When the 2012-13 school year ended, the K-12 students of Highland Christian School all occupied the same campus, in the old Arlington High School building, but when the 2013-14 school year starts this fall, the K-5 students of Highland Christian School will be going to the Arlington Assembly of God Church, while the school’s grades 6-12 students will head off to the Cascade Christian Reformed Church of Marysville.
“Ideally, we would have been able to accommodate everyone in one location, but we couldn’t find anyplace big enough for us,” said Rick Poortinga, vice president of the Highland Christian School Board and president of the Cascade Christian Reformed Church Council. “For 10 years, we were spoiled by that old high school.”
“We wanted to stay in Arlington, and the city wanted us to stay,” said Nola Smith, a member of the Highland Christian School and Arlington Assembly of God Church boards. “There are at least three areas in Arlington that could be available, that wouldn’t need to be rezoned to accommodate us, but in the meantime, we’re now spoiled for indoor gymnasium space in ways that we weren’t at the old high school.”
Poortinga and Smith agreed not only that both Highland Christian Schools would be fully moved into their new locations and ready to start the new school year on Sept. 4, but also that the move out of the old high school building has been a blessing in disguise for them.
“Highland Christian School is not a building,” Poortinga said. “It’s a family. This forces our hand and gets us out there to aggressively try and find a new home.”
“We’ve retained a strong infrastructure even after losing our building,” Smith said. “We have outstanding teachers who have raised the bar and maintained a future-focused vision.”
Highland Christian School’s students come from as near as Arlington and Marysville, and as far as Darrington and Camano Island, and the school is still accepting applications from families wishing to enroll students, by calling 360-403-8351.
In the meantime, Highland Christian School will bid farewell to its former digs with a garage sale at the old Arlington High School building at 135 S. French Ave., tentatively scheduled for 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 24.
“We’ve been in that building 10 years and accumulated a lot of stuff that we won’t have room for at our new locations,” Poortinga said.
“Even though we’ll be at separate campuses, we’ll still be one family,” Smith said. “We’ll be an even stronger family because we’ll have to work harder at staying connected.”