Our Story

Lake Park Baptist School was established in September 1968 as an outreach ministry of the First Baptist Church of Lake Park.  It expanded within a few years from a pre-school to include all elementary grade levels.

Mrs. Voni Mauney was Kindergarten director and teacher of the four-year-old Pre-Kindergarten Class. The 1968/1969 year operated in the black and had an enrollment of twenty four-year-olds and sixteen five-year-olds.

In April 1970 it was voted in Church Conference that the First Baptist Church of Lake Park enter a Christian Elementary School Program to be coupled with the existing Kindergarten, depending upon demand, in September 1970.  Mrs. Voni Mauney was principal.  Reverend James Leonard was the pastor.

School bus service became available in April 1971 and continued until 2006.  A lunch program was begun in September 1971.  Mrs. Pat Bigbie was employed as the lunchroom supervisor and Mrs. Pat Davison as her assistant.  When Mrs. Bigbie resigned, Mrs. Davison became the Cafeteria Manager.  She was employed at LPBS through the 2006-2007 school year.

Reverend Gene Henson became pastor of the First Baptist Church of Lake Park in February 1974.  When Mrs. Spencer resigned, the School Committee and Church voted for Mrs. Gene (Exie) Henson to serve as Interim Principal beginning in November 1974.  After a few months, the Committee and Church requested Mrs. Henson to continue as principal.  She remained in that position until June 1977.  At that time Lake Park Baptist School had one Pre-Kindergarten, two Kindergartens; two First Grades, two Second Grades; two Third Grades; one Fourth Grade; one Fifth Grade and one Sixth Grade.  There were seventeen teachers, including one full-time Physical Education teacher and one part-time Music teacher.  The enrollment was 217.

Following Mrs. Spencer’s resignation, the School Committee and church body voted to call Mrs. Gene “Exie” Henson as interim principal. After a few months, the committee and church requested that she continue permanently. Mrs. Henson remained in the position until June of 1977. At that time the school had an enrollment of 217 students and employed 18 full-time teachers and one part-time music teacher.

During the time that Exie Henson was principal, Carol Hyatt was a half-day first-grade teacher and a half-day assistant to the principal.  Her tenure as principal began with the opening of the 1977-1978 school year.  The FACCS Evaluation Committee returned that fall and granted accreditation status to Lake Park Baptist School.

On September 1, 1976, Dr. Thomas H. Graves became Interim Pastor, and after serving for one year as interim Pastor, he became Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Lake Park.

Gardens Baptist Mission was started as a ministry of the First Baptist Church of Lake Park on March 1, 1978.  A middle school program (Grades 6, 7, and 8) was established in the fall of 1978 as an extension of LPBS at this mission site.  The Gardens Baptist Mission was constituted as a church on September 5, 1979, which was the last school year of affiliation with Lake Park Baptist School.

Dr. Graves resigned as Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Lake Park on November 4, 1979.  Reverend Nash A. Odom assumed the pastorate on August 1, 1980, and continued until his resignation on August 31, 1986.  During his ministry, groundbreaking service was held on Easter Sunday, April 22, 1984, for a new office and educational addition on the west side of the present facilities.  It would contain new offices for the church and school and additional classrooms.  It was made possible through a generous gift of $325,000 by a friend of the school and church in order to establish a middle school program at LPBS.

Rev. Odom resigned as Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Lake Park on August 31, 1986.  Dr. Don Berry served as Interim Pastor until Rev. Ron Lentine assumed the pastorate on July 4, 1987.  Rev. Lentine served as Pastor for ten years and resigned in April of 1997.  Rev. Bruce Hodge assumed the pastorate on March 6, 1998, and served until his retirement from the ministry on Feb. 27, 2005.  Dr. Don MacKay assumed the pastorate on April 1, 2006.  Under the leadership of Dr. MacKay, Lake Park Baptist School continued in growth and vision.  One Ninth Grade class was added in 2006 and one Tenth and one Eleventh Grade class in 2007.

Dr. Bonnie Arnone, a 22-year member of the faculty, was appointed principal of LPBS on July 8, 2007. The tenth/ eleventh-grade classes were discontinued due to a lack of enough students in 2008.

Rev. John Thompson assumed the pastorate on November 21, 2010 to lead our congregation. Mrs. Carol Hyatt returned as principal of LPBS in April 2011 after the resignation of Dr. Bonnie Arnone that year.  The Lord has truly continued to bless this school ministry, as we continue to seek His direction to guide our future, and to serve continuously as a lighthouse in northern Palm Beach County for 50 years.

Currently, LPBS has one three-year-old class, two classes each grades pre-kindergarten through third grades, and one class each of fourth through eighth grades.

There is one full-time Physical Education teacher and serves as the Athletic Director also, one part-time music teacher, one part-time art teacher, one part-time computer education instructor, and one teacher aide for the preschool.


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