The Johnson Family
Society has two great questions:
Who will teach the children? and What they teach them? – Plato
Derek and I always assumed our children would attend public school. We both attended public schools and knew we would live a community with a strong school system. That assumption changed in a moment during Derek’s commute to work back in 2008. He was listening to talk radio and heard a quote credited to Plato: “Society has two great questions: Who is going to teach the children? and What will they teach them?” That evening, Derek told me about the quote and said he felt we had to send our children to a Christian school. God spoke to us through the radio that morning and our lives have been forever changed.
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Ten years ago we visited Southeast Christian in our quest to find ‘the perfect school’. From our first step through the door, we knew that Southeast would be our school home; our school family. We signed a contract and made a financial commitment, but more importantly we entered into a covenant with Southeast. A covenant is defined as an agreement which brings about a relationship of commitment between two parties. In choosing a Christian education, we entered into an intimate relationship with the school to grow our children in a Christ centered environment.
In the decade we have spent at SECS, we have witnessed countless changes. In our time, Southeast has faced with trials of the changing economy, charter school growth, shifts in autonomy from SECC, and facility challenges. We have matured to know that there is no such thing as a perfect school. The one constant in our tenure has been the steadfast confidence we have in “who is teaching our children and what they are teaching them”. There is no question that staff and faculty at SECS is committed to growing our children into confident, capable, and compassionate children of God.
As any non-profit business or organization evolves, there are financial demands that must be met. This fall, we had a few meetings with administration and board members to discuss these needs. The needs of the school have always been on our radar and while we have freely given of our time, we have only cautiously given of money. In making financial gifts, we often give what is comfortable, or want to have say or control in how our gifts are used. When we try to maintain control, or only give what is comfortable, we are not really giving and certainly not trusting in God. We had to learn to surrender our gifts to God. Little did we know that through this process of becoming educated and coming to terms with selfish desires, God was independently preparing our hearts to do His will.
In December, Derek shared with me that he was really feeling led to give a substantial gift to Southeast. He warned me that I might be shocked by the number that was in his head. I agreed that my heart was being drawn in the same direction of giving. As we spoke about SECS, he tearfully shared the amount with me and I began to cry because God had placed that same amount on my heart. When God orchestrates and you allow Him to take the baton, it is an indescribable feeling!
Our decision to give to Southeast was less difficult to make than the decision to share our story with you. Not for one moment do we want accolades for following God’s call and, on the flip side, we hesitated to share for fear of judgement by our peers. It is not our nature and far beyond our comfort level to share this publicly, but we feel God is calling us to step outside our comfort zone with more than just our giving. Just as God orchestrated our hearts to independently grow to a place of comfort with giving freely, His desire was to share our walk with you; to stretch us well beyond what is comfortable to grow His kingdom. We pray that each of you reading this will have the opportunity to open your heart to what God desires for you to give to grow His kingdom; your talents, your time, your money. As we all have made a commitment, covenant to the future of our children.
Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it.
Parents: Derek and Meredith Johnson
Children: Bryce, Cole, Libby, Edie
The Rol Family
Growing up, my educational experiences in school were diverse. During those years, I was enrolled in public school, homeschooled, attended a private Christian school, homeschooled again, and finally graduated from a public high school. Having the opportunity to experience each of these options has given me a unique understanding of what each type of education has to offer. Since you are reading this for Southeast Christian School, it is obvious what choice I made for my children. Give me a moment to tell you why.
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I was raised with a father who was not a believer. My mother was a devout follower and lover of the Lord. I do not have a testimonial about how I became Christian or came to faith. I remember praying and feeling God in my spirit from my earliest memories. I have always known He was there. I have always known that He rules over all, and that He died for me. However, I kept that belief tucked in my heart as I walked through the world, not always living a life that reflected that knowing.
I attended public school from kindergarten through third grade. These were not good years for me as I was a child with dyslexia. This was before teachers were ever taught what that was or how to deal with it. Literally, I was told I was stupid and they couldn’t fix that! This was the very good reason for me being homeschooled the first time. My homeschool experience was good. I was homeschooled with my cousins. We joined a homeschool group with many other kids and were able to participate in many activities. Also, we had a large social group. I began to get some of my self confidence back.
Fifth through ninth grade, I attended a private Christian school. The world tells us that believing in God is for people who just need that comfort, that there is no scientific proof that God is real or that He created the universe. Also, they teach there is no evidence that the Bible could be factual or that it was not changed over the years. I learned that many great scientists, theologians, historians, and many brilliant people have a applied logical thinking and found scientific evidence that supports the Bible and God’s creation. Historically, just as we know King Tut was real, we know that Jesus walked on this earth and was crucified. During that time, I had no idea that seeds of truth were being planted firmly in my soul.
I was homeschooled again for 10th and 11th grade. My senior year, I attended, and graduated from a local high school. These years taught me the difference between the quality of education between private and public schools. When I attended private school, I was a solid B student. This was not from a lack of effort. I studied longer and harder than all of my friends. The grades just came harder for me. During my senior year of public high school, I was an A student. The problem was, at that time in my life, I had decided that school was not important. I didn’t study, never opened a book, and skipped class. Unfortunately, I wasn’t miraculously smarter. School was easier. I still remember being completely shocked when I got my first report card from public school. I honestly thought they screwed up!
I now have three children that attend Southeast Christian School. Madison in sixth grade, Brent in fourth grade, and Luke in kindergarten. During the last seven years with this school, I have seen my children grow into kids with an understanding of who our Great Father is. I have also seen many teachers pour confidence and self-esteem into them. That is not saying that my children have not struggled in some areas. However, to see the intentional attention the teachers and staff have poured into them is beyond amazing. With all this said, I truly did not see one of the greatest things about the school until a year ago.
Last December, I was in a horrific car accident. I was in hospitals and rehabilitation centers for around three months. This time was so hard on my family. There was so much fear, emotion, and uncertainty. My children lost their lives as they knew it. Instantly, their child like security was gone. The community of Southeast stepped up and became a large part of the miraculous care and blessings that God was performing in each one of my family members lives. They provided meals to help my husband and kids. This made just a little bit of their day easier. Parents helped with rides for my children. The school has provided much needed financial help for my children which allowed them to continue attending. Teachers, staff, and classmates came around each of my children so specifically with a heart to comfort and serve each of them as individuals. To have a community love your family with such intention is truly amazing and humbling. Now, one year later, this still has not subsided. My two oldest children begged me to sign them up to be baptized this year at Southeast. Dozens of my children’s friends and classmates came with their parents and families to celebrate with my children. To learn what the family of God looks like to one another has been a true phenomenal blessing in my life this year. This school has irrevocably changed my family and who my children will be forever. They changed how they will live and their view of what God‘s family looks like.
The Debel Family
“SECS has been a huge blessing to our family. Raising children in a culture that is counter to so much of what the Bible teaches is true is very challenging, and SECS has provided a safe and loving environment for our kids to be taught all subject areas through the
lens of a Biblical Worldview. They will leave SECS knowing who God is and have a strong Biblical foundation to help guide them as they journey through high school, college, and adult life. We are so appreciative of the support our kids have received through individualized instruction academically along with the discipleship that takes place every day in the classroom. Our kids are away from us for 7 hours each day, and to know they are being loved and poured into by teachers who love Jesus means everything to our family.”
The Savage Family
“We have been at Southeast Christian for 10 + years now and I support this school 100% and will advocate for it as long as it’s around. I say this because it’s very important to me that Christian education will still be around when I have a grandchild. It is a sacrifice at times to send your kids to a private school but it’s the best return on your money you can buy when you see your kids come out thriving, and not only academically but spiritually. Seeing the wisdom and love that was poured into them that allowed them to grow closer to God I will forever be grateful for. I thank everyone at Southeast for walking along side of us as parents and helping us raise them up on God’s truths and encouraging them not only to know God but to have a relationship with Him as well. I believe in this school so much that it was also important for me to do everything possible to not only have my kids attend but to get my nephews to SE as well. I have seen what a difference it made in my daughters lives and with true answer to prayer I can now watch what a difference it is making in my nephews lives as well. God is good! Building a strong foundation in your kids is very important in the world we live in today, so invest in what it takes to make your kids stand out, be bold, and to be the light! Christian education!”
“I am a Grandparent of two wonderful boys who attend Southeast Christian School. I love this school, or should I say, the people that work there! Our children are being taught in an environment filled with the love of Christ. You can feel it when you walk down the halls. Along with the normal subjects, they are being taught how much God loves them. They are learning they can have a personal relationship with the Lord. They are learning His Word. They are learning to be kind to one another and to the people in their community. The fellowship and the support system is beyond anything you will find in most schools. What a wonderful gift to give to a child! Thank you Southeast Christian School for all you do for our precious little ones!”
The Cree Family
“The Lord led us to SECS when Payten was halfway through 1st grade. The difference between SECS and what we had experienced at public school was incredible and we instantly knew we had been blessed with so much. A couple years later, we found ourselves in a difficult financial position and no longer able to pay the full tuition amount. We were completely heartbroken to think we had to take Payten out of SECS. We were so grateful to find out that tuition assistance was available to us and we are so thankful that Payten and now her sister, Camryn, can continue to be at SECS. Payten has grown and matured spiritually, intellectually, and socially in incredible ways. She has built friendships and relationships that will last her lifetime. It is our prayer that both our girls can attend SECS through 8th grade, that we will no longer need tuition assistance soon, and that the Lord will bless us with the ability to give back to the tuition assistance fund.”
The Shoutta Family
“My family is forever changed because of tuition assistance from Southeast Christian Church. In 2015 My daughter was all set to start public kindergarten. While she was still in pre-school, she brought her Bible to pre-school. When I picked her up that afternoon her pre-school teacher told me she wasn’t allowed to bring her Bible to school. In passing I mentioned this to a family member. My family member was so upset that she couldn’t bring her Bible to school but was also so excited about her passion for God. This incident moved my family so much that they helped pay for my daughter to start Southeast Christian School for the 2015-2016 school year and has continued that help for the past 3 years, but the time has come that they can’t financially support her tuition anymore. The 2019-2020 school year was going to be the first year I had 2 kids in full time school and I knew I couldn’t afford to for both kids to go to Southeast. I started looking at public schools for both kids and spoke to a dear friend (and fellow SECS parent) about my situation. My friend directed me to apply for tuition assistance through Southeast and began praying for my family. Several of the families at Southeast came along side my family and prayed that we would be able to continue our kids schooling at Southeast Christian School. Our prayers were answered and we received tuition assistance for the 2019-2020 school year!!! When I received the email with our award I cried tears of joy at the never ending provision of Jesus. My daughter was baptized on May 11, 2019. My family has grown SO much in our walk with the Lord thanks to education my kids have received at Southeast Christian School. We are FOREVER grateful to be a part of the Southeast Christian School Family.”
The Thiessen Family
“The tuition assistance through Southeast has been incredibly helpful to our family. Three kiddos in private school is quite an investment! It means so much to Jon and I to be able to keep our kids in the devoted, Christian environment Southeast provides.”
The Fallons Family
“We are so blessed that you have helped our family this year. Southeast Christian School has changed our kids lives in such a short amount of time. They now love to learn and feel supported from their teachers and the staff. Their desire for God has increased and they have turned into little prayer warriors. This is exactly what our family needed! Thank you so much!”
“We hadn’t been planning on sending our son to a private school and hadn’t budgeted for it. During the 2018-2019 we saw our son facing a spiritual battle in the public schools. We saw a young man who loved the Lord being more and more influenced by the world and have a hard time with endurance. While we are called to be a light in the world, did Jesus ask this of children? When we decided we needed to make a change we weren’t sure how we were going to pay for it. We prayed and felt peace that God would provide. God provided, Southeast Christian gave us a little bit of a tuition discount and God provided extra income. All we needed was a little bit of faith to take the first step (visit). Then the next step (apply). Then the next step (ask for help). We are praying that God continues to provide and next year we will pay full tuition and be able to donate to help another family who needs it.”
– Anonymous Family
“My husband and I believe that the most important part of our children’s education is knowing the love of Christ and the mercy and grace of our Savior and that is what they get here at Southeast. Not only do our kids get an amazing education and wonderful teacher support, they are also reminded daily how much Jesus loves them and how great HIS kingdom is. They feel safe and valued in the environment here at Southeast and have also seen tremendous growth in the classroom year to year.”
-Anonymous Parents of a second and third-grader
“We love southeast and can’t imagine our family anywhere else. Teachers and staff are truly
“My children love going to school daily and I am thankful they are reminded daily that they are a child of God.”
“We LOVE our school and everyone who makes it wonderful! Such a blessing to us!”
“We just keep finding things we love about Southeast. It’s been wonderful so far and I’m excited to get more involved as our kids grow here over the years to come.”
“This school is a great blessing for our entire family and we are eternally grateful!”
“Great school. Amazing teachers that truly care about our kids. Their care shows and the kids look forward to going to school everyday.”
[Preschool Director, Donna Bell] “I cannot say enough great things about Donna! She had made us feel so confident in sending our child to SCS and we know she truly loves what she does. She is such a kind and loving person and we recommend the preschool program to all of our friends.”
[K8 Principal,] “Nathan Teigland is an amazing principal who genuinely cares for each student at SCS. His focus is to build Christ-like character and spiritual leaders in the students.”
[Executive Director, Michelle Davis has] “Outstanding leadership, integrity, approachability and professionalism. She has turned this school around in a few short years. She has shored up the foundation and created a school that can grow and thrive.”