The number of children hearing the gospel in Christian schools has declined all over America. This decline has led to the closing of many Christian schools, in many cases because of the increasing cost of running a school. This has led to a significant reduction in ministry to children that attend Christian schools, and in many cases, to the communities that surround these schools.
A changing environment in the delivery of education in America has created an opportunity to utilize public dollars provided for education to create financially viable “Choice” schools. In Wisconsin the School Choice program allows for religion to be taught as a part of the curriculum on a daily basis.
The opportunity then is to create new, financially viable, Christian schools that work together with our local congregations. The vision is for hundreds of children to hear about their Savior on a daily basis while receiving a high quality education. The vision grows larger as church folks interact with children and their families through the schools, building bridges to all kinds of people for the gospel of Jesus.
A little more than three years ago we saw the potential to bring more hope to Milwaukee neighborhoods where churches had vacant school space. We approached several churches to see if they would support filling their space with a Christian school that would give parents a choice they otherwise would not have. The congregations at Fairview Lutheran Church and Abiding Word Lutheran Church saw the potential.
Shining Star Christian School opened its doors at both locations in the fall of 2014, and in three years has grown to serve 220 students in grades K4-6. We receive state aid payments through the School Choice program, a portion of which goes back to the congregations in the form of rent payments for the space. We have also been recommended for accreditation by the Wisconsin Religious and Independent Schools Accreditation. Our goal has been to provide a high quality education, and form partnerships with these congregations who want to reach out to the community with the gospel Christ has given us.
Our mission at Shining Star Christian Schools is to ignite students’ love for learning and their Savior, and lead them to shine at school, home, in the world, and for all eternity.