Why Classical Education?
At the heart of our academic life is the principle that the true purpose of education is the integral formation of the person for the Good. The classical curriculum is an initiation into the profound spiritual and intellectual traditions of Western civilization. Its key elements are:
A focus on the highest spiritual, literary, artistic, and scientific achievements of Western civilization. Students are exposed to the very best of which the human person is capable and are thus inspired to excellence themselves.
Development of the memory as a critical intellectual faculty through repetition and memorization. A well-trained memory is a gift that fills the mind with beautiful and noble ideas to which the student can return for a lifetime.
Our educational formation is organized by the ancient trivium of grammar, logic, and rhetoric. The early years are spent in the acquisition of knowledge (grammar), followed by the development of analytical and abstract thinking (logic), culminating in the ability to organize and present original ideas with clarity and confidence (rhetoric).
The set of skills that a classically educated child learns is an invaluable tool in any future course of study, whether in high school, college or university. Moreover, because the classically educated student is taught to pursue and display public mastery of his subjects, he is endowed with a unique, authentic confidence and poise that is rarely found in non-classical educational settings. The object of a classical education, and its true value, is not merely a superior educational outcome, but the formation of a student who is alive to the presence of truth, beauty and goodness.
A well rounded education is often reflected in test scores. While test scores are clearly not the end goal of education at HCCS, the data above shows that strong test results are a side benefit of the classical education offered at the school.
St. Jerome Academy's Classical Education Plan
Holy Child Catholic uses the educational plan of St. Jerome Academy, a flourishing Catholic school in the outskirts of Washington, D.C. Saint Jerome Academy is the first diocesan Catholic school in our generation to become classical and has provided a blueprint for other schools to follow.
St. Jerome Academy's unique curriculum focuses on a nine year cycle of history and includes a unique American Year. It offers an exciting way to ground students in the tradition of Western Civilization. Students cycle twice through the history of the world.
Classical Stages of Learning and Growth
It is good to understand the essentials of a classical pedagogy, versus modern approaches to education. While classical educators use modern tools like technology to enhance learning, we keep our eyes fixed on the end goal: application of knowledge to express truth in the light of wisdom. To reach these goals, we begin with the stage of Grammar, develop Logic, and finally acquire the skills of Rhetoric. This image helps to depict the classical way to educate a child. We believe learning occurs in stages and in a fixed order. This model suits the dignity of the human person like no other.
Doctors of the Church
Holy Child Catholic School is committed to preserving our Catholic intellectual tradition. This is why each of our classrooms is named after a Doctor of the Church.
At the bottom of each page of this website, you will see a photo of a Doctor of the Church and the classroom that honors that particular doctor.