Second and third graders at Keokuk Christian Academy, taught by Krista Little, work quietly during class time Wednesday. KCA is holding its annual open house from 6 to 8 p.m. today.
Keokuk Christian Academy provides faith-based learning for 104 students
By Megan Spees/Gate City Staff Writer
Keokuk Christian Academy, 1578 Hilton Road, has provided an academic alternative for local Christian families for nearly 30 years.
KCA will hold its annual open house from 6 to 8 p.m. this evening. Kindergarten Round-Up is from 8:30 to 11 a.m. Friday, Feb. 19. The KCA Auction will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday, March 6.
The private Christian school was founded in 1981 with the support of New Testament Christian Church. Parents in the congregation approached the church board about starting a Christian school. The board agreed to include the school in its ministry projects and provide funding.
“The mentality is that it’s ‘New Testament Christian School’ and it’s not,” said Adam Brumbaugh, who took the position of school administrator last month. New Testament allows KCA the use of its education wing and covers utility costs.
Seventy-five percent of KCA’s budget is funded by tuition; the rest comes from Christian Parent Teacher Association fundraising and donations from the school’s volunteer-based ambassador program. A six-member school board meets regularly.
The school employs five full-time certified teachers, a part-time preschool director and several teachers’ aides. Preschool, kindergarten and first grade classes are taught in separate classrooms. Second and third grades; fourth and fifth grades; and sixth through eighth grades are taught together.
Sixty-two children are enrolled in K-8 and 42 in preschool. Most of the students at KCA attend other churches in the community.
“It’s amazing how many churches make up the school (student body) itself,” Brumbaugh said.
In the past month, Brumbaugh has visited with pastors of several local churches to re-emphasize KCA’s commitment to bibically-based education. Churches have been very open to promoting the school, posting fliers and making congregations aware of upcoming events at KCA.
“Community support from churches has been overwhelming,” Brumbaugh said.
KCA’s single hallway lined with classroom doors and colorful student art doesn’t look much different from the interior of a typical public school. But a day at KCA begins with prayer — a practice banned from public schools decades ago — and the Pledge of Allegiance, which in recent years has come under fire from school boards across the nation for its use of the phrase “under God.”
What sets KCA apart from Keokuk public schools, Brumbaugh said, is the freedom to speak openly about the Christian faith and the “support system” that exists there. His hope is that the three institutions of church, family and school work together to provide a solid foundation for the development of KCA students.
Intramurals with Keokuk High School allow KCA students to participate in sports and music programs. The school’s multipurpose building, completed two years ago, gives the KCA Cardinals girls’ and boys’ basketball teams plenty of room for games.
Smaller class sizes allow for more interaction between students and teachers. Brumbaugh said class schedules are lined up so that if, for example, a fourth grader struggles in math, he or she can sit in on the third grade math class. But if that same student has strong language skills, he or she could join the sixth, seventh and eighth graders in English class. KCA uses A Beka curriculum, a faith-based program.
Call Kathy Smeltser at 524-5752.