Three years ago the Holt Public Schools made a building switch and had the seniors move from the high school main campus building over to what used to be the ninth grade campus building across the street, referred to now as the North Campus building. This change in buildings became notoriously known as “the switch.” According to Holt High School Principle Michael Willard, the campus switch caused a lot of distrust from the community, and made people question a lot of other policies and rules set in place by the school. Time has given way for the rearranging to settle down and become the norm for the current Holt senior students and staff. “Three years later and our data from surveys and focus groups indicates that the students love the new configuration of our high school, and the teachers support the change,” said Holt Public Schools Superintendent Dr. David Hornak.
Delhi Township Supervisor John Hayhoe leaned back in his chair at Tim Horton’s gazing out the window listing off the positives of Delhi Township and Holt when he came to a mid-thought remembrance. “The one thing we do have that’s a nice draw is Holt Schools,” Hayhoe said. “People actually move in to Holt so their kids can go to the local schools.”
Holt High School stands alone in what appears to be an old field. It’s a sprawling structure of brown brick and slanted roofs, reminiscent of multiple supermarkets placed next to each other. After what Hayhoe labeled as a “tough bill to pass” the bonds were sold through a millage and construction began in 2000 and concluded for the start of the 2003 school year.
After the opening of the 1.5-mile Ram Trail in early December, Delhi Township administration is in the midst of designing Ram Trail Two, which will start at the Holt Road and Eifert Road intersection and travel north-east towards Jaycee Park and Cedar Street. “These trails have been very popular amongst citizens and in my 27 years working for the township I think the trails are one of our greatest contributions to the community,” said Director of Parks and Recreation Mark Jenks. According to Tracy Miller, Director of Community Development, construction of the new trail will most likely begin in spring of 2017 and be completed that fall. “There is some property across from Eifert Road that the township owns. There is a worn out two track back there that people use and that is something that could be a part of Ram Trail Two,” said Jenks.
While studies still support the idea that a child is safer in school than they are in a car, the rising rate of acts of violence in school still raises red flags for some. Acts of school violence can occur anywhere and can have many different causes, making them difficult to track and study. So what can schools do to stay safe? For the Holt School District, most doors are locked with security cameras. The school resource officer, Mary Hull, a local deputy, is on-call for the district’s eleven different buildings.
By Aundreana Jones-Poole
Holt Journal Staff Reporter
A program at Holt High School is changing the lives of general education students and their disabled peers. The LINKS program is a peer-to-peer support program that was implemented by The START program at Grand Valley State University to provide help to students with Autism Spectrum Disorder or other disabilities. The help comes from other high school students. The students who provide support are called “LINKS.” They have the option of enrolling in the program as an elective.
By his own accounts, Holt Public Schools Superintendent Dr. David Hornak has been in office for just over 120 days. But, does anyone in the district really know him yet? Behind the thick-rimmed glasses, white button-down shirt and larger-than-life smile, you will see a man, who, in his own words is, “tickled to be here.”
Sitting down for an interview, Hornak exudes confidence and charisma with every word he says about Holt Public Schools. It takes only a matter of seconds, and a quick glimpse around his office, to see just how passionate he is about his students and his role as superintendent. Before taking his current position as Holt Public Schools superintendent, Hornak spent 22 years working in the district as both an elementary school teacher and principal.
By Aundreana Jones-Poole
Holt Journal staff reporter
The Delhi Charter Township’s recycling center and other recycling programs are increasing environmental awareness in Holt.
According to the Public Services Department section of the township website, Delhi has instituted some recycling programs to reduce health hazards and help the environment and are improving them constantly. Sewer backups and overflows can damage home interiors, cause health hazards, and threaten the environment, according to the website. In an effort to combat this, Delhi has instituted a grease-recycling program. ‘This program started many years ago in response to the Sanitary Sewer Overflow Regulation,” said Sandra Diorka, Director of Public Services. “Now grease is fed to the digester system for energy production.”
According to the website, household greases and oils are recycled into products like bio-diesel, pet food and cosmetics.
It’s 7 p.m. on an early October evening and tensions are high as parents, teachers and students fill the school board meeting room at Holt High School’s North Campus. After several minutes of discussion, Executive Director of Curriculum and Staff Development Dr. Ruth Riddle addressed the growing crowd. “Based on our internal data, we projected being down about 50 students and we’re right on target with our budget projections,” she said. According to information gathered from MISchoolData.org, which publishes student count rates, there were 5,803 students in Holt Public Schools during the 2013-14 school year. The district saw a loss of 87 students in the next year, dropping to 5,716.
Holt High School celebrated 11 senior athletes moving on to play their sport at the collegiate level during a short ceremony Thursday, Feb. 20. The after-school event brought student athletes, coaches, parents and faculty alike to celebrate the athletic achievements of the Class of 2014. Boys’ soccer Assistant Coach Camron Gnass set up the celebratory signing in honor of the students who signed their letters of intent on February 5. “We didn’t have a National Signing Day event,” said Gnass.
By Lia Kananipuamaeole Kamana
Ingham County Chronicle Staff Writer
Injuries are nothing new in the sports world. Athletes are no strangers to sprains, strains, contusions, concussions and broken bones. In recent years, injuries amongst female athletes have been going up, especially lower leg injuries. The three most dangerous sports when it comes to these lower leg injuries are soccer, volleyball and basketball. Examples of lower leg injuries are ankle sprains and strains, hip problems, foot problems, shin splints, pulled muscles, and the knee.