Written by: ACSI
Article source: JOY! Magazine

The joys and privilege of having children often also carries the weight of each parent’s responsibility to grow and develop the individual child towards independence and maturity. This entails all the various facets of physical, emotional, intellectual, social, and spiritual growth. As parents strive to prepare our children for a responsible, significant adult life, most of us end up calling on all the help we can get. Christian parents rightfully claim full responsibility for their children’s education, but at the same time it is a source of great comfort to partner with the church and schools to achieve this.

Our role as Christian parents
It is a sad reality that the views, distractions, and temptations of the world are dominated by a striving towards self-actualisation and material success. Conversely, we as Christians seek to develop our children to be image bearers of Christ, functioning within God’s purpose for each life as stewards of His world. This Biblical worldview provides answers about the truth of God, His created world, and the place of man in it – whilst speaking to the very core of man’s existence, his purpose, and his destiny.

Our mission is to unite, equip, and strengthen Christian schools worldwide.

The Bible gives great insight
Proverbs 22:6 reminds us that we should, “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” This verse speaks to the significance of the educational process in preparing children for their future. Because schools play such a dominant role in the lives of our children, often even greater than that of parents and the church, the choice of school has a profound impact on the overall growth and development of each child.

What does Christian education seek to promote?
The purpose of Christian education is the directing of human development towards God’s objective for man, which should be godliness of character and action. Christian schools aim to partner with parents and the church in the growth and development of each child’s knowledge of God, of His character as the Creator, as well as of His ongoing relationship with the created world. All of this whilst preparing them for their respective service to Him here on earth.

Everything we do starts with this belief: In Christ, we are stronger together.

Christian schooling is essential
The academic preparation of each unique child is not compromised in a Christian school, but rather it becomes a hallmark of God’s call to diligence, obedience, and purpose. Academic excellence is undergirded by a focus on leading children to discover their calling as Christ ambassadors in a broken world and training them to be more like Jesus in wisdom and character through His revealed Word and through an exploration of His created world. The Bible is the foundation of a Christian school’s curriculum and the key to the development of a Biblical worldview.

A Biblical standard of excellence
Educational excellence is expected of Christian leaders, teachers, and children even in the most remote and destitute areas. The heart of these people is the heart of the school curriculum, which encourages each child to accept Jesus and build a personal relationship with Him. A knowledge of God, His ways, and His character through the teaching of His Word will help to prepare each child’s future vocation in service to Him and His Kingdom.

The influence of Christian leadership
The value of an authentic Christian school is to be found in the lives of its Christian leaders and teachers who model a Biblical worldview and way of life. This is often very different to that of the world. The influence of a Christian teacher in the foundational years of a child’s life is significant, as the child is both loved and discipled. The Christian teacher creates the opportunity for each child to know God, be convicted about His truth, and build a growing relationship with Him.

Operating locally and internationally
In the same way that God’s design of family supports the growth and development of each child, so too the family of Christian schools supports and unites those God has called to serve this purpose. The Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) serves more than 120 Christian schools in Southern Africa, including schools in Zimbabwe and Eswatini. Internationally, 28 ACSI offices serve more than 26 000 schools, impacting around 5.5 million children’s lives around the world.

ACSI represents Christian schools
The vision of ACSI is to serve local Christian schools through strengthening the shared call of developing disciples of Christ who can integrate their faith with their learning, and leading schools to maturity through assistance with legislative compliance, school policy administration, and academic support. A personal relationship with school leaders facilitates courage and growth towards administrative integrity and educational excellence in each unique school. ACSI represents Christian schools at both provincial and national level, providing critical support for the rights of religious independence.

Don’t compromise on your children’s education
ACSI strives to equip and develop Christian teachers through training, while helping them to implement the foundations of Christian education. This includes Biblical worldview, Biblical integration, and spiritual formation. Regular teacher workshops and conferences support teacher growth and inspire a passion for the pursuit of God’s truth and the skills required for quality education. Christian public school teachers are encouraged to join our family by visiting our website and to share in the collegiality of those called to Christian education.

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Date published: 11/06/2020

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