Nationally Recognized College-Preparatory Christian Education
At First Presbyterian Day School, our goal is to provide a strong college-preparatory education that reflects a Christian world-and-life view in the Reformed tradition. Reformed Christian Education has a rich tradition that is founded in the ideals of the Reformation and has impacted even the early American public schools. College-preparatory education has changed rapidly over the past 100 years as the challenges facing society, business, and industry have grown (especially in respect to mathematics, science, and technology) and the nature of post-secondary education has changed. We work hard to see that our program reflects these time-honored ideals and changing societal needs in a seamless and coherent way in order to fulfill our purpose to educate and equip students to change the world for God’s glory.
- Elementary program named a national Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education in 2003 and 2015.
- Upper School cited as an exemplary Christian secondary school in the national study Learning from the Best, published jointly by CSI and ACSI.
- Middle School program named a national Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education in 2012.
FPD is accredited by both AdvancED and the Southern Association of Independent Schools (SAIS), and is certified by the Council for Educational Standards and Accountability (CESA). The elementary school (2003, 2015) and middle school (2012) have been named National Blue Ribbon Schools by the U.S. Department of Education. AdvancED is a consortium of regional agencies, including the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), recognized by the US Department of Education for accrediting institutions of elementary, secondary, and higher education. Regionally accredited schools must meet a set of rigorous standards that address curriculum and instruction, personnel, facilities, finances, and governance. SAIS oversees accreditation of independent schools and CESA certifies strong college-preparatory Christian schools that meet standards going beyond regional accreditation.
Faculty at accredited schools must be well-qualified and involved in ongoing professional learning. The school must maintain a program that is consistent with its beliefs and mission as a school and must be committed to a process of continual research-based improvement that focuses on student achievement. Student academic credits earned at one regionally accredited institution are automatically accepted at any other. Accredited schools verify compliance with standards annually and host a peer review team every five years that validates the school’s compliance and the progress the school has made in school improvement. FPD’s last peer review visit occurred in 2013 and we will host our next team in 2018.
What are Reformation Ideals?
The Reformers were concerned that people be able to read the Scripture themselves and then teach others. They also promoted a broad education including the Liberal Arts, history, languages, the arts, and a trade that would in turn create competent citizens who would impact society and culture. We honor these ideals by providing a comprehensive curriculum and extra-curricular program. We expect all students to
- have a strong knowledge of Scripture,
- to be able to reason from and be informed by history,
- use mathematical and scientific modes of thinking,
- express themselves well and analyze others’ expression (both classical and contemporary),
- appreciate the arts
- live a healthy lifestyle, and
- understand and participate redemptively in society.
What is College Preparatory Education?
We assume our students are preparing for a four-year college experience. Our students have the opportunity through honors and Advanced Placement courses to meet the expectations of any university in the country. Current college expectations that inform our curricular decisions include
- the importance of strong written expression and reading comprehension,
- the fact that more fields require more mathematics and science,
- the assumption of technological proficiency, and
- the expectation that students make significant commitment to activities outside of the classroom including service to the community.