Second-Grade Reading Fair

Hillcrest’s second grade classes recently held a reading fair.  The boys and girls worked very hard on creating storyboards for their favorite books, pointing out the important elements and artistically displaying them in any way they wished. Mrs. Engels and Mrs. Tynes are so proud of their students, as they transition from “learning to read” to “reading to learn.”

Student Spotlight – Jake Lape

Whenever a group of HCS students is “fired up” and having fun at a school event, Jake Lape can be found right in the middle of, if not at the front of and leading, them.  Jake has been a student at Hillcrest for 8 years, and not only is he a long-standing member of the “Hype Squad,” he has played football, basketball, baseball, and has run track throughout his years as a Cougar.  His experiences in athletics here have led to some of his favorite memories as well as some valuable lessons.  Jake recalls that his JV basketball season, in particular, was particularly memorable because the team “went 21 and 2, and [we] formed great friendships.”  That season also taught him that “It ain’t over ’til it’s over.  The lesson learned was never give up.  We came back and beat Prep AT Prep after being down by 20 points.”

Jake has learned other lessons during his years at Hillcrest as well; for example, he advises his fellow classmates and younger students to “listen to your teachers and stay out of trouble… even though the chairs in the [adminstration] office are actually pretty comfortable.”  This sense of humor and his friendly, outgoing nature are some of the qualities for which Lape is known; however, he believes that earning good grades is one thing not to joke about.  Jake is intelligent and is proud to find his name posted on the honor roll at the end of nearly every term.  Philippians 4:8 is a verse which helps keep his mind focused on “the right things” too.  It states, “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”

After his graduation in May, Jake plans to attend Hinds Community College and then go to Ole Miss to pursue a career in physical therapy.

It’s Tournament Time!

Hillcrest is proud to host the 2017 Class AAAA, District II Basketball Tournament beginning tomorrow. Games will take place this week on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, starting each day at 4:00 PM.  This is an MAIS event, so everyone has to pay the $8 admission to the games, HCS students included.

Other teams which will be participating in the tournament are as follows: East Rankin, Pillow, Oak Forest, Washington, Lamar, and Magnolia Heights.  Hillcrest’s Varsity Boys’ team will play tomorrow beginning at 7:45PM; our Varsity Girls will play against Pillow Wednesday beginning at 4:00 PM.  You can find the brackets posted under the “Athletics” tab above.  Please come out and support not only our Cougar athletes, but plan to stay and enjoy plenty more good basketball games!


…Basketball goals, that is.  Congratulations to our JV teams — girls and boys — for their victories at the district tournament held at Parklane yesterday.  The boys’ team took 1st place for the second year in a row, and the JV girls came in 2nd overall in the district.  Way to go, Cougars!!!

We also want to congratulate our senior basketball players for their successes this season and every other season which they’ve played as Cougars throughout the years.  Thank you for all your hard work and for your neverending Cougar spirit!

from L to R: Moses James, Andrew Mitchell, Jake Lape, Thomas Cain Jr., Thomas Wilson, Mayowa Asagunla
from L to R: Tori McCray, Kaitlyn McBride, Jordan Bailey

Envirothon Preps for Competition

According to, “The mission of the North American Envirothon is to develop knowledgeable, skilled and dedicated citizens who have an understanding of natural resources and are willing and prepared to work toward achieving and maintaining a balance between the quality of life and the quality of the environment.” This is accomplished by educating young people in the principles and practices of resource management and ecology and through practice in making complex resource management decisions.

Hillcrest’s Envirothon team and sponsor Mrs. Matthews went to the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science yesterday to participate in training in order to prepare for their upcoming competition on March 23rd.  They viewed presentations and attended meetings about soils, forestry, wildlife, and aquatics, and they took part in hands-on studies about pollution and conservation.  This workshop was in addition to their at-least weekly early morning meetings, in which members further their knowledge in this wide variety of areas. Their goal is to once again win at the district competition on March 23rd (held at the Tomato Museum in Crystal Springs), and if they succeed in that, to bring the trophy back home at the state competition in late April.