QUALITY in Christian Education

January 23, 2012 — Leave a comment

The word “quality” means: “a peculiar and essential character : a degree of excellence : …a distinguishing attribute.” (Merriam-Webster).  This post will help a Christian school evaluate and/or create their “peculiar and essential character”.  It will also help the school to look at its “distinguishing attributes”; and find out what degree of excellence it has. To accomplish these, there needs to be a proven standard to measure against.  There needs to be an established statement of what the quality level is expected to be, and there needs to be a manual of procedures to use to achieve and ensure that quality.   That standard of measurement in Christian schooling is the Word of God and God’s principles.  Here is a statement worth noting:

The Word of God and God’s principles are the standard of measurements used to evaluate and construct the character and distinguishing attributes of a sound Christian school.

Let me interject a very important comment before continuing:  All Christian schools should stand on the same biblical foundation, the same ‘Christ’-ian basis, or those that do will consider those that do not to be impostors, denigrating the term “Christian school”, and therefore offensive to Jesus Christ.  If your Christian school’s foundation and policies are not based solidly on godly principles, then please consider removing the name “Christian” from your school.

Since the term Christian means “Christ follower”, or “little Christ”, a Christian school must therefore be rooted in the character and teachings of Jesus Christ. And, since Jesus said “In the volume of the book it is written of me” (Hebrews 10:7), the whole Bible should be used as the standard and basis of Christian school establishment, policies, and curriculum.  In chapter 1 of the gospel of John, he establishes that Jesus Christ is the embodiment of the whole Word of God:  “The Word of God became flesh and dwelt among us” is what he said in verse 14, so a “Christian School” must be founded, rooted, and based on sound ‘Christ’-ian principles from the Word of God.  (Specific principles will be covered in detail throughout this blog.) That presents a second notable statement of quality:

Sound Christian schools are “Christ Followers” and are rooted in the character and teachings of Jesus Christ as the foundation for all aspects of their schooling.

In addition to that, do not, by any means, un-tether Jesus from the Word of God.  That might be a strange comment, but you realize its validity when you consider that Satan has few issues with teaching laws, ethics, or what we call morality, but he does have issues with Jesus, and he does not want Jesus to be the basis of those three things.  So, when you disconnect Jesus from laws, ethics, or morality, as he hopes you do, then you have no basis for them.  Morality then becomes movable, with no anchor or foundation, and that means morality can change and be different for different people, which presents a lot of problems.

We can see in our world today, the detrimental results of disconnecting Jesus from morality: Moral relativism, situation ethics, truth that differs from person to person, etc. Jesus is the author of laws and morality, and Christian schooling must include Jesus as its anchor or foundation in all areas, and especially in the teaching of morals.  That is why John began his gospel so very eloquently establishing in chapter 1 that Jesus is the Word of God; there is no separation or difference.  Laws and morality must be based on the Word of God, or they don’t work. That gives students the correct basis of their beliefs, which is used for their growth in Christ, their life of service to Him, and for the all important trait a Christian must learn: discernment.

Discernment is distinguishing between truth and error, or right and wrong (more on that in subsequent posts). So tying that concept with the term “quality” mentioned above, students must have as their anchor or foundation or “distinguishing attribute”: Jesus, the Word of God.

Sound Christian schooling does not un-tether Jesus from the Word of God, laws, ethics, or morality. This becomes the basis for beliefs, growth in Christ, and for discernment.

I believe there are three basic and essential components or building blocks to achieving quality in a sound Christian school:

1.      Using the Bible in all aspects of education including evaluation, curriculum, policies, and administration.

2.      A true biblical Christian requirement of all school employees.

3.      What will be described as “the whole counsel of God.”

For the next three posts, I will develop each one of these components individually.

 

 

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Copyright 2012, Kevin Brownlee

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