CREATING A CULTURE OF CARE
Reflecting on some of the professional growth I shared with three colleagues(teachers/administrators) in October at a convention with 700 other Christian administrators. There are a couple of key ideas. First of all, being in a church sanctuary worshipping in song with 700 other Christians is a little piece of heaven! Secondly, seeing so many educators excited to learn and return to share with students, families, and staff is inspiring. Yet the most valuable concepts to take away from that powerful learning environment centered around “Campus Culture”.
What is campus culture? It is the level of trust between all the entities of a school community; families, teachers, administrators and support staff, students and community members. It is the “parking lot talk”, it is staff meeting sharing, it is office traffic daily, it is traveling through email, websites, RENWEB, and it is the climate in each classroom. How are students feeling about their school? How are families feeling about their school? How is the staff feeling appreciated or respected? What is the community’s perception of RVCS?
Of course, campus culture will vary according to each person’s perception because God created all of us in his image with unique learning styles, emotional level variations, brain strengths, and physical variations. That is his creative design! In addition to that people have certain biases based on past experiences, life events, family dynamics, and day to day struggles.
Consequently, having a positive campus culture doesn’t guarantee that everyone will be on board with the consensus, or trend. But what are the components that truly create the kind of campus culture where everyone involved feels the love of Jesus, the peace of a Christian school , as well as satisfied with the level of trust in the community?
One dominant theme in teacher training classes, educational seminars and publications, is to create a culture of care. What does that mean in a Christian School? It is a different design because the core of our culture is Jesus Christ, and the handbook for life is the Bible. The Bible gives us a clear map for creating a Christlike culture, and Jesus life and ministry gives us the specific examples. If we take the acronym for CARE- which is the key, we can see the direct Biblical application for creating the culture that reflects Christ in every person. Referring to God’s word, we can practice the keys to developing trust, loyalty, honor and value;
Matthew 7:12- “ So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the law and prophet”
Proverbs 15:1-2- “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. The tongue of the wise adorns knowledge, but the mouth of the fool gushes folly.”
Romans 12:9,10-”Love must be sincere, hate what is evil, cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above ourselves”
Nehemiah 4:6- “ At last the wall was completed to half its height around the entire city, for the people had worked with enthusiasm”
I am so thankful for God’s word, it shows me the vast abundance of his love for us and his desire for our peace. When I evaluate how I contribute to our school culture here at God’s school, I go back to Romans 12:9,10. It speaks of trust, a huge demonstration of a healthy culture. Our love for each other (students, staff, families, communities) must be sincere. We have to authentically be devoted to one another in love, we need to purposefully honor each other above ourselves. How are we doing here at RVCS? If you have input or something to offer to contribute to a “CARE CULTURE” here at Jesus’ school, let me know! Each voice is important here- respected , honored, and valued. Be blessed as you act on Romans 12:9-10, and as you consciously receive Romans 12:9-10 from others in our school culture.