Position on Science
The Peace & Justice Academy teaches that the Bible and science are compatible and complementary. The Bible serves many irreplaceable functions in our lives, including spiritual guidance, wisdom, and inspiration. Read as a whole, the Bible reveals to us a portion of the infinite and magnificent character of God. Science reveals creation – and thus the Creator – to us in a way that serves and enriches Scripture. Although the Bible begins with creation, many people of faith disagree about how literally to interpret the creation story. In our science classes, we start with what we have learned about the world through the scientific method; our starting point is not a literal reading of the creation story. There is scientific evidence that species on earth have evolved over millennia. The scientific consensus is that the mechanism of natural selection accounts for most, if not all, of this evolution. Our science classes will ground students in an understanding of the natural selection mechanism, and adhere to the belief that God is sovereign over all life and does not leave the evolution of our ecosystems entirely to chance. The Bible and our beliefs in it are not threatened by science unveiling more of the mysteries of God’s natural world. At the Peace & Justice Academy, we encourage students to think critically, ask questions, and wrestle with incorporating their faith values about the earth and the universe in which we live into all their classes.
Position on Partisanship
The Peace & Justice Academy unconditionally accepts and respects all members of the school community (students, parents, faculty members, staff members, administrators, and Board members), regardless of their political views or party affiliations, recognizing that people of faith may support a wide range of political positions. As a school, the Peace & Justice Academy maintains a completely non-partisan approach to politics. We will not affiliate with, endorse, support, or oppose any political party, nor any candidates running for any office. Beyond the legal constraints faced by 501c3 nonprofit corporations concerning partisan endorsements, we believe it is critical to promote the independent thought and action of our students. Members of the school community may not impose their personal party affiliations on each other but should be willing to discuss and listen to a variety of opinions and convictions respectfully. At the same time, we are a school devoted to the causes of peace and justice, and, as such, must be fundamentally a political school. We are a school dedicated to teaching students the ways of political advocacy and the tools of non-violent activism in support of positions and causes that individual students value, whatever those positions and causes may be. We believe that informed participation in the political process, including voting and communicating with elected officials, is an opportunity to put our faith into action and “wage peace, stand for justice, and change the world.”
Position on Gender and Sexual Orientation
The Peace & Justice Academy affirms and embraces all members of the school community (students, parents, faculty members, staff members, administrators, and Board members), regardless of gender or sexual orientation. We believe that God expects us to extend hospitality to all people, just as God has welcomed us. We acknowledge that the world can be a place filled with alienation, hate, inequality, and brokenness. We endeavor to maintain a school environment where students and staff can be who they are. We follow the call to model mutual respect and love that will be a witness to those who encounter us. We affirm that all individuals, regardless of gender or sexual orientation, are created in the image of God and loved by God. We strive to show a welcoming and affirming vision of God’s love for every individual.