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April/May 2005

North Cobb Christian School
Helping Each Child Reach Full Potential
by Linda Couch

Popular culture bombards young people with messages, concepts and behaviors that frequently conflict with the values parents are trying to instill. Concerned families investigating an independent religious education are often looking for a consistent philosophy between home and school to prepare their children for life. Parents at North Cobb Christian School (NCCS) have found a place that provides reinforcement of the values they teach at home, a place where enrollment is seen as a partnership between the home, church and school.

In 1983 four families desiring a nondenominational Christian alternative to public education founded NCCS with the intent of sound academics along with the deeper dimension of promoting faith and moral character. "It is comforting to know that the values being taught are in line with and support the principles we are teaching at home," say parents Dwight and Lisa Hicks. "The joy and assurance of knowing Christ is a priority in so many of the staff, teachers, and faculty makes sending our children to NCCS a blessing." While students consistently score 15-26 percentile points above other schools in the state and across the country on standardized tests, balanced emphasis on academics, fine arts, athletics, and Biblical principles enables parents to feel confident that NCCS addresses the whole child.

On the other hand, private institutions can combine elementary and secondary grades. This is the case for Mount Paran Christian School a private K-12 grade school in Kennesaw, with a student population of 950. "If we compare ourselves with other Christian schools, we are a fairly large school. If we compare ourselves with public schools in general, we are small. Now, if we compare ourselves with public high schools, we are very small," says David Tilley, the school's headmaster.

The m ain campus building, completed in 1998, includes a media center, science and computer labs, a gymnasium, several art and music rooms and 60 classrooms. Students go about their activities in small classes of 18-23 students led by faculty members who are not only committed to their profession but feel called to it. Many have Masters or Doctorate degrees.

"Here the relationship between student and teacher is a nurturing one. Our students have respect for teachers, and teachers recognize that every child has a different potential. We are very concerned that each child is able to reach that full potential," says Jeri Speck, communications coordinator.

The NCCS philosophy is put in motion in the lower grades with the A Beka Book curriculum developed by Christian scholars. Every grade joins in age-appropriate Bible class and chapel. The accelerated RISE program encourages reaching God-given potential. The North Atlanta School for the Arts, a "school within a school," allows high school students to focus on their talents in the arts. That special NCCS attitude is seen in community service projects, an award-winning drama troupe, as well as championships in both boys' and girls' sports.

"Many families have told us that when they step through the doors they sense a difference here," says Speck. Through everything runs the concept of preparing growing human beings mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually to go into further education and ultimately out into the world with the valuable purpose to use their abilities in lives grounded in the principles of Christian citizenship. "There is a respect for each other's differences," Speck says. "Athletes, artists, and musicians get along well and realize everyone has something different to offer."

The Specifics

Grades: Pre-K through 12

Affiliation: Christian, nondenominational

Students Enrolled: 888

Total Teachers: 76

Annual Tuition: K4, $2,780 - $4,450; K5, $3,960 - $5,480; Grade 1-7, $6,375; Grade 8-12 $7,645

Open House: Tours by appointment Mon.- Fri. year-round

Location: Northwest Cobb County

4500 Lakeview Drive
Kennesaw, GA 30144

Newcomer Magazine - 8382 Roswell Road, Ste. B - Atlanta, GA 30350 - Phone: (770) 992-0273 - Fax: (770) 649-7463