At Cary Christian School, our mission is to provide an excellent classical education founded upon a biblical worldview. All subjects are taught as part of an integrated whole, with the Scriptures at the center, serving as the hub of all knowledge. As a result, students learn to interrelate and examine knowledge, allowing them to view their studies as a unified effort. The focus of this effort is to see God’s sovereignty over all and to glorify Him.
Classical Education is a time-proven approach to teaching that structures learning according to the God-given stages of child development. This enables students to gain knowledge, understanding, and wisdom at an age when subjects are most easily mastered. At Cary Christian School, curriculum is taught in a three-part educational process termed “The Trivium,” and each phase is dependent on the others. For more information, go to the Academics section of our website.
Cary Christian School has adopted a proven model of education that really works. A good measurement of educational success is student performance on the annual Stanford Achievement Test. The school regularly scores in the top 15 percent of students nationwide.
Accreditation with the Association of Classical and Christian Schools
ACCS is an association of Christian schools designed to serve the needs of new or established schools who are seeking to return to the educational heritage of the West. Neither reactionary nor progressive, it seeks a return to our cultural roots so that we may resume the process of cultural growth, as God gives the increase.
Requirements for all member schools:
- A representative of the school must subscribe to the first two chapters of the Westminster Confession of Faith.
- The school must be in basic agreement with the vision for education as set out in Recovering the Lost Tools of Learning.
- The school must be current in its membership dues.
Cary Christian School is a fully accredited member of ACCS. The first annual ACCS conference was held in and hosted by Logos School in June 1993. These conferences have continued yearly at various locations. The growth of interest in this education created a demand for more practical training of staff members in classical Christian schools. Logos School responded by conducting and hosting week long, summer training sessions, taught by Logos teachers and administrators. Since 1995, hundreds of other teachers and administrators have traveled from all corners of the United States to attend these training sessions. (CCS attended the Logos training for two years.) We marvel at and are humbled by God blessing Logos School with this kind of leadership in classical Christian education. We too are blessed by all they have done.
History of Cary Christian School
Cary Christian School began with a group of committed parents who wanted to apply Douglas Wilson’s book, Recovering the Lost Tools of Learning, to the classroom. We had read Dorothy Sayer’s essay, “The Lost Tools of Learning,” which had been reprinted from the 1940s and knew that following the Trivium and teaching it according to the developmental stages of children as described in the essay made perfect sense. This was the educational philosophy that the founders desired to implement in a school setting. The founding board at CCS comprised Mr. Tim McClelland, President; Mr. Rick Chapman, Vice-President; Mr. Frank Barry, Secretary; and Mr. John Calhoun, Treasurer. Mrs. Teena Armstrong joined the board shortly thereafter.
School opened September 5, 1996, in modular units set at Peace Presbyterian Church in Cary. Hurricane Fran came that night and school started again the following Thursday. We began with approximately eighty-four students the first year in grades K-12. The school grew primarily through word of mouth. We offered small class sizes, though we did have combined grades for the first several years.
With a dedicated staff, we grew the second year to one hundred and forty students. We expanded our use of the Peace Presbyterian Church building from two kindergarten classrooms to include an office. Mr. Tony Husemann, the principal for the first two years, left at the end of July, and Mrs. Ginger Hayes became the interim principal for the third school year, with Mrs. Teena Armstrong assisting as Program Director. Our enrollment increased to one hundred and sixty-seven. We expanded our facilities and moved grades 5-8 to the B building of Salem Baptist Church in Apex and decided to pare back the program to K-8.
For CCS’s fourth year of operation, we hired Mr. John McGillicuddy for the position of principal. The permit for the modulars expired in August, and we were blessed by God to have Salem Baptist Church offer to lease additional space to include grades 2-4 at the Apex facility. Mr. McGillicuddy resigned in late February, and Mr. Tim McClelland stepped in to assume his responsibilities. We ended the year with approximately one hundred and ninety students.
Driven by his understanding of the educational model and his vision for the school, Mr. McClelland remained the principal for the fifth year. He was committed to refocusing Cary Christian School on the classical Christian model of education by inviting Mr. Larry Stephenson from Logos to come and speak to our parents. Mr. Stephenson moved to Cary to serve as principal in August of 2001. We had approximately two hundred and fifty students our fifth year.
Blessed by God with steady, yearly growth, we began our eighth year with five hundred and two students enrolled and eagerly awaited the construction of our new facility on Old Apex Road. We continued to occupy nine classrooms and an office at Peace Presbyterian Church, which we referred to as the Peace campus. It housed three kindergarten classes, three first grade classes, three second grade classes, and an office. The Salem campus at Salem Baptist Church housed three third grade classes, three fourth grade classes, three fifth grade classes, and an office. Cary Christian School was blessed to have the support of both of these churches over the years. The secondary campus located on North Salem Street housed two sixth grade classes, two seventh grade classes, two eighth grade classes, and one class each of ninth, tenth, and eleventh grades. The Headmaster, Business Manager, Development Director, and Athletic Director offices were located at the secondary campus.
On July 17, 2004, with the help of some one hundred parent volunteers, we moved from our three previous sites and a storage unit, into our permanent home at 1330 Old Apex Road. As we entered into our eleventh year, with an enrollment of approximately seven hundred and twenty students, we had three classes each of grades kindergarten through nine, two classes each of grades ten and eleven, and one twelfth grade class.
In our twelfth year, enrollment reached seven hundred and eighty students, and we continued to enjoy the blessings of being together on our campus at 1330 Old Apex Road in Cary. Completion of an annex included two high school science labs, two locker rooms, a weight room, an auditorium, and a music and band room. We grew to ninety committed staff members, all growing and developing for the glory of God. We completed our fourteenth year with 812 students, just under 100 staff, and our first graduating class of three sections! Dr. Larry Stephenson’s ten year tenure ended with the close of the 2010-2011 school year. We thank God for the tremendous growth and success CCS experienced under his leadership. Mr. Rodney Marshall served as interim headmaster for the 2011-2012 school year.
On June 1, 2012, after serving as the Rhetoric School Principal for one year, Mr. Dell Cook was appointed as the new Headmaster. Mr. Cook has been a member of our faculty since 2000, serving in the grammar, logic, and rhetoric schools during his tenure at CCS.