Like many, Joseph Bodenman started his Covenant story his freshmen year, but unlike many, he took a hiatus to try another high school. He thought he wanted a larger school. “I found out that there is a huge difference,” he said. Joseph didn’t like the bigger size of his new school, finding it difficult to fit in and make new friends. He encountered cliques and as soon as he transferred, he said he knew he wanted to go back to CHS. “I knew that was where I wanted to be,” Joseph said. “I just found it to be a way better fit. You’re more well-known here and it’s a tighter family.”
“One of my favorite things about [CHS] would have to be the teachers and how connected they are,” Joseph said. All of them have been crucial to his spiritual development and education. “I’m more rooted in my faith and confident in what I believe. I’m building, more deeply, my relationship with God.”
“It’s been really nice to be surrounded by everyone that you know is a believer so you can talk about your faith all the time,” said Joseph. “It’s nice to be in an environment where the teachers are excited to talk about the faith and all subjects connected to it.” Joseph used English as an example, and how they frequently analyze books not just from a literary standpoint, but from the Christian faith.
Other than English, Art has been incredibly helpful for Joseph, which he has taken for every year he’s been at Covenant. He’s also enjoyed physics and calculus much more than he anticipated, as it satisfies the logical part of his brain. These classes have been important in shaping what Joseph desires to do with his future: graphic design.
Over the past four years, Joseph says he’s come out of his shell and seen his leadership strengthen, embracing new roles as treasurer of Honor Society and a student ambassador. He’s become more organized, servant-hearted, and learned how to serve in a role that benefits the community through community service projects and simply reaching out and taking advantage of his opportunities.
Next year, Joseph plans to go to George Fox University to study graphic design. He currently pictures himself as a future graphic designer or architect, but looks forward to exploring what a career around graphic design could look like.June 21, 2019
Lauren Adam’s Covenant story did not start her freshmen year like most, but her sophomore year, when her younger brother started the transition from homeschool to Covenant High School. Nervous and hesitant, she wanted to stick to her homeschool routine, but the more she connected with CHS peers and faculty, the more comfortable she became.
From the beginning, Miss Battle, Fine Arts faculty, played a role in Lauren’s experience. “I really enjoy being in her class and company,” she said. By the time art students are seniors, Miss Battle leaves the medium of their work up for them to decide, focusing on what they love most. Lauren has thrived on that artistic freedom.
Other beneficial classes have been Advanced Biology and English. “Since I’d like to go into nursing, [Advanced Biology has] given me a good intro into what I’m going to be studying more,” she said. In English, “Mrs. Tamminga always finds a way to connect the books she’s chosen for us back to Christ and how to relate them in our lives, which I really like,” Lauren said.
Until senior year, Miss Battle and Mrs. Tamminga have remained as supportive mentors who Lauren can always talk to. “They love to help us succeed,” she said.
When asked to compare freshmen-Lauren with senior-Lauren, she said, “I would definitely say I’m a lot more confident.” This confidence influences not just her work, but even the way she connects with others. Over the past four years, Lauren said she has learned the importance of pursuing her friendships. One of her favorite verses is Proverbs 27:17, “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” While she says this wasn’t as central of a theme to her as a homeschool student, her time at CHS has helped her realize her desire to invest in her friendships and grow stronger in them. “Which I have,” she declared. Wisely, she exposed the fact that just because Covenant is a Christian school, does not mean that students don’t face struggle. “We forget that we still have sin and pain and that we need to pursue one another,” said Lauren. “We need to show Jesus’ love.”
Outside of CHS, Lauren loves hiking, artwork, embroidery, and spending time with friends. She also stresses the importance of mentors and the role they’ve played in her high school career. “It’s important that we all have someone outside of school to have someone help us in our faith and walk,” she said.
Upon graduating from Covenant High School, Lauren plans to attend Northwest University in Kirkland and pursue a career in nursing.June 14, 2019
Yearly, the Pierce County Library hosts “Our Own Expressions,” a teen writing and art contest. The contest is open to any student in grades 7-12 living or attending school in Pierce County. Awards are given in the following categories: poetry, short stories, photography, and drawing. Out of thirty-six possible winners, six Covenant High School students placed in the categories of poetry, short story, and drawing.
A sincere congratulations to the following students:
For a complete list of winners and contest information, visit the Pierce County Library website here.May 13, 2019
A key part of ACSI’s mission is to strengthen schools. One of the ways they do this is through the process of accreditation. Accreditation with ACSI is a vigorous, holistic process of organizational appraisal and improvement that engages all of a school’s constituents. Every step of the accreditation process is designed to be useful for driving the improvement of a private school.
#1 The school board demonstrated a deep commitment to Christian education and their due diligence.
#2 The school board orchestrated a smooth transition in leadership as they brought a new principal to the school.
#3 The curriculum has a well-documented biblical basis.
#4 School personnel consistently demonstrate their mission and philosophy to the school.
#5 The school demonstrates excellence in creating a culture of Christ-like respect.
We are excited and humbled by these affirmations from a highly regarded association. It is an honor to have the opportunity to continue our work in deepening students’ relationships with Jesus Christ and preparing them for fruitful service to God and man.
March 7, 2019
Peyton Gomez, Covenant High School Senior, has been named one of the top runners-up in The 2019 Prudential Spirit of Community Awards in Washington! As a result, Peyton will receive an engraved bronze Distinguished Finalist medallion to commemorate this prestigious award.
Beginning in 1995, the Prudential Spirit of Community Awards represents the United States’ largest youth recognition program based solely on volunteer service.
Peyton volunteers her time as a front desk assistant at American Lake Veteran’s Golf Course, a volunteer-run organization that offers a rehabilitation and recreational outlet for veterans. Peyton also connected the organization with a local technical college to create promotional videos to spread awareness about the cause, and regularly works with veterans who visit the course to help them with their technology-related questions.
Because of her outstanding service, Peyton has also qualified for the President’s Volunteer Service Award. This award recognizes Americans of all ages who have volunteered significant amounts of their time to serve their communities and their country.
Congratulations, Peyton! The way you actively serve your community does not go unnoticed.
February 8, 2019
To Glorify God and to Enjoy Him Forever
By Principal David T. Miller
The famous missionary and Olympic gold medalist, Eric Liddell, famously said, “God made me fast. And when I run, I feel His pleasure.” Liddell had discovered one of life’s truths: when we pursue the giftings and talents that God gave us, we experience the joy of the Lord. Since Covenant’s founding, the motto of the school has been “To Glorify God and to Enjoy Him Forever.” This motto permeates everything we do at Covenant High School. Just as Liddell felt God’s pleasure when he ran, we desire to feel God’s pleasure when we teach lessons, take field trips, hold a club meeting, or put on a school social.
The members of our faculty view teaching as their calling, and when I observe them teach, I often think of our school motto as I can see it coming to life. The faculty at Covenant are enthusiastic and knowledgeable about their subjects, and they are equally excited about each student in their classroom. These men and women desire to shepherd the hearts of each student to grow in their faith through building strong relationships with each student. At the same time, they also love to challenge our students and foster deep thinking and reflection while developing our students’ skills and abilities. This faculty culture creates a place where students flourish.
With a strong faculty culture, we collaborate as a team by intentionally defining the characteristics and virtues we desire in our graduates. Here are some of the characteristics that our faculty desire to see in our graduates:
To be confident and winsome communicators: At Covenant, we require our students to take four years of speech and rhetoric. We believe speaking to be a skill that must be practiced just as an athlete must practice their sport. Each year, the speeches become progressively more challenging and complex. Like an athlete has a final championship game or meet, students in their senior year are asked to propose a thesis on a controversial topic of their choosing and argue this thesis to the faculty and their classmates. As they argue this thesis, their faith must be central to their thinking and articulation. Speaking extends beyond the speech class: our faculty in all subjects require speeches in their classes and foster Socratic discussion among the students. Our student-led clubs and co-curriculars create other opportunities for students to inspire classmates through speaking.
To seek truth through careful investigation: There is a plethora of messages and views expounded as truth in the world today. Our faculty aspire for our graduates to be prepared to sift through information and discover truth. We train our students to read carefully, think logically, and ask difficult questions. Our science curriculum emphasizes training in scientific method through project-based learning and hands-on processes. Students are asked to extract DNA, sketch drafts of potential designs, collect samples of various specimens, and perform careful recordkeeping and analysis. Our math curriculum emphasizes not only the proper steps of problem-solving but the reasons and logic behind the steps. In Interface Design and Technology, students learn the logic of coding, while having discussions regarding ethical consideration of coding. Throughout all classes, our faculty teach careful reading and logical thinking. You will frequently hear a faculty member ask, “Is this Christian?” and “What does the Bible say about this topic?” All of this equips graduates to identify arguments quickly and not be easily persuaded to the latest fad or in-vogue thinking.
To appreciate their Christian heritage: At Covenant, we want students that think logically and identify arguments, but we equally desire graduates that feel passionate about their faith and enthusiastically make faith part of their daily habits and practices. We believe one way to achieve this is to identify the heroes of the faith. Our faculty enthusiastically tell stories that spotlight Christian heroes in history that demonstrated commitment and perseverance in their faith. This culminates in our biannual UK and France Historical Tour that brings students to historic Christian sites, where students sing hymns on the very ground of where martyrs died for their faith. This outstanding trip fosters an imaginative faith in the students as they picture history, while standing in these historic Christian sites.
To cultivate a love of artistic beauty: Given God is our creator, we believe creativity and a love of aesthetics are essential to a healthy Christian outlook. We also believe that appreciating beauty must be taught as a skill to the students. All students at Covenant are required to take an art appreciation and music appreciation course in their freshmen year, where they are exposed to a wide variety of styles. After freshmen year, students delve deeper into either choir or a visual art through elective choices that are prioritized in the schedule. We celebrate the work of our musicians and artists by putting on a festive semester choir and art show. Students are given a fine arts half day the previous week to put the finishing touches on art projects and do a complete rehearsal of their choir performance. By emphasizing fine arts in our scheduling, the students can see how much we value the fine arts in our school.
To live and enjoy Christian community: Covenant is a tight-knit community where everyone belongs and matters. Our student council designs inclusive socials and encourages all students to participate, while our ambassador group regularly reaches out to students through “day makers” to make all students feel welcome. Students occasionally come to the school to be greeted by a table of donuts and juice at the entrance of the building. The intimate class size encourages the opportunity for students to build deep friendships through discussion and collaborative projects. Covenant has an extended Thursday lunch period built in to the schedule that alternates between student-led clubs and a house system. The student-led clubs give the students a variety of options such as political discussion club, chess, or rock painting. The house system divides students into ten different houses divided by boys and girls and named after Christian heroes with each house having a corresponding brother and sister house. These houses compete against each other to build fellowship and comradery across grade levels. In addition to these opportunities, students have a variety of after school and weekend clubs they can join. This includes a hiking club, photography club, WIAA speech and debate team, and a boys and girls discipleship group.
Covenant High School is a unique place where students are challenged academically and spiritually by a nurturing faculty. We consider the virtues and characteristics we desire to see in our graduates as we seek to shepherd our students. Our desire is that our graduates are students that are intellectually equipped and that their heart’s desire is “to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.”December 12, 2018