*Monday, October 14 – Columbus Day (No Classes)
*Monday, October 14 – HS Soccer Practice, 5:00-6:30 p.m.
*Tuesday, October 15 – Pizza Lunch for those who purchased
*Tuesday, October 15 – Spelling Club, 3:45-5:00 p.m.
*Wednesday, October 16 – Butter Braid Orders & Money Due
*Wednesday, October 16 – PSAT for those who signed up
*Wednesday, October 16 – TAPPS Men’s Ensemble, 3:45-4:15 p.m.
*Wednesday, October 16 – TAPPS Ladies Ensemble, 4:15-4:45 p.m.
*Thursday, October 17 – Scoliosis Screenings for 6th & 9th Grade Students, 8:00 a.m.
*Thursday, October 17 – 6th Grade Field Trip to Pecan Park, 8:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
*Friday, October 18 – Taco Bueno for those who purchased
Announcements & Reminders
*Save the Date
*Tuesday, October 22-Thursday, October 24 – Standardized Testing for 3rd-9th Grade Students
*Wednesday, November 6 – Individual Pictures Taken
*Thursday, November 7 – Family Soccer Night
*Friday, November 8 – 1st Trimester Ends
*Friday, November 8 – PTO Movie Night
*Friday, November 22 – Noon Release for Thanksgiving Break
*Friday, November 22 – 4-H Fall Festival, New Hope Church, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
*Monday, November 25-Friday, November 29 – Thanksgiving Break
*Monday, December 9 – Christmas Program, Grace Bible Church, 6:30 p.m.
*Tuesday, December 17 – 5th & 6th Grade Drama Parent Performance, GCPC, 6:30 p.m.
*Thursday, December 19 – Noon Release for Christmas Break
It is almost time to pay for November hot lunches. November Tuesday Pizza lunches are $17.25 per person. November Friday lunches are $17.25 per person. November Tuesday & Friday lunches are $34.50 per person. Lunches may be paid for in the school office or online using E-Funds. November hot lunch payments are due by Monday, October 21st.
Butter Braid orders and money are due to the school office no later than Wednesday, October 16th.
*Scoliosis Screenings – Thursday, October 17th
A Scoliosis Screening “Opt-Out Form” was sent home to all 6th and 9th grade students this week. State law says that schools must screen students for spinal problems in 6th and 9th grade if the child was not screened in 5th or 8th grade. A trained screener will check your child for signs of spinal problems like scoliosis. Catching a spinal problem early can make the treatment much easier. Not treating spinal problems can lead to serious health problems. The procedure for screening is simple: Dr. Vicki Satir, a local family practitioner, will examine your child’s back while s/he stands and then bends forward. For this examination, boys and girls will be seen separately and individually. Dr. Satir will have an assistant (male for boys and female for girls) during the exam to help facilitate the screening process. If you, as the child’s parent/guardian are interested, you may be present during the exam. Please sign and return the “Opt-Out Form” no later than Tuesday, October 15th, if you do NOT want your child screened.
Our 3rd-9th grade students will take the CTP5 standardized test in two weeks. The dates of the test are Tuesday, October 22nd through Thursday, October 24th. Teachers will keep homework and studying to a minimum for these students so that they can get plenty of rest and be at their best during the school day. Please get lots of sleep and eat a good breakfast during testing. Students who are taking the tests should bring a snack and a good book to read in case they get finished early.
From the Headmaster
I want to share with you an eloquent article by Pastor John Piper in which he argues for the rigorous training of the mind in our children so that they will be able to read the Bible with understanding. Pastor Piper does not mention classical Christian education directly, but he doesn’t have to.
I was reading and meditating on the book of Hebrews recently, when it hit me forcefully that a basic and compelling reason for education—the rigorous training of the mind—is so that a person can read the Bible with understanding.
This sounds too obvious to be useful or compelling. But that’s just because we take the preciousness of reading so for granted; or, even more, because we appreciate so little the kind of thinking that a complex Bible passage requires of us.
The book of Hebrews, for example, is an intellectually challenging argument from Old Testament texts. The points that the author makes hang on biblical observations that come only from rigorous reading, not light skimming. And the understanding of these Old Testament interpretations in the text of Hebrews requires rigorous thought and mental effort. The same could be said for the extended argumentation of Romans and Galatians and the other books of the Bible.
This is an overwhelming argument for giving our children a disciplined and rigorous training in how to think an author’s thoughts after him from a text—especially a biblical text. An alphabet must be learned, as well as vocabulary, grammar, syntax, the rudiments of logic, and the way meaning is imparted through sustained connections of sentences and paragraphs.
The reason Christians have always planted schools where they have planted churches is because we are a people of THE BOOK. It is true that THE BOOK will never have its proper effect without prayer and the Holy Spirit. It is not a textbook to be debated; it is a fountain for spiritual thirst, and food for the soul, and a revelation of God, and a living power, and a two-edged sword. But none of this changes the fact: apart from the discipline of reading, the Bible is as powerless as paper. Someone might have to read it for you; but without reading, the meaning and the power of it are locked up.
Is it not remarkable how often Jesus settled great issues with a reference to reading? For example, in the issue of the Sabbath he said, “Have you not read what David did?” (Matthew 12:3). In the issue of divorce and remarriage he said, “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female?” (Matthew 19:4). In the issue of true worship and praise he said, “Have you never read, ‘Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babes you have prepared praise for yourself’?” (Matthew 21:16). In the issue of the resurrection he said, “Did you never read in the Scriptures, ‘The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone’?” (Matthew 21:42). And to the lawyer who queried him about eternal life he said, “What is written in the Law? How does it read to you?” (Luke 10:26).
The apostle Paul also gave reading a great place in the life of the church. For example, he said to the Corinthians, “We write nothing else to you than what you read and understand, and I hope you will understand until the end” (2 Corinthians 1:13). To the Ephesians he said, “When you read you can understand my insight into the mystery of Christ” (Ephesians 3:3). To the Colossians he said, “When this letter is read among you, have it also read in the church of the Laodiceans; and you, for your part read my letter that is coming from Laodicea” (Colossians 4:16). Reading the letters of Paul was so important that he commands it with an oath: “I adjure you by the Lord to have this letter read to all the brethren” (1 Thessalonians 5:27).
The ability to read does not come intuitively. It must be taught. And learning to read with understanding is a life-long labor. The implications for Christians are immense. Education of the mind in the rigorous discipline of thoughtful reading is a primary goal of school. The church of Jesus is debilitated when his people are lulled into thinking that it is humble or democratic or relevant to give a merely practical education that does not involve the rigorous training of the mind to think hard and to construe meaning from difficult texts.
The issue of earning a living is not nearly so important as whether the next generation has direct access to the meaning of the Word of God. We need an education that puts the highest premium under God on knowing the meaning of God’s Book, and growing in the abilities that will unlock its riches for a lifetime. It would be better to starve for lack of food than to fail to grasp the meaning of the book of Romans. Lord, let us not fail the next generation!