Ellen Loper and Mark Drenth

ELLSWORTH, MICHIGAN – Ellsworth Community School is excited to introduce two new teaching staff members.  Ellen Loper, preschool, and Mark Drenth, middle/high school physical education, will be joining the ECS teaching staff for the upcoming school year.

Ms. Loper, a Petoskey native and Lake Superior State University graduate will be the new lead preschool teacher in ECS’s three/four-year old GSRP preschool classroom.  For the past several years Ms. Loper has been teaching in a Head Start and GSRP preschool classroom in the Petoskey area.  “We’re thrilled to have Ms. Loper joining our team of educators at Ellsworth Elementary,” indicated ECS Superintendent, Aaron Gaffney.  “She’s a perfect fit for our community and families.”  Ms. Loper echoed that excitement, saying, “I am very thrilled to join the Ellsworth teaching team and can’t wait for the year to start.”  The ECS Little Lancers preschool program begins on Monday, September 16 and runs from 8:00-3:00 Monday-Thursday.

In the middle/high school building veteran educator, Mark Drenth will be a welcome addition as the new middle/high school physical education teacher.  Mr. Drenth, who attended ECS in elementary school, is a veteran teacher with many years of PE experience, including teaching for 22 years at Charlevoix Middle/High School.  Recently retired, ECS is delighted that he has chosen to come out of retirement to take on teaching middle and high school PE classes in Ellsworth.  “Mark Drenth is a top-notch educator,” indicated Superintendent Gaffney.  “We feel very blessed that our students will have the opportunity to work with Mr. Drenth during the coming school year.”  Mr. Drenth noted, “Through participation in a wide variety of activities and sports, (he) hopes to instill a passion for fitness and teach students health related physical fitness concepts that will lead to an active and healthy lifestyle throughout adulthood.”

All ECS K-12 students will begin with a full-day of school on Tuesday, September 3. ECS would like to encourage all families and community members to attend the Back-to-School Picnic on Wednesday, August 28 at 6:00 p.m. to meet Ms. Loper, Mr. Drenth, and to reconnect with the entire ECS staff as well as other families and friends.