Barry Pickering joins us to talk about Faith Academy’s upcoming open house. That’s coming up on January 20th from noon to 4 pm. Here’s a look at our conversation:
Chad: Tell us about Faith Academy itself, what is its mission in Christian education?
Barry: Faith Academy is a ministry that serves 1,670 students here in Mobile. We are a non-denominational Christian school that has served students in Mobile for the past 50 years. It is the mission of Faith Academy to offer a quality Christian education in a safe, clean and orderly environment while assisting and encouraging our students to realize who they are in Christ.
Chad: What is the value of a Christian education?
Barry: Christian education is deeply rooted in the history of America. Christian schools today carry on the tradition that has been part of this nation since it’s beginning. We provide quality education that enables students to be successful at the next level, while instilling values in their lives that will help them to become responsible citizens. We train our students to be more than just scholars, we want them to learn to serve their fellow man. At Faith Academy, students have a Bible class every day from kindergarten through the 12th grade. We also give our students the opportunity to worship and lead in worship through our chapel services.
Chad: How is faith woven into the curriculum?
Barry: Curriculum is more than a textbook. The curriculum is integrated into every aspect of our school. We teach our students to approach life with a Biblical worldview. All teachers at Faith Academy are born again believers in Christ, and no matter the subject that we teach we emphasize that the hand of the Creator is evident in all things. As I said earlier, we want the students to learn to serve others. Service is a skill that is learned, so we try to give our kids as many opportunities as possible to get their eyes off of themselves and focus on others. From Angle tree projects to Hope for Honduras, food drives, ministering in the community through the Faith Club clean up projects, we have many opportunities for our student body to be a blessing to others. Faith Academy has a school in Ghana West Africa that has been educating around 300 students there for the last 5 years of so. We give some of our upperclassmen the chance to go to countries like Ghana and Honduras to put he hands of Christ to work around the world. Our goal at Faith is to fulfill the Great Commission in Matthew 28, and many of our students and alumni do this every year by going to all the world.
Chad: What do you think children with a faith-based education gain compared to more secular public schools?
Barry: It has never been the goal of Faith Academy to be in competition with any other school. We were founded on the premise that we wanted to have a school that could where students could learn the principles that are taught in God’s Word while getting the best education that we could offer. Faith has some of the finest teachers that I have ever seen. The faculty views their employment as more than a job; they see what they do every day as a ministry opportunity. Faith has so many things that kids can be involved in; we have an outstanding music program which includes an award-winning band and choir, our athletic teams have had great success over the years, RamTech robotics has become a very popular program that has seen great success over the last few years (they actually just won the region championship for robotics at Auburn) and there are so many other programs that students can be involved in. All of the programs that we offer are awesome opportunities for kids to find their niche, but the most important thing we provide is an academic success. Students leave Faith Academy prepared to go to the next level. Our students go to some of the finest universities in the country.
Chad: The open house is coming up, tell us about that.
Barry: Open house is a chance for prospective families and the community to come and tour the school. This year our open house will be on Sunday, January 20 from 12:00 to 4:00. We also have many that drop in and tour or make an appointment and come to tour the school. You are welcome any time to come and visit us to see what God is doing at Faith.