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Family Ministry Philosophy and Core Values Overview


The University-Model® family is an educational community of Christ followers called together into a Kingdom model of education that begins in the home.
We believe God’s design for the education of children begins with parents (or those officially fulfilling parental roles) as the primary disciplers of their own children (Deuteronomy 6:4-7). It follows that we also believe a child’s complete education transcends academics, with spiritual formation in Christ as the main mission (including meaningful involvement in local church community) and academic excellence as a critical component in the accomplishment of that mission. School, church, and home stand together, therefore, as vital partners in the urgent priority of making disciples and not merely graduates. 

Knowing that disciples cannot be made apart from Christ (John 15:5), the family ministry vision and mission is framed and supported by the promise of His presence with us and His power at work within us (Matthew 28:18-20). To that end, we pursue healthy, Christ-honoring relationships in all areas with a focus on spiritual formation (John 13:35).  

Purpose Statement:

To strengthen University-Model® families by partnering effectively with them, uniting with them around the school’s shared core values, and equipping parents in their efforts to establish homes that powerfully support mental, emotional and spiritual growth. 


Family Ministry Core Values:

This list of eight values is not intended to be exhaustive.  Rather it defines the key ideals inherent in a school and home that form a growth and faith-oriented culture. Foundational to such a culture is the fullness of God’s grace and truth. 
  1. We place our trust and hope in Jesus Christ, who is the anchor of our souls. 
  2. We desire to love God and allow His love to flow through us to others. 
  3. We purpose to live virtuous lives, with our strength coming from Christ, and we purpose to guide our children to do the same.  
  4. We focus on practices that reach and influence the hearts of our children rather than settling for behavior management approaches that focus merely on external actions.
  5. We believe that parents should be the primary influence for their children and embrace our parental authority in loving ways.  To that end, we discipline our children with an approach that is redemptive, and not punitive in nature. 
  6. We view growth as a daily decision and complacency as never becoming an option. 
  7. We foster and model a grateful, forgiving culture. 
  8. We purpose to develop hearts and minds at rest amidst a culture full of distractions. 

Effective Family Ministry Strategies:

The vision of the University-Model® is to strengthen Christian families and values. While the practical complexities of running a school week after week can distract attention and divert energies, the truth remains that the very success of this model of education rests on the health of families and their vital connectedness with the school community.

Following are effective family ministry strategies that serve to further the University-Model® vision by strengthening the parent community: 
  1. Make family ministries a top visionary and practical priority. 
  2. Identify and authorize an employee who champions family ministries and is trained in carrying out the UM stated family ministry purpose and objectives. 
  3. Encourage a school-wide mentoring culture. 
  4. Address the needs of UM parents at all the various phases. 
  5. Identify specific means and events through which to connect with, listen to, and/or influence parents.
  6. Establish effective parent training for each school year.     
  7. Manage and respond to school crises.
  8. Build traditions and volunteer programs that connect parents to meaningful ways of serving within the school community. 
Contact Us:
Christi Wilson
Family Ministries Director
Ellen Schuknecht
Family Ministries

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