The Secret Ingredient: Part 1

Written by: Dr. Whitaker, Head of School

One of the questions that I am most often asked is, “What are the secret ingredients that makes The First Academy such a special place?” Undoubtedly, the major part of that answer is our teachers (the heroes). Our teachers are dedicated, caring, and faithful individuals who give of their time, talent, and treasure in an unselfish manner. While the rewards of their ministry are wonderful, teachers regularly face unique and demanding challenges that would cause many to throw in the towel.

Imagine that your son or daughter told you that they had invited 20 of their friends to spend the day with your family next Saturday. They explained that parents would be dropping their children off at 8:00 a.m. and returning at 2:30 p.m. to pick them up. During this “fun-filled” day, you would be expected to supervise lunch, maintain a disciplined environment, answer each child’s questions thoughtfully and sensitively, nurse wounds, comfort the discouraged, keep the house neat, and give a detailed report on the activities of the day to any parent who might inquire – all this done on your own with no help from your spouse! And by the way, your child mentions that this is no ordinary play date, but this play date is going to happen for the next 180 days in a row. Sound inviting? This is just a snippet of what a teacher’s day looks like.

As I travel the country, I am constantly reminded of how blessed we are by the quality of educators we have here at TFA. They are simply one-of-a-kind. So when you see a teacher in the carline or in the hallways, join with me in saying a special thank you to them for the incredible way they serve our children. They truly are the heroes of The First Academy.


Steve Whitaker, Ph.D.
Head of School


*Next week, we will continue with Part 2 of our “Secret Ingredient” series.