In 1996, six families desired something different, something greater, for the education of their children. They started Westminster Academy on September 6th of that year with 41 students and a deep passion to school those children using a classical, Christian education. “We started the school to get back to the right understanding of knowledge…to establish a love of the truth,” founder John Hodges recalls. And God was honored in those early years, as Mrs. Cathy Boyd, who began teaching at Westminster that first year, remembers, “There were so many little blessings, and God’s provision for our needs. He made it clear that it was His hand in so many of the details.”
Twenty years, 1400 students and over 250 graduates later, Westminster Academy begins its 21st school year with a new headmaster, new head of upper school, and a fresh desire to mold its students into lifelong learners and lovers of the Lord. As Headmaster Janikowsky notes, “We actually send students out prepared for the voyage in front of them. We send them out with a full, comprehensive understanding of the primary purpose of man, which is ‘to glorify God and to enjoy him forever’.”
So it would seem the desires of those first families are being fulfilled. As Mrs. Boyd puts it, “Now we have a more robust understanding of a classical education. We can see a place for the mathematical arts and for cultivating virtue. We can see how we can help these little people become flourishing humans who know and love the truth.”
Gina Hall, one of the founders, describes the impact of the school upon her family. “It has meant so much to each of our four children individually, and to us as a family. I think of all the teachers that have poured their lives into, loved, and discipled to our children. I honestly don’t believe they would be who they are, were it not for Westminster. Because of the weekly worship at our church, what we humbly attempted to instill at home, and the constant upholding of the Lordship of Christ at Westminster, I do believe they ‘know the gospel in their bones’.”
This year, Westminster welcomes its first legacy student, Jack O’Dell, son of 2002 graduate Emily O’Dell. His enrollment marks a return to the beginning of the circle, to continue impacting future generations for the Lord, and that is to be celebrated. Happy 20th Birthday, Westminster Academy!!