Monday, February 28, 2011

Edline/Grade Quick is almost ready

It appears that the technical adjustments that needed to be made in our school's server have been made, the equipment that needed to be upgraded has been put in place, and our long awaited, anticipated, and delayed on-line grading system is about to be brought on line.  The staff must still go through a period of training before the account will be activated, but once that occurs, parents can have almost immediate access to the grades of their children.  

This will be relatively easy to use.  You will have a web address to go to in order to enter your personalized login and password to view a page that has your child's grades on it, each subject, along with any notes from the teacher, their attendance, and other information.  No one else can see this information.  The last date grades were entered will appear on the page so you will be able to know how up to date it is. 

Because this is a technical "toy," we expect some glitches, problems, and issues with the "learning curve" at first.  Please do not call the office if you are having a problem.  We will have an email address set up for you to register your problems. 

We thank you for your patience with this.  We had some technical diffiulties that had to be resolved, due to the age and condition of some of our computer equipment.  Most of that has been resolved.  Also, we have received a number of contributions toward the purchase of the program and its operating costs over the next three years.  If you would like to help with that, the opportunity is still available. 

Sunday, February 20, 2011

CONGRATULATIONS!

Friday night was senior night as PCS honored four senior girls and four senior boys during their last home basketball games of the season.  A large, raucous crowd gathered to watch as both teams provided some of their best play of the season, and defeated their friendly rivals from Eden Christian Academy. 

This week, both teams will be involved in playoff games, moving toward the championship trophies of the SWCAC, an athletic conference of Christian schools in Southwestern Pennsylvania and Eastern Ohio.  It is a small conference, the schools that are members are all small, Christian schools, and their total combined enrollment probably doesn't come to much more than 800 students.  But it is important to them, and to the athletes who made the commitment to play, and by playing, to learn and improve. 

Our boys varsity plays Tuesday night against Eden again in the gym at Wilson Christian Academy in West Mifflin at 5:30.  The girls play at home on Wednesday night in the second round.  The support they received on Friday night boosted their efforts.  They deserve all the support we can give them. 

More on Senate Bill #1

The debate in the Pennsylvania senate over Senate Bill #1, the educational voucher bill, is continuing.  As with most bills of this nature, there is a lot of misinformation being put out about what the bill will or won't do.  Basically, the provisions are pretty simple.  At the beginning, only low income families from poor performing schools will be eligible.  Each succeeding year, new provisions will be added until vouchers become available to low income families and to students in poor performing school districts.  There is an increase in the EITC allowance as well.

While this is not a comprehensive educational choice bill, one that would allow any family in the state to take their voucher wherever they want their child to go, it is a step in the right direction.  Legislators need to hear from you if you are supportive, since we are getting reports, through those in the Christian school movement who are active in Harrisburg as advocates for this bill, that the opposition is telling legislators if they vote to pass this bill, there will be organized efforts to unseat them at the next election cycle.  The public education lobby is strong in the state, and has a lot of money behind it. 

The misinformation that is being spread consists of the claim that this bill will lead to increased state spending in education.  The fact is that it won't.  At the moment, the state is paying approximately $10,000 per year to provide education for one student for one year in the public school system.  That dollar amount won't change if they transfer to another public school.  Private schools are limited by the bill to receiving only the amount of their highest tuition and fees, which, statewide, will average about $1,800 less than that figure.  Of course, the public schools which lose the money will try to make a case that they can't cut their expenses proportionately, but I think the common sense question that needs to be asked is, "Why not?"  If they are not providing services for those students, then their cost should drop. 

There is also a fear, on the part of opponents, that the lack of accountability of most private schools will lead to abuse of the system.  I have to smile at that one.  The fact that private, Christian schools are free from cumbersome government oversight and regulation is one of several key reasons why their measureable standards exceed those of the public education system by a substantial margin.  As a private, Christian school, we are accountable directly to the parents who send their children to us.  If we don't provide the best education they can receive anywhere, then we're out of business, and out of a job.  The partnership that exists between parents, teachers and administration of private, Christian schools is the key to our success, and that is a foundational, Biblical principle that we cannot compromise. 

A voucher program simply gives parents a choice.  It is not state funding for private schools, it is an equalizer that makes the best education available accessible to families who seek it.  They are the taxpayers, it is their money, and most of them will pay far more money in state and local taxes over a lifetime that go to education than they will ever receive in services from the school system.  They should not be told where they have to spend that money.

For more information you can visit websites for ACSIPA and PACAPE which contain all kinds of information on Senate Bill #1. 

Monday, February 7, 2011

Show Your Warrior Spirit

Thursday, February 10, the PCS Warrior JV girls, Varsity Girls and Varsity Boys Baskebtall teams will be hosting Wilson Christian from Pittsburgh, beginning at 4:00 p.m.  The "Little Warriors" cheerleaders, a group of elementary students who were recently trained by our varsity cheerleading squad, will be performing. 

This is the perfect night to come out and watch some great basketball, and cheer on our athletes.  This is an important conference game for our varsity boys and their seeding in the upcoming SWCAC tournament, and our girls have a chance to remain unbeaten in conference play and strengthen their hold on first place.  Games begin at 4:00.