At Northumberland County’s March Board of Supervisors meeting, Bart and Leslie Morrison got the go-ahead to start a Christian school at Bethany Baptist Church next September. By Friday, they didn’t know how many students Emmanuel Classical Christian Academy (ECCA) would have but they are already hiring teachers and will open Pre-k through eighth grade school regardless of the numbers, Bart Morrison said.

The “classical” in the school’s name means classical for real ‑ the curriculum will include Latin for all students. Bart Morrison said that Latin is the base for a great deal of English and a major part of the classics were originally in Latin. He and Leslie believe a grasp of the language is essential to a real learning. “There will be a heavy emphasis on the great books,” Bart Morrison said. “Shakespeare, Homer, the classics.”

In a twist on standard educational approaches, students will be allowed to study with those who are on their level of proficiency. For example, if a student is in the fifth grade but can read at sixth grade level, he or she will be placed in the sixth grade reading classes, Bart Morrison said. The initial goal is that ECCA’s students will be able to read the newspaper by the end of first grade, he added.

Bart Morrison said that while the school will be fundamentally Christian it will be non-denominational and will accept students of any faith with but a single caveat. “We will expect the parents not to contradict what we do in the school,” he said.

To assure everyone knows what the understanding with the school is, there will be an intereview process prior to a student’s being accepted. That…

—Read the full story in the March 26 issue of the Northumberland Echo!