What does it mean to ‘partner with parents’?
At Covenant School, this means that we are in covenant with one another, and with God, in a shared vision and mission. This partnership is at the very core of who we are as a community of faith and learning.
Covenantal partnership goes beyond involvement—it means that we share core and agreed-upon principles and objectives; that we commit together to do the hard work of honest, timely, and biblically-guided communication; and that we will strive to model those things that are true, good and beautiful for the children entrusted to our care.
Our partnership with Christian parents whose faith is growing within the care of a church ensures that the minds and hearts of students are cultivated not only at school but at home and church as well.
We are convinced that if we are truly aligned on the major objectives, walking shoulder to shoulder in the same direction, we will not only avoid much distraction and division but will give our children a profoundly formative academic, social, and spiritual education.
Three Partnership Principles
Parent Partnerships at Covenant is based upon the following overlapping principles:
Shared and Agreed-Upon Goals
As Covenant School, we—both school and parents—have a clear picture of the desired outcome of a Covenant education: the end goal described in our Portrait of a Graduate. Together we work backwards from graduation to our youngest grades, assessing the school’s curriculum and culture for their alignment with the Portrait of the Graduate. In joining the Covenant community, families are agreeing on the objectives captured in that portrait.
In addition to defining the Portrait of the Graduate, we strive to clearly communicate the educational and cultural Core Beliefs of Covenant as a Christian and classical school. Our Core Beliefs include our Statement of Faith, as well as our classical distinctives such as instruction in Latin and Logic; pursuit of students’ hearts along with their behavior; the study of great literature, art, and music; integration of disciplines; commitment to orthodox Christian theology and standards of morality; and the cultivation of students’ affections.
Partnering well requires healthy, biblical communication from everyone in the community. The school must communicate the goals and priorities mentioned above; teachers must communicate students’ academic and social progress; parents must communicate questions, concerns, or helpful information about their children.
A key to healthy communication is understanding the power of the tongue and taking our words seriously. The tongue is a tool that can cause great good as well as great harm. As Christians involved in gospel community with one another, we should take great care that our words are life-giving, full of grace, and a source of encouragement. When they are not, we should repent to God and to those we have offended. Some of the surest indicators of true gospel-centered relationships are admitting mistakes and confessing sin against one another.
“Engagement” rather than “involvement” is the best way to describe a parent’s role at Covenant. Parental involvement—volunteering, attending school events, etc.—is important and necessarily fluctuates with seasons of life. However, parental engagement is vital, both with children and their studies and with other adults and families of the Covenant community, providing strong support for students as they learn and socialize with classmates. To be part of Covenant is to partner not only with the school but also with the other families God has brought together in this important work.