The Barnabas Initiative
There are approximately 200 international Christian schools (ICSs) around the world serving the missionary, diplomatic and international business communities. The rich experiences, perspectives, values, and even aptitudes that characterize our TCK students have uniquely prepared them to have a disproportionate influence on the world. The potential of our schools to shape the world for Christ is, therefore, significantly greater than our modest numbers would suggest.
A primary obstacle to maximizing impact for many international Christian schools is resources. On our own, many of our schools lack the financial and human capital needed to regularly envision, and then implement, the school improvements they believe will help them develop the potential that arrives on their campuses each year.
The Barnabas Initiative seeks to help our schools move from surviving to thriving, by encouraging mutual support and collaboration amongst the international Christian schools community as they pursue Christ-like excellence, through increased sharing of ideas and resources.
As it develops, we expect the Barnabas Initiative to include, among others, the following elements:
The Fresh Eyes Project
Developing pools of experts from various ICSs who would be willing to visit schools (at no cost to the receiving school) in Africa and around the world, who are seeking external feedback, or fresh ideas and practices from experienced peers who understand the unique challenges faced by ICSs.
The Fresh Eyes Project in Action
The Sabbatical Project
Utilizing Rosslyn Academy, and any other willing schools, as a temporary (sabbatical) home for international Christian school educators (ICSEs) to come, rest, think, collaborate, and dream, away from their work homes, but within a vibrant educational context.
The Strategic Conference Project
Regularly bringing together teachers and administrators from international Christian schools for strategic mini-conferences on specific topics related to producing excellence in international Christian schooling (both academically and operationally).
The Research Project
Regularly turn out academically robust, but practically engaged, studies that are of particular relevance and importance to the international Christian schools community.
The Teacher Tithe Project
Creating a platform through which well-resourced schools might tithe one or two excellent teachers, each year, for a year (at minimal to no cost to the receiving schools), to ICSs with significant staffing needs. (Ideally this teacher tithe would be to schools seeking to implement innovative Christian educational strategies or practices that are already being implemented well at the sending school.)