Society for Parent-Controlled Christian Schools in Scotland

John Murray

The following is the statement of purpose and principles from the society’s constitution. The society established a Christian school at Dornoch about 1975. See John Murray, “Christian Education,” in Collected Writings, 1:367-74, and Iain H. Murray’s “Life of John Murray,” in John Murray, Collected Writings, 3:149. “Faced once with the question, ‘How do you account for the spiritual decline in Scotland?’ he commenced his answer with the words, ‘The surrender of the young by parents to the State. This had not been so in former years.’ “

The purpose of the Society is to establish and maintain Christian Schools, both primary and secondary, and to engage in such other educational activities as shall promote and support this project. In defining the purpose it is necessary to set forth the following principles.

1. Day-school education is the responsibility of the parents. This principle is particularly applicable to Christian parents and it is a violation of the responsibility for nurture devolving upon them to commit their children to the tutelage of an organization over which they do not exercise control. Though church-controlled schools may supply and often have supplied the nurture Christian parents should insure for their children, yet day-school education is not the province of the church.

2. The Christian school is one in which all of the instruction is conditioned by and integrated with the world and life view given in the Christian revelation deposited in the Scripture of the Old and New Testaments. As no sphere of neutrality is allowed by the Christian faith, so no department of the day-school curriculum can be neutral in respect of its religious orientation.

3. The Bible as the inerrant Word of God is the supreme norm for all Christian faith and life and therefore for the educational enterprise.

4. Subordinate to the Bible as the Word of God the Society accepts the Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms as setting forth the system of truth taught in Holy Scripture and that the educational undertaking must accord with the specifically Reformed position formulated in these documents.

5. The educational goal is to prepare youth for the fulfillment of the calling of God. This goal unifies the educational process and, when consistently applied, insures that the pupils are confronted with the claims of God upon them in every area of life. Since sin has made us incapable of fulfilling the demands of the calling of God, it is the privilege of the Christian School to inculcate the provisions of redemptive, regenerating and sanctifying grace in Christ Jesus and it thus seeks to train young people in that dedication by which every thought is brought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. The Society aims to maintain the highest standards of academic competence in the promotion of this goal.

6. As the obligation for day-school education rests upon parents, so the control of the Christian school resides in the hands of Christian parents. Other members of the Christian community, however, may and should unite with them in the promotion and support of the enterprise. Parents and others above the age of eighteen who are in agreement with the purpose and principles stated above are eligible for membership in the Society.

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