Why This Atheist Chose To Send His Child To A Christian School

choice

I’m an atheist.

I’m not the evangelizing sort of atheist. I’m not out to tear organized religion apart. In fact, I’ve got no real beef with organized religion at all. It’s just not for me. I find myself incapable of believing what the religious believe.

That being said, it may surprise you that someone like me would agree to a Christian school for my children. That’s just what my wife and I did this fall – she’s a practicing Lutheran – and it certainly surprised many of my friends and family.

So how did we reach a decision like that (and I write “we” because it wasn’t just my decision to make)?

For one thing, we wanted out of the public school system. We have an older daughter who is in the public school system. She gets fantastic grades, and we’re keeping her in public school because we feel the continuity is important for her at her age. But increasingly we’ve felt like the public schools work pretty hard to keep us at arm’s length. It doesn’t seem like the schools want parental involvement. There is a sense that we’re to get our kids to school on time, and then show up only at parent teacher conferences and school performances.

Oh, and open our wallets to buy magazine subscriptions and candy bars to raise money for schools that are already getting a hefty chunk of tax dollars.

We wanted more. We wanted to feel like we were part of our child’s education, and the private school we chose afforded that. On the first day we got a list of all the ways in which we could volunteer to help both in and out of the classroom. Our involvement, if not outright expected, is definitely encouraged.

For another, we felt like there was more accountability in the private school. The teacher our child has been assigned to has a blog. And an online calendar. And a reporting system that allows my wife and I to get status updates about our child’s behavior and achievements almost in real time, if we want it. The Minot Public School system has something similar where grades and announcements are posted, but my experience is that it is inconsistently used. It wasn’t something we could rely on.

Our teacher is eminently accessible in ways public school teachers haven’t been. If we have a problem, she’s a call or an email away, and with just 30 students in her two half-day kindergarten class, she’s always got plenty of time for us. The school’s administrators too. We don’t feel like we’ve enrolled our child in a school. We feel like we’ve joined a community.

This, we think, will pay dividends.

And I’d be lying if I didn’t say that some of the data points on academic achievement coming out of our public schools didn’t worry me. ACT testing numbers showing less than 1/4th of students ready for college-level classes is troubling. And while I’m no fan of No Child Left Behind as public policy, when it comes to my children it worries me that the schools they would/do attend aren’t hitting Annual Yearly Progress benchmarks.

I often feel like the public school system is run to benefit the bureaucrats to administer it and the teachers who work in it. It seems like the public schools often end up serving political agendas, rather than educational agendas. I’ve felt like serving parents, and serving teachers, fell far lower on the list of priorities for public educators than they should.

At our new school, there is a sense that students and parents are at the top of the list. And why wouldn’t they be? Unlike the public schools, in a private school we can always take our tuition dollars elsewhere.

To be sure, we didn’t make this decision without some concern. For instance, I had a lot of questions about the science curriculum (and the school had satisfying answers). But on the whole, we feel it was the right decision.

You often hear the saying that education “moulds young minds.” But I don’t want my daughters to be moulded. I don’t want them to be shaped. I don’t want to feel like I’m sending them off to a factory. I want them to be empowered. I want them to be taught to think critically.

There’s a better chance of that happening in a private school than a public school, I believe. Which brings me back to the atheism vs. Christianity thing. I’m ok with a Christian school because they will provide a better education for my daughter. I’m ok with a Christian school also because I’m not afraid to send my kids out into the world to be confronted with ideas that may not conform with my own.

I think more people would choose these things if they were empowered to do so. I think we’d all be better off if the public education policy weren’t such a hurdle to parents choosing something better for their kids.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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  • Camburn

    Rob: I commend you for what your family did. Now get out there and help others who are not as fortunate, or educated to get the public school system up to par.

    Might be time to go back to one room school house standards. Eighth grade testing 80 years ago to graduate would stump the majority of High School Seniors today. That is shameful.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      The best way to fix the public schools is to empower parents opt for better schools.

      • david

        i don’t agree with this comment though

    • sbark

      One room school house ……drop down to the “where is the money going” analysis

      http://explorations.chasrmartin.com/the-cors-project/

  • whowon

    Totally understand. Went to private school for nine years then switched to public. Average student in private, straight A’s in public and was on the honor roll. Started my daughter in public in Minneapolis but had to move her to private school after a few weeks, horrible. The poor teacher was at the end of her rope, Hmong students had taken over this school as the city had brought them all in as Minneapolis always does. Didn’t speak English, tough shite for the teachers. Who cares about the Minnesota kids and teachers! As long as the liberals could feel good about being the land of any refugees, it was all good. Had to leave eventually,

    • Opinionated

      We could talk forever on this issue… My nieces are in public schooling Eden prairie home of the Somalian students and it is not pretty but better than North Dakota schools

  • Harold Reimann

    Not a Christian. you’re not alone. 6 billion aren’t Christians. not Catholics, Orthodox or Protestants. But I am and a prophet is coming soon, Elijah III, who will be a real Christian. If you listen to him you will be saved from going down with this country. Now if you really want to be empowered you need to be free. THE TRUTH MAKES YOU FREE! Nobody has it though but me! Keep you posted.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      Huh?

    • zipity

      WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE…..!

      The Crazy Train’s in town….!

      Hold on to your tin-foil hats folks….

    • two_amber_lamps

      Does he have a little place for us all to go where we’ll be happy and safe? I don’t suppose it’s called Elijahtown?

      • borborygmi45

        I believe he made it clear that it was Elijah III town

    • ellinas1

      What?
      Did you fall off your rocker? Bumped your head someplace?

  • NDGAL

    Rob, I am so happy you chose Our Redeemers. It’s a great school with a lot of class (no pun intended). You know how happy we have been with our kids in private school and the opportunities that they were most likely not able to experience in the public school system. And I am not against the public schools here in Minot at all! It’s just nice that my kids are known by their name at the parent/teacher conferences and not by a number! I am so glad we made the decision to send them to private school in Kindergarten!

  • JoeMN

    . I’m ok with a Christian school also because I’m not afraid to send my
    kids out into the world to be confronted with ideas that may not conform
    with my own.
    Good for you.
    And better yet, by not following the lead of the left in demanding your chosen school now be forced to conform with your ideas.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      The thing about the Christian schools is that theyre open about their agenda. It is a religious school. Everybody knows that going in.

      In the public schools, they arent so clear about the agenda.

  • RCND

    This decision will pay out in dividends you cant measure.

  • GameND

    Rob,
    What you are an atheist? You must not be a “real” conservative.(sorry, I could not resist)

    On a more serious note, I got a letter from the School district telling me that because our school did not meet Federal standards, we had the option to enroll our kid in a school that did. In Minot, the only school that did was Perkett Elementary.

    My thought is why do I need to have a standardized test to tell me that I can enroll my kids in any PUBLIC school. I don’t support vouchers to private schools, however, can we all agree that at the least, parents should be able to enroll their kids in any public school?

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      If recognize choice as sound policy within the public school system, why would you oppose expanding that choice outside the public school system?

      • yy4u2

        Because fairness to a progressive is only fair when they offer the choices. You knew that and am sure they won’t respond because they know that.

      • GameND

        It is a very simple answer. Freedom. I don’t want public dollars being used to teach or promote religion. I believe that once religious schools are reliant on government funding for survival, they will begin to alter their teachings in order bring in more money.

        • Hoth

          So parents will have freedom to choose which schools they send their kids to so long as they’re schools you approve of. How… open minded of you.

        • sbark

          ….but the Right is supposed to accept their kids having the various left wing golden calf religions pounded into them.
          Face it, the left is more ardent on preaching abortion, wacko enviro, welfare, multiculturalism, race baiting, big govt, high taxes………than are 99% of the Christian right in pushing relgion……….
          The Left is a cult of ideology as is Islam –both with the goal of gaining power and money, both will use violence at points in history as it becomes useful to them.

        • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

          You have a very strange sense of freedom.

        • JoeMN

          Where were you promised freedom FROM religion, Game ?
          How about if we changed it from a voucher to a refundable tax credit, good for that students share of education dollars ?
          Now it’s the parents money again to spend as they choose.

          • GameND

            I did not say anything about freedom FROM religion. I said that Religion should be free from Government.

            I actually think we could/should talk about an income tax credit for k-12 education, as it would sort of be an expansion of the day care credit and the college expense credit.

          • JoeMN

            So a voucher amounts to government funding of religion, but a refundable tax credit would not ?

            The founders intent was that government not endorse a particular religion.
            Yet isn’t denying religion en mass an endorsement of Atheism ?
            As long as government allows all private schools access to funding, where is the problem ?
            Should religious hospitals be denied Medicare reimbursement ?

          • GameND

            Joe,

            Tax credits for private daycares exist now, and you can use tax credits to attend a religious based school. I know, I did both. Expanding that credit to fund k-12 education would allow parents a break for choosing an alternative school without taking funding away from community schools.

            I don’t look so much to the “founding fathers” for my inspiration on this. I look to the bible,Matthew 22:20-22. It is the role of the government to create community schools that are available to everybody. It is not, nor should it ever be, the role of the government to fund religious teachings. That is the role of parents, and communities of faith.

            On this note I read a great story about a well though out conservative flop flopping on this very issue recently. You can read it here….

            http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/06/valarie-hodges-lawmaker-retracts-support-for-bill_n_1655249.html

          • JoeMN

            Expanding that credit to fund k-12 education would allow parents a
            break for choosing an alternative school while still pouring good money after bad into the public system

            Didn’t Rob just prove that Christian schools are also available to everybody ?

            Your story involves a PRIVATE school.
            How about this one involving a PUBLIC school in Detroit ?

            http://atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com/atlas_shrugs/2010/05/your-public-school-dolllars-at-work-for-jihad-.html

          • yy4u2

            Narrow view and guessing you think tolerant. Where is Phillipians 4:8-9 to take place? Btw, any idea of public education, if there was such a thing 2000 and some odd years ago?

  • ec99

    Can’t say I understand the need for an apologia, anymore than one is needed for going to a restaurant run by Christians which serves better food than one run by non-religionists.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      It’s not an apologia. A lot of people in my personal life were surprised by our decision. I thought the decision my wife and I made, and how we made it, would be interesting in the context of the statewide and national debate we’re having about education.

      • borborygmi45

        It is a good way to further the conversation.

      • ec99

        It actually is an apologia.

        • borborygmi45

          From another thread: Okay , education voucher. Sounds great, but…..Some of the possible problems , physical space, There may not be enough space for everyone that wants to to fit into the school, Supplies, teachers transportation could be shifted from other schools but….you would still need to keep schools where families have decided proximity, the neighborhood school , are more important then some other school. The vouchers would have to be sent out a year ahead of time so plans could be made. If there are more students wanting to go to schools then there are rooms or teachers what happens? Placement is first come first in, closest to the school get in? People would be a little ticked if they lived next to a school but their kids couldn’t get in because kids from across town got in first. Would the vouchers be used for private or religious schools. I suppose there could be a can of worms there. Again seems like a good Idea but the logistics….

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            This is a ridiculous argument.

            You may as well be arguing against private sector grocery stores on the idea that we’ll never keep enough food on the shelves unless the government plans for it.

            The education market would react to the presence of vouchers. We’d see new private schools pop up to offer alternatives to public schools.

            The market would provide, as it always does.

          • borborygmi45

            Could your new school deal with a 30% increase in a given year. I am just saying the logistics are…difficult……..

  • Snuggarunt

    You are indeed an anomaly, Rob, as it seems most atheists would disagree with you. Thought you might like to hear this analysis of the views of atheist PZ Myers, author of “The Happy Atheist!”

    http://issuesetc.org/2013/08/29/3-responding-to-atheist-dr-pz-myers-dr-john-warwick-montgomery-82913/

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      Sadly, most atheists arent very tolerant.

      • Hoth

        Far too many would be better classified as anti-theists rather than atheists.

        • JoeMN

          Or simply agnostic.

      • sbark

        your tolerance must comes from your Big L side……..it overpowers your atheist side

  • exsanguine

    My oldest is in public school as her father is an atheist also and refused to let us send her to private school. Our youngest is in private school and is doing far better. One thing that brings Christian schools well above public schools is that there is NO ambiguity when it comes to morals, ethics and expected behavior.

    • borborygmi45

      “One thing that brings Christian schools well above public schools is that there is NO ambiguity when it comes to morals, ethics and expected behavior.” Another conservative blaming someone else for what they are personally responsible for! Morals, ethics and expected behavior are the domain of the parents. Why would you let someone else whether in public or private school teach those to your children?

      • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

        Morals, ethics and expected behavior are the domain of the parents.

        That’s true, but one of the way the parents accomplish that is by ensuring that their child’s curriculum is in keeping with their moral standards.

        • borborygmi45

          There is reinforcement there.

        • sbark

          .

      • Hoth

        “Morals, ethics and expected behavior are the domain of the parents.”

        Yes, they are. And then parents send their children off to public school where all of their efforts will be undermined.

        • borborygmi45

          Didn’t do very well instilling then did you

          • two_amber_lamps

            Now that’s the douchey-gurgle response we’ve become accustomed to!

          • borborygmi45

            Thank you. I try to accomodate.

          • two_amber_lamps

            Lol… touche.

      • sbark

        Peer pressure in schools can erode what the parents strive for……Kids are in school 9 months of the year, if they are subject to the steady stream of negative peer pressure…its become apparent the parents influence cannot compete, especially then with the kids remaining subject to the same peer pressure 24/7–365 via cell phones, facebook social media, and then everything spewing out of Leftwing media via Hollywood such as Miley Cirus re-inforces that negative peer pressure.

      • exsanguine

        Gawd you are a chump. I chose to send my child to a school that enforces what i teach at home rather than somewhere that fights against it.

  • borborygmi45

    “I think more people would choose these things if they were empowered to do so.” Nothing is stopping them. God does work in mysterious ways. Best of an education for both Children

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      Nothing is stopping them.

      That’s not true. America’s existing education policy is prohibitive to private sector education. Break the monopoly. Let all parents choose, not just those who can afford to opt out.

      • JoeMN

        How true.
        You must now pay twice to educate your child, Rob

  • borborygmi45

    Do you and your wife volunteer time in your older daughters school. If so good for you but then why this:

    “On the first day we got a list of all the ways in which we could volunteer to help both in and out of the classroom. Our involvement, if not outright expected, is definitely encouraged”

    If you aren’t volunteering for your older daughter why would you now?

    Unless things have changed or are different in Minot vs Fargo. there was a list for volunteers. We did scouts, lunch room monitor, chess club, or just room helper and no one ever turned us down. Have you offered to be a volunteered or just waited for someone to ask. If just waiting you have no reason to complain about parental involvement in the school.

    Oh, and open our wallets to buy magazine subscriptions and candy bars to raise money for schools
    If you don’t think there isn’t going to be fundraisers you are sorely mistaken.

    • borborygmi45

      THis isn’t meant to be a question an attack on you but in general if anyone brings up these reasons for slamming a public system then they should be answered.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      Our volunteer work isn’t wanted in the public school.

      • borborygmi45

        Then things have changed dramatically. This wasn’t the case when my kids where in school. All volunteers quite welcome.

        • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

          It may not be the case in all school districts. But it was the case in our school district.

          We made the decision based on the circumstances which exist where we live.

          • borborygmi45

            Then Minot School District should be ashamed.

  • borborygmi45

    ” I want them to be taught to think critically.” In the static dogma of Religious education?

    • yy4u2

      The framers of the constitution gave us freedom of religion and not freedom from religion as has been bastardized by the progressive left much like Lenin’s Russia, mao’s china, Mussolini’s Italy, Islam or obama’s Amerika.

      • borborygmi45

        I believe all religion should be taught in schools. Take say a year studying the main religions and some of the offshoots and cults.

        • sbark

          ….instead they are forced into 12 yrs of studying the cult of Liberalism….and all its golden calf idols of abortion, teen sex, global warming, welfare, big govt, high taxes, free birth control………

    • Waski_the_Squirrel

      I think Mr. Borborygmi45 may be confusing the behavior of some elements of Christianity with the behavior of the mainstream. Some are certainly very closed-minded and anti-intellect. However, the Christian religion has a long history of preserving education and knowledge and encouraging research and intellectual endeavors.

      Although there are some awful private schools in this state (and, no, I won’t name names), I believe that Mr. Port has several very good alternatives in Minot. Admittedly, I’m less familiar with the elementary schools in Minot than I am the high schools, so take that statement with a small grain of salt.

      But Mr. Borborygmi45 does have a small point. When opting for the private school option, always research. In fact, when moving to an area, research the public school options as well. In some cities, the public schools are better than the private schools. And in some areas, the public school in the neighboring community is a lot better than the public school in another. Mr. Port researched because he cares about his children instead of simply trusting the experts. This level of concern is why his kids would likely turn out all right no matter where they went to school.

      • borborygmi45

        This level of concern is why his kids would likely turn out all right no matter where they went to school…..yep

  • LoveND

    We’re considering the same thing Rob. My husband is a non-practicing Catholic and I pretty much don’t believe in religion as a whole. After witnessing the school supply list for new kindergarteners having to buy either nothing but a box of crayons to buying 15 glue sticks based on income, I’m fed up. We’re hearing of no limit on time to complete homework because it may “stress the child”. It’s also possible my son will be bussed across town for after-school program because the low income kids will come to his school (we live ~3 blocks from our school). We are also the “English as second language” school, so we must cater to those kids first. We’re in Grand Forks and I’m pretty sure the taxes we pay should be more than enough money for markers. My son is 3 and we may send him to Sacred Heart. If there are no winners, they must all be losers.

    • sbark

      ….all that study of understanding multi-culturalism…….and yet G.Forks school system still pumps out kids that will have race baiting signs at the Class A BB tourney……….must really be working…..what are the voting demographics in general of the city of GForks?…..hmmm

      • barks

        …must…respond…to…every…thread….

        • sbark

          …….for awhile yet there is this thing called the 1st amend.,

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      I’m glad you have the means to opt out and choose something better.

      I wish all parents were empowered to make that choice.

  • SethO

    Big deal that its a religious school, especially considering that your wife is religious. It’s so obvious that the point of this article was to jerk off your conservative christian readers and assure them that you dont think they are stupid for being christian. And no, its not surprising that you find a government institution more troubling than a private, although religious, institution.

    • Matt

      But are the conservative christians smart enough to realize they are being patronized to? Evidently not . . .

      • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

        Which part was patronizing? The past where I earnestly described the reasoning behind our decision to choose a private religious school?

        • Matt

          Patronizing? Of course not – every post on this site seems to be chosen with the utmost sincerity and without a shred of sensationalism. I can’t wait to hear another story about Obama’s dogs and other such pressing issues.

          • SethO

            I liked the dog in the osprey story. It really made me think.

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            That must have been a unique experience.

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            You mean, the post criticizing media outlets for making such a big deal out of his dog riding on the helicopter?

            Excuse me for having the integrity to criticize absurd coverage even of a political figure I dislike.

          • Matt

            But why even post about such trivial things in the first place? It turns your blog into a tabloid – but I guess whatever drives up readership.

            And for the record, a quick google search reveals that your ‘integrity’ is not as consistent as you portray it to be. I could be wrong, but you don’t seem to be too critical of the media coverage of this equally absurd story: http://sayanythingblog.com/entry/did-obama-fly-the-first-dog-back-from-hawaii-to-washington-dc-for-a-photo-op/

            I’m not sure why the Right is so obsessed with Obama’s dog – from vacations to BS stories about the dog trainer’s salary – it never ends. Why not rise above the riff raff and post about substantive issues?

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            Maybe because the dog traveling with everyone else is different than the dog being sent cross-country on his own for a photo op.

            I consider how taxpayer dollars are used to be an important topic.
            It’s sad you don’t.

          • Matt

            Sure, dodge the issue that a large portion of your posts are sensationalistic and frivolous.

            In regards to the issue of government waste – if you were truly serious about dealing with the debt and reigning in spending you would post about more substantive issues than the dog being flown to Hawaii.

            Is flying the dog across the country wasteful? Sure, but I think writing about the structural issues (and potential reforms) of our political system that have exacerbated our dire fiscal situation would be far more useful at enhancing the national dialogue on the subject.

          • SethO

            Dont forget the story about the dog trainer! SAB: best blog for pooch politics.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      Judging by this display of literacy, I’m guessing the public schools did a not so great job with you.

      But the point of the post was to break through some of the stereotypes morning is to an schools which people like you seem to be embracing.

      • SethO

        What are you trying to say in your second sentence? Is it supposed to be an ironic joke?

        • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

          That was my tablet speaking the language of auto correct. :-)

      • Matt

        hmm well judging by the incoherence of your last sentence you may not want to be too involved with your child’s homework, regardless of the school (at least not the writing assignments).

        • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

          That’s what I get for commenting from my tablet in bed.

          That should have read, “But the point of the post was to break through some of the stereotypes about Christian schools which people like you seem to be embracing.”

          My auto correct went wild.

  • toomuchguvmint

    It is fantastic when people choose Christian schools for their children. It is also fantastic when people choose to be followers of Christ and choose Christian values for life choices. Those making this choice versus those choosing hollywood values certainly have different lives. See

    http://www.christianpost.com/news/interview-duck-dynastys-si-robertson-on-life-marriage-proposals-and-his-unwavering-belief-in-the-creator-103480/ and see http://dailycaller.com/2012/02/20/illegitimacy-becoming-the-norm/

    • ec99

      You don’t find it a bit contradictory that one of Jesus’ central precepts was a life of poverty, while money is necessary to send kids to Christian schools?

      • Neiman

        It is wrong to suggest that Jesus was against wealth honestly attained, as it is equally wrong to suggest He taught material/financial poverty as a way of life. Jesus and Paul and others were supported in their ministries by people of wealth. The gift of giving presupposes the person has the means of giving unto the Lord for the furtherance of the Gospel and meeting the needs of the brethren, as well as strangers.

        It is true that those that are poor in material things and spiritually impoverished will more easily find God than one who can meet their own material needs and feel no need for God.

        The statistics tell us that Parochial Schools and home schooling do on average produce a higher quality of education and moral values than godless, liberal public schools. Rob though is taking the chance that his child will find Christ and Salvation, contrary to his atheist beliefs.

        • ec99

          You offer two separate points, Mr. Neiman:
          I don’t have to cite the New Testament for the numerous comments on wealth, gained legitimately or not.
          Easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle
          Sell all you have and give to the poor
          The parable of Lazarus the beggar
          Do not travel with a purse
          Parochial schools have the advantage of being selective; they don’t have to take every kid. Thus, the teachers don’t have to waste valuable class time on discipline. And they can kick kids out. Plus, parents who enroll them are generally more concerned about them.

          • borborygmi45

            “Parochial schools have the advantage of being selective; they don’t have to take every kid. Thus, the teachers don’t have to waste valuable class time on discipline. And they can kick kids out.” This happened at my daughter-in-laws school. Child was a discipline problem and they cut him and there were no special needs students.

          • ec99

            In a 180-day school year, if the teacher only has to spend 5 minutes per day on discipline, that’s 900 minutes (=15 hours) wasted. But we all know it’s more than that. As for special needs, that’s all from the idea of mainstreaming kids who would be better served by specialists outside the school system. These specialists demand a salary parochial schools can’t afford.

          • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

            There are special needs kids at our school.

            But this is often an excuse public schools throw around. It’s a fair one, I suppose, but it hardly explains all of the problems public schools have. And it’s certainly no argument against school choice.

          • borborygmi45

            That is a very good school then.

          • Neiman

            Please remember, Bob above is, by his own admission, NOT a Christian and is not qualified to speak on God’s Word. “The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit.”

            Matthew 6:19 “Christ herein dissuades his people from the evil of covetousness, and worldly mindedness; and anxious care and concern, to hoard up plenty of worldly things for themselves, for a time to come, making no use of them at present for the good of others: and this he does, from the nature of the things themselves; the places where they are laid up; the difficulty of keepingthem; and their liableness to be corrupted or lost.”

            In your example about the rich man going through the eye of a needle, you like most people refuse to quote the entire passage, wherein it says “When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and asked, “Who then can be saved?” 26 Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

            Because being rich people feel they can meet all their own needs, their hearts are hardened towards God, so it seem impossible for them to be saved, but what you want to omit is that Jesus said that while it is impossible with men, nothing is impossible to God and so a rich man can be saved.

            Like Bob, you cannot seem to discern spiritual truth. God does not hate riches, look to King David and Solomon, the latter being the richest of all earthly kings. What God teaches is exactly what I said above, “Jesus and Paul and others were supported in their ministries by people of wealth. The gift of giving presupposes the person has the means of giving unto the Lord for the furtherance of the Gospel and meeting the needs of the brethren, as well as strangers. It is true that those that are poor in material things and spiritually impoverished will more easily find God than one who can meet their own material needs and feel no need for God.”

            There are too many Christians schools that take every child of their faith or congregation for your theory of their not taking stupid and poor kids to hold any water.

        • http://realitybasedbob.sayanythingblog.com/ realitybasedbob

          Thank your for another installment of what you don’t know about Jesus, Old Pal.

          Matthew 6:19-21

          19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:
          20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
          21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also

          21 Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me. 22 But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions.

          Acts 2:44-45

          44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common; 45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.

  • devilschild

    From what I have learned over the years these schools don’t take children with special needs. I understand that private schools have fewer obligations to accommodate and educate special needs kids but aren’t these kids just as worthy of a Christian education as non-disabled kids?

    • borborygmi45

      Good point but it adds a strain on existing resources.

    • http://sayanythingblog.com Rob

      Many private schools do take kids with disabilities. Their capacity to do so would be expanded by school choice policies.

  • comstocck

    Read Jeremiah 2:4-13. This was in my husband’s Sunday bulletin (Words from the Holy Scripture) this past Sunday. A warning? Yes. True words for the United States today.

  • ken55

    So what, big deal. You sent your kid to an Christian school and you don’t like public schools, You’re a confused idiot.

  • david

    agreed

  • Emily

    I realize this thread is a bit old but I am at my wits end with public school. I am raising a child (she’s seven and not my daughter) for the last three years. She has a history of neglect so there are plenty of challenges. She’s in special education which has become a horrific joke. She’s bright, beautiful, funny, personable and compassionate – she just has delays and suffers from severe anxiety but at least it isn’t PTSD anymore. I could begin a war with the district (I do have a legal leg to stand on) but by the time it was over, too much time would pass putting her further and further behind. She does well in a Montessori summer program but sadly there are not Montessori schools in my area.

    There is one sort of Montessori based school in my area, it is highly expensive and I am calling them tomorrow. However, private schools are not always that equipped to deal with a child like mine. The only other private school option for her is a Catholic school. It comes highly recommended, very nurturing and great academics. Hell, they even have a BUS system! Not only that, it is very, very affordable. BUT, they have mass every day and while I explain to her what people think ‘god’ is (it comes up at school) she doesn’t even like to recite the pledge of allegiance because the word ‘god’ is in there. I don’t bash religion, I say very little really except for watered down explanations that she can understand so honestly it surprised me how she railed against saying the pledge (a new requirement for public schools in Michigan, ugh). She’s not required to say it by law and I told staff to just leave her alone about it and sit it out. Come to find out, they were physically forcing her to stand and recite it.

    Anyway, this is a very hard decision for me. The last thing this extremely sensitive child needs is any sort of religious indoctrination that is going to make her feel bad about herself – most things already do. I feel she should know about religion though, especially Christianity because there are so many Christians running around. I was raised Catholic but really it was more agnostic. I am fortunate to have a relative that is willing to pay for a private school for her, it just makes me SO incredibly sad there aren’t more secular options. If I had it my way, there would be a Montessori school in every neighborhood. I just hope this tiny, highly expensive school works out because if it doesn’t, she’s headed to St. Pius.

    Maybe I’ll start a war with my district (supposedly the best in my area BTW) in the middle of all this because honestly, no one in the public schools seem to be looking out for our kids. I just want her to receive a quality education in a nurturing environment that doesn’t have 25 little kids crammed in one classroom. I have been to so many damn meetings with the school she is in and he progress is virtually non-existent. Her writing is horrible. Therapist suggested OT. I took her last week and she has extremely weak hands, that’s the culprit. It took 30 seconds to test her hand strength but did the school do that? No. Instead they just badger her to death. I have been told over and over by school staff she has ADHD – I have taken her to MANY well qualified medical and mental health professionals that say she absolutely does not. I was told to ‘doctor shop’ by school staff to get her stimulants. Putting stimulants into a kid with severe anxiety it just flat out stupid. Since I refuse to doctor shop, they are ‘throwing up their hands’ and just housing her now, forcing her into a general classroom she can’t tolerate because of her sensory problems. And yes, she has an IEP and a behavior plan but it is all a colossal joke They haven’t done shit for her. If anything, they’ve made a lot of things worse.

    She hates school, she hates the teachers, she’s strong-willed and punitive measures don’t work with a child that has a history of severe neglect. I’m so disgusted at the state of the public school in my district, I can barely stand it and if this new school works out, oh, the scathing letters that will be headed to everyone I can think of will be mailed out in droves. But, I can’t burn the bridge with them just yet —- you see, a private school can bounce a kid with issues out, a public school can’t. So, if she can’t swing the private school, she’ll have to go back there anyway and I certainly don’t want to make enemies with the people that might wind up in contact with my kiddo in the future but I will absolutely wage war with them – and I’ll win. (If I could home school, I would, it isn’t an option for me — but oh how I wish it was…)

    This post was pretty rambling – my apologies. My internal agony over all of this takes its toll.

    • ec99

      You start with the reality that the Catholic school is going to expect the student conform to them, not vice-versa. She will encounter a good education. She will also encounter a crucifix and a picture of the Pope in every classroom. If she cannot bend to their doctrine, which is entwined in the academics they offer, she will not succeed there.

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