Posted June 6, 2007 2:44 p.m. EDT
Excellence in values and in learning
Upon arriving in the Triangle, one of the first questions many parents ask is, “What are the educational options for my children?” The answer ? There are many alterantives here. Let’s take a look at faith-based, private schools. Unlike secular education, faith-based schools can provide an option for parents who want to have their children taught within their moral and spiritual belief backgrounds.
Many parents want what the public schools cannot provide: an education of both the mind and the soul. “To do that, we must have outstanding teachers and coaches, who not only embody Christ-like character, but who can teach it as well. At St. David’s, our mission is to prepare young men and women for college, and for life, by providing challenging opportunities to excel in the vital areas of faith, virtue, and knowledge,” says John Murray, Headmaster of St. David’s Episcopal School in Raleigh.
“Parents must consider the total education of a child, which is made up of four areas: academic, spiritual, social, and physical, “ says Dr. S.L. Sherrill, Superintendent of North Raleigh Christian Academy(NRCA). “We encourage and guide our students to develop excellence in each of these four facets of education.”
The leading faith-based schools place an emphasis on community service, arts and athletics, not just academic and spiritual development. Your child could participate in an orchestra, or play football on a school-sponsored team, just like at any secular school. In performing community service, NRCA, for example, requires each high school student to complete at least 12 hours each year, but many often do more than that. For example, your child could do community service by recycling cans to benefit the Ronald McDonald House, by performing Christmas carols, or by visiting nursing homes.
Allowing each child to learn at his or her own pace
is another reason for choosing a faith-based school. Peter Denton, Jr.,
Headmaster of Trinity School in Durham, agrees. "One of our missions is to
be 'unhurried',” he
says. “At Trinity, we understand that people are also spiritual
beings, and that it takes time to both develop the spirit and to learn.
We live today in a culture of speed, but faster is not always better
Today, students have excellent academic opportunities in a faith-based school, with general, preparatory, or honor academic tracks available. Most students score just as well just as children from secular schools on national standardized tests, like the SATs and the ACT, and gain entrance into prestigious higher educational institutions.
In short, faith-based schools are a wonderful alternative to public schools and to private secular academies, with the emphasis of spirituality added to education. So, if the oustanding option of faith-based schools fits your child’s academic and spiritual needs, consider yourself lucky—the Triangle has an abundance of options to choose from!