News from CAK
Earlier this month, I just had to squeeze and thank Mrs. Terri Hankins for always bringing such a sweet joy and spirit into our building. Terri has two middle school students, Ethan and Hannah, and one elementary school student, Blake. People like Terri are a gift to our community. Her joy is contagious and her positive attitude about making a difference in our school is so heartfelt, encouraging, and genuine. Mrs. Giles recently spent some time discussing Terri’s thoughts about our school in a brief interview:
How many years have you been a part of the CAK community?
In what ways are you involved at CAK?
I have served as room mom for multiple years with all three kids. I love to help the teachers by working in the workroom. Now I volunteer in the clinic. I’m helping in preschool extended care and substituting. I always help with the music programs and serve as one of the middle school event coordinators with the WPA.
Why did you choose CAK for your family?
I first came to CAK for a program that my nephew was involved in and remember seeing scripture all over the walls and the administration praying over the kids. I didn’t even have kids at that time but knew that’s what I wanted for my kids someday.
What parts of the elementary school are your favorite?
I love that it is a safe place for my kids to come, not just physically but also a safe place to share their thoughts and grow in their relationship with the Lord. I love the community we have here. Right now, I feel called to serve here instead of in my career field. This isn’t just a community for the kids but also for parents as we are all on this journey together. I love how well-rounded the school is, really campus-wide. Obviously, we value Christian education and academics, but I feel that there is something for everyone here at CAK. There is a place for everyone to fit in from preschool all the way to our seniors in high school. It’s a place to belong.
What advice would you give to families looking for ways to be involved on campus?
Don’t be passive- there are so many ways to serve, and there is such a need. If you want to serve you can find a place- just don’t be passive. Even when I worked, I volunteered on my days off so that my kids’ teachers would have more time with their families.
I am so thankful for all those, like Terri, who faithfully work behind the scenes supporting our mission, loving our students, and solving issues as an act of service to our school. Please consider how God may be leading you to make our school better!
CAK is pleased to announce that three of our outstanding high school athletes are going to play at the next level - Division I collegiate athletics. Among them is the first-ever female lacrosse athlete from Knox County to sign for a Division I school, Hailey Carroll. The list also includes two members of the three-time state championship CAK baseball team, Austen Jaslove and Connor Jurek.
Hailey Carroll will be attending Gardner-Webb University. She is a 4-year starter for the varsity lacrosse team at CAK, and a member of the TNLAX Travel Team. Carroll has also been on the Tennessee National Lacrosse Team for the past two years, and has been on the All Prep Xtra Girls Lacrosse Team. She has been 1st Team All-Region, and a Knox News Girls Lacrosse Player of the Year Nominee.
Austen Jaslove is signing with the University of Tennessee. As a four-year varsity starter for the CAK baseball team, Jaslove helped his team win three state championships. Other honors include: 2019 All-District, Sophomore Rookie of the Year, and Sophomore and Junior 2x Gold Glove.
Connor Jurek will play for the University of South Caroline Upstate. He is also a four-year member of the state championship CAK baseball team. His other honors include: 2019 All-District, 2019 All-Region, 2019 5 Star Prep and Prep Xtra 1st Team, and 2019 Offensive MVP.
Dear CAK Parents,
I trust that you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving Break. I am so thankful for all of you. Second-quarter is almost complete, and your kids are doing great!
If you will remember my September post, I quoted a statement by a teacher to a parent. In that statement, I want to build off the last sentence “…it appears the more we pushed them academically, the more we failed at teaching them life.” This phrase is a concern to me in that life mostly is learned through difficult and trying circumstances, not through constant success. If you are like me, my life has been full of missteps, poor decisions, and failure. Calvin Coolidge, I believe, presents a nice idea of persistence:
“Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not: the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.”
So, how is persistence developed? I submit to you that it is through failure and setbacks that we learn persistence. It is taking that challenging AP course, then working hard and failing the first quiz. It is auditioning for Musical Theater and not getting the lead. It is through trying out for the basketball team and having to sit the bench. Our students need to experience failure; life is full of failure. Trying to shield students from failure is not teaching them life.
The most valuable lessons I have learned have come as a result of the failure. Were these lessons painful? Absolutely, however, they inspired me to improve and attain goals that I did not feel I could ever reach. There were times that I didn’t learn from my failures and paid a heavy price.
No one wants to see their child fail a class or not get picked for the school play and definitely not sit on the bench. Yet, your students need to experience “failures,” and if they do not, they will not be ready for life. Henry Ford was quoted as saying “failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.” May I encourage you to challenge your child to take those hard classes regardless of how they will impact their GPA. Please encourage them to try a sport, work hard in practice to earn playing time and in the process, learn valuable lessons in teamwork. Invite them to audition for a role in the play; they may discover that it is a blast even if they are on the stage crew!
This post is from my heart to yours. I love our students as I know you love your children; they must be taught life. As adults, we all know life is hard and full of disappointments, let your children experience discouragement to see them grow.
In God's grace,
Interim Head of School
Christian Academy of Knoxville
Elite pole vaulter Kelsie Ahbe is training at Christian Academy of Knoxville (CAK) under Coach Jim Bemiller. After being an Olympic finalist in 2016 (top 12), Ahbe's ultimate goal is to medal at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. Currently, she is training to compete at the 2019 World Championships in Doha, Qatar (Sept 27 & 29).
"I train at CAK because it is a very welcoming environment," says Ahbe. "As an elite athlete, it is difficult to find places to train, but CAK has been generous to give me access to the track and pole vault pit."
Coach Bemiller also coached Olympic gold medalist (2004) and former Vol Tim Mack. Due to Bemiller's experience, Ahbe says "I believe I am in good company and have a shot at winning a medal in 2020."
She also enjoys seeing so many CAK athletes practicing each day beside her. "I hope I can inspire them with my athletic journey!"
CAK is honored to have Ahbe on campus and looks forward to the 2020 games!