Article VIII: The Headmaster Plans Strategically to Fulfill the Mission
There are plenty of books and seminars on strategic planning many of which begin with SWOT Analysis. This is all very valuable and available. I also use it as a part of the strategic planning cycle. However, I first rely on our Trinitarian impetus to envision boldly for Christ, plan thoughtfully with the Holy Spirit, and implement trusting in the Father. Then we will seek to execute the plan with faith and excellence, operate and continuously improve for the sake of His Kingdom.
North American and western culture in general needs radical (all the way to the roots) Christian transformation to evidence the coming of the Kingdom of Christ. Let us believe for the moment Thomas Cahill’s claim that the Irish saved civilization in the wake of the fall of Rome by preserving and then spreading Christian liberal arts under the influence of Saint Patrick and generations of his disciples. Even so, now the development of Christian liberal artists through classical – Christian education could help refresh our threadbare contemporary western culture for the glory of God. This enterprise will need soaring vision but it will also require perceptive leadership, strategic planning, funding, and long-term hard work.
After the converted Irish discovered liberal learning, they copied furiously and then took their learning all over Europe. They opened dozens of learning communities (styled as monasteries or foundations) in what are now Ireland, Scotland, England, France, Germany, Switzerland and Italy. It seems a well-organized effort to open learning communities (styled as classical – Christian schools) across America, based on Christian liberal arts, could yield similar transformational results.
What we think, determines how we live. Teaching people to think Christianly is the best opportunity to affect real change in how people live, and therefore how they shape culture through their individual callings and their collective impact as God’s covenant people living all of life before God. Therefore, a classical school I founded in 1999, Coram Deo Academy, seeks to educate youth and adults in a historic Christian worldview through a vigorous classical curriculum. The goal is to train youth and adults as ethical leaders and wise thinkers that will shape culture for the glory of God. The classical Christian school as a learning community for students from pre-kindergarten and then through college and adult life – long learning provides the medium for a culture of teaching and learning to cultivate liberal artists who become ministers, and professionals that will spend their lifetime transforming culture as part of the culture. Thus, they will leave a legacy of wisdom, morality and manners for the next generation to build on and amplify over time.
It seems feasible that starting, growing, maturing, replicating and multiplying communities of teachers and learners through classical Christian schools will lead to cultural transformation. This Christian legacy could expand in an outward and upward impulse as tangible evidence of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ until He comes again. Since this endeavor is so important to the furtherance of Christ’s Kingdom it makes sense to provide the means to extend its influence with greater efficiency through a strategic plan and an organization to administer that means. This plan is not an exclusive means nor does it intend to replace any existing school, organization or plan but to add outward impulse to a movement in classical Christian education to which the stakeholders owe a debt of gratitude. We believe this endeavor so worthwhile and the business of education so important that many wise readers will see this as worthy of prayerful, financial and professional support. As it has been said, “no matter how big your vision is, God’s is bigger.” May the Lord bless the work of our hands.
A Strategic Plan for Regional Influence
The Strategic Academy Assessment and Action Plan
And many more