Holy Trinity Church will close Sonshine Preschool

On April 25, Holy Trinity Lutheran Church’s Council announced that Sonshine Preschool will close at the end of the 2017-18 school year.

A press release from the church said that the decision was made after careful consideration of the current trends in early childhood education, the financial outlook for the school, and prayer. The decision was not easy and is centered on a number of external challenges, particularly declining enrollment due to increased preschool options available in the New Prague area.

Director Lori Tiede, who has worn dual hats as director and teacher, remarks: “Sonshine Preschool has been serving families in our community for over 20 years. This has been very sad news for our current families, past families, and especially our staff.”

For the past two decades, Sonshine has provided students with a quality, faith based preschool experience. Jamie Bisek, a Sonshine Board member, remarks, “Sonshine Christian Preschool has been a great ministry here at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church. A lot of families have wonderful memories of Sonshine Christian Preschool.” Pastor Ben Hilding adds, “I’ve had a chance to get to know these students, and they have loved Sonshine. These teachers have given selflessly of themselves for years. I don’t see this as a failure by any means, because the landscape has simply changed. I see this more as a completion of a faithful calling, which we seek to honor and celebrate in the weeks to come.”

Sonshine has been blessed by a number of committed staff members. Their dedication and passion for the students has been noted by many. This year, Stacy Kiihn stepped up to be lead teacher, after serving faithfully in a supportive role to Marilyn Breimhorst, who stepped back this year and assumed morning Kid’s Club responsibilities. Sonshine was also aided by the work of Jen Cameron, who joined the school this year as a Para.

“As the Council representative to our Children Youth and Family ministries, I have had the privilege to see firsthand the impact Sonshine has made in the lives of not only kids, but their families as well,” said church council member Jay Schoenbeck. “Although we know this is the right decision, it’s also comes with some sadness. I’m grateful our church has been able to provide this gift to the community over the past 20 years!”

While this decision impacted....

To see more on this story pick up the May 3, 2018 print edition of The New Prague Times. 

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