The DNA of Santa Fe Christian makes our community unique. We are one-of-a-kind… unlike any other school. Although there are other evangelical Christian schools, there flows in our communal veins a Santa-Fe-ness that makes us unique. Some societal experts call that differentiation.
Hearing from so many of you along the way, I am amazed at the beautiful complexity of our school. I observe our Santa-Fe-ness – or DNA – in four categories: core principles, flexible practices, rich human stories, and visual symbols. Core principles are what you believe – foundational truths that guide your behavior. For example, we are a Christian school. What you actually do with what you believe, is a flexible practice… for example, at SFC, we offer a variety of sports, all kinds of field trips, electives, and much more. A rich human story is how we communicate. One of my favorite stories that I’ve heard thus far is about a student, who was visibly sad. This student’s teacher noticed their somber disposition and had no hesitation in walking up and embracing the student. Our DNA is made up of principles, practices, and stories – all of which flow out to visual symbols. Our colors are red, black and gold. We are the Eagles. We have specific logos. We have a beautiful campus. We have a unique clock tower. And so on.
To illustrate my point of uniqueness or differentiation, apply these four categories to your special, one-of-a-kind home and family. What are your family’s core principles? Flexible practices? Rich stories? Visual symbols? Just as your own family has amazing stories of celebration and also shared trauma, you know that all of those events animate and illustrate your family. Mine is no different.
I notice these four categories as I am walking around campus or enjoying a community coffee chat. My heart absorbs the elements of our DNA. Yet, the most important visual symbol on this campus is the image of God, as seen through earnest eyes, in each person on campus. Logos are great, but more importantly, when you look into the eyes of an SFC teacher, coach, or volunteer, you feel cared for, and important. When I see the earnest eyes of a teacher looking at a student with care, I see one of the most important parts of the DNA makeup of SFC. They say our eyes are the windows of our souls. I say, yes!
P.S. You will hear more about these four categories in future blogs. Stay tuned!