Message from the Principal

Dear Parents, Families, and Friends:

I would like to start off by welcoming you to the 2016-2017 school year!  

Some of you may be interested in knowing a little bit about me.  I was born and raised in Niles, Michigan. I am a 1990 graduate of Niles Senior High School. In 1995, I graduated from Michigan State University, where I earned a Bachelor of Science in Physical Education and Exercise Science. Without a teaching certificate to complement my bachelor's degree, I chose to work in a factory, Universal Forest Products, building trusses for the next seven years. In 2002, I enrolled at Bethel College in Mishawaka, Indiana, where I earned a teaching certificate in K-12 Physical Education. As a full time student at Bethel College, I also began working full-time as a Mental Health Technician at Madison Center for Children in South Bend, Indiana until 2008.

For the next nine years, I was employed by Lewis Cass Intermediate School District
eaching secondary students with severe emotional impairments at North Pointe Center in Dowagiac, Michigan. In 2008, I obtained a Master's Degree in Special Education with K-12 endorsements in EI and LD at Western Michigan University. I continued at Western Michigan University in their doctoral program, where I earned my administrative certification in Basic Principalship and Special Education Directorship. As a Doctoral Associate, I taught courses in the Special Education & Literacy Studies Department, conducted evidence-based research projects, and assisted in writing grant proposals.

I am married to my wonderful wife, Stacey, and we have two amazing boys, Brenner and Cole (3 and a half and 18-months, respectively). In my spare time, I enjoy bow hunting, ice-fishing, golfing, and spending time with family and friends. I am a sports fanatic and have a distinct passion for Spartan football and basketball.

My leadership competence includes: The ability to promote the philosophy of the school program; provide team-building leadership; promote multicultural awareness, gender sensitivity, and racial and ethnic appreciation; make informed, objective judgments; create professional learning communities; engage in continuing professional development; the relentless determination to do whatever it takes to ensure success; the passion to improve rural education by using university partnerships as a model of effective school reform; the commitment to embrace a culture of data-driven decision making; and the implementation of evidence-based approaches to school reform.

As I begin my second school year as Principal of Ross Beatty Jr./Sr. High School, I am energized and deeply committed to making a positive difference in the lives of your student(s). We will accomplish this by setting high academic and behavioral expectations for all students and providing supportive systems to assure they are met. By addressing school culture, setting high standards for teacher performance, increased academic and behavioral expectations for all students, and engaging the community, it is our goal at Ross Beatty Jr./Sr. High School that all students will demonstrate the academic, technological and cultural competencies necessary to compete in a global society.

The staff of Cassopolis Ross Beatty Junior/Senior High School believes that the school exists to produce responsible citizens who can successfully function in an ever-changing society. We are committed to upholding positive academic and behavior standards within a safe learning environment, which will encourage our students to develop self-respect and to reach for their highest potential.

We embrace the challenges of the future while we continue to cherish and celebrate the traditions of the past. Our remarkable staff, involved parents, and committed students come together to make Ross Beatty Jr./Sr. High School a wonderful and unique place.

Having the opportunity to work with the dedicated staff and parents in the Cassopolis community is truly a dream come true! The people here are friendly, hardworking, and genuinely care about each other, especially the children in the community. The new school year is just around the corner, and I am eager to get it underway! I have spent several days at school over the summer and have been impressed with all the people that have gone above and beyond to make the school look wonderful from floor to ceiling! I am looking forward to having the building full of students and staff and all of the energy they will bring. I am excited to get better acquainted with the people in the Cassopolis community. If you are in the building, please stop by my “new” office for a visit and check out our new security entrance to keep our children safe.

Please join me in this cause, this pursuit, this meaningful endeavor, the most important of all endeavors, to make a deep and genuine difference in the lives of your students, and through them, on the future of society. It is up to us, and our time is now!

We hope your visit to our website at will give you a quick snapshot of life at our school. Please explore our links to find out more about curriculum, programs, and daily events at Ross Beatty!

If you would like to contact me, my email is You can also reach me by phone at Ross Beatty Jr./Sr. High School at (269) 445-0506.

I am looking forward to working with you and your student(s) as we work toward an academically successful school year.



 David E. Van Lue

 David E. Van Lue

Ross Beatty Jr./Sr. High School Principal