| Over four million children
attend Christian schools in the USA.
Due to our nation's view
regarding the seperation of church and state, schools who teach religion
do not receive public funds. Therefore, Christian schools are privately
run. In fact, many Christian schools would refuse to accept government
funding even if it was offered believing that acceptance of funding would
allow the government to dictate their school (and potentially their church)
The largest association of
Protestant Christian schools in the Association of Christian Schools International
(ACSI). The ACSI serves 5,300 member schools in approximately 100
countries with an enrollment of nearly 1.2 million students. Another,
smaller, association of Protestant Christian schools is Christian Schools
International (CSI), with approximately 500 schools and 100,000 students.
One movement among Christian schools in the US is the return to the traditional
subjects and form of education known as classical education. This growing
movement is known as the Classical Christian School movement, represented
by the Association of Classical & Christian Schools, with 70 schools
and 8700 students.
Baptists have been very successful
in both the founding and maintaining of Christian schools. There
is scarce a community in the United States where such a school in a Baptist
church cannot be found.
THE "SCHOOL OF TOMORROW" CURRICULUM
Smaller churches can easily
set up an Accelerated Christian Education (ACE) school even if there are
only a handful of families in the community who are willing to pay tuition
to fund it. Also known as the "School of Tomorrow," this program
has modernized the old one room schoolhouse approach and made it very effective
in contrast to today's educational environment. One teacher can manage
a room full of students at various grade levels by using paces (booklets
that cover one phase of a specific subject at a particular grade level)
as curriculum. The student works his/her way through the pace until
it is completed and then takes a test covering the material. Other
media like audio cassettes, videos, and soft ware support the paces.
One of the greatest strengths
of this program is that a slower student no longer feels the pressure of
keeping up with the rest of the class. By contrast, a faster student
can move on ahead without feeling the frustration of waiting for the rest
of the class to move on. Educators know that both types of students
are the biggest cause of discipline issues in traditional schools, thus,
ACE schools have much less trouble with difficult students. Those
church schools who hold higher standards regarding entrance qualifications
do even better regarding a well behaved student body.
Furthermore, those who graduate
from this program have proven to exceed in their freedom to go on to higher
education and be valued in the job market.
Those seeking more information
regarding the School of Tomorrow program can check out the ACE web site
using this link....
THE "A BEKA" CHRISTIAN SCHOOL
This program was developed
by the Pensacola (Florida) Christian Acadamy which is one of the most reputable
Baptist schools in the world. Having some fifty years of experience
in curriculum development, the A BEKA materials are also Bible centered
and of the finest quality.
Geared more for the traditional
classroom, A BEKA more than fulfills the educational needs and requirements
of those seeking to go on to higher education. Those who favor the
graded system will appreciate the many helps, associated prgrams, and varied
materials provided by this curriculum.
Here's the link to the A
BEKA web site.....
THE HOMESCHOOL APPROACH TO CHIRSTIAN
The mid-eighties signaled
an amazing new movement. Various Baptist parents began taking full
responsibility for the education of their children.
At first, many simply pulled
their children out of the public schools and began putting together whatever
materials they could to facilitate the educational level of their children.
Local laws regarding education were generally ignored resulting in many
finding themselves in legal battles with their local boards of education.
However, the movement evolved
and matured. Today, those who commit to teaching their children at
home have learned that meeting the basic legal qualifications regarding
education is doable without any compromise. Certified Christian teachers
will often sponsor a local homeschoolers association made up of several
families who are co-operating together. Many use the A BEKA homeschool
curriculum (see the link above) which is respected by even those in public
education. As a result, this movement and those who conduct their
homeschools in a responsible manner have gained credibility.
This writer was able to homeschool
three of his children for one year. Today, all three children are
grown adults but are agreed in their remembrance as that year being the
best year of their early education. Their parents would also agree
in that our children were much more focused on their lessons when it the
classroom environment was one-on-one. In fact, all four children
did much better in school after that year as a result of learning how to
focus in on the teacher while the lesson is being taught. We were
unable to homeschool for more than that one year but it was enough for
us to personally experience the many advantages of doing so.
If homeschooling is a consideration
for you and your child(ren), be sure review the laws in your local community,
the available curriculem, and the possibility of joining a local homeschoolers
association. All of these things will keep you legally safe
while securing a terrific way to provide a good Christian education for