King’s Ridge High Students Rap Their Gratitude In Song
Imagine a story that starts with a need for more classrooms, involves much prayer and ends up with a rap music video. This story has even been referenced by some as a modern day miracle.
Several factors contribute to this feeling of “miracle” that has been in the works at King’s Ridge Christian School. First, it only took 14 months to secure $10M in donations and pledges to fully fund the construction of a 47,162 square foot Craftsman-style architecture high school classroom building. Next, there will be no debt on this new construction as it will be paid for before the scheduled opening in fall 2013. Finally, for a Christian school there is great significance placed on acknowledgement that it happened with each step being led by prayer and amazing stories of hearts being inspired.
These stories include major foundations who contributed a total of $2.6M towards the $10 M goal. The school community commitment was strong with 93% of school families participating, and 70% of them circling back to update their initial pledges. There were generous contributions from friends of KRCS. But some of the most touching inspirations can be found in stories of how students were motivated to get involved.
Last year 8th grader, Nathan Kurtz, used his budding entrepreneurial skills to start a small business in which he spends much of his summer to build and install shelves for student lockers. Through his efforts he has contributed to campus improvement projects and now has pledged to raise $1000 for the high school building. Another story involved two 4th grade girls, Brooke Nitkowski and Olivia Owens, who set up lemonade stand one weekend and donated the $17.89 in proceeds.
Once it became clear that the goal of $10M was within reach, King’s Ridge High School students, Grayson Byrd, Penny Hart, John Jarrard, Sam Jarrard, Stephen Meisel, Tarez Miller, and Elizabeth Volker gathered to come up with a plan on how to express gratitude to the donors with more than the traditional “thank you.” It had to be unique and needed to communicate the message in a way that it wasn’t about the money. It was about the fact that it happened with God’s involvement.
They gathered to collaborate and create a beat, a script, and a story board to express the relational culture of the King’s Ridge network of community and acknowledge that it would have been difficult to accomplish this milestone alone. In a time where social media allows teens to post their every move, this group kept the project quiet by recording and filming outside of school hours. It was revealed to the entire student body after the ground-blessing ceremony for the high school building on the last day of school.
Response to the video has been overwhelmingly positive. “Knowing some of these students and their heart for others I knew this would be something special. They didn’t disappoint,” says Connie Sheets, KRCS faculty member and coach. “Each time I watch the video it is clear that these students understand the importance of a relationship with God.”
The students involved in the project were able to leverage their passion for music, their creative talents to produce content and model collaborative skills that will be needed for the learning environments they will enter in college and the problem-solving challenges in their careers.
One of the benefits was being able to see their engagement in the project to the point of passing up other social events because of their commitment. “These kids didn’t cut corners, they really showed up to get it done,” comments Steve Thomason, a KRCS parent who managed the video production. “I loved their excitement and it inspires me to think that someday my son would be able to use his talents for something so creative.”
The video is available for viewing through the QR code, on the King’s Ridge Facebook page or at this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ngw6hm1MDKc .
If you are interested in learning more about King’s Ridge or scheduling an admission tour contact 770-754-5738 or visit www.kingsridgecs.org. You may also connect with the school by “Liking” their Facebook page.