Highlands Blog: The Value of a Christian School – Why It Matters
By Mrs. Brittany Brown
Highlands ’05 Grad & Admissions Director
Once in high school, I looked at my mother’s pay stub. An elementary teacher for over twenty years, she had always chosen to teach at and send her children to Christian schools. On this particular day, armed with an unrealistic understanding of money, I exclaimed that her paycheck was substantial! She laughed and said one day I would realize it wasn’t as much as it seemed, but it didn’t matter because we were all able to be in a Christian school—and that made it worth it.
When I stepped into the role of Highlands Admissions Director in 2017, I began to see Christian education in a different light than I had as a student. I’ve always known it was a blessing to attend HCA; I did not understand, however, that it was a privilege. Over the past two and a half years, I have met many families who desire nothing more than to have their children at Highlands. I have heard countless stories from parents who wished they had grown up in a Christian school and wanted to provide their children with the safe haven they did not experience. Some sacrifice more than I will ever know for their children to walk our hallways, and there are some who, despite their best efforts and heartbreak, are unable to afford private school tuition.
Last week I had the honor of giving a campus tour to a family from Shanghai, China. They flew in for a few days to determine where to send their son to high school. As we walked into the secondary chapel service, the lights were dimmed and our praise team was on stage. As our talented student musicians began to lead worship, I looked at the parents of this young man. It occurred to me in an instant just how much they are willing to sacrifice for their child to be educated in a Christian environment…how many sleepy mornings around the kitchen table they will miss if he attends here…how many conversations, hugs, athletic games, or concerts they will forego. These parents are willing to send their son across the globe so he can safely learn about Christ, regardless of how much it breaks their hearts as he leaves home younger than most.
I have to be honest with you. I am so convicted about the times I have forgotten the blessing of living in a country where I can freely teach my children about Jesus and send them to a Christian school. I am humbled to work in a position which allows me to meet these families who can clearly see what I oftentimes overlook. I am sure many of you reading this already appreciate the benefits of being involved in this school ministry. I know each of you has sacrificed in some way to be part of the Highlands family—because you know how important it is for young people to know and grow in Christ. I also think, however, that when we find ourselves in the midst of a blessing for a long period of time, we run the risk of becoming desensitized to just how fortunate we are. It’s during these times we can allow situations, people, or inconveniences to blind us to our privileges.
I am rejuvenated by the reminder the Lord sent me through this international family. I am thankful for the sacrifices my mom made to send me to Highlands many years ago. I pray that one day my daughters will look back and say the same. And I pray that every day between now and then, I will remember how privileged I am to serve Christ on our campus, how blessed I am to openly worship Him in our school and community, and how fortunate I am to call each of you brothers and sisters in Christ.