top of page


'A Bible class doth not a Christian school make'

For it to be truly Christian, a school's structure must follow God

by John Savage, Founder of The Academy for Individual Excellence

      To be a follower of Christ is to be a follower of God, in that Christ says, “I must be about my Father’s business. Not my will but Thine,”

     We know that God created us to be born into and raised and taught in families. We know that his design for the family started with a mom and a dad. For a child to exist there had to be two adults. Children in a healthy family grow up seeing adults working together for the good of the family and for the good of the whole. And if they are focused on God and focused on Christ, then they are modeling for their kids what God designed for the family and what He designed for us as healthy, productive adults.

     When public schools were created, they started taking kids from their families to educate them. The school began to outweigh what was going on in the family. It began to erode what God made us to become, because what happens to children in public schools and other mainstream schools is not the natural development that takes place in the family, where they can give, take, and find their worth. Where they learn that “I belong. I am needed. I am an important part of this and there is a hole when I am not here.”

     Mainstream schools do not teach them that. Mainstream schools teach children that competition is paramount. Every man is for himself. The top dog gets the bone. Above all else, be the best. Be better than your classmates. They teach this instead of teaching them compassion, or work ethic. Because if I’m beating you, if I am simply better than you, then I don’t have to work that hard, maybe. If I just use that as my measure, that I am ahead of you, I am not really looking inside myself for what God has put there. I am not looking for my best. If I am allowed to stop with “I’m better than you,” I may never learn how great I am capable of being. And if I am that other child, the one who is not the best, that competition has sown me only my limitations.  It tells me, “I will never be like you.” So I will save face by not trying as hard. I will grow up accepting that I am second-rate.

     For the most part, I think Christian schools are mimicking the design of public schools and adding Bible classes. I don’t think that’s sufficient. In order truly to follow Him and to raise our children to follow Him, we must pay more significant attention to the family relationship as it should be, with children of different ages and different abilities learning how to get along; learning how to give and take; learning how to work together, to be inspired by those who are further along in development and to inspire those who are still developing; to value and think of and act for the good of the whole, which is what the family unit teaches.

     The Academy for Individual Excellence, the Christian school that I founded and have worked more than three decades to develop, is a place where we try to mimic the structure that God wanted for children so that we might be centered in a healthy way on becoming everything He wants us to become. We are offering the support and the scaffolding that children need—and that they get in healthy, Godly families.

     We have made AIE a place where kids get to see and experience the beauty of Christian development—the natural development of whom God would have us to be, so that we may live a Christian life rich in the fruit of the spirit, the things that come when we understand who we are when we are not trying to fight for this identity and can be okay with who we are.

     If that is what you want for your children, we would love to welcome them—and you—into the AIE family.

 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” (Galatians 5:22-23)

bottom of page