×

Do we have great parents, or what?

This week our new parent group honored all the teachers and staff members at ICSV with gifts of appreciation. Last Friday, we were surprised with delicious homemade cupcakes (I must admit it – I had two!). Then on Monday, we received a gift bag with candy and a giftcard to Starbucks. On Tuesday we enjoyed more candy and homemade treats – chocolate-covered strawberries, cookies, and chocolate! We were even given a lovely glass heart with a Bible verse. On Wednesday, we were blessed with delicious fruit. The blueberries brought back memories of my mother, as she loved them and would try to keep them all for herself. There was mango, in addition to many oranges, apples, etc. Then Thursday was Flower Day! I loved the tulips and cherry blossoms – a sweet reminder that Spring is on its way!

On Friday, we enjoyed a homemade lunch made by the parents. Food started to arrive first thing in the morning, and then volunteers came to set up and serve soon thereafter. There were sandwiches, quiche, cupcakes, scones, and the list could go on and on. My office is right by the staff lunchroom, so I could hear the sounds of joy as teacher after teacher came down to enjoy their lunch and the wonderful fellowship that sharing a meal brings. I have served in many schools over the years, but ICSV is really special. Our parent group may be small, but the joy with which they encourage us, pray for us, and serve us is so evident.

On behalf of the entire school faculty and staff, I thank you all for your most generous giving that provided the funds for all of these special treats. This week is one of the hardest ones to keep going, as it is the sixth week since Christmas, and the winter seems so long. Once we return from Energy Break, we will have another six weeks until Easter. But by then it will be Spring!

May you all have a wonderful week with your kids! Whether you are flying south to feel the sun on your face or you are heading to the mountains for a week of skiing, we wish you all safety and fun. We’ll see you back on Monday, February 27.

Because of His Faithfulness,
Sharon Brobst, Ed.D.
Director

What’s in a Name?

In many cultures one’s name is very important. It carries meaning. In the Bible we learn why people received their particular name. For example, God changed Abram’s name to Abraham, meaning “father of many nations,” and Simon became Peter meaning “rock.” In the US, carrying on the “family name” is important – or, at least, it was in my family. I come from a family of five children. Both of my brothers had all girls, so there were no sons to carry on the family name. What is interesting is that the sisters felt the importance of our name, so that when we married, we kept our maiden name “Christian” as a middle name. That is why I go by Sharon Christian Brobst. The relationship that I had with my father, and consequently my keeping his name, was very important to me. (Yes, my maiden name was Christian!)

In high school chapel last week the worship team led us in a song that I had not heard before. It was called, “Death was Arrested,” a song recorded in 2015 by North Point InsideOut band. The high school students always do such a wonderful job leading us, but when Abby Hunter began singing, I was stopped in my tracks.

In the second verse, she sang: My orphan heart was given a name.

Two weeks ago I spoke about what we are given when we become Christians. I said that we are adopted into the family of God as God’s children. In Ephesians chapter 1, the Apostle Paul reminds the Christians in Ephesus that God “predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself.”  When we become Christians, we are also given Jesus’ name. “Christian” means follower of Christ. It’s a derivative of Jesus Christ’s name, and it implies that we are His. In the song the high school students sang, we are referred to as an orphan who is adopted into Christ’s family and given His name. It’s more than just a name; it’s an identity. It’s a relationship. It means we belong to Him. We are part of His family.

When I had my first son, I named him Daniel Christian Brobst. I wanted him to identify with my father, his grandfather, and our family. My father, Russell Christian, was a godly man who was in Christian service, mostly as a pastor, for over 50 years. I grew up as Pastor Christian’s daughter. In a way, my life was defined by who my father was. That’s the way it is with God as our father. We are not just wandering through life with no identity and no purpose. We have been chosen by God to be His adopted sons and daughters. What a most amazing gift! He has given us His name!

(If you’d like to listen to the song I referred to, here is a link.)

Because of His Faithfulness,
Sharon Brobst, Ed.D.
Director

ACSI Self-Study is Almost Complete

For the last two years, the ICSV staff has been working on a Self-Study leading up to an ACSI/Middle States Re-accreditation visit in March. The Self-Study is broken into eight sections, with each one focusing on a different area of the school program. They range from philosophy and governance to the instructional program and student care. Teams of board members, administrators, staff members, faculty, and parents met to discuss where the school is doing a good job and areas where we should focus our attention in the future. We looked at student achievement test scores, parent surveys, exit interviews, and other ways that the school has collected input over the years. The outcome of our study is a Continuing School Improvement Plan (CSIP) that links to a Strategic Plan and a long-range plan of where we see ourselves in five years.

The Self-Study was shared with the entire staff this week. Once they provide feedback, we will be submitting it to ACSI, our accrediting body, for review. A committee of five educators from around the world will be arriving in Vienna on Sunday, March 19. They will spend three days at the school visiting classrooms, talking with students, parents, staff members, etc. They will be looking for evidence that what we stated in our Self-Study is actually happening at our school.

We ask that you please remember the school in prayer as we now prepare for their on-site visit. When the visit is complete, they will send us a report acknowledging our areas of strength and noting areas for improvement. We will modify our CSIP based on their recommendations. We will then share with you their findings and communicate our plans for the next seven years when we will go through another Re-Accreditation study and visit.

A huge thank you goes out to all who participated on these committees, helping us to take an honest look at our programs. We are excited to share with you the results.

Because of His Faithfulness,
Sharon Brobst, Ed.D.
Director