Our Mission & Distinctives
God has appointed three complementary institutions for civilizing and cultivating the next generation: the family, the church, and the state. Each of these three civilizing institutions has a divinely-appointed jurisdiction that relates to raising children. The state’s job is to restrain evil and promote justice by establishing laws and punishing evildoers (Rom 13:1-7). The family’s job is to instruct and discipline children (Eph 6:1-4), and the church’s job is to teach Christ’s followers to observe all that He has commanded them (Mt 28:18-20). In light of these three primary institutions, Coram Deo Academy is a secondary-institution that aims principally to promote the work of the local church and the family. We believe that parents are the primary educators of their children, and we serve in loco parentis (as an extension of the parent) each day. At CDA, we prioritize partnership and see ourselves as the third leg of the stool with the other two legs being the church and the home.
Principles of Partnership: Common Aim
We believe that diversity of background is helpful, diversity of gifting is essential, but diversity of agenda is toxic. At Coram Deo Academy, we have a shared vision of graduating students who are contagious Christians that leave their families and neighborhoods better than they found them. We measure our success as an institution by the aims in our Portrait of the Graduate. In joining Coram Deo Academy, parents put their ‘yes’ on the table with objectives defined in that portrait.
The Christian beliefs in our Statement of Faith as well as the shared practices in our Core Virtues describe the DNA of the character of the families at Coram Deo Academy. These core convictions lead to common practices among Coram Deo families: tech-lite and word-rich environments, focusing on the Habits of the Heart and not just external behavior, and studying classical subjects like Latin, Logic and the Great Books. The teachers and families stand together in pursuit of a generation of students that see the connections between various disciplines as well as our commitment to prepare students for eternity by education before the face of God (coram Deo).
Principles of Partnership: Shared Playbook
Raising and educating children is a one-time event with eternal consequences. Therefore, we are committed to healthy biblical communication in pursuit of our common aim defined in the Portrait of the Graduate. When Charlotte Mason wrote, “Education is the science of relations,” she was referring to the relationship between the teacher, the text, and the taught (the student). We think this science of relations also extends to the student’s parents. Our teachers are committed to sharing students’ academic progress and other helpful information pertaining to their students.
To successfully execute the aims we share, we prioritize healthy biblical communication that understands the power of the tongue for both good and evil (Pr. 18:21). As Christians in community, we are committed to recognizing wrongs, confessing sins, and forgiving one another as God in Christ forgave us (Eph. 4:32). Through involving every family in our age-integrated House program, we are fighting against isolating human behaviors like gossip and quarreling. Our playbook is to foster community-building behaviors like hospitality and encouragement (Eph. 4:29) through a joyful family-friendly atmosphere.
Principles of Partnership: Team Sport
Coram Deo is not a place where you write a check and drop your kid off at the curb. There is no place for hiding at Coram Deo, because our families are both engaged and involved. They are engaged by supporting their child’s progress in both discipleship and scholarship but also involved by participating in House events, volunteering, and serving within the Academy as needed. Involvement might fluctuate based upon the season of life and age of children, but engagement should remain steady through the 13 years of partnership. By seeing education as a team sport, we do not need to hire as many support staff and administrative positions. This enables us to keep tuition more accessible than it would be without a culture of volunteerism and philanthropy. It also helps our community guard against a Professional Services client-provider type of relationship. Although there is a business and schooling aspect to what we do at Coram Deo Academy, we view our partnership as an extension of Gospel ministry.