Standards of Learning
CACS follows a standards-based curriculum as recommended by our supervising organizations at the Southwestern Union and North American Division Offices of Education. This insures that we meet local, state, and national requirements. Our curriculum requirements are set forth in the North American Division standards. Standards in education are a statement of what students should know (content knowledge) and be able to do (applicable skills) upon completing a course of study. Standards state in clear, concise terms what students are expected to learn.
All of these learning areas are standards-based, rather than being text-driven. This means that our teachers provide instruction for students in a basic set of concepts and skills, using the textbook as a support, rather than the sole foundation of instruction. This allows our teachers some freedom to provide more hands-on and experiential activities rather than simply working from one textbook page to another. We have found this to have outstanding benefits for our students.
We also provide non-academic instruction in such areas as peer and non-peer relationships, Christian character development, community service, and church leadership. We feel that it is this training that contributes to the eternal good of our students that is of the utmost importance.
One way we evaluate our curriculum is though standardized testing. Our students in grades three through eight participate in the Iowa Tests of Basic Skills (ITBS) each fall. This is a standardized testing program in which each child’s performance is measured against national norms. This helps us to evaluate our teaching strengths and weaknesses. We use these tests as a guide to help our teachers find ways to improve classroom instruction. Under these guidelines, our teachers are able to teach more in-depth content rather than teaching “for the test.”