Date of Award

4-1-2008

Degree Type

Dissertation

University or Center

Interdenominational Theology Center (ITC)

Degree Name

D.Min.

Abstract

This study expanded the concept of church-sponsored schools by including charter schools in the definition of church-sponsored schools. Some denominations embraced the idea of local congregations supporting and sponsoring church schools while others had not. scripture and theologians supported and give value to churches providing appropriate learning environments and educational experiences for children who were members of churches as well as children who were not members. Though history prior to the institution of democracy in America indicated joint church-state support of schools for children, the secular mindset of America increasingly separated church and state in public education. This study suggested a new meeting place for the church to join the state in sponsoring schools for children. The new meeting place was charter schools. The argument was presented that Christian churches had a responsibility to educate children through sponsoring church schools. Given the secular mindset of American society, Christian churches had an even greater challenge to establish proper learning environments for children. Middle to high-income Christian families had a greater ability to provide church schools for their children. This study examined how the Christian church, particularly in the inner-city, could provide schools for children from low-income families who traditionally were not served by church-sponsored schools. Focus was given to examining a congregation that was part of a denomination that traditionally had given little support to church-sponsored schools.

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