In our modern American culture, adolescent dating is generally accepted as the “norm.” While we acknowledge the prevalence of teenage dating, we reject it as a necessary tool in learning to relate to members of the opposite sex. Indeed, we are convinced that “recreational dating” as practiced in our country often hinders a young person’s academic and spiritual growth, and may prematurely place the individual in an emotionally intimate relationship. Furthermore, we are convinced that this practice contributes to the high divorce rate which plagues our country today.
We recognize that God has placed within young people an interest in the opposite sex. We certainly do not strive to eradicate normal, healthy development within our teenage students, but we do desire to help them channel their energy and interests in a God and peer-honoring way. We have deliberately created a learning environment which encourages teenagers to develop healthy friendships with their fellow students without the pressures associated with pairing off. The “level playing field” that has developed at CEA over the past few years is tremendously liberating for our teens. Since none of our families embrace high school dating, students are free to enjoy relationships with brothers and sisters in Christ without the pressures, and yes, temptations associated with dating.
It should be noted that we do not “de-Christianize” any parents for their acceptance of dating, as we recognize that there are many dedicated Christians who permit their teens to date. Teen dating is a personal preference issue, and parents must seek God’s guidance for their own children. At the same time, families interested in enrolling their children at CEA must share views and goals similar to ours in order to be a good “fit” for this program. Our families have deliberately chosen to “swim against the tide” in relationship to dating, and thus we strive to clearly articulate our goals in this area so that parents understand the type of environment provided. If you have any questions or comments concerning this important aspect of the program, please feel free to contact us.
- Her Hand in Marriage by Douglas Wilson
- I Kissed Dating Goodbye by Joshua Harris
- When God Writes Your Love Story by Eric and Leslie Ludy
- Before You Meet Prince Charming by Sarah, Stephen and Grace Mally
- Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot
We recognize that standards of dress may vary greatly, even among Christians. However, our goal is to encourage modesty and restraint so that clothing, accessories, and jewelry are not a distraction to the learning process. At CEA, students do not wear uniforms. Acceptable school wear is casual (i.e., male students may wear non-screen printed t-shirts, school t-shirts, slacks, jeans and knee-length shorts. Female students may wear non-screen printed t-shirts, school t-shirts, knee-length dresses and skirts, jeans, capri or knee-length pants.)
Challenging guidelines or boundaries is a temptation most individuals face at times. However, upon enrollment at CEA, families agree to comply with the program’s defined guidelines. We ask parents to review the dress code at the beginning of each year and ensure that their children comply with it.