& Information provided by Principal Steve Hicks:
"I was the founding principal
of Bethel High School which opened in 1983. Then pastors Robert Zetterburg and Kurt Graff
approached me the previous year about starting a Christian high school to piggy back with Faith Christian, then under the
principalship of John Novak. I was, the year before, teaching at Etnyre Middle School in Oregon.
I spent the year of 1982-1983 writing all the policies, curricula, etc., on my trust typewriter and then at the ripe old age
of 28, we opened that fall (1983) to about 23 kids in the basement of the church. This arrangement lasted two
years until we moved into the building behind the church, even though the gym floor was still concrete then. Unfortunately,
pastors Zetterburg and Graff left after the 1st year. Besides being the principal, I was
also the athletic director, guidance counselor, development director, and a teacher of 2-3 classes every semester. I decided
to move on to resume teaching. I moved to Florida, and went back into full-time teaching. I've never looked back,
although I do think we did a good work in those years.
We developed an athletic program. I
started a flag football program which played on the field behind the parsonage. We had a girls' volleyball program and
a boys' basketball program which also competed against other schools. They were coached by employees and parents who
were generously giving of their time. We had choir programs, art programs, etc. -- most of the same things in "small
form" that the public schools had. We also had a computer lab with Commodore 64s--remember those? These were purchased
at Montgomery Ward's in Dixon.
When we were in the basement,
I remember running upstairs twice a period every period for 180 days to ring the existing Sunday School bell to start and
end classes. I also recall selling Florida oranges every year to raise money for extra-curricular things, delivering
them around Christmas in snow and cold.
As far as some other key people,
Eric Forman was instrumental in building the school; Jerry Virtue was the head of the church
board; Romelle Sikula was my very able secretary. We had a third pastor, Dick Reigle,
I think, who was a good guy and supportive of the school. By the time he'd come, though, it was too late for me.
I'm 65 and have now taught
school for 43 years."
You Have Any More Information...
We are told that Bethel did
not offer any athletics, but may have offered other extra-curricular activities. If you have any other information regarding
the history of the Bethel School, especially a timeframe of high school offerings, more photos of the school or great clubs
you would like to share, please e-mail this web site at firstname.lastname@example.org.