MRA Voted 'Best Private School' (9-12)

Dear Families,

I am pleased to share with all of you that Mount Royal Academy was recently awarded the 2017 Eagle Times Reader's Choice Award for Best Private School (9-12). When I received the phone call from the newspaper communicating that we received the award, I was honestly quite surprised. I was unaware that such an award was given, and our high school is still a relatively new option for families in the Upper Valley Lake Sunapee Region. Back in 2009 when I first began teaching at MRA, there were barely 20 students in the high school. Now, we are approaching 60 total students, as we continue to expand courses and co-curricular activities.

Awards and accolades are always very appreciated, but it does cause one to reflect on why and how. The bottom line for us is mission: we educate students so they can get to heaven, and bring as many others along with them as possible. This means that our high school students are confronted with questions that aren't always pondered in other settings, such as, "What is God calling you to do? For what purpose were you created? How can you become the best version of yourself?"

The truth is there are so many adversarial ideologies that high school students are bombarded with from cultural forces that only seem to become more explosive and confrontational. The most distressing element of these inhuman ideologies is that teens are told that nature doesn't matter, but this suggests that there is no established purpose for human activity, except for those purposes that we declare. What if we declare the wrong purpose? What if I am not meant to do this or that? That is a risk that I am unwilling to take; our children are simply too precious and valuable. They were made for greatness, and this greatness is made manifest in virtuous lives lived both for the glory of God and as a gift for others.

I also think that our faculty should really be recognized. Teaching is both an art and a science, and failures can sometimes seem too difficult to deal with. But our teachers really persevere in reaching each individual child. Junior high and high school teachers are completely committed to five different preps, engaging lessons, meaningful assessments, and cultivating real relationships with students. This award is also a reflection of how elementary school is so very important: it sets the foundation for higher thinking and the rational articulation of truths that are handed down from the best thinkers of all time.

It may be anecdotal data, but as I think about the graduating classes over the last 8 years, the most accurate indicator of student achievement and personal growth is whether or not the student benefited from being taught at MRA from elementary school all the way to high school. These students really embrace the possibilities and potential of God's purposes in their lives.

The class of 2017 is really a remarkable group of young men and women. I look forward to interacting with them each and every day. They are full of promise and hope, and their achievements as a group are quite unprecedented. Perhaps it is because they are the largest graduating class yet!

Thanks for taking the time to read this good news. Please join me in praying for the class of 2017.

Yours Truly In Christ,

Derek Tremblay