HOLLAND — Holland High School has its newest assistant principal. The district’s school board approved the hiring of Zach Kapla to the position Wednesday, July 6.
Kapla, a 2002 Holland High graduate, has worked at the school for the last 15 years. He has been a social studies teacher, director of HVRT, the district’s online learning coordinator during COVID-19 and has been involved with various sports and clubs.
“You’d be hard pressed to find someone with more love and dedication to HPS than Mr. Kapla,” Superintendent Nick Cassidy said to the board in recommending the hire. “He has a heart for kids and improving outcomes and I’m excited to bring the recommendation to the board.”
Kapla’s hire ends a chain of internal administrative hires that started earlier this year with the retirement of Deputy Superintendent Karen Sherwood.
Katie Pennington, previously Holland High principal, was promoted to associate superintendent of human resources to replace Sherwood. Andrea Mehall then moved from assistant principal to principal at Holland High. Kapla now takes Mehall’s former role as assistant principal.
Disc golf course proposed
Jeff Kordich, a math teacher at Holland High and Holland Early College, brought to the board an idea for a new feature on campus — a disc golf course.
He said a course at the high school would support physical education units, provide an activity for students after school, support student mental health by providing a stress relieving activity and be a benefit to the community.
Board members told Kordich they think it’s an interesting idea, but would like him to get student feedback on potential ideas before approving a project. They also asked him to reach out to other schools with courses to get an idea of maintenance and upkeep requirements.
Board President Liz Colburn suggested gathering feedback and coming back to the board sometime in the fall.
Several schools in Kent County have nine-hole courses, including South Christian and Caledonia high schools and East Rockford Middle School. In Ottawa County, Zeeland Christian School has a nine-hole course.
Kordich said the total cost of an 18-hole course would be around $10,000. That includes purchasing and installing 18 baskets and equipment rental for installation. He said he doesn’t plan for the course to be district funded, instead using grants, business sponsorships or a combination of both.
Kordich’s draft course design avoids windows and athletic fields, he told the board. He added that the course would ideally be open to the public outside of school hours.
The board held another discussion on the future of broadcasting meetings via Zoom Wednesday. In May, the board opted to scale back Zoom broadcasts to only regular meetings and revert to in-person only for study sessions and committee meetings.
Cassidy noted that HPS is the only district in the area that provides a streaming option for board meetings.
Several board members said they were in favor of keeping some sort of video element for meetings so those unable to attend could watch live or after the fact, saying it adds transparency.
Ultimately, the board opted to continue broadcasting meetings on Zoom for at least the July 18 board meeting while looking into other options for recording or streaming future meetings.