Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Decline of Christian Schools

As a Christian school teacher, I often would have a lying student in the pastor's office, accompanied by enraged parents, claiming innocence. The standard procedure was that the teacher would tell the truth, the student would lie, the parents would go into a rage, and the pastor would back the student.

But I eventually learned from the students that the pastor already knew that the student was lying, and the parents knew it as well. Both the parents and the student would brag about all the trouble they had caused in getting revenge on the teacher. I went to the pastor, who explained that I wasn't looking at the big picture, and he was, so it was all right for him to lie that he didn't know whom to believe.

The Christian school movement in America has fallen heavily from its heyday in the sixties and seventies. Godly, experienced teachers quit, leaving the ranks filled with inexperienced teachers. My own observation was that less than half of all Christian school teachers would enter their third year. Poor discipline, poor education, and a contempt for the pastor by the parents and the children became more and more normal.

Compromise worked in the short term, but not in the long.