Monday, September 2, 2013

Ethan attending a new school

This past summer, we made a decision to send Ethan to a new school here in Wichita called, The Classical School of Wichita.  In a sense this decision came really fast and out of nowhere but as we prayed about it and made the decision, we realized God was answering a prayer that was several years in the making.

Ethan has loved learning Spanish and attending Horace Mann. We have absolutely loved the school and the faculty. Ethan loves the Latin culture. The school goes through 8th grade, so we didn't have any plans to change schools.  But that changed in a matter of one week in June.

This past year, I've felt like the Lord has impressed on me that this is a critical time in his life and development.  Since our Peru trip a year ago, we've seen his heart grow for missions and serving God.  He has a tender heart for the Lord and often talks about Heaven and eternity. But also he has really struggled with anger and it just seems like there is a real battle for his allegiance right now.

So Angie and I wanted to expose our kids to other kids who are passionate for God. We sent them to a Signs and Wonder camp at IHOP in KC.  This camp changed both of their lives. They were exposed to God in deep levels. They both learned to love to worship God and experience His Presence in new ways. When I talked to Ethan following the camp, I thought, "What has happened to my son?!"  He couldn't stop talking about the Holy Spirit.  It was obvious he was touched by God.

When we got home and shared with our good friend, Lisa Entz, she mentioned that we might need to home-school him.  That wouldn't work for Angie and I but it got us thinking that now might be the time to switch to a Christian school.

Ethan has met a couple of good friends at Horace Mann, but as a whole he hasn't made many Christian friends.  He has been picked on a lot at recess.  I talked to one friend who taught in public school for a few years in 5th grade. She said 5th grade is the year where a lot changed for the boys. She was so surprised with what the kids knew and talked about.

Suddenly we realized, we needed to steward what God was doing in his life and that the public school environment wouldn't be the best for him.

We researched schools and learned more about the Classical School. We were so impressed by the education and faculty and the families that attended. We sensed God was leading us there so we enrolled Ethan and now he is attending there.   He is very excited to be learning Latin.  He has already met some good new friends, and we have loved the new community there.

It was interesting though after the first couple of days. He said that he misses speaking Spanish and misses the Latin culture. He has sure learned to appreciate many cultures.  But he will still get many experiences of culture through playing tackle football and our work as missionaries.

The issue of public school vs Christian schools and home-schooling is one that has caused a lot debate. We have always been in favor of public schools and want to support public education.  But in our current situation as missionaries and the lack of Christian friends Ethan has, we felt that at this time, this decision was right for us.


  1. Encouraging to hear how you are listening to God for your kids, we think of you guys all the time with how you are living in our city as missionaries with kids, we know few others ahead of us in this lifestyle of following Jesus. We'd like to get together soon to connect with you more. Love, Ashley

  2. Matt,
    As a public school employee, I definitely appreciate your perspective on this issue. Amie and I have had similar discussions on what is best for our children. She grew up in a Christian school and I in a public school. I think it is safe to say that God was a significant part of both of our lives throughout our education. I'm glad to hear you are doing what is best for Ethan and have the wisdom to see things clearly rather than with an agenda. I know Ethan will benefit from his education at the Classical School and I wish him all the best!

  3. thanks Ashley. totally. we would love to catch up with you all. just let us know what works for you all. our schedule is a little crazy right now with Ethan's football but we still have some free nights. or (lunches during the week day without kids). thanks Jeff for your thoughts. yea, what you say is totally true. I think a few things have changed even more in public school in 25 years since we were there. the other thing I didn't mention was the state assessment testing and the emphasis on that. that was another factor as well. but we had to weigh a lot of different things. that's again for your encouragement. hope you are doing well.