The 17 February this year marked the 40th Anniversary of the opening of Parkes Christian School. The School started with 47 students and three classes. Chris Cohen taught K-2, Heather Moss taught Years 3 and 4 and Wes Slade taught Years 5 and 6. The original building, situated at the front of the school, had three classrooms and an office on the top floor, a hall, kitchen and bathrooms at the bottom.
When I started teaching at Central West Christian Community School back in 1998, as a fresh, just out of university teacher, I did not think I would still be part of the Parkes Christian School Community 24 years on and for over half its history. I remember saying to the whole school board at my interview that I would commit to being a teacher here for three years. God had more planned…..I did not know back then that I would marry a local and be invested in a Christian school in our community for as long as I have been. I don’t think of myself as being old, but when I am teaching the children of students I taught myself, you stop and think for a moment.
I see the start of my journey at Parkes Christian School having two important parts. The first was back in November of 1997 when I was finishing my Bachelor of Education. A friend’s mother prayed with me that I would have a job by Christmas. In the week leading up to Christmas I was asked for an interview and then would you believe I was offered a job teaching Years 3 and 4 on the morning of Christmas Eve 1997.
The second part of my story started when I met this happy, incredibly good looking young Christian man (no I am not trying to make you all sick) that had a strong connection with our school. (Who would have thought.) He was one of the first kindergarten students back in 1982 when our school opened. Phill went right through to Year 10 (this was as high as it went back then) and he was school captain in his final year.
When I look back at this school being built on God’s love, prayer, volunteers, dedicated teachers and staff, and the generosity of people in our community, people can be so proud of the wonderful school we have today. There have been different seasons of staff, students and parents. Our school has touched so many lives and every student that leaves here, could not help but know their value in Christ.
Psalm 138:8a The Lord will work out his plans for my life – for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever.