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Highlights May, 2011

A publication for CAK’s extended family

Miles for Mitchell and Mallory Approximately 30,000 people in the United States are living with cystic fibrosis (CF). CF is a life-shortening disease that causes thick mucus to build up in the lungs and digestive tract. Currently, there is no cure. Allison and Jon-David Deeson, however, are working to change that. The Deeson’s two children, Mitchell (11) and Mallory (9) are both living with CF. “All things considered, we feel very blessed,” said Jon-David, “but you live with some level of constant anxiety. It is hard to completely escape those feelings given the potential consequences of infections. We go through a significant daily regimen of medicines and treatments, and the goal is to keep Mitchell and Mallory as healthy as possible.” Mitchell and Mallory both attend Christian Academy of Knoxville and on the outside, appear as healthy as the rest of the students in their classrooms. Internally, however, they are fighting a daily battle. On average, Mitchell and Mallory Deeson together take 9,000 pills each year and will spend approximately 500 hours each year undergoing treatment, therapy or doctor/hospital visits trying to stay well. “Yes we have CF, but we don’t want the focus of our lives to be CF. It’s just a part of who we are. Our challenge is to create as normal a life as possible in spite of CF but this is often not easy,” Allison said. Mitchell was diagnosed with the disease while Allison was pregnant with Mallory. Both Allison and Jon-David admitted that, at the time, they didn’t know much about CF. So they started doing their research, educating themselves and wondering if Mallory would also be born with the disease. Statistics show that one in 31 Americans are carriers of the recessive gene. If both parents are carriers, there is a 25% chance they will have a child with CF. In the Deeson’s case, however, they quickly found that the odds did not apply to them. Mallory was also diagnosed with CF shortly after birth. “There’s a certain grieving that goes on with any family that has that type of diagnosis. In fact, it is life changing. You can frequently be reacquainted with the grief but you work through it, you pray and hope for a cure,” Jon-David said. The Deeson family has found a comforting home at CAK. “The hardest part is to live and function doing things that are normal, yet trying to stay healthy and well,” Allison said. “It’s been such a blessing for my children to attend CAK. Everybody has been so willing to do their part, wanting to help and embracing them like they would their own. We feel very loved and supported by the community here and we’re very grateful for that.” The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation hosts a number of fundraisers each year including the Great Strides Walk to raise money to find a cure for the disease. The Deesons have participated in the walk for a few years with a team, “Miles for Mitchell and Mallory.” This year, they are going to take their efforts one-step further due in large part

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Health Council Challenge The Elementary Health Council feels that the cafeteria and campus-wide food services are vital to the overall health of our students and staff. For that reason, the Health Council challenged the Elementary School to get behind this campaign and the Elementary School responded! In two weeks, the Elementary School raised $83,362! As a result, Elementary Principal David McFalls and some other staff (to be named later) will be entering the dunk tank on May 13 and May 20, during Field Day. Six teachers also will benefit from the fundraising as their classes raised over $5,000 and therefore they will be receiving an iPad or some other gift of equivalent value. Thank you to all of the Elementary School students, parents, faculty and staff that supported this challenge!

In This Issue: Athletics ........................... 2 Food Services .................. 3 PreK Enrollment .............. 4 Academic Honors .............4 Born to Worship............... 5 Athletic Honors................ 6 Leadership Corner ...........7 Arts ....................................8

Community Continued from cover

Join Miles for Mitchell and Mallory!

to both Mitchell and Mallory, asking for the first time, how they can Great Strides Walk - May 14, 9 a.m. raise money themselves. As a result, the Deesons have enlisted the Victor Ashe Park help of another CAK family, Scott and Meredith Layton, to team up with them to raise awareness for CF. Visit their website for more information The Laytons own The Cup and have agreed to lend their support by hosting a “Cupcakes War” fundraiser that will pit brother versus sister to see who can sell the most cupcakes. In fact, be on the lookout in early May for Team Mitchell and Team Mallory coupons to lend your support. “We’ve had some friends and family already step-up in a big way to support fundraising. But the question has been on our hearts for some time ‘how do we raise awareness and get more people involved with the CF fundraising efforts?’ Because the reality is we are battling time and the progressive nature of CF,” Allison Deeson said Both Allison and Jon-David agreed that it has been Mitchell and Mallory’s recent passion for fundraising that has driven them to take action. In fact, they have developed a website at that is the beginning of a more deliberate effort to raise awareness about CF. “If our kids weren’t ready to take this step we wouldn’t feel as comfortable,” Jon-David said. “The mindset we are trying to communicate to our kids is that God has a very specific plan for their lives. They are going to have a unique opportunity to impact people’s lives for God’s glory because of cystic fibrosis. This is just the beginning of that as we prayerfully consider how they can learn to walk in the fullness of His purpose for their lives.”

Athletics Sports Physicals 2011-12

A Special Thank You to our Silent Auction Donors 1. Scripps Networks – Trip to tour the 2011 HGTV Dream Home in Stowe, VT 2. Mr. & Mrs. Gordon Whitener - UT Box Suite for UT vs Buffalo 3. Hollymont Girls Camp – 1 week at camp

Thanks to you many items were funded in full at the “CAK Sports Showcase.” If you would like to donate to any items that still need funding please go to and then click on Booster Club and click on Donate Now.

It’s time to get your Athletics Physical! Dr. Richard Cunningham with TOC will be providing on-campus athletic physicals for $10/student (payable to CAK) on Wednesday, May 18. (Juniors, 1:30-2 p.m.; Sophomores 2-2:30 p.m.; Freshman 2:30-3 p.m., rising 5th-8th graders with last names A-L 3-4 p.m., rising 5th-8th graders with last names M-Z 4-5 p.m.) Visit to print a TSSAA Physical Form (2011-12). Pages 1 & 5 of the form require a parent’s signature and personal medical history ... students must have these pages completed and signed AHEAD OF TIME, especially if they won’t have a parent with them.

Thanks again to all those who helped make the CAK Sports Showcase a success this year.

All Sports Packages, Reserved FOotball Seats NOW AVAILABLE

If you have any comments about the evening please forward them to Monica Cunningham at

All-Sports passes for the 2011-12 season and football reserved seats are now available. Visit for more information.


What food services would look like at CAK Over the past few months, CAK Administrators, parents and staff have traveled to various schools to catch a glimpse of what Flik Dining Services has to offer. Each time, they returned with rave reviews. Finally. on April 21, CAK was able to see for itself. Flik Dining President, Ray Mulligan, and some other Flik representatives flew into Knoxville and worked all day to prepare a meal, just like a typical lunch service, and present it to CAK families.

Focus on Food: Five-part series addresses questions about campus-wide food services Part 1: Picky & hungry eaters love the options! A hungry eater will be able to have unlimited seconds and a picky eater will be able to choose among a variety of food selections if a campus-wide food service program comes to CAK. Part 2: More nutritious, freshly prepared and better quality food is offered! Packing a nutritious lunch every day is not an easy task. With a food services program at CAK, students would have access to a wide variety of freshly made foods on a daily basis. Part 3: Moms no longer have to fix meals for sports teams, field trips, teacher appreciation lunches, etc Having a food-services program on campus would also allow parents and teachers options when it comes to planning events, providing meals for sports teams and teacher appreciation lunches. The options are endless! Part 4: Food allergies are handled more effectively and appropriately At CAK, there are students in each of the three schools on campus who suffer from food allergies, some minor and some severe. With that in mind, CAK is committed to hiring an “allergen aware” food service provider. This will provide better protection for students with severe food allergies. Part 5: More choices and unlimited seconds for about what parents currently pay! Most CAK parents are already paying a “lunch fee” somewhere betwen $400 and $1000 per child. If CAK decides to go with a campus-wide “All-In” type plan, the cost will fall somewhere in the range above. The earliest start date could potentially be January 2012 and financial assistance will be made available to any family for whom this creates a financial hardship.

Academics CAK represented at 4H Club Congress Pre-K Program * Spiritually Nurturing * Academically Challenging * Socially Enriching AfterKare available until 6 p.m. For more information, visit or call 865-690-4721 ext. 190.

Smiling faces at CAK’s PreK Program By Anne Hart Shopper News

Spend just a few minutes observing the PreK students at Christian Academy of Knoxville and you see a lot of bright youngsters with big smiles on their faces indicating they’re happy to be where they are. Spend a little while with Donna Hardesty, the school’s Pre-K and AfterKare director and you find out the reasons why. Her enthusiasm for what she does is contagious and is reflected in the eyes of the children when they gather around her. Hardesty has been with the school for 12 years and started the PreK program. Her son, Logan, began CAK as a first grader and will graduate this year. Hardesty willingly volunteers her core philosophy about her work with the children at CAK. “My passion is to establish a true love for learning, and the earlier you can do that the longer it stays with them. And learning doesn’t have to be boring.” There is certainly nothing boring about this place. The school’s Pre-K program now fills two buildings. Students spend their classroom time moving among three rooms, each of which has a specific teaching purpose. Forty-five minutes is spent in each room before going on to the next. The pattern repeats throughout the day. First is the ‘craft room’. This is very much a ‘hands on’ environment, where children learn to exercise all five senses: sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell. This room has a kitchen, and there is some actual cooking done with the children – cookies, biscuits, hot chocolate. It’s also a good place to make salt clay ornaments. Once a month there is a ‘color day’, where everything eaten that day is of just one color. Another day is devoted to a particular shape, or a certain letter of the alphabet. Other exciting things happen here, too – like the beans that are starting to sprout in little plastic bags attached to a sunny window. Next is the ‘Skill Room’, which is set up like a typical classroom in kindergarten with tiny tables and chairs and teacher-guided learning. Here the children learn numbers, letters, shapes, handwriting and color association to certain items. There are story boards and letter charts that aid in teaching various kinds of skills. The third area is called the ‘Center Room’. Here there are ten different centers of activity, and each child chooses what he wants to work on, including puppets, science, art, reading, puzzles, legos and ‘home living’, which includes such things as ironing and cooking. Study here is more individualized, because the students are actually making their own choices and discovering what they like doing or learning best. This room offers a different kind of challenge. Most of the centers allow for only one or two children at a time, so students learn to take turns with each other for favorite activities. There is a great deal more that takes place in the PreK program, and enrollment for the fall session is now underway. Tours are available on a daily basis. For more information, call 690-4721, ext. 190, or go to

CAK’s 4H Club Members Holly Nehls and Aaron Waldrupe. represented Knoxville and the Eastern Region at the State 4-H Congress held in Nashville, March 27-30. Delegates learned about state government by assuming the roles of senators and representatives in chambers at the Capitol building. They held elections, debated bills, passed resolutions and met local politicians. Competitions were held for Public Speaking, Citizenship and Leadership. Holly Nehls was a Level I state finalist in citizenship and Aaron Waldrupe was the State Winner in ninth grade Public Speaking consisting of both extemporaneous and prepared speeches. His speech, entitled Making A Difference, challenged listeners to find ways to help others both locally and globally.

Regional Science Fair Appearances CAK 8th graders John Grant and Matthew Little participated in the regional science fair and received honorable mention.

Spiritual life Born to Worship

On April 21, the Elementary School (grades 3-5) held its spring musical, “Born to Worship.” The performance was a great combination of music and acting by the students and shared the powerful message that we can all worship the Lord in different ways through different ways. “Lots of worshippers, lots of ways to worship - one true God!”

God Lives in Me If you only look at me, then you might fail to see The light that shines inside is the light of Christ in me. I am not my own; I belong to God alone, And it’s a mystery why He would call my heart His home. But I know he did, and now I have no doubt That He’s molding me and changing me From the inside out. This it he place where God lives in me. This is the place where I am set free. Sing and dance and shout it loud: This is what it’s all about. God lives. God lives in me.

LOVE SONG All my life long, I’ll sing a love song, A “Hallelujah! Praise You, Jesus!” Sing “You’re Worthy.” Shout Your glory, Tell Your story ‘til the whole world sings along, Lord. I’ll sing, I’ll sing a love song.

Academics Congratulations National Honor Society Members The CAK chapter of the National Honor Society recently announced the names of students selected for chapter membership. Students qualifying must have a 3.3 GPA and meet other standards of Character, Service, and Leadership. Students are then selected by teachers for membership. These students were inducted in a ceremony on April 17, 2011. The guest speaker for the event was CAK graduate Shande King (2006). Shande, recently named a Fulbright Scholar for the University of Tennessee, spoke to students about diligence, dedication, and hard work. New members include: Seniors -Katelyn Bailey, Emery Naler, Jessica Clothier, Andrew Fritts, Rachel Sproles; Juniors-Jake Hartline, Jon Lamont, Elle Nelson, Warren Tefft; Sophomores-Alli Acuff, Jeffre Allen, Cassidy Belk, Emily Blalock, Blake Brashear, Maddy Braswell, Emily Brooks, Drew Cage, Sarah Campbell, Shelby Campbell, Forrest Carroll, Abby Cate, Beth Anne Clayton, Taylor Cofer, English Daugherty, Allison DeBusk, Mary Drake, Reece Duncan, Anna Catherine Fox,

Morrigan Garrett, William Gass, Emily Hall, Katie Hartline, Macie Hatmaker, Charlie High, Halle Hill, Hannah Hodges, Ben Holt, Josh Hoover, Andrew Howard, Brett Kendrick, Anna Catherine Kill, Carter Krohn, Amy Lasater, Hannah Lipps, Lauren Love, Peyton Maddux, Meagan Mason, Grace Mitchell, Laura Morse, Franklin Murchison, Holly Nehls, Rachel Newman, Liz Anne Ozment, Kyle Parker, JP Presley, Taylor Purcell, Abigail Ramsey, Jonathan Ray, John Richardson, Chris Scott, Sara Seaman, Rachel Setzer, Sarah Kate Shore, Teresa Slade, Briana Sproles, Holly Staab, Matthew Starnes, Caroline Statum, Emily Stivers, Michaela Stockdale, Katie Stogner, Abby Taylor, Morgan Taylor, Sean Wagner, Austin Walker, Ryan Warrick, Katherine West, Paxton Wills, Trey Worley, Avery Wyatt, Isaac Wyatt. Students are required to maintain this 3.3 GPA throughout the remainder of their high school career. NHS members are also required to fulfill an on-campus service opportunity in addition to their required CAK community service.

Athletics 2011-12 College Athletic Commitments Kia Batiste - Tennis (Norfolk State) Kelsey Brown - Basketball (Maryville) Tanner Burnett - Football (Mississippi College) Hannah Cox - Track (Univ. of Louisville) Cameron Dickerson - Tennis (MTSU) Quinn Epperly - Football (Princeton) Steven Fortner - Football (Centre College) Jared McPherson - Swimming (Univ. of Cumberlands) Sierra Plese - Softball (Milligan College) Marcus Walker - Football/Track (Carson Newman) Lee Whitehead - Golf (Kings College)

Hammaker All-State CAK’s Anna Hammaker entered this basketball season with plenty of expectations. Just an eighth grader, Hammaker was poised to lead the Warriors as starting point guard for CAK’s varsity girls’ basketball team. After all was said and done, the Warriors were celebrating their second straight district regular season title and Hammaker was the only eighth grader in the state to receive All-State honors. CAK finished the season 19-11, including a big win over then-No. 1 Elizabethton on senior night, a regular season district title and a regional semi-final appearance. Hammaker led the way for the Warriors with 19 points, 4 assists and 6 steals per game. She was named to the KIL and PrepXtra teams. Hammaker and Senior Kelsey Brown were both honored at a recent PrepXtraBanquet (pictured right).

SAVE THE DATE 2011 Warrior Shootout September 9, 2011 The proceeds from this event go to several areas of school life, including tuition assistance and the purchase of educational materials and equipment. Mark your calendar and plan to golf, volunteer or help promote the event! We need your support to make the 24th annual CAK Warrior Shootout a success!

Leadership Corner Cultural Issues Debate: Who Made the Cupcakes? CAK held a special chapel last month in the high school to conclude this year’s cultural issues debate on prejudice. Hallerin Hilton Hill was invited as the guest speaker. As Hill took the microphone and began his presentation, he asked one very simple question: “Who made the cupcakes?” The question was received with a few giggles from the crowd and an overwhelming sense of curiosity as to how this could possibly relate to the issue of prejudice. Hill opened a box of four cupcakes and put them on the table: one chocolate, one vanilla, one pumpkin spice and one red velvet. Next, Hill grabbed a shopping bag and started to unload the ingredients for a cupcake: sugar, flour, eggs, butter, baking powder, water, vanilla extract and salt. Quickly, his point became clear. “When God made you we were just the same,” Hill explained to the students, “just like these cupcakes. When the cupcakes were made, they started with the same ingredients.” Hill asked all the students to turn to the person seated beside them and say “you are a special little cupcake.” “When you don’t feel special and you don’t realize who made the cupcakes, then you don’t respect the one who made you,” Hill said. “We need to realize that it’s not always a race problem to fix, it’s a Jesus problem. Everybody is trying to find a way to separate themselves so they can feel special but they forget that they already are special. You’re special because God made you.” The purpose of the cultural issues debates, which are a component of CAK’s Leadership Program, are to give students the opportunity to listen carefully, think critically and biblically, and respond respectfully. The cultural issue of prejudice was always on the radar, but (L-R) Hallerin Hilton Hill, Tessa Piety and was acutally Donald Snider.

At the conclusion of his presentation, Hallerin Hilton Hill gave the cupcakes out to four CAK students. The first went to Laura Schwarz, shown above.

brought forth this year as a result of conversations junior Tessa Piety has had with HS Principal Donald Snider throughout her career at CAK. “Tessa came to me and expressed how she felt as an African American student at CAK, and to be honest, there was a time when Tessa wanted to leave CAK,” Snider said. “I made a commitment to her and to our entire student body, that if she would stay, I would address this issue. I told her that I would make this something that we would talk about and deal with because it was the right thing to do. I wanted to start a conversation with our student body about learning to treat each other the way Christ would want us to.” During Hill’s presentation, he commended Piety for speaking out and sharing her story. Hill shared his own personal story of growing up as an African American student in a private school. “On my first day of school, we were having an assembly in the gym and when I walked in, the gym went silent. I certainly wasn’t feeling like a special little cupcake,” Hill said with a laugh. In all seriousness, Hill described those first few days at school as a “nightmare.” “I wanted to leave. I wanted to quit. I had no idea that going through that was going to prepare me for the rest of my life,” Hill said. “I think people treat each other badly when something is missing. The moment you realize what Christ’s shed blood did for you, the missing piece falls into place.” Hill asked one more time: Who made the cupcakes? “God did. Love Him and you’ll love them!”

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Bye Bye Birdie played to enthusiastic and “sold out� audiences April 14-16 in the CAK Campus Center. Many memories were made on stage by the 38 member cast supported by a dedicated crew and some very talented musicians! Congratulations for a wonderful weekend of musical theatre!

May Warrior Highlights  

A quarterly publication of Christian Academy of Knoxville.