One of my favorite quotes from Maria Montessori: The greatest sign of success for a teacher... is to be able to say, 'The children are now working as if I did not exist.'
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Elementary News

Senior Capstone Showcase is Thursday, May 23 - Join Us!

Senior Showcase Invitation

Our Ms. Tricia Needs Your Help!

Hello BR Families! My name is Tricia Schrotenboer and I am the school counselor for the middle and high school.  With many changes taking place in the area of employment, Michigan has responded with passing several bills that require schools to take a more active role.  In the coming months, I will be developing a scope and sequence along with lesson plans for each elementary classroom that focus on career and college readiness.  As a former Montessori teacher, I feel it is important to develop hands-on lessons and activities. In order to make this a reality, please consider purchasing any of the following items.  All donations can be dropped off in either main office by Wednesday, June 5. Thank you in advance for your support.

Five Black River Teachers Nominated as Amazing Teachers by Holland Sentinel/Gentex

Five Black River elementary teachers were nominated to be recognized at the Holland Sentinel/Gentex Amazing Teachers Banquet on May 23, 2019. The Amazing Teacher program is an ongoing tribute to spotlight all the Amazing Teachers in the Holland/Zeeland area. The following Black River teachers were nominated for their dedication, expertise, and the difference they are making in the lives of our children:

Kristen Van Ravenswaay - Lower Elementary
Jared Graybiel - Special Education
Jamie Fredenburg - Lower Elementary
Elyse Cisler - Lower Elementary
Carrie Ames - Upper Elementary

See the list of nominees and information on how to nominiate your favorite teacher at

Garden STEAM Needs your Help! BR Garden Stem Logo

Calling all gardeners, builders, and those interested in creating an elementary school garden! The Garden STEAM project term class will be underway soon and we would love any and all help. If you have skill or interest in any of the listed areas, we would love to hear from you! Our class will meet from 11:40-2:40 between May 28-June 7. Come play in the dirt, or bring your craft to help produce an amazing experience for the kids in the elementary building! 

We are in need of:
-those willing to build raised garden beds
-families interested in a rotational schedule to tend to the garden over the summer (free produce!)
-gardeners to assist during implementation or after

Please contact Nicole Duquette for more information or if you would be willing to help us:, or extension 161.

2018-19 BRPS Yearbook Delivery Information

The 2018-19 BRPS Middle School/High School yearbook will be available for pickup in the main building during the beginning of August. Watch the Black River website or your student email address for the exact date. Please contact yearbook editor, Alex Koch  at if you have any questions.

Attention Seniors: If you did not choose and pay for shipping, then you will have to pick your yearbook up at the main building when it is available. The books should be ready before college starts. If you (or your family) cannot pick up your yearbook during August, then we can hold onto them for you.

The 2018-19 Elementary yearbooks will be handed out to students during the last week of school. This will be on Wednesday June 5th and Thursday June 6th. 

Reminder: Project Term School and Office Hours

Project Term school dismissal time (all grades) is 2:40pm 
Project Term main office hours (both buildings) are 7:30am-3:30pm 

Big History Thank-You

On Wednesday, May 1, Black River 9th grade students and several teachers traveled to Ann Arbor for the Sixth Annual Big History Extravaganza where students visited the following sites:
Museum of Natural History 
Museum of Art
Kelsey Museum of Archaeology 
Law Quad
This incredible trip was made possible to students at no cost! Funding was provided by a combination of support from the Michigan Council for Arts & Cultural Affairs (MCACA) and BIG HISTORY Project supporters. Thank you to all who made it possible.

Big history field trip

First-ever Tulip Time Run Recycling Event Created by BR Student, Hannah Huggett
Recycling is the number one action we can take for our environment and our future on this planet. Black River student, Hannah Huggett recognizes this and created the first ever recycling event at the Tulip Time Run this past weekend. Her recycling event was a huge success!
Here’s a summary of the material stats her team diverted:
Boxed Water – 139 lbs
Plastic recycling – 57.2 lbs
Corrugated Cardboard – 237.5 lbs
Total Diverted from the Landfill: 433.7 lbs...btw, this is the equivalent to 5 orangutans or the weight of one motorcycle
Hannah and her friends (listed below) plan to work with the sustainability director for the City of Holland to expand recycling next year! We are very proud of all of their efforts!! 
Celia Baerwalde
Ainsley Harju
Hannah Huggett
Hailey Huggett
Molly Huggett
Clara Mitchell
Madelyn Rynsburger
Recycling team
Elementary News You Can Use!

½ Day Dismissal:

May 8, 9, and 10 will be ½ days for all grades - we will dismiss at 11am.

No School:

Monday, May 13, 2019


Project Term Dismissal time:

Starting May 14 all grades dismiss at 2:40pm, please make arrangements for this change.

Community Service Reminder

Required Community Service Hours are due to Brenda by May 10, 2019 for 5th graders to be eligible to earn Community Service awards at 5th grade graduation. All other grades CS hours are due by May 24, 2019.


That's a Trap!

Check out the last episode of Student News for the school year....that's a trap!


BR Middle School Students Attend the Calling All Colors Conference

The middle school Calling All Colors conference was held Monday, April 29th at GVSU. The conference, sponsored by the Lakeshore Ethnic Diversity Alliance, hosted approximately 10 lakeshore middle schools. Each year the delegations from each school are asked to evaluate the climate of diversity and inclusion at their school and do something to impact it for the better. This year all 4/5 students and all middle school students experienced a lesson plan created by these wonderful students. We are very proud of the following Black River students that have remained committed to this important school club. 

Black River Public School Calling All Colors Club Members include:
Atif Usmani
Elizabeth Ruiter
Hannah Huggett
Madeline Benson 
Lourdes Manderfield
Mary Catherine Leahy
Finleigh Sinclair
Hailey Huggett

Calling All Colors Lakeshore Conference

Our Students are Making Headlines!
BRPS Senior Decision Day is HERE!

Congratulations to all of the seniors sporting their college gear today for the annual BRPS Decision Day! Mrs. Heneghan caught up with Ein Joiner and Tanner Menghini this morning when they stopped in the main office. We are excited to see them ready to take on the next chapter in their academic career. Go Trolls, Go Green! 

Ein and Tanner

Black River Public School Ranked #6 in Michigan by U.S. News & World Report

We are in the news!  Black River Public School is proud to be recognized as #6 in Michigan and #1 Charter by the U.S News & World Report. Read the full article here:

See all rankings here:


Thank you for supporting Fine Arts Night!

Thank you for coming out and supporting Fine Arts Night this past Wednesday.  It was a wonderful evening of music and artwork, and your generous donations will help to support the needs of the Fine Arts department.  Thank you all for your contributions to the silent auction and we hope you enjoyed the evening.  

Silent Auction Winners:  As a reminder, all items not yet picked up from the silent auction will be held in the MS/HS main office until Friday, May 3rd.  Please stop by to pick them up before that time.  After this date any remaining items will go to the next highest bidder.

Thank you!  

The BR Fine Arts Boosters

Yearbook Reminder

Don't forget to order your yearbook here! The deadline for both Secondary and Elementary Yearbooks is soon approaching. The price will increase after the deadline. The order number for elementary is 40125. The order number for the 6-12 is 40122.

Parents of Seniors - An email was sent regarding the purchase of a dedication to your graduating senior. At this point, we have not received any dedications. Please don't miss out on the chance to honor your graduating senior by purchasing a 1/8, 1/4, or 1/2 page dedication in the yearbook. Fill out this form and return it to the main office. If you have any questions, contact Joy Shirk, yearbook advisor, at or Alex Koch, yearbook editor,


Elementary Summer Enrichment Opportunity

Although summertime may mean a vacation from the classroom, it should never be a break in any child's intellectual development. Education research shows that children lose a great deal of what they have learned during idle summer months. Researchers have studied the “summer effect" on student achievement and their studies consistently show that student learning declines or remains stagnant during summer months. Students who keep their learning skills active during the summer months are better primed to return to school in the fall. 

Athletic Boosters has BR Gear for Sale 24/7!

The Black River Athletic Boosters E-store (through Chromatics, Holland MI ) will be accepting orders until Monday, April 8.  Merchandise will be printed and ready, usually within two weeks of the E-store closing. Orders can be picked up at school- your student will be notified when their order is available.


Best Summer Ever! BR Summer Camp and Enrichment Opportunities Available Here!

Summer Camps are open to any Black River Public School student, as well as their friends from other schools! We welcome all students who want to have fun, improve skills, and enjoy a camp with individualized instruction. Invite your friends! Each camp has a minimum participation level of 10 campers. Individual coaches/teachers run camps. Please contact coaches through email if you have any questions about camp. Administration/paperwork questions can be directed to Tim Witvoet at

2019 Summer Camp Brochure

2019 Summer Camp Registration Form

Black River Rat School Spirit Store - Order Online 24/7!

Check-out the new Black River School Spirit Store - Uniting Students, Parents and Fans through School Pride! We are very excited to announce our School Store with 24/7 online ordering and delivery straight to your home. The link can be found on the banner in the right hand corner of the Black River website or here. Watch for a $10 Gift Card, one promotion per household which will be sent home with the youngest child in each family this week. We hope you will consider the School Store when shopping for the holidays and stocking stuffers! Contact the MS/HS Main Office if you have any questions.

Meet your New Infinite Campus Apps!

Infinite Campus has released two new and improved mobile apps: Campus Student (for students) and Campus Parent (for parents). Download your free app for real-time access to grades, assignments, schedules, announcements and more.

meet your new infinite campus apps


Download on the App Store

Get it on Google Play


Box Tops & Direct Your Dollars Receipts Box Top Logo

A friendly reminder to keep saving BoxTops and Family Fare/D&W Direct Your Dollars receipts.

Download the District Mobile App

The Black River District website can also be via the SchoolPointe Stay Connected app which is available for both Apple and Android phones. Please click on the preferred link below to download the website application.

Download on the App Store
Click Here for Apple SchoolPointe Stay Connected App

Get it on Google Play
Click Here for Android SchoolPointe Stay Connected App

SchoolPointe's Stay Connected App features:

-Headline News and Information
-Calendar of Events
-School and Staff Directory
-School Notifications

View All News

Events & Calendar

More Info



Please call in!
MS/HS = x228
Elementary = x328

If school is to be closed or delayed, Black River Public School will make the announcement via web, voicemail and media outlets (WHTC 1450 AMWOOD TV8) prior to 6:30 a.m.  

NON DISCRIMINATION STATEMENT  Black River Public School admits students of any race, color, sex, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. The school does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, athletic programs and other school-administered programs. 

513 Columbia Avenue
Holland, MI 49423
Phone: 616.355.0055 x302