I am pleased to announce that Mr. Ben Zickafoose has accepted the offer to serve as Chief Operating Officer (COO) of CSW. He will officially step into the role full-time this July.
A seasoned leader, Ben brings a wealth of experience to the position that will help our school continue to grow and thrive as we seek to serve our students and families to the glory of Christ. While being highly qualified in operational aptitude and experience, he is best-known for his humility, sincerity, and joy!
For the past seven years Ben has served as the President & CEO of Carpenter Place, a faith-based non-profit children’s home located here in Wichita. During his time at Carpenter Place, he provided operational oversight of the residential and academic programming, budgeting, business development, capital projects, donor relations, facility management, and strategic planning.
Ben and his wife Kendra have been married for 18 years and have four children who attend CSW: Emma (11th grade), Kate (9th grade), Jack (5th grade), and Luke (1st grade). He has served as an assistant varsity boys basketball coach at CSW for the past three years, which has given the CSW administration and families the opportunity to see his passion and humility on display in real time. Prior to coming to Wichita, he served as the Principal of Village Christian School in Pleasant Plain, Ohio for four years, after serving two years as that school’s Athletic Director and PE teacher. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Sports Management and a Master of Science in Athletic Administration and Coaching, both from Ohio University-Athens.
Ben’s appointment is part of a strategic restructuring of our administration that will allow me to focus on the academic program, serving our teachers, and supporting our students as the COO assumes CSW’s daily operations. This new structure reflects the exciting growth of our school and our desire to serve the needs of our students and families well.
As you have opportunity, please congratulate Ben and pray for him and his family as he transitions into this role. We offer praise and thanksgiving to the Lord for His continued provision for our school and community.
Peace of Christ,
Joshua B. Dyson
CSW senior Shelby Green has been named a Commended Student in the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program. Commended Students placed among the top 50,000 scorers of more than 1.5 million students who entered the 2021 competition by taking the 2019 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test.
We are proud to announce that CSW is ranked 4th in the nation for student Classic Learning Test (CLT/CLT 10) test scores recorded during the 2019-2020 school year. Way to go, Saints!
Since 2016, thousands of students from more than 1,200 schools have take CLT assessments on grammar, literary comprehension, and mathematical and logical reasoning. The CLT is a college entrance exam, and the CLT10 is a preparatory assessment for 9th- and 10th-grade students.
Click here for the full report.
We are excited to announce that CSW ranked in the top 25 schools in the nation for the Classic Learning Test (CLT). Our student scores ranked 8th in the nation!
The Classic Learning Test is a college entrance assessment of grammar, literary comprehension, and mathematical and logical reasoning. It is designed for high school juniors and seniors.
Click here for the full report.
Speaking of the incarnation of God in Christ, John of Damascus (676-749 AD) said, “God rescues man, like by like—most difficult though it seemed—and His wisdom is seen in His devising the most fitting solution of the difficulty. For by the good pleasure of our God and Father, the only-begotten Son and Word of God and God… bent the heavens and descended to earth… What greater thing is there than that God should become man?”
The Incarnation: What an unexpected turn in the story of Redemption! Yet the rumblings of this mystery are present throughout the Old Testament: Abraham bows down before Melchizedek, Joshua before the Angel of the Lord, and we all recall the mysterious “fourth figure” in the fiery furnace! Yet God did not leave Himself without witness outside of Israel. The Greeks dreamed of heroes such as Hercules, bridging the gap between the gods and man. The Mesopotamians conceived of the bridging of natures in the Epic of Gilgamesh. And even Plato longed for the possibility that a Philosopher and a King might be joined in one person. Still, for all their dreaming and longing, they couldn’t foresee the Lord’s ultimate plan of salvation.
Even Joseph might have rejected the incarnation of God if not for the intervention of the angelic dream saying, “She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:21) And just like that, Hope rumbles onto the scene in a near inaudible eruption—miles away from the epicenters of culture and empirical rule—quietly the Mighty One, the Lord, slips into our world unnoticed. Unnoticed by those who don’t have eyes to see and ears to hear. But for us children of God who are able to see—what seems dim and obscured to the world—is wonderfully and disruptively bright! Light! As Paul proclaims, “For God, who said, ‘Light shall shine out of darkness,’ is the One who has shone in our heart to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ!” (2 Corinthians 4:6)
So to answer John of Damascus’ question above: “What greater thing is there than that God should become man?” There is nothing greater! For the incarnation of God in Christ leads to a perfect life… then to a costly death… then to a glorious resurrection… accomplishing for us so great a salvation. All so that we might say with another John, “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!” (1 John 3:1)
We at CSW are blessed to share in this Good News with you and your children each day at CSW and especially in this Christmas season.
Merry Christmas to you and Happy New Year!
Head of School
CSW senior Chris Davis filmed and edited a video about CSW from the student perspective. Click here to watch the video and see why Chris and other students here call CSW “home.”
“Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord.” ~ Isaiah 1:18a
In your experience, do things in life seem to be reasonable and able to be thought through? Although this is a broad question, it can be seen that God has given logic and reasoning to his people as a key to helping us discover truth and understand the world we live in.
At Classical School of Wichita, we teach our students about veritas, bonitas and decorum, which is Latin for truth, beauty and goodness. However, we do not teach our students to think about these three things as subjective, based on personal feelings or opinions, rather, we teach them that these three things are universal, objective truths.
There is a true beauty.
There is a true goodness.
There is a true truth.
We know these to be objective truths because these three words are attributes of God we can experience partially now and will experience fully in a time to come. Reasoning and logic play a crucial role in the pursuit of true truth at our school.
At Classical, students begin formal logic training in 7th grade. Ask any of our logic students what logic is and they will give you Dr. Jim Nance’s definition, “Logic is the art and science of reasoning well.” Reasoning simply means to draw correct conclusions from information. These two tools, logic and reasoning, are given to us by God as a means to find true statements and to identify false statements, but not only that, logic is also given to us to be winsome in sharing the gospel.
Let me take a minute to say, we are not teaching our students how to be better at arguing about screen time, bed time or, for that matter, to argue with their parents at all. We are teaching students how to argue in a time of their development when they are already argumentative. We want our students to use their minds to argue for truth and not just to “win” or get what they want. This process happens by enculturating our students to be a part of a godly Christian community that promotes objective truth and by teaching them how to rightly order their affections.
If logic truly is the art and science of reasoning well, then we can take statements and creatively and scientifically break them down to find their truth values. The previous statement is not only our starting point for this paragraph but is also what is known as a conditional statement. Basically it is an if/then statement (in the formal study of logic it is represented by p⊃q, which reads if p, then q), and we can find out if it is true or not by looking at the truth value of its component parts. Dr. Nance has explored his definition of logic in blog posts of his own when he breaks down what science and art mean:
“A science is a systematic study of some aspect of the natural world that seeks to discover laws (regularities, principles) by which God governs His creation. An art is a creative application of the principles of nature for the production of works of beauty, skill, and practical use.”
With this as our guide, it can be seen that logic is helping us to find rules as we reason and to apply them as we creatively and persuasively converse and argue. We can convince people of their need for a savior. We can argue for values and ideals based in objective truth. We can, by the power of the Holy Spirit, win souls for Christ and press on toward the goal of making disciples of all nations.
~ Grant Bickell, CSW Logic and Bible Teacher
At Classical School of Wichita, we have an ambitious curriculum that emphasizes reading and assessing the great books that have shaped Western Civilization and thought.
From kindergarten on, our students are encouraged to read—and read a lot. From “Blueberries for Sal” all the way to the works of Socrates and Plato—we believe there is merit to the discipline, knowledge and joy gained from spending real time with books. Unfortunately, in a culture focused on sound bites and what’s next, reading is fast becoming a lost art.
In an opinion piece by Philip Yancey, published by The Washington Post this past summer, Yancey bemoaned his own struggle against the tide of social media and instant, shallow news designed to attract our fleeting attention. It’s a worthy read and stark reminder to us to continue to challenge ourselves and equip our students to break the surface and dig deeper.
Our desire is to create a love for reading, learning and growing in our students with a rigorous, interesting curriculum that connects the dots between subjects in a meaningful way. As a result, CSW students are engaged and thoughtful. If only we all could respond to books—and reading—in kind!
As you reflect on the last year and make your resolutions for 2018, maybe this is the year to consider adding another book (or two or three) to your list!