Is CCA a “Christian school?”

Columbus Classical Academy is a school founded, governed, and led by those who affirm the truth of the Apostle’s Creed, both Catholic and Protestant, and is operated in a manner consistent with the principles of historic, orthodox Christianity; however, Columbus Classical Academy does not provide instruction in Christian doctrine or practice as part of the curriculum, nor does it require a statement of faith from students or families in order to attend.

At Columbus Classical Academy we teach students the broad and deep body of human knowledge that makes for an educated American, as well as the virtues that are the hallmarks of a good citizen. This requires us, like every school, to embrace certain presuppositions—first principles—about the nature of reality, of man, and of the truth. The education CCA offers rests upon a classical, biblical foundation.

However, whether or not families or students have “come to God through the work of Christ” themselves, our purpose is not to evangelize or to catechize students as part of our academic programming, nor do we require that those who seek an excellent education for their child sign any statement of faith in order to join our community of learners. We are a school and do not assume the role of the family or the church.

In short, CCA is a civic institution with a biblical foundation.

“But we should realize that the word Christian can legitimately be used two ways. The primary meaning is: an individual who has come to God through the work of Christ. The second meaning must be kept distinct but also has validity. It is possible for an individual to live within the circle of that which a Christian consensus brings forth, even though he himself is not a Christian in the first sense.
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To whatever degree a society allows the teaching of the Bible to bring forth its natural conclusions, it is able to have form and freedom in society and government.”

~Francis A. Schaeffer, How Should We Then Live?

For those considering CCA who are Christians…

The classical, Christian foundation of a CCA education ensures that your child will receive rigorous instruction in the liberal arts and sciences and in classical virtue in a manner consistent with the principles of the Christian faith. However, we believe that it remains the responsibility of parents and the church to catechize children and to disciple them in the faith. Thus, CCA will support you—but will not displace you—in the fulfillment of that duty.

Moreover, while we are not neutral about the fundamental truth of Christianity, as a matter both of institutional competence and of doctrinal integrity, we believe that an ecumenical approach to such matters presents more challenges than benefits.

For those considering CCA who are not Christians…

Any honest assessment of Western thought and culture must acknowledge the classical, Christian foundations at its base. In addition, a school that purports to be neutral with respect to those foundations is either mistaken or misleading about the matter. Either moral virtue is divinely ordained and fixed, or it is merely a human invention and changeable; either truth is objective and knowable, or it is subjective and a matter of individual perspective; either man and his world are part of a created order, or they are the product of material and chance. In each case, we believe the former is true, and not the latter.

Nonetheless, the instruction that we provide at CCA is not proselytic in nature. We will not require your student to affirm any particular religious doctrine as part of their academic program or to participate in liturgical exercises as part of school life. Our commitment is to provide every child with an excellent education in knowledge and virtue, while at the same time respecting the role of parents as the first and final authority over their child’s training in ultimate matters.

“The purpose of a Christian education would not be merely to make men and women pious Christians: a system which aimed too rigidly at this end alone would become only obscurantist. A Christian education would primarily train people to be able to think in Christian categories, though it could not compel belief and would not impose the necessity for insincere profession of belief.
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[T]he educational system will be formed according to Christian presuppositions of what education—as distinct from mere instruction—is for…”

~T.S. EliotThe Idea of a Christian Society

Additional Resources

Download our Board Policy on the Role of Faith.
Review the list of prayers offered at Morning Assembly and Lunch each day.

Further reading:

“Behind the unity of Western culture we have the older unity of Christian culture which is the historic basis of our civilization.
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Consequently anyone who wishes to understand our own culture as it exists today cannot dispense with the study of Christian culture, whether he is a Christian or not. Indeed in some ways this study is more necessary for the secularist than for the Christian, because he lacks that ideological key to the understanding of the past which every Christian ought to possess.”

~Christopher Dawson
The Crisis of Western Education