web analytics

Archive | Schools

Last day of school finalized

Parents of students in the Cedar Springs Public School district finally have an answer on when the last day of the school year will be. The answer is Monday, June 10.

Superintendent Scott Smith sent the following email out to parents of students on Thursday, May 16:

“The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) has now provided clarity around the forgiveness of weather-related cancellations of school between January 29 and February 1. Governor Whitmer signed the snow day forgiveness legislation into law last Friday. The MDE needed time to develop a process for districts to follow to document the fact that school had been cancelled on days the Governor had declared a State of Emergency days due to the extreme weather conditions during that time.  

Barring any unforeseen school cancellations between now and the end of the year, our last day of school for students will now be MONDAY, June 10.

Please note Cedar Springs Public Schools will be in session on: May 24, June 6, 7, and 10.

Additional days will be identified beyond June 10 if we have further cancellations this year. Let us hope that we have seen the last of the snow this season.

Thank you for your patience during this time of uncertainty.”  

Icy, snowy and dangerous winter weather, including sub-zero temperatures and power outages, caused Cedar Springs Public Schools to close 14 times this year. That’s eight more times than the Michigan Department of Education (MDE) allows without the days being made up.

The MDE also allows schools to apply for a waiver for three extra closings, above the six, but when Cedar Springs applied for the waiver, they were denied. That’s because Cedar Springs is currently in session less than 180 days, the amount currently required by state law, though they are in session the 1,098 required hours. The school has only been in session 172 days a year since the 2013-2014 school year, because of an eight-year bargaining agreement with staff signed in June 2013, which occurred before the current law took effect in 2016/17. The students get the same amount of instruction; it’s just done over a day that’s 16 minutes longer. 

Once many schools were denied those extra three days, the legislature then introduced legislation to forgive the three days of school lost while Michigan was under a state of emergency. It was this legislation that Governor Whitmer signed on Friday, May 10.

Posted in Cedar Springs Public Schools, News, SchoolsComments (0)


SCHOOL HOURS | Grades K-5: 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. | Grades 6-12: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m.

May 20 8th Grade Promotion Ceremony

24 Early Release Day

27 No School – Memorial Day

28 Talent Show

29 Field Day

31 6-11 Exams

Dunk Tank Testing Incentive w/PA Carnival

Early Release Day

June 3 Last Day of School

6-11 Exams

End of Year Family Picnic 

Early Release Day

*Early Release Dismissal Schedule

• K-5 Dismissal at 1:00 p.m.

• 6-12 Dismissal at 12:45 p.m.

Posted in CTA, SchoolsComments (0)

Girls Varsity Soccer

Front Row (L to R): Ruby Tompkins, Gaby Christie, Saige Montambo, Nadelynn Brinley, Elizabeth Jahns, Ana Besmer, Trinity Besmer and Jayda Schreiber.

Back Row (L to R): Coach Justin Harding, Dani Piskun, Kaela Bucholtz, Analiese Van Harten, Molly Wortz, Alyssa Shelagowski, Hannah Hofstra and Malikia Walker.

Posted in CTA, SchoolsComments (0)

Senior Honored with Congressional Medal of Merit

 Elizabeth Jahns with Representative Justin Amash.

On Saturday, May 4, Creative Technologies Academy Senior Elizabeth Jahns was a recipient of Justin Amash’s Congressional Medal of Merit at the Gerald R. Ford Museum. The Congressional Medal of Merit is awarded to students who demonstrate exemplary citizenship and academic excellence. CTA is proud of Elizabeth and her contributions to our school and the community.

Posted in CTA, SchoolsComments (0)

Choir Concert is a Tribute to the Class of 2019

The Harmonic Chargers

CTA’s final choir concert of the year was a tribute to seniors. On Thurs., May 9, the CTA choir program put on their final choir concert of the year. This concert featured our middle school choir, Harmonic Chargers, our high school a cappella group, Voices of Lightning, and our bigger high school mixed group, Charger Voices. Each group performed three to six songs. Audience favorites included “Bora Maisha,” a fun middle school piece that featured a student on the bongos, “Seasons of Love” performed by Voices of Lightning, a big group number, “River in Judea” and a combined piece with both the middle and high school choirs called, “Stand Together”. Another big highlight of this concert was some special senior performances. Senior Tobius Potter performed the solo, “Der Mond” by Felix Mendelssohn. Tobius recently performed this at State Solo & Ensemble and received a one rating. The seniors also selected, “7 Years” as their senior song. They got to sing the melody on it while the rest of the choir members sang back up vocals. Overall, it was a fitting end to their CTA choir career.

The Charger Voices perform their class song with the seniors featured on the melody.

Posted in CTA, SchoolsComments (0)

Elementary Students perform Broaway-Style for concert

4th grade students Deegan Van Harten and Colren Bailey were two of the students who aided in introducing songs.

On Tuesday, May 7, the Elementary students performed in a music concert called “Broadway Beat” which featured songs from various Broadway musicals. The students donned snazzy clothes as if they were going to attend a show on Broadway in New York City. Some of the musicals that were featured were “The King and I”, “The Music Man”, and “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown”. Several 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th graders read a script that went along with the concert and introduced each song. The songs “For Good” from Wicked and “We Go Together” from Grease featured soloists. The concert was directed by Bethany Holtrop.

Student incorporated hand motions into several of the songs as they sang.

Posted in CTA, SchoolsComments (0)

Students Showcased Iconic Charlie Brown Moments In Spring Musical

Lucy (Audrey VanDyke) gazes at her love interest, Schroeder (Nolan Patin), as he plays piano.

The CTA Drama Department brought the beloved comic strip ​Peanuts​ to life in their spring musical, “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” On Fri., May 3 and Sat., May 4. This was CTA’s first full-length musical and the students did an amazing job. The show consists of several iconic Charlie Brown moments such as Charlie trying to get a kite to fly, Snoopy reenacting the World War I flying ace “Red Baron,” Lucy’s infatuation with Schroeder and many others. Meant to be a series of vignettes versus an overarching plot, this show was fun for all ages. Thirteen students participated and the show was either sold out or very close in both performances. “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” was also the final performance for three seniors. Tobius Potter (Charlie Brown), Logan Winters (Peppermint Patty), and Elizabeth Jahns (Marcie). Logan and Elizabeth were in all of CTA’s productions during their high school career.

Snoopy (Willow Sidlauskas) rests atop her red doghouse.

Posted in CTA, SchoolsComments (0)

Public asked to give input on school facility proposals

By Judy Reed

Cedar Springs Public Schools is asking the community to give their input on three different proposals to help improve school facilities and accommodate future growth. 

They have posted a survey on their website at csredhawks.org called the “CSPS Facilities Vision Questionnaire” and it will remain open through Monday, May 13.

According to Superintendent Scott Smith, there were two areas they looked at: facility needs and programs—how they were serving students.

The process started in 2016, when the district hired a company (GMB Architecture – Engineering) to do a facilities assessment. They looked at core systems such as roofing, heating/cooling, floor coverings, and plumbing. They also looked at safety and security, energy enhancements, and what site work needed to be done, such as paving and playgrounds.

Smith said that boilers in the various buildings are functioning but are very infefficient. Roofs also need to be replaced. They cannot even get parts anymore for the heaters in the classrooms at Cedar View. Instead, when another school replaces their univent heaters, they send the old ones to our district. 

The roads are also badly in need of repair. “The roads are in trouble,” said Smith. “Like the governor said, ‘it’s time to fix the darn roads.’ We’ve been doing projects with money from the sinking fund, but we don’t want to replace roads if we won’t need them in the future. If we refigure how the campus is laid out, we might not need them at all. Or we might need more. We’ve been going slow, but have been very targeted in what we are spending money on,” he explained.

Overall, the facilities assessment showed $42.5 million was needed just in facility repairs—and that’s targeting either what needs to be repaired right now or will need to be repaired/replaced in the near future. And that includes all eight buildings on campus: Cedar Trails (K-1), Beach (2-3), Cedar View (4-5), Red Hawk (6), Middle school (7-8), High school (9-12), and Hilltop (District Office).

They also looked at programs and enrollment. Smith said their projected enrollment is very stable, with a growth of about 1 percent per year (35-45 students per year) over the next five years. The problem is that some of the buildings are already at capacity. Smith said that both Cedar Trails and Beach are at capacity, as is the high school. “In the near future, every room at the high school will be used every hour, with some teachers on carts. The cafeteria and kitchen is also too small to serve our students,” he said. He noted that the middle school is not feeling overcrowded but is full. Cedar View and Red Hawk both have some room. The three options were developed taking this all into consideration.

Under all options—A, B, and C—the preschool program would be moved from Cedar Trails to either Cedar View or Red Hawk. “By moving them out, it gives Cedar Trails room to breathe,” explained Smith, “and provides more space for them to do things like art and other activities.”

And Hilltop—which was built in 1923 to replace the original high school—is not being used for students at all. Which presented a dilemma—do you spend $6.2 million to renovate a building that students no longer use?

“The sad reality is that it needs $6 million in renovation. The windows are single-paned, the boiler is inefficient, and the roof needs to be replaced,” explained Smith. “We have a hard time saying let’s put money into it when it’s not serving students.” So under all the options, Hilltop would be demolished and a green space created. 

Smith understands the important role the 93-year-old building has played in the community. It was built in 1926 as the new high school, after the original Union High School, built in 1871, was razed. And over the years it has served both elementary and secondary students, and currently hosts district office employees.

“If we don’t do anything, it will continue to deteriorate. We have to look ahead at 50 years from now. Will that grassy area be a beautiful spot for a new school? People will drive by it every day. What will they see? It’s easy to think in the short term, but at some point, we will need to let it go,” he said.

Smith noted that while there are currently three options for the board to consider, it’s still early in the process. “We are still considering, still thinking.” He said the board would review all three options Monday evening, May 13, and hear the community feedback from the surveys. It will then be up to the board whether to propose one of the following options for a bond issue or not.

“We are still open to suggestions. We are still exploring our options. We are trying to be strategic and thoughtful while trying to respect and honor our community at the same time,” explained Smith.

The current three options are:

Option A: Cedar Trails (K-1): do roofing and mechanical upgrades. Beach (2-3): do a partial demolition and reconstruct the academic wings. Do minor remodeling, site improvements, fixtures, furnishings, equipment, playground. Cedar View (4-5) Facilities critical needs. Middle School (6-8): Add a 6th grade wing, do critical needs, furnishings, fixtures, equipment. High School (9-12): do critical needs, add 8 classrooms, expand cafeteria, furnishings, fixtures, equipment. Red Hawk (District Administration, preschool, Cherry Health, Community education): critical needs, heavy remodeling of existing building, fixtures, furnishings and equipment. Hilltop: Demolition and site restoration. Cost: $78.9 million. 1.07 mil increase.

Option B: Cedar Trails, Beach, High school and Hilltop: the same as option A. Cedar View would become home to District office, preschool, Cherry Health and Community Ed. Do critical  needs, heavy remodeling of existing building, fixtures, furnishing and equipment. Red Hawk (4-6): Critical needs, new classroom wing for additional classrooms, fixtures, furnishings and equipment. Middle School (7-8): Critical needs. Cost: $79.8 million. 1.07 mil increase.

Option C: Cedar Trails, Beach, Cedar View, Red Hawk and Hilltop: same as option A. Middle School (6-7) move sixth graders to middle school. Do critical needs. Build a new 8-9 building (adjacent to high school). Do site improvements, fixtures, furnishings, equipment, auxiliary gym. High school (10-12): Do critical needs, fixtures, furnishings, equipment. Cost: $78.8 million. 1.07 mil increase.

Whatever the outcome, Smith said it’s not just a decision about taxes. “It’s about how our community is represented by the schools, and how our kids are engaged in the learning process.”

Posted in Cedar Springs Public Schools, News, SchoolsComments (2)

Cedar Springs Public Schools

Spring Art Show

Thursday, May 16 at 6:00 p.m.

High School Cafeteria

Come see the students display their work in the annual Spring Art Show.

Light refreshments will be available to enjoy.

Cedar Springs High School Graduation Ceremony

May 30, 2019     7:00 p.m.

Red Hawk Stadium (weather permitting)

New Beginnings High School Graduation Ceremony

May 22, 2019    7:00 p.m.

Cedar Springs High School Auditorium

Reception immediately following in the cafeteria

Class of 2019 Red Hawk Parade

Class of 2019 graduating seniors are invited to parade through the Cedar Springs campus on May 28 at 2:00 p.m. 

Students and staff from Cedar Trails, Beach, Cedar View and Red Hawk will line the parade route congratulating the graduates.

2019—2020 School Year Schools of Choice IS NOW OPEN

If you would like additional information please contact the registrar, Krissi Brott at Kristina.Brott@csredhawks.org or (616) 696-1204 x1919. 

Forms available at www.csredhawks.org 

MASB Presents Awards of Merit

MASB (Michigan Association of School Boards)was pleased to present awards to board members across the county for professional board development courses completed during the past year.  

Congratulations to CSPS Board President Heidi Reed for earning the MASB Award of Merit. 

From the Superintendent

The provision of constructive feedback is critical to improving performance.  Plants grow faster and stronger when provided with the right fertilizers, in the proper amounts, and following the prescribed schedule.  Similarly, school districts grow faster and stronger when they use feedback as fertilizer. Cedar Springs Public Schools is in the middle of what is playing out to be a very exciting season of gathering feedback from multiple fronts.  We are thankful for the investment of our stakeholders; including students, parents, community members, and staff are making in our work.

Scott B. Smith, Superintendent

Our feedback season started strong in January with the launch of our community based, three-year strategic planning cycle. Nearly 2,000 people with a direct connection to our district participated in a focus group, a community forum, or submitted an online survey to help develop a strategic plan that will guide the work of Cedar Springs Public Schools for the next three years.  

Since early April, students at each grade level have been putting their best effort forward on a variety of assessments including the SAT, PSAT, M-Step, iReady, and local assessments. Teachers will use the results from these assessments to drive instruction for the rest of this year as well as make adjustments for the 2019/20 school year. The district is currently collecting feedback on our facilities as we look to develop a facility plan that will set us up for success through the 2030/31 school year.  Lastly, we will be providing staff with performance feedback in May to help us grow in our professional practice for next year.

Cedar Springs Public Schools is getting stronger each day as a result of the willingness of our students, parents, community members, and staff to put their ideas on the table for consideration.  Our stakeholders are providing us with a rich collection of feedback that is making a difference in our work throughout the district. You are sharing your perspectives, and we are listening.

With respect and appreciation,

Scott B. Smith, Superintendent

Cedar Springs Public Schools Facilities Vision Questionnaire

In 2016, CSPS conducted an assessment of our existing facilities. The report identified a number of areas in need of our attention including safety and security upgrades, roofing, paving, mechanical systems, flooring, playgrounds, and electrical system upgrades throughout the district. In addition to areas of need associated with our current schools, we are in need of additional learning spaces to accommodate student growth. 

 CSPS has utilized its building and site sinking fund and grants to address some of these capital improvements.  District leaders placed an emphasis on projects which enhanced safety and security on our campus. The Board of Education is now considering several options to provide the necessary spaces for our growing student population and address our remaining infrastructure needs. 

 Your thoughts are important to the Board members as we work to clarify the direction for our district’s facility plan.  We are asking parents and residents of our community to complete a short questionnaire in order to help us clarify the district’s next steps regarding our facilities. 

Please share your thoughts through the questionnaire by May 13th. Be assured that your answers will remain completely anonymous.  Responses are only reported in aggregate.

 Please visit www.csredhawks.org and locate the CSPS Facilities Vision Questionnaire link on the homepage.

 Thank you again,

 Scott Smith, Superintendent

Heidi Reed, Board of Education President

2019 Campus Kids Summer Camp

We are currently gearing up for our Summer Camp session. Campus Kids Summer Camp will be held at Cedar Trails. The children are divided by age group – 4 to 7 year olds and 8 to 12 year olds. This way we can plan age appropriate activities and outings. 

Summer Camp starts on June 17, 2019 and runs through August 28, 2019. We are closed the week of the 4th of July. There is a $20 registration fee for one child and a $40 registration fee for a family. If you register for the Summer Camp, your registration fee covers the next school year. Cost for Summer Camp is $30 a day or $140 for 5 days a week. Families can sign up for as many or as few days as needed. A sibling discount is available. Tuition payments are due a month in advance and payment is expected for the number of days registered. No refunds are issued for missed days. Field trip costs are extra. Drop-In rates are available but your child needs to be registered.  Please call in advance to check availability.

Programming for Summer Camp includes many field trips to various fun and educational spots around the area. 

Registration packets are available at Cedar Trails or online at csredhawks.org and Campus Kids is under the Parents tab. Or, you can call Campus Kids at (616) 696-1716 or e-mail questions to campus.kids@csredhawks.org. Please register for Summer Camp by May 25, 2019.

2019 – 2020 school calendar is available at www.csredhawks.org

2019—2020 Kindergarten Class Enrollment OPEN NOW

Your child must be 5 years old by September 1, 2019 to register for Kindergarten.   Visit www.csredhawks.org and select K-12 Enrollment.  Contact the Registrar at 616.696.7317 with any questions.

Hearing and Vision Screening

Kindergarten entrants will need documentation of Hearing and Vision Screening through the Kent County Health Department (KCHD). The KCHD will be at Cedar Trails Elementary on the following date: 

June 4, 2019 & August 27, 2019

Please call Cedar Trails Elementary at 616.696.9884 to schedule an appointment.  

Additional appointment times can be scheduled by calling the KCHD at 616.632.7047.

Preschool Open Enrollment OPEN NOW

Classes will be forming for students who are 3 or 4 years old by September 1, 2019.  Information is available for families that are interested in tuition assistance for preschool.  

Contact Cedar Trails Elementary main office 616.696.9884.

Posted in Cedar Springs Public Schools, SchoolsComments (0)

CTA Charger Voices broadens performance background with Collaborative Festival

On Friday, April 12, high school students in Charger Voices traveled up to Gaylord, Michigan for the first ever “Northern Michigan Choral Collaboration Festival.” This festival was created by Mr. Holtrop and Mr. Reed (the Gaylord High School Choir Director) as an opportunity for both schools to learn and grow from each other. Students rehearsed on Friday and Saturday, and then completed a closing performance on Saturday, April 13. During this event, both groups got the amazing experience of working with Ms. Xioasha Lin, doctoral student at Michigan State University. She worked with each choir for an hour and even taught the groups a new piece for the performance. This collaborative effort between the two schools really helped our students grow and experience music in a new and exciting way.

Charger Voices at Festival: Choir students from both CTA and Gaylord High School combined their voices for a performance together.

Lady Chargers soccer team kicks off season

CTA is proud to announce that the girls soccer program is up and running for its inaugural year. The team is coached by one of our middle school teachers, Justin Harding. Fifteen Lady Chargers in grades 6-12 make up a strong team for the first-ever girls soccer season at CTA. The team had their first game on April 9 against an experienced Barry County Christian team. For many of the Lady Chargers, this was their first taste of soccer at a varsity level, and they fought hard and gave their best effort. Even though the team did come up short and lose their first game, they have not lost hope. Coach Harding and the team look forward to playing against them again later in the season as the girls look to keep growing and pushing themselves to improve each day. Coach Harding had this to say about the team, “We have a very smart team, and these girls are learning the game very quickly; I look forward to seeing their potential continue to grow.” The Lady Chargers are looking forward to playing at Algoma Christian on May 2 at 5:30 p.m.

“You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown” Musical is coming to a stage near you

Tickets are on sale now for Creative Technologies Academy’s spring musical, “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.” You will not want to miss this show on Friday, May 3 and Saturday, May 4 at 7:30 p.m.! CTA drama students have been working hard to bring this beloved comic strip classic to the stage! This show features some of the most iconic scenes from the comics including Charlie Brown’s battle with a kite, Schroeder’s love of all things Beethoven, Snoopy’s Suppertime celebration, Sally’s unfortunate coat hanger sculpture grade, and many more! This show is sure to make you laugh and relieve the nostalgia of the Sunday Funnies. Advance tickets are on sale now for $6 by calling 616-696-4905 or by going to the CTA office. Tickets are $7 at the show and seating is limited. Concessions will be available for purchase at the show, and the funds raised will be used to continue to support the Drama Club and future productions. Hope to see you at the show!

Harmonic Chargers perform National Anthem at the West Michigan Whitecaps game

Harmonic Chargers at Whitecaps

On Tuesday, April 16, CTA’s middle school choir, “Harmonic Chargers,” performed the National Anthem at the West Michigan Whitecaps game against rival The Lansing Lugnuts. The students represented CTA well and had a great time at the game!

March is Reading Month 2019

Crash made a visit to some of the classrooms after the assembly, including the 2nd grade class

March is an extra special month as it marks a whole month dedicated to promoting the enjoyment and importance of reading both in school and at home. Creative Technologies Academy placed special emphasis on activities that promote reading during the month of March with the theme of “Grand Slam Readers.”

Crash spent time dancing with elementary students during their Reading Month closing ceremonies and even had time for photo opps with a few students!

Each week, students were given a new reading log to shade in the required amount of “outside of school” reading minutes given by each grade. Whole school and classroom activities were abundant throughout the month including: a giant baseball bulletin board keeping track of their reading as a whole school, mystery readers, reading buddies, library visits, Scholastic Book Fair, and more.

We also had a special surprise guest visit from Whitecaps mascot, CRASH, during our final student assembly. As a final celebration, there will be a school-wide outing to a Whitecaps game on May 23rd.



Grades K-5: 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. 

Grades 6-12: 7:45 a.m. – 2:45 p.m.

April 26 Early Release Day 

Popcorn Day 


27 Mother/Son Event

30 Kindergarten Round Up

May 3 School Bank

Spring Musical “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown”

4 Spring Musical “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown”

7 Charter Day at the Capitol Elementary Spring Concert

9 Student vs. Staff Softball Game

Middle School/High School Choir Concert

10 Early Release Day

11 Family Trivia Night – CTA Disney Trip Fundraiser

17 Graduation 21 PA Meeting

23 Elementary Trip to Whitecaps Game

24 Early Release Day

27 No School – Memorial Day

28 Talent Show

8th Grade Promotion Ceremony

29 Field Day

31 End of Year Family Picnic w/PA Carnival

June 7 Last Day of School

*Early Release Dismissal Schedule

● K-5 Dismissal at 1:00 p.m.

● 6-12 Dismissal at 12:45 p.m.

Posted in CTA, SchoolsComments (0)

Advertising Rates Brochure
Kent Theatre
Cedar Car Co

Get Your Copy of The Cedar Springs Post for just $40 a year!