Cultivating Children’s Minds
JECA is passionately committed to the great endeavor of educating students by exposing them to wisdom, beauty, and virtue—qualities often foreign to the modern mind. These qualities, which originate with our Creator, can and ought to be reflected by man. Proverbs urges us to seek earnestly after wisdom; it is the “principal thing.” With wisdom comes happiness, safety, peace, security, life, and the sweet favor of God. Philippians 4 commands us to settle our minds on what is pure, lovely, and praiseworthy.
An educated person is someone whose mind has been trained and nourished on the best things. American parents and teachers have become accustomed to and have settled for much less. For, while a great feast of academic meat is at our disposal, we are content with giving our kids tidbits of stale facts. The result is a generation of young people who struggle to live without any mental connection with the past and no bright hope for the future.
The people who envisioned and founded this free country enjoyed an education that was drastically different than what is offered today. It was an ancient education that was founded on teaching the best sorts of things. We call it classical education, for it is that beautiful educational tradition that is not concerned with filling our children’s minds with pails of cold facts; we aim to light a fire inside them that will sweep their minds, hearts, and souls.
Celebrating the Lordship of Christ in Every Area of Life
Our Christianity permeates every area of our lives. Secularism marginalizes our faith to a few hours on Sunday, willfully resisting the wisdom of God in the public square. If our children are to winsomely defend and exhibit the Christian faith, they must be thoroughly immersed in the great history of the Church and be seasoned in the Scriptures and sound doctrine.
Instead of retreating from the culture, the Biblically-saturated student examines his culture in light of church history and sound doctrine, and he is equipped to shape his own culture. Rejecting shallowness, P.T. Forsythe observes that “the real strength of the church is not the amount of its work but the quality of its faith. One man who truly knows his Bible is worth more to the Church’s real strength than a crowd of workers who do not.”
The school does not replace the home or the church; instead, is an excellent complement to both, teaching the history of the church and producing students that give back to society by being responsible family members, earnest church members, and faithful and productive citizens who acknowledge Christ in all things.
Christ must have preeminence in all things. All things includes spelling, math, reading, music, and history — and even physical education. It is a beautiful thing for the home, church, and school community to speak with one voice as we point children’s shoulders toward God, that we may honor Him and His sovereign power in all things (Romans 11:36).
Creating a Culture of Virtuous Childhood
JECA is committed to putting before students only excellent role models of the Christian faith. We reject the idea that doctrine can be separated from real life, so we must model wisdom, beauty, and truth before them. In their youth, our children will see enough of those things that are malicious, deceitful, and profane. We wish to endear them to truth and beauty, overtly leading them toward a pattern of good works in Christ.
We openly and unapologetically instruct students in a lifestyle of beautiful manners and also in living lives that are overtly noble, gracious, generous, loving, hopeful, pure, chivalrous, and brave. If these goals seem naively ideal, it is because we have capitulated to an unbelieving culture of low expectations for our children. It is our duty and our joy to teach our children to know God, to love Him, to serve Him, and to be like Him.