SIGNAL MOUNTAIN CHRISTIAN CO-OP offers a unique alternative, providing an education that focuses on meeting the needs of the whole middle school student. We believe parents are the primary educators, and we strive to come alongside them in cultivating lifelong learners. Our teachers seek to glorify God and share the knowledge of His saving grace through excellent curriculum taught from a Biblical worldview.
Our school meets on the lovely campus of Wayside Presbyterian Church, located atop beautiful Signal Mountain. Classes offered for grades sixth through eighth include Bible, history, Latin, science, language arts/writing, and mathematics. Classes meet Monday through Thursday from 8:45 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Our block schedule offers families the flexibility of full-time (4 days) or part-time (2 days) enrollment.
We believe in the primacy of the parent as an educator and the home as the center of education and relationship. We also believe the Lord provides spiritually gifted teachers as a resource to His people. SMCC collaborates with parents to create an educational hybrid between a traditional Christian school and a Christian homeschool. Our classes and other activities are designed to supplement and complement the work of parents in educating their children.
The following principles summarize our philosophy of partnership and how it is implemented in our school operation:
Biblical truth is the foundation for all aspects of our SMCC. God’s truth is integrated into a balanced curriculum which encourages students to learn Christianity as a way of life.
EXTENSION OF THE HOME
God has given parents the primary responsibility for educating their children and, therefore, SMCC functions as an extension of the home.
The development of Christian character which leads to wisdom takes priority over the accumulation of knowledge and is our primary emphasis. Therefore, we take a holistic and somewhat classical approach to education. This in no way diminishes the SMCC’s commitment to excellence in the academic disciplines.
SMALL CLASS SIZE
SMCC functions as an extension of the home and because of the definite educational benefits of our small enrollment and abbreviated class schedule, the maximum number of students generally allowed in the co-op is 14.
We believe that children need to spend more of their time at home under the influence and direction of their parents. There are several reasons for this:
More time can be spent with parents to allow students to more fully internalize their family’s values.
We believe this family-oriented portion of a child’s education is just as important as the formal education provided by the co-op or any other schooling.
More time can be spent outdoors, learning from God’s beauty.
There are more opportunities to learn by doing, experimenting, and observing.
Working with parents in cooking, cleaning, gardening, traveling, studying art, music, and natural phenomena are important learning venues.
Because the ultimate goal of the SMCC’s existence is to teach students to glorify God and enjoy Him forever, the educational process should be positive and fun for the students. We use curriculum and methods that engage the students’ curiosity and touch their emotions, leading toward a lifelong desire to learn more about God and His world. Our curriculum includes Bible teaching that is consistent with our Doctrinal Statement.
Students will be regularly assessed for performance and competency. For the first and third quarters, parents will receive narrative reports covering academic, spiritual, character and social development. Proper use of letter/numerical grading may act as a motivation and standard of objective assessment of student progress. However, we recognize the inability of grades to fully evaluate the growth and development of children created in the image of God.
Educational field trips are carefully planned to coordinate with and enhance our curriculum, especially in the areas of history, language arts, science, and Bible. Of particular interest are our annual family field trips over a 4-day extended weekend or our Spring Break trip during the year we study American History.