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Spiritual Life

Spiritual growth is a primary concern of GHCA, growing out of our mission to provide a biblically-integrated education. This focus is reflected in a number of ways in the school's program throughout the year:

  • Daily class Bible reading and prayer
  • Weekly faculty and staff devotions
  • Integration of biblical perspectives with all areas of school study and activity             
  • The teaching of Bible as a regular course of study
  • Weekly chapels
  • Junior High and High School discipleship groups
  • Community service projects
  • Scripture memorization
  • Annual High School Retreat

 

Cooperation with Area Churches

Our students and staff represent about twenty area churches with whom we work to maintain a strong partnership for the spiritual benefit of our students. Churches support the school in a variety of ways, including providing chapel speakers, facilities for school use (e.g., chapels and concerts), and financial support. Pastors often provide counseling and prayer support for our students and staff.

 

Prayer Meetings

School prayer meetings are scheduled periodically to provide opportunities for the board, staff, parents and students to come together to pray for the needs of the school and its families.

 

Chapels & Assemblies 

All students are required to attend chapel each week, which gives them the opportunity to sing, share testimonies, and hear a nondenominational, biblical message. Chapel and discipleship groups alternate weeks for secondary level students. Chapel programs involve many different kinds of speakers, activities, and videos. Area pastors, youth pastors, and missionaries are frequent guests. Occasionally special chapels or assemblies are announced when the opportunity arises to hear special guests or presentations. Special all-school (PreK – 12) chapels are held at Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter. Parents are always welcome to attend chapel services.

 

Discipleship Groups

Students in grades 7-12 are divided into “discipleship groups” that alternate meeting times with chapel services. These groups are informal and enjoy time focusing on various aspects of what it means to be a disciple of Jesus Christ. Discipleship groups sometimes do off-campus service projects; they also can go off campus for lunch about once each quarter.

 

Athletics

As a member of the Maine Principals Association (MPA) and the Aroostook League, we offer secondary students an active interscholastic sports program, the goal of which is to teach Christian character—such as self-discipline, commitment, and fairness—as well as to provide a vehicle for interaction and testimony to other students and provide a wholesome release for energy. Current sports offerings include cross-country, intramural soccer, basketball, baseball, softball, and tournament volleyball. In addition, GHCA has a cooperative agreement with Hodgdon High School to allow individual students to compete in varsity soccer and golf. All GHCA interscholastic athletic activities are governed by the rules and regulations established by the MPA. Following are some athletics policies (in addition to the eligibility policy and other guidelines listed in “Student Activities”) that all students are expected to follow.

 

Middle School Program

The middle school level is foundational and emphasizes basic rules and skills, sportsmanship, and teamwork. Playing time will be as equal as possible but will also reflect skill, attitude, and work ethic. Cuts are rarely made but may be necessary due to resource constraints. Students in grades 5-8 may compete at this level. Due to our school size, eighth grade athletes are eligible to play in high school level sports. It is the school’s policy that priority is first given to the middle school programs—eighth graders are not allowed to practice with varsity teams until their season is complete but may travel and play with the varsity teams for games. Eighth grade athletes are expected to play all middle school games. At the conclusion of the middle school program, eighth graders may begin practicing with varsity teams. The school recognizes that it is a great opportunity for eighth graders to be involved with varsity teams and encourages such involvement. However, it is our belief that such involvement is mainly for developmental purposes, not athletic performance.

 

Varsity Program

At the varsity level, teams strive to be as competitive as possible within our philosophy. Coach expectations are higher at this level. There is a greater time commitment (daily) and the possibility of an extended season due to play-offs and tournaments. Playing time will vary depending entirely on skill, attitude, and work ethic. Any cuts made at the varsity levels are based on skill, attitude, and work ethic and may also be necessary due to resource constraints.

 

Christian Testimony

An athlete's actions are a reflection of the standards and values of GHCA. Therefore, all athletes are expected to exhibit Christ-honoring behavior and attitudes both on and off the field/court. This includes being respectful and obedient and demonstrating good sportsmanship.

 

Sportsmanship

All our school family—parents, staff, and students—are strongly encouraged to come and cheer for our teams in competition. Spectators are asked to remember, however, that good sportsmanship on the part of fans enhances our testimony as a Christian school, while poor sportsmanship sets a negative example for our children and harms our witness to the community. Failure to conduct oneself in a Christ-honoring way may result in the offender being asked to leave the event.

 

Awards

Awards nights are held at the end of the winter and spring seasons to celebrate athletic accomplishments. Certificates, letters, pins, and trophies are awarded based on criteria established by the athletic staff and administration. Student athletes are required to attend all such functions.

 

Secondary Enrichment

The Academy sponsors a number of activities for grades 7-12 that enhance student life in various ways. Some of these include the HIgh School Retreat, Fall Fling, National Honor Society, Spirit Week, field trips, Senior Chapel, County Spelling Bee, science fair, chapel praise team, community service, Region II vocational training and the annual Rotary Student Leadership Dinner.

 

High School Fall Retreat

Each fall high school students enjoy a two-day, one-night retreat at Living Waters Bible Conference in Weston where fun social activities are combined with worship and Bible study in order to help students build right relationships with God and each other.

 

National Honor Society

GHCA sponsors a chapter of the National Honor Society, which is duly chartered and affiliated with the national organization. It is open to any student in grades 10-12 who meets the eligibility requirements in four areas of evaluation: scholarship (must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher), leadership, service, and character. Standards for selection are established by the national office of NHS and have been revised to meet our local chapter needs. Students are selected to be members by the Faculty Council which bestows this honor upon qualified students on behalf of our school faculty each spring. Consideration for membership in the NHS is a privilege, not a right; merely achieving the minimum GPA does not automatically result in an invitation to be a member.

Students who meet eligibility criteria as listed in the chapter bylaws (available from the Main Office and the GHCA website) are invited to complete the Student Activity Information Form that provides the Faculty Council with information regarding the candidate’s leadership and service. A history of leadership experiences and participation in school or community service is also required.

To evaluate a candidate’s character, the student’s school disciplinary records are reviewed, and faculty are solicited for input regarding their professional reflections on a candidate’s service activities, character, and leadership. This information is reviewed by the Faculty Council along with the Student Activity Information Form to determine membership. A majority vote of the Council is necessary for selection. Candidates are notified regarding selection or nonselection according to a predetermined schedule.

Following notification, a formal induction ceremony is held to recognize all the newly selected members. Once inducted, new members are required to maintain the same level of performance (or better) in all four criteria that led to their selection. This obligation includes regular attendance at chapter meetings held quarterly during the school year, and participation in the chapter service projects conducted twice each year. Students or parents who have questions regarding the selection process or membership obligations can contact the chapter advisor through the Main Office.

Elementary Celebrations

A number of special activities (which can vary from year to year) sprinkled throughout the school year help make GHCA an exciting place for children to learn. A favorite tradition for our elementary students each year is the "Pilgrim and Indian Parade" (PreK- 6) during Thanksgiving week. Students dress up in appropriate costumes and parade throughout the school before parading over to the Thanksgiving chapel service with the rest of the school. Afterward, the lower elementary join together for Thanksgiving Feast with all the "fixins" . The annual pumpkin patch trip is always a hit. Trips to the Agricultural Museum, the Whited Family Farm, and Spring Break Sugar House have become annual highlights. Local treks to the post office, fire house and a nature hike complement students' school experience. The annual trip to Acadia to explore the estuaries of the coast is the highlight of the sixth grade class year.

Elementary classes come together for weekly chapel services and sometimes for other special activities. There are occasional school-wide assemblies and chapels (for example, at Christmas and Easter). Fourth-sixth graders serve as "Reading Buddies" for the Little Eagles Preschool, PreK and Kindergarten students they read to each week. Lower elementary students (PreK-3) enjoy an annual Snow Fun Day with plenty of sliding and hot chocolate. Many students learn to ski each winter as they hit the slopes of Big Rock with the Ski for Life program. Everyone looks forward to playing their part in the annual Spirit Week fun in March.

The choirs, not only sing at local nursing homes but each Christmas dazzle the school community in the annual Christmas concert gala.

Rounding out the school year with picnics and games in the town park is a bitter sweet beginning of summer fun and rest.

DIRECTIONS

Our Address:
27 School St
Houlton, ME. 04730
Office Hours:                           Contact Information:
   Mon. to Fri. 8am to 3pm            Phone:  207.532.0736
   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.                           Fax:      207.532.9553
   

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