Mission Statement of Capstone Classical Academy
“Capstone Classical Academy engages students to acquire wisdom, cultivate virtue, and pursue rigorous academic study within a Christian worldview. Our students will study what is Good, what is True, and what is Beautiful for the purpose of glorifying God and benefiting their community.”
Capstone’s mission statement is premised upon a partnership between parents, staff, faculty, administration, and the board of directors. Every teacher, staff member, administrator, and board member at Capstone has entered into the following covenant and will treat it as a trust established between parents and every representative and designee of the school, from the board of directors to every support staff member. Capstone recognizes the parents’ God-given role as the primary educators of their children and commits to serving parents with reverence for their God-given authority over their own children. The school does not take parents’ trust lightly, and parents should expect nothing short of the mutual commitment outlined below. This document is a solemn mutual commitment–parent to school, and school to parent. All parents must sign the school’s covenant in order to be considered for admission or re-enrollment. May God bless this partnership in Christ-centered classical education.
Our Shared Mission (Philippians 4:8-9)
We, the parents, will enthusiastically support the mission of Capstone Classical Academy.
Christ-Centered Education (Colossians 3:15-19)
We, the parents, will be supportive of Christ-centered education and the school’s efforts to integrate the Christian faith with learning, discipline, and all school activities within an interdenominational framework that seeks unity in response to Jesus’ prayer for believers (John 17:20-23). We understand that all Capstone employees affirm the Nicene Creed and are committed followers of Jesus Christ who are expected to express that commitment in word and deed, regarding the Bible as the authoritative guide for faith and practice. We expect the school will exercise discretion, charity, and grace in dealing with differences between students’ religious experiences, and we are committed to a fruitful dialogue regarding differences of conviction.
The Nicene Creed
We believe in one God,
the Father almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all things visible and invisible.
And in one Lord Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
begotten from the Father before all ages, God from God,
Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made;
of the same essence as the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation
he came down from heaven;
he became incarnate by the Holy Spirit and the virgin Mary, and was made human.
He was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered and was buried.
The third day he rose again, according to the Scriptures. He ascended to heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again with glory
to judge the living and the dead.
His kingdom will never end.
And we believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Lord, the giver of life.
He proceeds from the Father and the Son,
and with the Father and the Son is worshiped and glorified. He spoke through the prophets.
We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic church.
We affirm one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look forward to the resurrection of the dead,
and to life in the world to come. Amen.
We, the parents, are supportive of Capstone Classical Academy’s commitment to teaching the True, Good, and Beautiful, particularly as exemplified in the life and teachings of Jesus, and we understand that the employees of the school believe that mankind is fully human and finds the Good Life only in fellowship with Jesus Christ. We understand that Capstone Classical Academy does not require that we or our child share this conviction and that the school respects that parents, churches, and other faith communities bear the primary responsibility for the moral and spiritual education of their children. We should expect to be treated with dignity and respect if we do not share Capstone’s convictions about Jesus, but we understand and accept that our child’s faith formation will be influenced by the curriculum, teachers and role models within the school community—all of which are intentionally and openly Christian.
Civics (Jeremiah 29:7)
We, the parents, are committed to supporting a civic education which embraces America’s virtues while also grappling with America’s vices. We understand that Capstone Classical Academy regards man as both a religious and a political creature; therefore an education must be not only Christian but also civic. “Religion, morality, and knowledge being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind” (Northwest Ordinance), we will support Capstone Classical Academy’s work to form virtuous and neighborly citizens who are committed to the principles of America’s founding as elucidated in the Declaration of Independence and given effect in the United States Constitution. We understand that such an education requires teachers and students to discuss perennially difficult and contested issues, such as the nature of man and man’s obligations to his neighbor, his city, and his country. We will encourage our students to approach such discussions with charity and grace, and we will endeavor to model such charity and grace in our own discourse.
The Dignity of All People (Genesis 1:27)
We, the parents, respect that Capstone Classical Academy believes that all people are made in God’s image, are worthy of love and respect, and must be treated with dignity. Thus, we expect that in word and deed the members of the school community will strive to build a culture that is characterized by love of God and neighbor, and by joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, purity, truthfulness, gentleness and self-control (cf. Gal. 5:22; 2 Cor. 6:6-7). In partnership with the school, we are committed to affirming the God-given dignity of all people, regardless of belief. Not all people will agree with our views nor the school’s, but we commit with the school to treat those with whom we disagree with respect and love even when we cannot personally endorse their beliefs. (1 Corinthians 2:14; 2 Corinthians 4:3-4).
We, the parents, expressly reject any form of harassment, bullying, verbal abuse or intimidation by any member of the Capstone community towards any other member for any reason. This includes harassment based upon a student’s sex, race, ethnicity, religion, sexuality or perceived sexuality. These are antithetical to the spirit of Christian relationships and to our fundamental commitment to human dignity. Such behaviors are considered major violations of our code of conduct for students and faculty alike. (For more information, see the Student Handbook.)
We, the parents, understand that Capstone takes reports of abuse very seriously, and if we ever have reason to believe that sexual or physical abuse of a child has occurred, we will immediately contact the North Dakota Child Protection Program.
Human Sexuality (Genesis 1:26-27)
We, the parents, understand that Capstone Classical Academy believes and will teach that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female and that these two distinct, complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God (Genesis 1:26-27). Additionally, we understand that the school curriculum will teach that marriage has only one meaning: the uniting of a man and a woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture, (Genesis 2:18-25) and that through this divine union, man is expected to be fruitful and multiply, (Genesis 1:28), demanding that we cherish and nurture all life, from conception to natural death. (Exodus 20:13; Proverbs 31:9-9). We will treat with respect the school’s biblical teaching that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other (1 Corinthians 8:18; 7:2-5; Hebrews 13:4) and that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman. We understand that Capstone Classical Academy does not require families to subscribe to this position, but we understand that students will encounter the school’s beliefs on these matters as normative in the school curriculum and codes of conduct. We should expect that open and respectful dialogue is welcomed regarding these matters should we wish to discuss with the leadership of the school any questions or concerns we may have.
We, the parents, support the school’s aim to provide a culture in which all students can learn and thrive in peace and freedom. Young men and women in their teenage years experience a great deal of change, sometimes volatile emotions, and a growing sexual maturity. Though it is natural and consistent with human development that students experience sexual attraction, we understand that the school discourages the formation of exclusive relationships. Though the decision whether to allow our child to date is left to us, we will direct our child that at school they are not to be exclusive or to draw attention to their dating relationships.
Though at this age, some students may experience same-sex attraction, we, the parents, support the school’s belief that it is unwise for children and adolescents to interpret any particular emotional experience as identity-defining because such self-identification can lead to students being labeled based solely upon sexuality, generate distraction, create confusion, and prevent students from experiencing true freedom within the culture of the school. We support the school’s discouragement of students openly discussing matters of their personal sexuality or that of others and agree with the school that teasing, ridicule or mistreatment based upon a student’s sexuality or perceived sexuality are unacceptable and subject to disciplinary action.
We should expect that when challenging issues of sexuality arise for a student, the school will make every effort to handle them with sensitivity, discretion, and care for the student.
Integrity (Proverbs 20:7)
We, the parents, will conduct ourselves with integrity and honor in a manner consistent with the school’s biblical foundation for morality. We will report to the school administration and to the responsible parents any rumors or confirmed cases of student behavior that violate the well being of students, the school’s code of conduct as outlined in the handbook, or its reputation in the community. We will do so out of love and concern for the individual student and for the well being of the school community.
Encouraging Words (Ephesians 4:29)
We, the parents, are committed to the pursuit of wholesome speech as outlined in Ephesians 4:29, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” We will hold other members of the school community to this standard.
When conflicts arise we will believe the best about each other and will speak directly with the party involved in the conflict to resolve it and to nurture our partnership. (Matthew 18:15-17) We will not resort to gossip or to spreading feelings of discontent to other members of our community. The administration exists to help resolve conflicts productively when initial efforts prove unproductive, and we will ask for assistance when necessary.
The Free and Disciplined Exchange of Ideas (James 1:19; Colossians 4:6)
We, the parents, are committed with the employees of Capstone Classical Academy to promoting, modeling, and cultivating within the school community and within our family a free and disciplined exchange of ideas. We can expect faculty to model the art of this kind of dialogue with their students. We support the school’s desire for students to discuss the ideas they encounter in their courses without a spirit of faction or partisanship and expect teachers will model this ideal. We are also committed with Capstone to students giving a good account of their own perspectives, asking good questions of each other and of their teachers, and engaging in rational discourse together about challenging topics.
Mutual Respect (Romans 12:10; Philippians 2:1-11)
We, the parents, expect the school to respect our sovereign role and good intentions as the primary educators of our child, and we will respect the committed Christian educators who serve our children. We expect that the faculty and administration will treat us as allies, not as adversaries, even when they disagree with us, just as we will do for them.
The Joy of Learning (Matt. 22:37)
We, the parents, will teach and model the joyful pursuit of learning for its own inherent good. We respect that the school will teach our child to love God with his or her mind and that the goal of education is to know God and his creation so that we can serve and glorify him in service to others. We will teach our child that there is intrinsic reason and incentive for hard work and learning. We will nurture in them the joy of using their mind, time, and energy to acquire knowledge and wisdom because they are desirable and empowering for service to God, not for A’s and accolades. We can expect the faculty of Capstone will model learning as a lifelong joyful pursuit and a way of being rather than a hoop to jump through.
The Celebration of Discipline (Hebrews 12:11)
We, the parents, believe that discipline is a blessing for our children so that they may live good lives, learning to use their freedom for the good of their own soul and their community. We will support the faculty and administration when they discipline our child, just as we expect teachers and administrators to honor and support the discipline and expectations that we have for our child. We support the notion that our child is free and responsible for his or her own choices and that they should be treated in a way that respects their fundamental freedom. (For more information, see the Student Handbook.)
The Gift of Freedom, Responsibility, and Work (Proverbs 4:1-23)
We, the parents, support Capstone’s conviction that our child is the agent of their own learning and expect they will be treated as free and responsible for their own choices within the school community. Still, the pursuit of wisdom is a joint venture between our child and us. Like all worthy pursuits, it requires work. We believe it is a responsibility, a joy, and a blessing to engage in work with our child. We understand that learning will at times extend beyond the classroom and is intended to be enjoyed as quality time for us with our child. We welcome this opportunity to enjoy the gift of work and the pursuit of wisdom with our child, and we expect that the faculty will also respect our need for time with our child apart from schoolwork and will provide helpful feedback to the school when a proper balance is not being achieved.
The Call to Honor (Philippians 2:15)
We will teach our child to live by the school honor code:
I will conduct myself in a manner that honors the mission of our school:
- I will respect my parents, teachers, and other adults within our community.
- I will treat my classmates as I wish to be treated.
- I will be honest and hardworking.
- I will report to a parent, teacher, or the headmaster any behavior that threatens the safety and integrity of our school community.
We are excited to enter into this covenant with Capstone Classical Academy, believing that the success of our partnership will be premised upon our mutual commitment to it.