Todd Marrah, Chair-Elect
Carl Martinez, Secretary
Robert "Bo" Gutzwiller, Past Chair
ACSI Charts New Strategic Direction Established on Advancing, Access, and Advocacy
Colorado Springs, CO – In response to the changing needs of its members and of Christian educators in a rapidly-evolving landscape, the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) is renewing its commitment to Christian schools and teachers by embarking on a new strategic direction characterized by three foundational pillars of Advancing, Access, and Advocacy.
According to ACSI President Dr. Larry Taylor, the primary goal of the shift is to better equip Christian schools and educators as they adapt to seismic cultural changes and disruptions to the delivery of education.
“Over the last two years we prayed and sought the Lord’s leading as we solicited and reviewed extensive feedback from our members against a backdrop of significant upheaval to the Christian education environment,” Taylor said. “We believe this new focus allows us to renew our commitment to Christian schools and educators by providing services designed to increase member value and see our schools flourish. This is in alignment with a 40-year commitment to promoting excellence in Kingdom education around the globe.”
All ACSI operations, programs and services will now be positioned under the pillars defined as:
- Advancing: Leading Christ-centered education toward excellence and flourishing.
- Access: Making Christ-centered education available and obtainable.
- Advocacy: Promoting and protecting Christ-centered education for today and tomorrow.
Some of the more noteworthy changes the Association is making involves moving toward implementation of a new divisional model that builds school services around school size as well as geographic location; and expanding staffing, reach, and influence in its Legal Legislative Department at its Colorado Springs headquarters and in Washington D.C., to provide increased advocacy for Christian schools, religious liberty, and school choice.
Dr. David Balik, ACSI Vice President, USA believes the new direction will enhance benefits for member schools, as well as improve response time to meet changing school needs.
“We’re increasing member value by prioritizing relationship building,” said Balik. “We’re also expanding our ability to connect with and convene schools and school leaders by providing better programs to existing members, while at the same time anticipating and delivering new opportunities and resources. This grassroots approach is designed to give membership back to our schools and their leaders. Our members spoke, and we listened.”
ACSI will also increase investment in research and development to meet emerging needs in Christian education and in digital transformation and delivery of content to better equip schools and teachers, in the U.S. and abroad.
Mike Epp, ACSI Senior Vice President, Global, is excited about the Association’s push to create more strategic global partnerships and connections throughout the world with an intent to share and uphold best practices.
“There are thousands of schools around the globe that feel a connection with ACSI because they believe they are in a relationship with us, have been served by us, and want to belong to the worldwide Christian school movement. The exciting thing is they have much to offer and we can learn a lot from them,” Epp explained. “I’m particularly thrilled about the opportunity to deliver services through new and different methods to reach and connect educators and schools wherever they are.”
ACSI has more than 5,500 member schools worldwide and its services have impacted more than 25,000 other Christian schools in other parts of the world.
“We have a lot to share, and we’re inviting anyone involved with Christian education to discover our new offerings, including our all-new website that features an improved user experience and easier navigation for locating ACSI services and programs,” Taylor said. “While we are all facing challenges, the steadfast mission of ACSI and the cause of Kingdom education around the globe has never been more relevant and necessary. We believe the future is bright.”
Headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo., ACSI exists to strengthen Christian schools and equip Christian educators worldwide as they prepare students academically and inspire them to become devoted followers of Jesus Christ. ACSI advances excellence in Christian schools by enhancing the professional and personal development of Christian educators and providing vital support functions for Christian schools by offering multiple services including teacher and administrator certification, school accreditation, legal/legislative assistance, and curriculum publishing. Serving more than 25,000 schools in 108 countries, ACSI helps more than 5.5 million students worldwide connect to Christian education.