Grant: We have enjoyed an increase in enrollment this year of 15 students in grades K-8 and our pre-school has been full throughout the year.  We have been blessed by the “Every Child Deserves to Know Christ” grant program with twenty students receiving scholarship funds from the grant.  Students on this grant program will be eligible to re-apply through grade 12.  New Kindergarten, Grade 1, and Grade 9 students are also eligible to apply for this income based scholarship.

Thank you for continuing to support TVA!  Our goal is to provide the best possible Christian Education and we appreciate the confidence you place in our teachers and staff.

May God bless,

Ed Tillotson

Principal TVA