Welcome to BMS!

 

Dear Prospective BMS Family,

Thank you for considering Belleville Mennonite School for your family.  My name is Starla Fogleman and I am the superintendent here at BMS.  It is my responsibility to walk prospective families through the BMS admissions process.  With that in mind let me share a few special things about BMS with you.

BMS was founded in 1945.  To date, more than 800 students have graduated from our school.  These graduates have gone on to live productive, service oriented lives in almost every career field imaginable.  Our alumni include successful entrepreneurs, college administrators, teachers, and doctors.  As you would expect, we also have a fair number of graduates who have served communities all over the world as pastors and missionaries.  You name the career field, and you can most likely find a BMS graduate who has done it and done it well.

At BMS, we consider ourselves a Christian learning community.  Everything at our school centers around learning in a Christ-centered, community-oriented environment.  In a world where bigger is often considered better, at BMS we value close relationships and we work hard to maintain a sense of community in our school.  To this end we limit the size of our classes which allows teachers to work individually with students, to get to know and understand them as human beings, and to get the very best out of them.  It also allows parents to know their child’s teachers and to partner with them to nurture and cultivate our unique Christian learning community.  This formula has been successful for the past sixty-eight years, and we have no intention of changing it.

Critical to the success of our Christian learning community are the teachers who lead our classrooms.  At BMS, we hire only well qualified, gifted, Christian teachers who share a common purpose:  to develop the minds and build the faith of young people.  BMS teachers love kids and enjoy engaging them in the learning process.  They also love God and are committed to sharing with young people the sustaining value of faith in God.  There is great advantage in educating children in a learning community where teachers and parents share the same basic set of values.

While BMS is steeped in tradition, we are not trapped in the past.  Our facilities, equipment, technology, and programs are thoroughly modern.  We recognize our responsibility to prepare young people to live productive, Christian lives in the 21st century.  Thus, we offer our students an outstanding academic program as well as a variety of opportunities for academic and spiritual growth in the classroom and in the community.  We teach all of the classes necessary for success in college, the workplace, and life.  A BMS education is first class and relevant.

If you are looking for a Christian learning community for your child, one steeped in tradition and yet thoroughly modern, I encourage you to take the next step in the admissions process and call the school office (717-935-2184) to schedule a visit.  I look forward to sharing more about the awesome educational experience available to your family at BMS.

Sincerely in Christ,

Starla


Exceeding Expectations in School and in Life
 

Rebekah Kauffman, Belleville Mennonite School Class of ’15, excelled at BMS both personally and academically and today as a sophomore education major at Shippensburg University, she is shining due in part to the strong upbringing in her home and also because of her 13 years as a student at BMS.

Becky’s parents, Ed, Class of ’87, and Carol, began sending Becky and her older brother Sammy, Class of ’14, to BMS when they were preschool age. Carol had this to say about why they chose BMS for their children, “(First) you will never have to ask me twice to share about either of my children or BMS!”  She continued, “When Sam was ready to start Kindergarten we talked about whether or not we wanted to enroll him at BMS because we knew we needed to make a full 12 year commitment.  We didn’t want to just look through elementary or middle school, we knew that we wanted him, and then of course Becky, to be able to stay at BMS through graduation.  We knew it would be a major financial commitment but also knew that the environment they would be learning in would make that commitment worth more than anything we might have to sacrifice.  God was faithful throughout the entire time and provided whatever resources we needed.” (pictured above is Ed, Carol, Becky and Sammy)

Graduating with over a 4.0 and as a national merit scholarship qualifier and class Valedictorian, Becky excelled in the classroom.  Taking Advanced Placement, college-prep courses, and honors classes, she was challenged by the faculty to take her natural gifting and apply it to her studies and life. 

Carol had this to say about her children’s academic experience at the school. “We struggled with whether or not our children would have the level of classes that they needed to attend college and whether or not they would be prepared because BMS was so small.  Again we were very blessed by the resources, classes, and knowledge level of the teachers at BMS that not only gave both of our children a quality education but also aided us in giving them a Christian foundation…..(some) people think that students at BMS are sheltered and receive minimal education but that has not been the case for either of our children.  Quite the contrary!  They received encouragement, prayers whenever/wherever needed, structure, exposure to serving others, leadership opportunities, and a superb education.”

Becky has this to say about her academic experience at the school, “BMS definitely prepared me for college.” She continued, “I came into college with the skills I needed, the ability to analyze and think for myself, and good study habits formed in an atmosphere that taught me to challenge myself.”

Becky was also involved in many extracurricular activities while at BMS including varsity field hockey and basketball, Concert Choir and District Chorus.  One activity near to her heart was acting and performing in drama performances directed by high school English teacher, Mrs. Ann Quinn.  “I loved acting in high school.” (pictured left is Becky with Mrs. Quinn's son, Danny, at a Shippensburg University drama perforamance in Fall 2016)

Her love for theater followed her to college. “When I found out that there was a theater class at Ship that was geared toward helping education majors take theater into the classroom, it seemed like a perfect fit for me.”  Becky continued, “I have really enjoyed getting back onstage, especially because I am performing for kids. My experience in both high school and college in this area will make me a stronger and more confident educator when I go into the field.”

Carol included this, “Becky’s education (at BMS) enabled her to receive a full, 4-year tuition scholarship to an accredited university where she is enrolled as an honor student, as well as a corporate scholarship that pays for housing for 4 years.  As a result, she will graduate from college with very little debt….Praise the Lord!!” 

Most important in forming eternal value were the spiritual influences Becky found at BMS.  She said, “BMS gave me the spiritual foundation I needed before entering an environment of secular ideas and competing worldviews.”  Becky continued, “My success in a Christian community at home and at BMS motivated me to seek out other Christians on my campus, connect with them, and lean on them when I needed to. I'm now in a leadership role in the Christian Fellowship group that I first joined upon coming to campus.” 

“The leadership opportunities that she received while at BMS have enabled her to be well adjusted and participate in campus ministry leadership,” Carol remarked.  “As for the notion that students at BMS are “sheltered”….she has been exposed to a great deal of this troubled world and has been given the foundation to hold strong!  That’s not sheltering….that’s preparing!”

“I can’t pick one thing or one example that shaped Becky.”  Carol concluded, “Every day built on the others to give them (Becky and Sammy) an awesome experience and prepare them to be well adjusted, service-oriented adults with a foundation in Jesus Christ!  We couldn’t have asked for anything more!”  (Becky is pictured below doing something she loves most, spending time with children)