Pictured with high school teacher Mr. Bryan Osborne (back row, center) are a few of his students (left to right): Spencer Waites, Kindall Billingsley, Corynne Schannuth and Jae Yoo. Bible history classes at both schools are voluntary, for-credit and funded entirely through private contributions to the Hamilton County Department of Education.
A diverse group of 11 Hixson churches have come together to support the Bible history program in their local public schools.
The “Hixson Gathering,” scheduled for Sept. 16, from 6-7:30 p.m., will feature a community meal, prayer service and fund-raiser at the Hixson Middle School gymnasium, 5681 Old Hixson Pike.
Organizers hope to raise enough money to fund the cost of two full-time Bible history teachers at Hixson Middle and High schools.
Proceeds will be directed to the schools through Bible in the Schools, a local nonprofit organization.
“I would love to say ‘thank you’ to the Hixson community for helping us to offer such a wonderful program in our schools,” said Hixson Middle School Principal LeAngela Rogers. “The teen years are a time of unprecedented growth socially, physically, emotionally and morally. Bible history classes contribute not only to their academic achievement but also to character education, as students develop into their own person,” Rogers said.
Ron Phillips, pastor of Abba’s House, is one of several Hixson pastors leading the joint effort. “President Andrew Jackson said the Bible ‘is the rock on which our Republic rests.’ No one is truly educated without a knowledge of Scripture,” Phillips said.
“The Bible is the most influential book ever written. It has shaped and transformed lives across several millennia, and it must surely be a valuable part of any well-rounded education,” said Robert Johnson, senior pastor of Hixson Presbyterian Church, another sponsoring church.
There is no cost to attend the dinner, but reservations are required by calling Bible in the Schools, 423 648-0500. A children’s program for grades K-5 will be provided by Student Venture following the dinner portion of the evening’s agenda. For more information, visit BibleintheSchools.com/hixson.
The participating churches, representing various denominations, are Abba’s House, Bethel Temple Assembly of God, Burks United Methodist, Clear Creek Church of Christ, First Baptist Church of Hixson, Hixson First Baptist, Hixson Presbyterian, Hixson United Methodist, Stuart Heights Baptist, The Ministry Center and Valleybrook Presbyterian.
Since 1922, Hamilton County public schools have expanded educational choice to its students at no cost to taxpayers with a Bible history electives program. All money is raised from private donations. Teachers are chosen through the normal means of faculty application and selection by the Hamilton County Department of Education.