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Wills Valley Church starts school not long after opening its doors comment (0)

December 18, 2008

By Megan Norris Jones

The members of Wills Valley Community Church, Fort Payne, cannot be accused of thinking small.

The DeKalb Baptist Association church, which started by meeting in the home of its senior pastor, Denny Mashburn, has only existed since 2003.

The growing congregation has a church building now and big plans for how it will use its resources to further the kingdom of God and benefit the community — it is launching a Christian school.

“This has been a really hectic year but it’s been fun. I like to pioneer new things,” said Heather Harrison, who is doubling as school administrator and children’s ministry director at the church.

What is now Life Christian School began last February with a nursery and preschool meeting in Wills Valley’s building. In August, it began its first academic year with the addition of K4 and K5 classes.

“People were very excited. A lot of people were interested and supportive,” Harrison said.

The school will add at least a first grade in August 2009 with the possibility of adding up through the fourth grade, depending upon enrollment for that year. The goal is eventually to provide Christian education from preschool through high school.

Life Christian seeks to unite what a child learns at home, at school and at church. That concept is rooted in the book “Kingdom Education” by Glen Schultz.

Students begin each morning with Bible study. The preschool follows the A Beka curriculum, and the kindergarten classes use a curriculum developed by Bob Jones University in Greenville, S.C.

All of the teachers are certified with degrees in elementary education, and the school has more potential teachers waiting in the wings as it adds grades.

One of those is Harrison’s husband, who is currently a public schoolteacher. The Harrisons support of Life Christian led them to sell their home and buy a smaller one to allow for more flexible finances to pay the tuition for their 4-year-old daughter, Shelby.

Adam Wright, who, along with wife Paige, serves on the school’s leadership team, is another teacher hoping to join the staff when Life Christian grows to include a middle school.

The Wrights are looking forward to next fall when their oldest child will begin kindergarten at the school.

“I want my children to grow up knowing the Truth and the way to apply it,” Paige Wright said. “My generation went to church, but for the majority, it wasn’t a life-changing experience.”

That life-changing experience is what the Wright family is looking for at Life Christian. Harrison is already seeing the fruit of Christian education in her daughter as she quotes Bible verses and even uses them to comfort her younger brother.

“Our children are just being immersed in Kingdom education, and it’s making a huge difference,” Harrison said.

For more information, call 256-845-7500 or visit the school’s Web site, www.lcswarriors.org.

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