The process of education begins when children are very young. After all, the capacity to know, think, feel, and act is not fully formed in small children. Therefore we must be careful to shape it for our children to develop into responsible adults.
As it has since 1844, Hillsdale teaches college-level students using a rigorous classical liberal arts education at our main campus in Michigan. However, as part of our mission to preserve the blessings of liberty nationwide, we offer resources to K-12 schools, especially charter schools, who pursue the same rigorous, classical education.
That’s why Hillsdale launched the Barney Charter School Initiative—an undertaking that is crucial to the future of our nation. Public education in America, to be successful, must be built on a foundation of classical liberal arts learning—the kind of learning best suited to a free society and most needed for its preservation. This kind of education used to be common in America, but in recent decades has been replaced with the current, failing progressive model of education.
The Barney Initiative aims to reverse this trend by founding classical charter schools nationwide. The curriculum emphasizes the core disciplines of math, science, history, and language arts, as well as music, art, and foreign languages. They also pay close attention to character formation. These classical K-12 schools focus on essential skills and knowledge, employ traditional teaching methods, and teach a proper understanding of history and civics.
And it is one of the best ways to invest in our nation’s future. It is up to Americans like us who understand the importance of education to return excellence to our public K-12 schools—for the sake of our children and grandchildren—and for liberty in our nation.
We put together a short but moving video about the Barney Charter School Initiative, and I want you to see it. You will be touched to see the impact these schools are having on young people, their families, and their communities. Watch the video here:
American classical education uniquely emphasizes human virtue and moral character, responsible citizenship, content-rich curriculum, and teacher-led classrooms. Classical educators focus on cultivating moral and intellectual virtue, so that each student becomes capable of self-government and is therefore able to live a happy life.