Page 1




Familiar Face at the Helm



Why Open Door Christian Schools?


ODCS Commited to El Salvador


Fall 2013

Life after ODCS: Tony Madalone


Greetings from the New Head of Schools


he Daniel household has recently embraced the adventure of having a new musician in our home. As our home echoes the sounds of a beginning flutist, I am reminded that the sounds of a beginning are very different than the sounds of a finish! However, I am also reminded that the beginning sounds need to be cherished and nurtured for the product that will soon follow. Such is the excitement of Fall in a new school year. We have the blessing of serving our students as they embark on many new beginnings. We watch them grow as the inexperience of new classes, new sports, new instruments, and new friends become steadily replaced with success in their new environments. We enjoy observing, even with noisy beginnings, the growth and success of our students. I, too, am enjoying my new beginning as Head of Schools. The first quarter has provided numerous blessings, one of which has been in learning the rich legacy of Open Door Christian Schools. For over thirty-five years, ODCS has been a place that provides a quality education and trains students to impact their world for the cause of Christ. Legacies are born from the efforts of people and there are so many who have sacrificed, prayed and poured their efforts into making ODCS a vibrant example of Christian education. The Lord has honored their efforts as we have grown into the largest Christian school in our region, continue to add new programs, and are poised to see continued blessings in the future. In moving forward, my prayer for our current students is that they will recognize the distinct privilege of attending our school and embrace the responsibility of weaving their gifts and talents into our proud tradition. I am confident that they will do so as their new beginnings grow into another proud chapter of ODCS. May each of us do our part to see the Lord bless each student with success. Sincerely,


In partnership with the family and the local church, our mission is the salvation, the discipleship, and the education for life and service of the students entrusted to our care. The Patriot Voice is published for families and friends of Open Door Christian Schools, Inc. For reprint permission, contact (440) 322-6386.

EDITOR Bronwyn Tucker ’92

PROOFREADERS Brenna Burger, Arleita Dirne, and Gayle Goodwin

PHOTOS Hannah Blandin, John Butcher ’83, dpix Photography, Jenna Gerber ’06, Leanne Jones ’00, and Ashley Nida ’06

SCHOOL BOARD Randy Crowder, Chair Susan Elder Brian Gevry Scott Giesbrecht ’94 Jamie Jackson Jon Phillips, Secretary Todd Wright, Vice Chair

ADMINISTRATION Denver Daniel, Head of Schools Darrell Dunckel, Principal (grades 7-12) Angie Lowe, Principal (grades preschool-6) Susan Schrodt, Director of Finance Bronwyn Tucker, Director of Admissions ODCS admits students of any race, color, and national or ethnic origin.

Denver L. Daniel Head of Schools


Courtesy of Aespire {}

Familiar Face at the Helm; Who Is He Really? BY EMILY HAWKS, ENGLISH AND BIBLE TEACHER


he name Denver Daniel is not a new one in the hallways of Open Door Christian Schools (ODCS). We have seen Mr. Daniel cheer for his son, Denver, at cross country races, stand on the sidelines of the football field and basketball court encouraging Caleb, his second born, and attend concerts and Parent’s Days with his youngest, Halle. And, of course, he is checking in with his wife, Dawn, in her preschool classroom to make sure he is at the right event, for the right child and at the right time. It is easy to see that Daniel’s heart is at Open Door Christian Schools because his family is here. But God led him to ODCS for much more than being with his family. “The Lord kept moving in my heart,” Daniel says about God’s leading him to accept the position as Head of Schools. He believes that God gave him this opportunity so that he can “minister more directly and disciple more intimately and intentionally” than in his former positions in the field of education. Two of his biggest passions have converged into one path as he joins the ministry of Open Door Christian Schools: student ministry and education. It was the desire to help people and build others that first motivated him to become an educator. As an elementary school teacher and principal it was the “excitement of

learning” that fueled his passion for people. In addition to serving in the schools, Daniels also serves as a student minister at his church. His experience in student ministry has had a major impact on his interaction with students because he has learned the dynamics of different age groups and how they think. “Ministry is not boring!” he says, “It’s relational based — it can’t be good unless we cultivate relationships.” Daniel believes that establishing good relationships with students leads to establishing their relationship with Christ. It does not take long to sense his hopeful anticipation for the present and future of Open Door Christian Schools. Recently, he remarked at a faculty inservice that he is still just as passionate and excited now as he was when he first started as Head of Schools. His positive attitude is evident and it is already making a palpable difference in the building. When asked what his ultimate vision is for the future of Open Door Christian Schools, he replied that he wants students to see what a privilege it is to attend ODCS and for the faculty and staff to recognize they impact the future generations for Christ. God has led Denver Daniel to be at the helm of Open Door Christian Schools so that this ministry can continue to succeed for His glory.



D 4

ecorating lockers, covering books, checking with your friends to see if you will be in English together, bustling through Target to find new school supplies, and making sure that you have picked out the “right” combination of uniform items to look amazing on your first day of school. This is what the beginning of the school year is all about isn’t it? Of course it is. We plan, organize ourselves, connect with others, all for the sake of becoming “more” than we were the year before, because we have passed one grade and we are ready for the next. We believe this is true with our spiritual lives as well. Spiritual formation is an integral part of education at Open Door Christian Schools. There have been many conversations by concerned faculty, staff, parents, and students

about how we can connect with God on ever deeper levels, and become stronger and more committed disciples of Jesus Christ. There are passionate discussions taking place about how we can move toward deeper spiritual formation. At first blush the task seems like it wouldn’t be too difficult. I mean, come on, just love Jesus more, right?

But how? How do you create an environment that inspires kids, but not come across as the adult trying to force feed a kid who appears to be not even hungry. The last thing anyone wants is another institution — in a long line of institutions — force feeding the “good news” to folks. The task is much bigger than one might think. The goal can’t be program-centered, and it can’t be systematized. It must invoke a passion for connecting with God through Jesus Christ. Somehow, it has to be God-centered. We have discovered it begins with prayer. Last April a handful of students and teachers organized a first ever evening of student-led prayer. The gym’s climate was softened, lights were dimmed, and what is usually a space where athletes battle, became a battleground of discipleship, a battleground of prayer. It was the beginning of a focus on prayer as the agent for real change. We began our school year with something “new” this year. We start-

I mean, come on, just love Jesus more, right? But how? ed off asking God to take another school year, significant as it may be, and transform it into something deeper and bigger than we could imagine. We repented of loving ourselves and sought the love of God, in hopes that we might matriculate from a weaker believer into a stronger disciple of Jesus. Our prayer continues to be, “God please grant us less of ourselves and more of you.”

First Varsity Football Season



fter years of planning and two years of playing a non-varsity schedule, the ODCS Football program is making the leap to the Varsity level during the 2013 season. The timing could not be better, as the Ohio High School Athletic Association has created a Division 7 in football and the freshman players who helped start the program are now juniors. ODCS is the only Division 7 school competing in football in Lorain County. Coach Ray Lowe and his staff have sought inspiration from the Bible and the army 300 in the Battle of Gideon, as they impact the community for Christ. “Our players, both those that played last year and those currently playing, completed a fasting and prayer commitment over the summer months. We asked our players, coaches and parents to give up something (Facebook, ice cream, ESPN, etc.) for 30 days and to spend at least nine minutes every night at 9pm in prayer for our

team. “We prayed for each player by name, for the coaches and for God to provide us with those boys interested in playing. We started the program with 14, and this year we’re at 19,” said Coach Lowe. “What an answered prayer.” On August 30, 2013 the ODCS Patriots made their debut under the Friday night lights, by taking on Danbury Lakeside. While our team came out on the wrong end of the scoreboard, the Patriot fans faithfully


Thanks to the Patriot Pride Athletic Boosters Club (PPABC) and the ODCS Athletic Department, our weight room now has new paint, new flooring and upgraded weight equipment. ODCS studentathletes are excited to put the equipment to use, as they work to raise ODCS athletics to the next level.

made the trip out to the Midview stadium under the lights to see the players give their all in making school history. Coach Lowe summed up the night by saying, “For our school, community, team and students, I really believe this is the beginning of something special at ODCS. The wait for Varsity football has been a long time at ODCS, but it has arrived and good things are in store for our program.” As Coach Lowe told the Chronicle Telegram, “We’re going to keep praying. We told our kids, win or lose, we honor God with how we play. I feel like the young men who were on the field gave everything they had. I couldn’t ask for anything more than that. And for me, that is how we honor the Lord. So, it was an outstanding night.”


Why Open Door Christian Schools?


INCREASING TECHNOLOGY n Three computer labs (two laptop and one iMac) n Four iPad 2 classrooms n Two Chromebook classrooms n 94% of classrooms have Smartboard or Interactive TV

23.1 21.8





95% of 2013 grads went on to HIGHER EDUCATION and earned over $1.7 MILLION IN SCHOLARSHIPS.

ENRICHMENT OFFERINGS include visual arts, drama, band, choir, media arts, digital technology, and robotics.


Strengthen the Body


Guide the Soul


of middle & high school students PARTICIPATED IN SPORTS.

Basketball Bowling Baseball Cross Country Cheerleading COMPETITIVE SPORTS TEAMS Track & Field FootballSoftball SoccerVolleyball


3,500+ HOURS OF COMMUNITY SERVICE performed by high school students in 2013.

96 4 96+




AREA CHURCHES represented in student body.

LOCAL, NATIONAL, AND GLOBAL MISSIONS TRIPS AND PROJECTS 2013-14 marks three-year partnership with sister school in Luz de Sotomayor, El Salvador.


Challenge the Mind

The largest Christian school from Cleveland to Toledo

Preschool Elementary school Middle & High school


Preschool through grade 12 including weekly chapel and quarterly family chapels.

77+11+57q 63+4+157q

Revenues and Expenses 2012–2013

Patriot Partners Thank You to Our Faithful Supporters! UP TO $99

$250 TO $499

Anonymous (4) Mr. & Mrs. Robert Atwood Jr. Mr. & Mrs. David Clark Mrs. Sandra J. Clark Mr. & Mrs. Harry R. Enlow Mr. & Mrs. David R. Knechtges Mr. & Mrs. Leland Meier Miss Ashley N. Nida ’06 Speech & Language Links & More, LLC Mrs. Gloria Mantini

Anonymous (3) Mr. & Mrs. Stephen Bond Mr. & Mrs. Darrell Dunckel Mr. & Mrs. Steven Lazar

$100 TO $249

 uition and Fees 77% T n State Funding 11% n Development 5% n Other 7% n

$500 TO $999 Anonymous (5) Mr. & Mrs. Jack Donnelly Mr. Vernon Dunckel Mr. & Mrs. William LaFluer

$1,000 TO $2,499 Anonymous (10) Mr. & Mrs. John Abraham Mr. & Mrs. Robin Breidinger Mr. & Mrs. Robert Cox Mr. & Mrs. John Cutter Mr. & Mrs. Rob Dirne Ms. Roberta Garcia Mr. & Mrs. Richard A. Gorman Mr. & Mrs. Willard A. Knapp Mr. & Mrs. Raymond Lowe Mr. & Mrs. John F. Mizerek Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Richard Novak Mr. & Mrs. James J. Oswald Mr. & Mrs. Karl Peura Mr. & Mrs. Raymond R. Raeburn Sr. Mr. Russell Reising Mr. & Mrs. Leslie J. Rice Rev. & Mrs. Darrell Shumpert Ms. Norrene E. Speckhart Mrs. Gladys R. Spencer Ms. Linda Stotts Mr. & Mrs. Scott Tucker ’91/’92 Mrs. Visobe Welch


Anonymous (3) Mr. & Mrs. Jeffrey J. DeMange Mr. & Mrs. Donald L. Haslam Mr. & Mrs. Gary Hayden Mrs. Margaret A. Hickle Mr. & Mrs. Keith Jones The Lubrizol Foundation Mr. & Mrs. Jonathan Phillips Rochester Manufacturing, Inc Mr. & Mrs. Roger Valentine Mrs. Carmen Sheets Mr. & Mrs. Steve R. Wallace Mr. & Mrs. Todd J. Wright

$2,500 TO $4,999 Anonymous (2) Mr. & Mrs. Mark Alder Mr. & Mrs. Jonathan M. Beckett Dr. & Mrs. Kevin Chang Mr. & Mrs. Frank L. Jaram ODCS Parent Teacher Fellowship (PTF) PNC Bank Aespire Mr. & Mrs. Brian Sooy


 alaries and Benefits 63% S n Equipment, Supplies, and Teaching Materials 4% n Services 4% n Financial Aid and Discounts 15% n Facility 7% n Other 7% n

$5,000 TO $9,999 Anonymous (1)

$10,000 AND ABOVE Anonymous (1) Dr. & Mrs. Jonathan M. Burton Green Circle Growers 7

ODCS Commitment to El Salvador Continues A Personal Commitment Fulfilled BY LEANNE JONES ’00, SPANISH TEACHER

I 8

remember being a Freshman when Open Door Christian Schools (ODCS) took its first international mission’s trip to the Dominican Republic. I wanted to go so badly; but at the time it was only open to Juniors and Seniors, so I vowed to go on the next one. Unfortunately, another trip wasn’t taken before I graduated and went off to college. God brought me back to teach Spanish at ODCS, and 15 years after the school’s first international missions trip, in January of 2012, I was finally able to complete that vow as I joined the team on a missions trip to La Libertad, El Salvador. As Christians and as Americans, sometimes we think we can change

the world, and we set out to make our mark on society, on other people. What I never expected, was to have the people of El Salvador leave such a mark on my own life. The battles are

hot water, refrigerators, beds, and clothes to name a few. What moved me the most during the last two trips to El Salvador (January, 2012 and January, 2013), has been watching how serving others has changed the lives and hearts of the students who have stepped outside of themselves. Over 20 students have felt the call over the past 3 years, and God has used each and every one of them, with most of them having gone more than once and/or planning on returning to

Every student has different abilities, and I was given the gift of watching all of them step up to the challenge that God had placed before each of them. real, and the daily struggle is evident in every aspect of their lives. Food and housing are not guaranteed by the government, so if a family does not have enough money for food, they don’t eat. We have luxuries that I didn’t even realize were luxuries —

El Salvador in January 2014. They have formed a bond, a common desire to make a difference. They feel the change in themselves, and they want others to share in those experiences. They are devoted to their sister school “Luz de Sotomayor” and the

people of the church “La Iglesia Gran Comisión.” Every student has different abilities, and I was given the gift of watching all of them step up to the challenge that God had placed before each of them. As we spent time at the local daycare and the orphanage, I was touched to see how they interacted with the children, showing so much love and compassion. We spent two days cooking food to deliver to a local impoverished community, and we were blessed as we were able to share the gospel via the Wordless Book Bracelets that so many at ODCS participated in making. In the middle of the city, these same students wrote, memorized and performed a skit proclaiming the love of Christ. Time after time, I watched them move and be moved. I have been a teacher for almost 10 years now, and I truly believe that this mission partnership is the greatest experience I have had through ODCS. I pray


ODCS Librarians, Wendi Phillips and Linda Hardesty, had a vision to make a fun, yet functional reading loft. With the expertise and help of Rich Hardesty (Linda’s husband), Chuck Deeks and Jim Wright that dream came true. The area is an extremely popular place for preschool and elementary students to “read aloft.” If you haven’t seen it, please stop in. You will quickly see why the students think it is so special!

we continue to make international missions trips not only a possibility, but also a priority for all of those students who feel the call of the Lord. We are so blessed, and it has been and will continue to be an amazing way

that we can give back to God for all He has done for us. By taking these trips, by sharing His Word, we are saying, “Thank you, Lord! May we continue to bless others in the way that You have blessed us!”


Patriot Theatre Presents ’13/14 Season

Fall Play: High School performance

Winter Play: Grades 2-6

Spring Musical: Grades 7-12

Friday, November 22, 2013 at 7pm and Saturday, November 23, 2013 at 2pm

Friday, January 24, 2014 at 7pm; Saturday January 25, 2014 at 2pm and 7pm

Friday, March 28, 2014 at 7 pm; Saturday, March 29, 2014 at 2pm and 7pm.

RNC stage at Open Door Christian Schools

RNC stage at Open Door Christian Schools

LCCC Stocker Center

Tickets are $10 each and can be purchased two weeks prior at the ODCS High School office or at the door.

Tickets are $6 and can be purchased 2 weeks prior to the show in the ODCS Elementary office or at the door before the show.

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased by calling the Box Office at (440) 366-4040 between noon and 6pm, Monday thru Friday, or by ordering online at Tickets are always available at the door before each performance.

SPOTLIGHT ON PATRIOT THEATRE ’12/13 The legacy of the theatre program lives on because of the talented thespians that have dedicated themselves to perform each year. Bringing the stage to life and entertaining our audiences is a way that we can bring glory to God and use the many talents with which He has blessed our students.


Last year’s productions included Peter Pan, Alladin, and Snow White.

Life After ODCS

Tony Madalone, Class of ’03



ecently I had the opportunity to sit down and interview Tony Madalone for both The Patriot Voice and the Minuteman Press. Tony is a 2003 Open Door alumnus, founder and CEO of the company Fresh Brewed Tees, and Co-Chairman for Ohio Homecoming. Freshed Brewed Tees produces Clevelandthemed shirts and also has a contract with the NFL Player’s Association to produce player themed shirts. Tony is currently working on organizing the Cleveland Rocks: New Year’s Celebration taking place in our fair city this coming New Year’s Eve. Here is some of what he had to say:

HOW WELL DO YOU THINK ODCS PREPARED YOU FOR THE BUSINESS WORLD? “Very well; I would say that in comparison to other schools, a lot better. Essentially, ODCS was more geared towards college education compared to most high schools in the area.”

WHAT GOT YOU INTO THE T-SHIRT BUSINESS? “So I started selling vintage t-shirts out of my dorm room. I became a powerseller on eBay; then vintage [clothes] got super oversaturated and everybody was doing it — so I couldn’t make any more money. But I learned the

industry. We were doing so much buying, getting stuff shipped from Arizona, buying stuff for like 50 cents a shirt and then selling them for about five bucks a shirt. I got my Master’s Degree at Ashland and was supposed to go to Wall Street. Then I was like, ‘I can’t do the desk job; I can’t do the corporate world.’ But I knew a little bit of the industry, I know sports well, and I know Cleveland even better. I spent about six months researching the market, got a small loan from a family member, and the first shirt we did showed up on ESPN. It was crazy; we sold a hundred shirts before we even printed it. We killed it with LeBron here; the Cavs were good. We started working with some players so it just sort of transpired from there. I can’t say that apparel was my dream but it was an opportunity to stay in sports. It allows me to be with the players and be at the games. It allows me to produce stuff for the fans. It’s something I can be proud of and make some money. It brings the fans together and it brings Cleveland together. The same thing [is true] with ODCS — it brings people together.” For the full interview, visit the Student Online Newspaper at


Non-Profit Org. US POSTAGE PAID Elyria, OH Permit No. 662

8287 West Ridge Road Elyria, Ohio 44035

The Patriot Voice Returns

Several ODCS alumni and their children stopped by for a picture at the 2013 Homecoming.

Calling All Alumni! What’s new in your life? Married? New baby? New job? Please tell us what you are up to! Scan the QR code above or visit

Design of The Patriot Voice was generously donated by: Mission-driven design for meaningful causes @ A E S P I R E


A E S P I R E . C O M

A Patriot is frequently defined as a person who loves, supports and defends his or her country and its interests with devotion. A patriot’s voice would therefore passionately proclaim what he or she believes. At ODCS, The Patriot Voice rallies our fellow Patriots around the same theme of loving, supporting and defending the cause of Christian education at Open Door Christian Schools. Welcome to the newest issue of The Patriot Voice! It is back, better than ever, and has something for everyone. Each issue will keep the ODCS community (alumni, parents, students, supporters and friends) informed. We want you to know not only what is happening on campus these days, but what our amazing alumni are doing, what issues our students are facing in the world today and how an ODCS education makes a difference. So take a look… from academic trends to athletic history, from changes on campus to the impacts ODCS staff and students make around the world. — Bronwyn Tucker ’92, Director of Admissions

Fall 2013 Patriot Voice  
Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you