When a child becomes a student, the parent becomes a partner with both the child and the child’s teacher. Biblically, the parent is always the primary discipler of the child. We believe that parents are called to raise and educate their children. It is the parents’ responsibility to “train their children in the discipline and instruction of the Lord” (Eph 6:4) and to equip them to live for God’s glory. The Christian school and the educators within it come alongside the parent to join forces for the common goal of championing the cause of the child in all ways – intellectually, spiritually, and socially/emotionally.
When Christian educators partner with parents, their attention to students is unique, personal, and loving. You will regularly find a teacher attending school games or events, praying with and for their students, and attending to their individual needs–academically and spiritually. Teachers continue to inquire about students years after graduation. They continue to celebrate the successes of alumni, attend their weddings, and pray for them. Christian educators are like an extension of many students’ families.
Ecclesiastes 4:12 says that “By yourself, you are unprotected. With a friend, you can face the worst. A three-stranded rope isn’t easily snapped,” (MSG). At Grove Christian School we believe there is a tri-fold partnership between parents/home, teachers/school, and pastors/church that creates this three-stranded rope.
For the school as a whole, a genuine partnership requires support and accountability that is reciprocal. In genuine partnership, parents and educators share the mission and vision of the school, support school policies, contribute to building school community and culture, ensure they meet their moral obligations in relation to the school regarding communication and finances, and actively seek to promote the school in the wider community.
For each student as an individual, a genuine partnership requires the following:
- Eyes – partners should have open eyes for data about where a student is struggling and why as well as what to celebrate and encourage and why. Partners seek discernment from God together.
- Ears – partners should commit to listening twice as much as speaking to hear what the other has to say about perceptions and experiences. Partners assume positive intent of the other.
- Hands – partners should understand that their hands are joined in partnership not only with one another but with God Himself as they journey together with the child. Partners reach out to one another for help.
- Feet – partners should be willing to plan action items as needed and expect one another to execute, follow-through, and communicate. Partners walk toward one another, not away.
- Heart – partners hold, shape, and disciple the heart, soul, and mind of a child. Partners have to work together in love and respond to one another lovingly with grace and truth.