Parents are waking up to a lamentable reality: School districts are embracing controversial curriculum flowing downstream of America’s broader culture. But perhaps the more problematic detail is that places like Montgomery County are denying parents the right to opt their students out of these lessons. Just last month, a federal court in Maryland ruled that students must participate in curriculum featuring LGBTQ+ content starting as young as Pre-K. Parents across diverse religious traditions have united to push back against what they consider to be indoctrination. They’ve been fighting for the parental choice to opt out, and for the time being, they’ve lost. It seems Montgomery County public schools deny parental authority when it comes to their child’s education. This raises the question; what should be the role of parents in their child’s education?
At ACE, it’s our belief that the responsibility of a child’s education belongs firstly to his or her parents. In the book of Proverbs, parents are instructed to “train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.” (Prov. 22:6) Parents possess an intrinsic power, designed by God, to influence their children in a uniquely profound way. The authority of parents is primary, while the authority of their child’s school is secondary.
When parents entrust their children to the care of a school, they are merely delegating a particular job for a particular purpose to that school. The role of the institution, therefore, is not to supplant parents under the guise of education; it is to support and collaborate with parents for the sake of children’s education. A school’s authority, whether public or private, has been granted in each child’s life by his or her parents – it is derivative and it has limits.
A disordered educational institution tries to demote parents from their natural place. It acts in the life of a student without respect given to whose primary care he or she is under. As in the case of Montgomery County, fathers and mothers are seemingly disregarded. A rightly ordered educational institution, however, honors the authority of parents in a child’s life. A healthy school educates with transparency and acts in the life of a student with appropriate consideration for parental input.
ACE is committed to being a place where parents are esteemed as the first and primary influence in their child’s life. Parents carry the responsibility to opt into an educational partnership with teachers and administrators committed to preserving their role as parents… At ACE, we honor and welcome your presence, your participation, your voices, and your freedom to choose how to teach Family Life education.
Madeleine O’Neill, “Parents Lose Challenge to Gender Guidelines at Montgomery County Public Schools,” Maryland Daily Record, accessed September 20, 2023, https://thedailyrecord.com/2023/08/15/parents-lose-challenge-to-gender-guidelines-at-moco-public-schools/.
The new school year is underway at the Academy of Christian Education! We’re thrilled to be welcoming new and returning families through the doors and into our growing community. With gratitude for the last 27 years of God leading and sustaining ACE, we continue to answer His call to build a place of robust Christian education. We’re offering rigorous academics with a biblical worldview, training up the next generation of students to love, lead, and serve an ever-changing world.
Since 1997, we have seen firsthand the difference our advanced curriculum and faith-filled teachers have had on our elementary students. As ACE has grown in recent years, we’ve been able to nurture the minds and hearts of middle school students as well, and it’s with great anticipation that we celebrate our inaugural 9th grade class! The walls of the Academy have expanded, lending an incredible new space for our middle and upper school students to flourish. We are especially excited for our older students to make use of this brand-new addition to our building featuring spacious classrooms, a lunchroom, library, technology lab, and theatre. We are ecstatic for these budding leaders to have their own spaces to develop their study habits, collaborate on projects, serve their communities, and fellowship with one another.
As ACE students find their footing in September, we want to invite our families to get engaged this school year at ACE. We encourage you to attend events, participate in extracurricular activities, join clubs, and seize service opportunities as they arise. We hope that you’ll grow in friendship with one another as we strive together to fulfill our mission. And we welcome you to follow our blog over the coming months as we continue to discuss the landscape of education, introduce you to our fantastic staff, and highlight new, exciting things going on behind the doors of ACE.
Welcome back, friends!
At The Academy of Christian Education (ACE), one of the student's favorite hot lunch days is Wednesdays. Why you might ask? That is because Wednesdays are Chick-fil-a day. The great employees at Chick-fil-a Reston, North Point Village package up lunch for our students every Wednesday in individualized boxes. Each student who orders lunch that day gets a box with their name on it and at the end of the lunch period that box ends up in the trash. That is until the ACE Student Government Association (SGA) decided to step in and create a solution. The solution they implemented is to recycle the boxes and they have gotten the whole school involved. The SGA produced a video to demonstrate how to break down the boxes so that they are flat and how to place them into the new recycling containers. Our students went a step further to figure out how much landfill waste their efforts would save. They determined, with the help of a few teachers, that recycling the Chick-fil-a boxes will save 40,880 cubic centimeters of trash every week, 163,520 cubic centimeters of trash per month, and 1,144,640 cubic centimeters of trash every year. That is quite an impact ACE students. Way to go!
The topic of Education has landed loudly on the general public’s radar in recent years, but especially so in Northern Virginia. It seems Fairfax and Loudoun County public schools have become recurring characters in the national news cycle, and their reputations haven’t gone unmarred.
Uncertainty about the American educational system became more magnified when the covid pandemic sent students home, granting parents unprecedented access to their children’s curriculum as they attempted virtual learning. As a consequence, suspicions were both born and vindicated. Does my child’s school have the same values as our family? Does our school board have our best interests at heart? But concerns have multiplied and diversified over time as gender ideology has infiltrated the system, leaving safety lamentably compromised. “Equity” has driven discriminative actions, leaving students betrayed by their administration. The truth is, trust in the public school system is at an all-time low. As educators, The Academy of Christian Education believes these parental concerns are not only warranted, but immensely valuable. These concerns are motivating parents across our nation to flee the public schools. And this is an exodus we heartily believe worth joining.
The Academy of Christian Education is a no-nonsense alternative to modern American public schools. We’re a private institution where moral and academic standards are still upheld, undergirded by biblical principles. It’s a place where each student is affirmed as an image bearer of God, fearfully and wonderfully made; where pronouns do not change and names remain the same. We believe that childhood can and should be protected.
The Academy of Christian Education still believes in unbound academic excellence in which students maximize their efforts and increase their potential; where a student is not held back to suit another’s pace but encouraged onward to reach new heights. We reject partiality, while honoring our differences. This has been our mentality for the last twenty-seven years and will continue as our new Middle and Upper Schools expand.
When it comes to the education of children, parents have choices. Where will you lay your brick — in the debris of public education which appears to be weakening and disintegrating, or in a place committed to your child’s best? We’re building something excellent, and we invite you to join us. Together we can invest in the next generation, and through them, a brighter, more hopeful future.
Attention ACE Families!!
Want to support ACE?
Want to spread the word about ACE to friends?
Does your child beg for one of those new sweatshirts that everyone is wearing?
The ACE SWAG store is now open. You can find the store under the quick links header on our website. We offer everything from ACE magnets to ACE folding sports chairs. The new sweatshirts are so comfortable that you will want one for yourself as well as your student! We have plenty of sizes to choose from. The best part is that every purchase you make supports our school. Plus, you will be spreading the word about our great school to those who spot you in your SWAG. Check out our new store today!
If you have children, then I am sure that paying for college has crossed your mind at some point. “On average, tuition tends to increase about 8% per year. An 8% college inflation rate means that the cost of college doubles about every nine years.” (Finaid.org) I'm sure that statistic didn't help calm your nerves about paying for college. Planning ahead for college expenses is the only way to calm those nerves.
When the time comes, do you know if your student will qualify for financial aid? Do you know the difference between financial aid and needs based aid? Is a 529 plan actually beneficial? These questions and many more can be answered by James L. Hicks, CFP®, ChFC®, ChSNC™, CFBS, CLU®, CPFA®, MBA. Jimmy is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® professional and has been a member of The College Funding Coach® since 2014. Ready to learn from Jimmy? Join us for parent workshop “Little Know Secrets of Paying for College” at the Academy of Christian Education on Tuesday March 7 from 6:30 - 8:00 p.m. The event is free but we do ask that you reserve your seat. https://www.thecollegefundingcoach.org/class/academy-of-christian-education/
College is EXPENSIVE! The College Funding Coach® is here to help families figure out HOW to save and HOW to pay for it! College seems far off, but in the blink of an eye your children will be there.
Students at ACE enjoy STEAM classes each week. STEAM classes involve hands on learning in the areas of science, technology, engineering, art and math. These skills are so important and the learning doesn’t have to end when students are at home. The Loudon County Public Library has the solution with their Makerspace section available at the Sterling, Rust, Brambleton and Gum Spring branches.
Makerspace is an area of the library dedicated to making and creating. Offerings vary depending on which branch you visit and can be found on the website https://library.loudoun.gov/Makerspace. There are 3D printers, sewing machines, 3D carving machines, coding robots and more.
My family recently explored the coding robots that are available to borrow for one week at a time. My sons loved the Sphero bot we borrowed first. Sphero is a round plastic ball that can be coded to steer in any direction and change colors. It’s recommended for ages 8 and up because of the coding but my six-year-old enjoyed steering without the use of coding which is possible through the app.
The next robot we borrowed was the Ozobot Evo and this my favorite so far. The Ozobot is recommended for ages five and up because it uses color coding. Children create a path for the robot to follow by drawing a black line. Then along the route they can use the color markers provided to code the robot to take actions such as speed up, spin around, zigzag and more.
The mBot robot must be a popular one because we are still waiting to borrow it. The great news is there is a waiting list and you are notified when the bot is ready to pick up. This bot is recommended for ages 8 and up and involves building the bot (think Erector set) and then coding it with Scratch.
We hope you get a chance to check out the Makerspace at your local library. Let us know which bot is your favorite bot to borrow!
Tag CloudAcademy of Christian Education ACE Swag Chick-fil-a Classical Education Coding College Funding Coach College Tuition Current Education Library Modern Education Recycling Robot STEM Student Government Support ACE Today's Education
Big changes came to the ACE playground over the Summer. We rearranged the five picnic tables in order to create more space for our students to line up when recess is over. This is especially helpful when multiple classes must line up at the same time. Moving the picnic tables that were located towards the rear of the playground allows for a much bigger basketball area for our students. Our students love the new basketball area and the new basketballs that go with it. In fact, all the balls, jump ropes and other playground toys have been replaced with new ones!
The benches on our playground got a fresh coat of blue paint. They now match the color of the picnic tables. Next to our benches are new sheds to house our equipment.
If you have a young student at ACE, they may have told you how much they love to ride on the tricycles at recess. Teachers usually had to put a time limit on the two trikes because of the high demand. Now, ACE has four new tricycles in nice bright colors. Sorry first graders and up, these trikes are for our younger students.
Over the years we have lost a few trees that used to shade our playground so ACE installed a very large sun shade. The use of this shaded area is totally up to the creativity of our students. We can see kids using the space for four square, hopscotch and more. We know our teachers also enjoy using the shaded space on hot days.
Lastly, ACE added a privacy screen around the fenced playground area. This not only gives our recess area a more private feel but it also makes our students more visible to the teachers.
We hope you enjoy all the updates to the playground at ACE. If you haven’t seen them yet, take a look next time you visit us.
Every summer, my family looks forward to lazy days with no real schedule. After a few days without structure the whole family realizes how important it is and we look for ways to put some back into our summer break. Another less obvious thing that happens over the summer is that our children start to slide academically. Without the daily practice of school work, children can forget as much as two months of math and reading knowledge. This is why most schools feel the need to reteach things the first few weeks of school.
So how can you help your child to avoid the summer slide? Academy of Christian Education has some easy tips that are easy to do and won’t take up your entire summer.
#1 Read, read and read some more:
- Visit your local library and let your children pick out some books to read. You can make this fun by adding an incentive for when your child finishes one book or even 5 books depending on your child’s reading level and book thickness.
- Read at all opportunities. Let your child help with cooking and read you the recipe. Let your child read you directions on your next trip.
- Play boardgames that require reading. My kids love monopoly and even though the game can last days, I love that there is math and reading involved.
- Reading to your children counts! Do your children still love a bedtime story? Reading to and with your kids is also a great way to keep up reading skills over the summer.
#2 Use math daily:
- You don’t have to sign up for a math camp to keep up your kids’ skills this summer. Practice math facts over the summer. Older kids can do this on their own, but both older and younger students enjoy parents quizzing them on math facts.
- Recipes aren’t just helpful with reading skills; they also provide an opportunity to use math skills. Do you have a recipe that makes too much? Have your child help you to half the recipe. Or maybe your child can help you double a recipe, because guests are coming over. If your child doesn’t enjoy cooking, there are recipes for making slime and play-doh online that might excite them.
- Headed to the store? Bring your children and let them help with any math along the way. Should you buy the small box of crackers or the big? Show your child how to look at the price per ounce and see which is the better deal. Another great way to use math is to let your child figure out how much tip to leave when you eat out.
- Lots of boardgames require math. The best part is that playing boardgames together as a family is a great way to spend quality time together and sneak in math practice at the same time!
Here are some more tips for avoiding the summer slide.
Physical fitness is important for our children now and over their lifetime. Sports are great for fitness, but keeping kids active can also be as easy and fun as heading to the playground or visiting one of the many trails around the area to take a hike.
This month ACE students will take part in the yearly ACE Fitness Challenge. Our physical education teacher, Mrs. Heath, is working hard to prepare everything for the week of May 23rd. ACE needs parent volunteers to help with this year’s fitness challenge. Please view the schedule below and see If you have time to help. And for those of you that are curious about the gold and silver level standards for the fitness challenge, they are listed below by age.
This year's fitness challenge is sure to be fun. We hope to see you there!
Academy of Christian Education Receives 2022 Best of Reston Award
The Reston Award Program announced on February 9, 2022 that the Academy of Christian Education had been selected for the 2022 Best of Reston Award in the Private School category. The Academy of Christian Education is the only private school in Reston, Virginia to receive this prestigious award for four consecutive years.
Each year, the Reston Award Program identifies companies they believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and our community. These exceptional companies help make the Reston area a great place to live, work and play.