Whether interested in the College Now program through NCSC or simply exploring options for your child, we thank you for your connection to Mansfield Christian School. You are a valuable part of our family and we do not take our relationship for granted. Our paths have crossed for the purpose of training future generations to live a life consistent with a Biblical worldview. This is our vision and we are pleased that you share this conviction.
The Scriptures are clear that the education of children is the primary responsibility of parents (Deut. 6:4-9, 11:18-21, Ps.78:1-7, Eph. 6:4). For this reason, MCS was founded by Christian parents and educators who sought to ensure that their children’s education would be firmly rooted in a Biblical worldview. This fundamental purpose of our existence is central to the school’s position to remain independent of the College Now program in its current form at NCSC.
It is our [MCS] interpretation of the mission to “assist the Christian home and church by teaching solid academics rooted in a Biblical worldview” that these two ideas cannot be separated. The most effective way for a Christian school to assist a Christian home is to teach. It is the foremost role of the school when the parents are unable to do so in the home. Training young minds by teaching is ultimately our purpose before God, the home, the community, and the State of Ohio.
We agree that the approach to education by our schools today must be flexible and responsive to the changing needs of families. For this reason, MCS introduced the Independent Studies program over 30 years ago, and chose to participate in the optional Post-Secondary Options program, the Credit Flex program, and AP coursework. These programs are connected and aligned with MCS in such a way that we believe our participation in them does not compromise our purpose or principles. Using these programs, motivated MCS students may graduate with up to 30 hours of college credit.
The College Now program is designed for students to earn an Associate’s Degree by the time they finish high school. In doing so, NCSC must ensure that both the college and high school coursework meets the required standard. Unfortunately, students are not permitted to take high school courses from their home district or private school of choice. Like most college programs, they require that specific courses linked with the appropriate outcome are completed to earn a degree. In the same way, but with much more flexibility through Independent Studies and Credit Flex, MCS requires Biblical worldview training through the senior year to earn a diploma.
Motivations for College Now vary among families – exposure to a career field, financial savings for college, the desire for an Associate’s Degree, early employment, student interest in specific coursework, etc. The exploration of a career field based on student appeal is of particular interest to MCS. We have been looking for a Christian-based alternative to the College Now program to better align innovative coursework with our Biblical worldview. Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy (CVCA) has created a “Schools of Distinction” program which seems to accomplish this based on our early research. These “Schools of Distinction” offer unique supplemental courses and experiences in the fields of Business & Entrepreneurship, Engineering, Medicine, and Ministry. Although such a program would likely require more personnel than currently available at MCS, we will continue our research because we value college and career readiness from a Biblical worldview.
The decision for MCS to remain independent of the College Now program in its current form at NCSC is ultimately driven by our desire to educate students from a Biblical worldview through graduation. We also believe that we offer exceptional flexibility through Independent Studies for the traditional home school family and the Credit Flex program for those on campus. Each year, MCS must be prudent to remain flexible and focused by selecting to share in programs that both adapt to the changing culture and yet affirm our primary objective.
Thank you again for your connection and commitment to MCS! May the Lord grant you wisdom as you consider your child’s education.
Prepared by the Administration and School Board at Mansfield Christian School August, 2014