I spoke last night to the parents, grandparents and community supporters of Trinity Classical Academy in Santa Clarita California.
I had done so before –five years earlier, when the school was just opening its junior high. Now its classes have reached the 10th grade and it is two years away from sending off its first college enrollees. By any standard Trinity is an extraordinary success, and their students are excelling on all the standard measures.
A few weeks before that I judged the final round of the Concordia Challenge of the homeschool debate federation STOA in which hundreds of high school students competed in a wide range of the standard speech and debate disciplines.
There has been an enormous amount of focus on all that is wrong with education in America and how to fix it, and great books like Jay Mathews’ Work Hard, Be Nice bring much needed attention to innovative solutions like KIPP.
It would be a great thing if MSM or an author like Mathews surveyed the revolution on the private side of the primary and secondary education world, where innovation and a commitment to rigor and traditional learning is producing a rising tide of very well prepared students. There may be a suspicion of these schools and of course of home schooling within MSM because of the obvious faith commitments of parents, teachers and staff, but there is a huge largely uncovered story out there about the slow but steady turn away from public education by parents willing to sacrifice even in a recession to assure their kids a quality, value-rich education.