Dare we talk about it? At Trinity Christian School, discipline is a positive word, and it is central to our mission. The essential process of education, learning, cannot take place without discipline. In fact, it is the "heart" of education. The Latin root for "disciple" means "one who learns." Our society often misinterprets discipline as merely the punishment (usually seen as harsh) of misbehavior. But, at TCS, discipline is concerned with the maintenance of an attitude and an environment that trains children to be disciples -- those who learn. This framework naturally directs students to the goals of their education and enables them to realize benefits for all of life. We look to our gracious God for His blessing on such efforts.
The TCS curriculum is rigorous and requires discipline from a student even as it nurtures discipline. The high academic standard means diligence is necessary, but it brings the reward of personal accomplishment through a quality educational experience. We view the degenerating standard of education in our nation's schools with concern and see the proliferation of learning disabilities among students as suspect -- an indication of a failing educational system. Our school requires focus and diligence from every student, including those with learning difficulties.
The TCS dress and property codes promote modesty and neatness, developing a discipline of appearance that is as concerned with others as with self. The appearance required and the message conveyed help develop order in our students' lives. We view the development of youth subculture styles and icons as antithetical to the health of Christian unity and community and see the pursuit of fads as subversive to the goal of personal, spiritual maturity.
The TCS environment cultivates a wholesome decorum and good old-fashioned manners that foster a spirit of courtesy and respect. The climate that permeates the school is one of orderliness, mutual accountability, and submission to authority. We view the promotion of self-esteem as fundamentally flawed and instead wish to cultivate self-discipline and self-respect through a scriptural understanding of self and a due regard for others.
The TCS behavior code balances a biblical perspective of law and grace. Students are expected to conduct themselves within the framework of God's promised blessing (Ephesians 6:1-3). Meanwhile, the sin nature of every student (and every adult working with students) is taken seriously and shown to have consequences. These competing spiritual realities necessitate a framework for nurture and correction that by faith depends on grace. Discipline is maintained through positive example, encouragement, and corrective means. We call sin, "sin", even in young children. We view the gospel of Jesus Christ as the only solution to this dilemma. And, we encourage students in disciplined obedience as evidence of a faithful Christian walk.
All this expectation and effort requires that the discipline of prayer accompany it, trusting God for His blessing. We look to parents for partnership in this endeavor.