A partnership with parents
The task of a Lutheran day school is simple, but profound: to support and assist Christian parents in their God-given responsibility of rearing and training their children to believe in Christ and to love their neighbor. This means that children learn both the Christian faith and how to live in the world which God created. Children are God’s gifts to us and He has placed in our hands the responsibility for both their spiritual and temporal welfare. Our only authority to educate and catechize children comes from the parents who extend this authority to us. In fact, we insist that parents retain their role and carry out their responsibilities in the education of their children.
Authority to Teach
The rearing of children to be Christians and faithful, educated, contributing citizens of our society is serious business. The day school teacher serves Christian parents and children in the same spirit of love and sacrifice to the neighbor which characterizes the life of every Christian in the particular vocation that God calls him. The authority extended to the Lutheran day school teacher from parents includes not only the authority to teach math and science; it is also the authority to teach religion and lead the children in prayers.
Our access to children is through their parents and the authority they extend to us in all areas of their life and upbringing. This is why we insist that parents know what we believe, teach, and confess as Lutherans, so that they can support us in this work. As tragic as it is for children to have parents who will not teach them the faith, neither the pastor nor the day school teacher can snatch this responsibility from Mom and Dad. The Word which father and mother have received from the preaching of the Gospel and their own catechization in the faith becomes a part of their conversation in the home as they catechize their children by word and example. This is the way God’s Word is passed on; this is the way we learn the Gospel.
As learners of the Gospel, we desire to teach the Gospel and all that the Gospel entails. We learn all about the incarnate Christ’s life and death, and all about the creation that Christ has redeemed. Because citizenship, fulfilling one’s office and station, requires more than “job training,” our curriculum in the liberal arts imparts the general knowledge and rational thought suitable for free people. As Christians are the most free of all people, we educate in all areas of study: languages, arts, and history, great deeds and sayings, and a sweep of knowledge of the world from its beginnings, including character and achievements, successes and failures. We use this knowledge as a mirror, to regulate and to order one’s life to Christ in faith.
The child of the Gospel of the incarnation of Christ may study all of God and His creation, embrace God’s working in the world, and engage in it as true Christians: pastors, parents, and children, workers of all kinds, and employers and supervisors. The child of the Gospel is truly educated, given the capability to be a true citizen who reflects the true love of God. We commit to being a truly Biblical and Lutheran school. By providing Christian parents a school that is faithful to the Word of God and the Lutheran Confessions, we support and complement parents in their sacred work in educating their child. This necessitates a “partnership with parents” every step of the way.