Mission & History

Over 30 Years of Faith-Based Academic Excellence

Celebrating God’s faithfulness for over 30 years, Ann Arbor Christian School is called to provide a vibrant and academically strong school rooted in the Good News of Jesus Christ in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Knowing and loving Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior (and the truths that come with that conviction) is the greatest gift we can give children. AACS is a school that draws strength and richness from many church traditions and the core beliefs and values that unite us as the Body of Christ. At the same time, we also hold steadfast to traditional and biblical views on critical social issues in our world today. We believe in God’s call to love all and to do so without compromising convictions. We want our students to learn to see the world through the spectacles of God’s Word and be equipped to live and act in contemporary society as followers of Jesus.

Our Mission

In partnership with Christian families, Ann Arbor Christian School offers Christ-centered, academically excellent education that challenges students to live and act in society as committed followers of Jesus Christ.

Our Vision

Our vision is to transform new generations of students who use their minds, hearts, hands, and feet to be culture makers for Jesus Christ.

Our Learner Goals

Our School-Wide Learner Goals for all age levels inform everything we do as we work in Christian community with families and churches to develop students who are:


Rooted Christ Followers
Rooted Christ followers who are grounded in the love of God and recognize Jesus as Savior and Lord.

Colossians 2:6-7a – “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him…”

  • Recognize Scripture as a source of revelation
  • Gain knowledge of God’s Word
  • Apply Scripture as a direction for living
  • Grow in personal relationship with Christ
  • Understand God’s grace and plan of salvation
  • Worship God with heart, soul, mind, and strength
  • Give witness to truth of the Gospel
Healthy Image Bearers

Healthy image bearers who know their identity in Christ and seek well-being in all aspects of life.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 – “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”

  • Recognize oneself as made in God’s image
  • Understand the body as a temple of the Holy Spirit and treat it with care and dignity
  • Strive to develop spiritual, emotional, and physical health
  • Maintain balance and recognize the importance of Sabbath rest
  • Use athletics to glorify God

Academically Excellent

Engaged Learners
Engaged learners who persevere in developing their God-given abilities and commit to pursuing knowledge.

Colossians 3:23 – “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.”

  • Thrive academically as well-rounded students
  • Recognize the gifts they have been given and work to their full potential
  • Participate actively and with curiosity in their learning
  • Develop a growth mindset by practicing grit and perseverance
  • Listen and ask questions to increase knowledge, engagement, and understanding
Wise Decision Makers
Wise decision makers who seek the truth and use discernment to guide their actions and choices.

James 3:17 – “But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.”

  • Understand Scripture as source of truth
  • Evaluate information critically and recognize bias
  • Consider consequences of actions
  • Respect the authority of others
  • Seek and learn from the wisdom of others
  • Make thoughtful decisions with confidence
Effective Communicators

Effective communicators who speak articulately, write skillfully, and listen intentionally.

Colossians 4:6 – “Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”

  • Convey ideas clearly in a variety of forms and languages
  • Express ideas creatively through the arts
  • Use technology wisely and effectively
  • Display honesty, integrity, and godly manners in all areas, including online communication
  • Communicate with others to build them up
  • Listen attentively to others to understand and demonstrate empathy
Collaborative Workers

Collaborative workers who contribute to the success of a group and value the contributions of others.

1 Corinthians 12:4-7 – “There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord… Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.”

  • Assume different roles willingly
  • Learn from one another
  • Share gifts with others
  • Listen to the ideas of others
  • Carry your own load by contributing appropriately
  • Utilize positive problem-solving skills

Living And Acting In Society

Faithful Stewards

Faithful stewards who recognize their role in caring for creation and use resources to build God’s kingdom.

Genesis 2:15 – “The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.”

  • Use resources wisely
  • Enjoy God’s creation
  • Balance personal resource consumption with the resource needs of others
  • Grasp the consequences of certain decisions and their impact on the environment
  • Take responsibility to care for God’s creation, recognizing that small steps make a difference
Willing Servants
Willing servants who put the needs of others before their own and give freely of their time and gifts.

1 Peter 4:10 – “Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.”

  • Notice and anticipate needs
  • Sacrifice their own comfort to meet the needs of others
  • Use gifts to benefit others
  • Receive graciously
Community Builders

Community builders who experience the power of living and working together and contribute to a community that reflects Christ.

Colossians 3:12-14 – “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.”

  • Value and practice Christian community where all are included
  • Accept differences in others
  • Recognize that everyone is created in God’s image
  • Work through conflict, being slow to anger, ready to reconcile, and willing to forgive
  • Demonstrate patience with others

Our Guiding Principles

As a school, we strive to follow these guiding principles in our work with students and families:

Maintain a Christ-centered focus
  • Recognize that Ann Arbor Christian School is Christ’s school and that all school activities are to glorify God.
  • Nurture students’ spiritual growth through prayer, worship, and Bible study so they learn to apply Biblical principles to their lives.
  • Encourage students to develop a fervent love for the Lord Jesus Christ and a desire to serve Him throughout their lives.
Provide excellent academics
  • Recognize each student’s uniqueness, and challenge students to fully develop the spiritual, intellectual, artistic, and physical gifts God has given them.
  • Balance teaching of basic skills with units that incorporate many subject areas.
  • Guide students toward a Christian worldview by integrating faith into academic subjects.
Challenge teachers and staff to excel
  • Offer staff members the opportunity for professional growth.
  • Provide salaries and compensation designed to attract and retain highly qualified Christian teachers.
  • Encourage teachers to draw appropriate materials from varied resources and adapt curriculum instruction to meet students’ learning needs.
Partner with parents in a Christian community
  • Involve parents to actively participate in the education of their children and ensure open communication between parents and teachers.
  • Provide opportunities for parents to serve in the day-to-day operation, success, and promotion of the school.
  • Build a caring community recognized for loving God and loving our neighbor as ourselves.
Operate the school with integrity and Christian love
  • Follow God’s Law and all governmental laws that apply to preschool through high school Christian education and childcare.
  • Establish the governing body of the school (the Board) through annual elections.
  • Exercise fiscal responsibility through creative stewardship of our community’s resources.
  • Believe in God’s call to love all and to do so without compromising convictions.

Our History

In the 1960’s, a small group of men and women attempted to start the school. While that initial attempt did not succeed, it planted the seeds for an attempt two decades later. In September 1986, after much discussion, research, and prayerful consideration, a group of Christian families formed the Christian School Association of Ann Arbor (the formal business name of Ann Arbor Christian School). Five years later, Ann Arbor Christian School, using space at the Ann Arbor Christian Reformed Church, opened its doors with one capable, passionate, and loving teacher and four students.

As time went on, God kept unfolding His plan for us. With more than 100 students enrolled in grades K-6 by the fall 2002, it was clear we had reached the physical limits of our original facility. The steady demand for Christian education in our area encouraged us to build a new 32,000-square-foot facility at our current location and to add a middle school. To build our current facility, we turned to families, charitable foundations, members of local churches, individual churches, businesses, and alumni families. Through our capital campaign, we secured pledges of $3 million and financed the remainder of the cost with a $1 million loan, which has since been paid in full. Nearly 75 percent of the donations came from school parents, showing the commitment of our families. Classes began in our current facility in February 2003. In 2004, we became a K-8 school. In the fall of 2009, we opened our Preschool program. Today, we have over 250 students, our highest overall enrollment yet, including the first 9th grade class at our Upper Campus, which opened in Fall 2023. We will add another high school grade each year. By 2026-27, we will be the first preschool through 12th grade interdenominational Christian school serving Ann Arbor!

In short, AACS is the unfolding of a vision. As a school community, it is our solemn joy, obligation, and duty to work alongside churches and families to uphold truths that are clearly revealed in the Bible. AACS aims to provide a strong faith culture and seeks to produce graduates distinguished by their faithfulness to God as well as their character, intelligence, and compassion. We want our students to see that there is no contradiction in providing an excellent education with a deep, courageous faith in Jesus Christ and the teachings of the Bible. This vision is sustained in a setting where their faith and intellect can flourish side by side. Many of the founding families continue to support God’s work at AACS, and we invite each new generation of families to partner with the generations past, present, and future to sustain and advance this vision.

AACS is accredited through Christian Schools International, which offers curriculum, teacher support, leadership training, testing, and other services to nearly 400 member schools in the United States and abroad.

Christian Schools International