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Weekly Update: December 2, 2022


Dear Grinnell Newburg Board of Directors, Staff, Families, and Friends:


“Oh, the weather outside” has been cold and windy as we kick off the December Holiday Season! These next few weeks will swiftly go by, and before we know it, the New Year will be upon us.  


There has been quite a bit of illness, flu, and colds around the district. Please remember to stay home if you are ill and wash your hands frequently. I thank our principals for working through the substitute challenges and coverage during this cold and flu season.    


We have much to celebrate this week! This update provides highlights from our week. GHS takes center stage this week!  We have a few other fun events that also went on that have been included.     


Mr. Ceresa at Mount Mercy:

5th-grade Teacher Zac Ceresa was invited to speak at Mount Mercy’s Social Studies Methods class about simulation-based learning.  Thank you, Zac, for sharing your excitement and experiences about the Grinnell Newburg School District!  We are appreciative as staff finds ways to showcase our school district as another means to recruit staff in the future. 



NHS Induction:

Congratulations to our students who were inducted into the National Honor Society!   Thank you to Mr. Aaron Backlin for your support and sponsorship of our students.  




Boys Varsity Swimming:


Boys Varsity Swimming beats Williamsburg 107 - 63 at their November 28th meet! 


Edith Renfrow Hall of Fame Induction:


Edith Renfrow Smith, class of 1932, was inducted into the GHS Hall of Fame on December 2, 2022, at approximately 10:00 am during the pride assembly. She participated via zoom!  Edith is 108 years old and was inducted for her work as an educator and more than 40 years of volunteer service to her community. She has lived a life of serving others!  She is also the first black woman to graduate from Grinnell College.  You can learn more about her and her family here. Thank you to our Grinnell Drake Library for providing this historical information. Please join me in congratulating Edith!  Her plaque reads Edith Renfrow Smith, 1932, "Educator, Altruistic Volunteer at Goodwill and the Art Institute of Chicago."  Thank you to the Alumni group for supporting her induction and Mr. Coffman and Monique Shore for coordinating this event!   





GHS Awards Assembly:


Students were nominated and recognized for outstanding character, academic achievement, and performance in extracurricular activities. 



Students were also recognized for the Matt Lageveen Character Award. 


The Matt Lageveen Character Award was established in 2006 after Matt’s unexpected death in 2005.  Matt was a fairly quiet student, but he had a good sense of who he was and what he wanted to do with his future. Matt was never in trouble and avoided drama.  He went about his day, doing the right thing and displaying exceptional character.  Many of our students are deserving of this award, but, of course, not all who are deserving will receive it. However, showing good character is so important we will continue to recognize those who are selected through the process. Sophomores through seniors are eligible to be considered. Nominations can be submitted anytime by staff or students. Recipients of this award receive a plaque that has a John Wesley quote inscribed on it. 


Do all the good you can

By all the means you can

In all the ways you can

At all the times you can

To all the people you can

As long as you ever can



Back Row:  Joel Dressler, Oliver Louden, Tamer Bush, Lexie Spooner (new), Tristan Willenbring (new), and Nathan Vanderleest (new). 

Front Row:  Kelsey VanCompernolle, Livie Herbers, Erin Nicklas, Monica Gruman, Landen Foster (new), Mary Jacobson (new), and Nina Walton. 



Science Center:


2nd Graders had a BLAST at The Science Center in Des Moines!




Senior Picture Reminders


If you would like your senior picture included in the Yearbook, please submit them by December 20th to Ms. Vanderleest at: jen.vanderleest@grinnell-k12.org Pictures should be a head and shoulder shot with a dpi of 300.


Upcoming Events: 


This is a busy time of year for our students!   Concerts to competitions will fill our campus!   Enjoy the busy time of year.  For complete information, you can click Activities Calendar Here


Here are a few highlights next week you may not want to miss upcoming concerts!  


December 2nd:

Drake Community Library Festival of the Trees

GMS Jazz Band to Perform! - 5:30 - 7:30 pm 


December 5: 

Winter Concert 5th/6th Grade 6:15 and 7:30 at GHS auditorium


December 6:

Winter Concert 7/8th grade at 6:15 and 7:00 GHS auditorium


Have a wonderful weekend!