From the Desk of the Principal – Summer 2024

What a year it has been…!!! Shepherd’s Watch Christian Academy (SWCA) has completed its first Christ-filled, academically strong school year. As I write, it is hard for me to believe that a full school year is complete. As I think back to the first days of the school year, the students were all excited. Some were nervous because this was the first time in a school classroom. Oh, and the special treat for the students was to be able to ring the old school bell that hung over this school for so many years. The bell was sold at an auction, after the high school was raised, torn down, and was now returned to Mattoon after it was heard the Shepherd’s Watch Community Center was going to start a Christian School. The bell was refurbished and was displayed in front of the school, welcoming students to the school on September 3rd, the first day of the school year. Several students even enjoyed the opportunity to ring the bell.

As we started the school year, we had 17 students in grade 4k-6th grade. It gave a wonderful opportunity for older students to work with younger students. This did happen a few times, but what was more overwhelming was the volunteers who helped the teachers in the classrooms. With multiple grades in a classroom, and I mean more then two grades in a classroom, the volunteer teacher aides were able to work individually with the students during the time the teacher was working with another grade level of students. As a recipient of the volunteer help, I can not express the thankfulness for these aides and the help they provided to the students. With their help, we began the year with a second grade student who could not read. At the end of the year she was one of the readers in our Reader’s Club.

Students had the opportunity to see the whole process of maple syrup making, from tapping the tree to collecting the sap and then tasting the final product. They were introduced to various farm animals as we do live in a farming community. Finally they enjoyed seeing the process of a chicken being hatched.

Well that was a little from the 2023-24 school year. We are now planning for the 2024-25 school year. SWCA became a part of the Wisconsin Parental Choice Program (WPCP) and was open for parents to apply who qualified financially. Sorry to say the window to apply for a student voucher in the WPCP is over, (Feb 1st – April 18th). Because the voucher window is closed, it does NOT mean that SWCA does not continue to take enrollment for the 2024-25 school year. SWCA will continue to take enrollment into the fall school year, however future enrollment will come with a tuition required. As SWCA mission is to be available for ALL parents to have their children attend a school of their choice, if a family is in need of financial help, they need to contact me. Funding is available for those in need.

I did not want to make this a book to read so I will end it here. If you or someone you know is interested, please contact us on our web page or facebook page. You can also call the school office at 715-489-3638. Tours of the school are available through appointment.

One last thing about the 2024-25 school year. We are serving 4K- 8th grade and our enrollment looks to be between 50-60 students.

I know there are many things happening at SWCA but we can only thank our Heavenly Father for the work being done, because it is ALL part of God’s Plan.

Have a Blessed Summer and I look forward to seeing everyone in fall.

Gerald R. Schmidt