Code of Conduct & Aesthetic Vision
Code Of Conduct
The Classical School of Wichita strives to guide students towards excellence in Christian character as well as academic achievement. We understand that this is a maturing process, and these guidelines provide a framework from which each parent, teacher and student may assess growth. The school wants to cooperate with the home to help students form traits such as cheerful obedience, integrity, honesty, responsibility, and respect for the time, dignity and property of others.
This code of conduct guides teachers in their discernment of student conduct that may require discipline. The students are expected to:
1. Obey Promptly.
Hebrews 13:17. “Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with grief, for this would be unprofitable for you.” It is expected that students will obey immediately. Students should have a respectful attitude, making eye contact with the person giving directions.
2. Obey Completely.
Deuteronomy 4:2. “Do not add to what I command you and do not subtract from it, but keep the commands of the Lord that I give you.” It is expected that students will neither obey “half-way” nor re-interpret a command given by the teacher, who has authority and is intended to be a biblical role model.
3. Obey Cheerfully.
Philippians 2:14-15. “Do everything without complaining or arguing so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation in which you shine like stars in the universe….” It is expected that students will obey with a thankful attitude. Grumbling, grimacing, sighing, and other complaining is not acceptable.
4. Exercise Diligence in Work.
Colossians 3:23. “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.” It is expected that students will be hard workers. Their work should give evidence of neatness, precision, and effort. They should be focused on, attend to and engaged in the task. Assignments should be completed and submitted in a timely way.
5. Display Consideration, Kindness and Compassion.
Ephesians 4:29, 32. “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… Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ has forgiven you.” It is expected that students will treat others with kindness in action and in speech. Harsh words and harmful behavior are not acceptable.
6. Speak With Honesty and Edification.
Ephesians 4:25. “Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body.” It is expected that students will speak honestly, without rationalization and excuse. Gossip and slander are not edifying. In the event of relational offense, students will be encouraged to speak directly with the person with whom they have a concern and to model the biblical principle in Matthew 18:15-17.
7. Exercise Self-Control.
Proverbs 25: 28. “Whoever has no rule over his own spirit is like a city broken down, without walls.” It is expected that students will control their tongues and actions. Students will be encouraged to speak at appropriate times and to control themselves.
8. Display Order.
I Corinthians 14:40. “Everything should be done in a fitting and orderly way.” It is expected that students will take an active part in maintaining their personal belongings and the school’s property and appearance, and uphold the dress code.
The apostle Paul instructs us to set our minds on that which is true, noble, just, pure, lovely; we are to meditate on those things that are of good report, virtuous, or praiseworthy. As a classical and Christian school, we have particular duties in this regard; we have been entrusted by our school parents with the responsibility to help train and discipline the minds of their children. We understand that the loveliness and nobility enjoined by the apostle involve more than just “spiritual” truths, and that our duty as a school includes the discipline of aesthetic education.
We therefore affirm that within the triune God reside all ultimate loveliness and beauty. As His creatures we are to serve and worship Him in all that we do in the beauty of holiness. He has created us in His own image, and requires us to strive to imitate Him in all that we do, and this includes the duty of understanding our responsibilities to appreciate and create objects of loveliness.
In the education we provide, we therefore deny all forms of aesthetic relativism. At the same time, we affirm our limitations as creatures. This means that in any work of art containing true beauty, only God knows exhaustively all that is beautiful about the work, while we see the beauty only partially. Because different human observers see different “partialities,” this creates an illusion of subjectivity. Because our vision of the beautiful must necessarily be partial, we seek to instruct our students to make all aesthetic judgments in humility. At the same time, we want to train them on their responsibility to make grounded and informed aesthetic judgments, rejecting all forms of principled ugliness or aesthetic nihilism.
We seek to teach the importance of aesthetic standards in all activities associated with the school, striving for that form of excellence suitable to each activity. This obviously dictates a strong emphasis throughout our curriculum on the fine arts — music, painting, sculpture, drama, poetry — with the attendant responsibilities of the students including study, meditation, and memorization. But our emphasis on aesthetics also extends to more mundane matters — the cleanliness and decoration of classrooms, student dress, athletic competition, handwriting, etc. In all this, we aim to teach our students the reasons for what we require, and not just impose the bare requirement. We deny that beauty and goodness can be separated, and that those things in the culture that are ungodly cease being beautiful or have only apparent beauty.
The standards we use in determining what we consider to be aesthetically valuable include conformity to the standards of Scripture, historical durability and the approval of many minds over generations, a balance of complexity and simplicity, also dignity, metaphorical strength, harmony, subtlety, and the power to evoke love of truth and goodness.