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Ripon, Manteca folks join bid to grow school
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The rebirth of the 53-year-old Modesto Christian School is getting a surge of help from those in Manteca and Ripon as well as Modesto to keep its doors open and to expand its offerings.
Twenty-three students from Ripon and Manteca are involved in the kindergarten through 12th grade school and 10 of those students will be hosting potential new newcomers during the campus “shadow days” scheduled for Wednesday.
The principal of Modesto High School is Ripon resident Shane Smith. Smith also has served in an educational capacity at Turlock Christian.
Another Ripon resident in the mix is Stephanie Hobbs, president of the Ripon Athletic Foundation, responsible for the restoration of the Ripon High football stadium project. She is assisting with the school’s public relations effort.
John Kamps, also of Ripon and owner of Kamp’s Propane, has also become a major player in the effort to keep the school’s doors closing at the 55- acre campus in Salida just south of Ripon. It is now serving some 300 students from pre-school through high school.
Kamps, along with Modesto physician Glen Villaneuva and their group have formed a non-profit corporation to keep the school functioning. They are looking toward to reaching greater heights set the expectations for a major expansion of the Christian educational facility. Modesto’s Neighborhood Church is the seller of the property and the congregational group that funded Modesto Christian School.
Nearly a dozen student leaders from Ripon and Manteca are hosting the potential new students and showing them around the campus on Wednesday to visit the classrooms and meet teachers and other students. From 12:30 to 2:35 p.m. students will tour the school’s sixth through 12 grades and see their offerings. Earlier, 8:15 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., kindergarten through eighth grade ages will be touring the campus with their parents.
Modesto’s Neighborhood Church is the seller of the property and the congregational group that funded Modesto Christian School. Until recently that church held services in the gym on Sundays. The 250 member church moved out last year and now leases a former warehouse for its congregation near Stoddard Road. Details of the sale of the property going to the new non-profit organization —Modesto Christian School, Inc. — and to the Great Valley Academy in Manteca was not made public.
The value of the campus’ land and buildings was assessed last year at $6.7 million in addition to an adjoining parcel at $1.7 million.
Manteca’s Great Valley Academy kindergarten through eighth grade school is moving its facility to 23 acres at the Modesto Christian Salida campus and will occupy a number of the buildings being used now by the Christian school. The nearly 900 Modesto Great Valley Academy students will not be affected in the move, according to a spokesman. The Manteca school was opened in 2008.