Parental Controls Don’t Work

No parental control software can completely protect your kid from online harm. And parental controls never replace the need for parents. After over 1,100 presentations, testifying in front of Congress, and countless conversations, PYE has discovered 5 traits that are common in families who have kids who learn to use technology well and we call it The Digital Trust Framework. Does your family have Digital Trust? How does Digital Trust help a family deal with pornography, YouTube, TikTok, or gaming? Good questions and we’ll answer them. At the end of this presentation, participants will be able to:
articulate the 5 components of Digital Trust, explain how their family can benefit from Digital Trust, and identify specific resources that can help their family use technology more safely.

Chris McKenna

A man with never ending energy when it comes to fighting for the safety and protection of children. Chris practices his internet safety tips on his four amazing children and is regularly featured on news, radio, podcasts, and most recently on Capitol Hill for his research. His 2019 US Senate Judiciary Committee testimony was the catalyst for draft legislation that could radically change online child protection laws and earned PYE the NCOSE Dignity Defense Alert Award in 2020. The PYE team has performed over 1,000 presentations at schools, churches, and nonprofits and was featured in the Childhood 2.0 movie. When not leading PYE, Chris is the Digital Marketing Manager for Covenant Eyes. Other loves include running, spreadsheets, and candy.

Leadership Lab

Great leadership is highly sought after and much discussed, but how do we really know that we are effectively teaching great leadership to our students? The same way that we often test other ideas – in the lab. We put our SR leadership curriculum to the test by conducting a semester long “Leadership Lab” in which our students put into practice all of the leadership principles and lessons they had learned. Students were divided into groups. All worked, but 3 had an additional distinct responsibility to bear. They chose someone to bear the responsibility for the decisions, actions, failures, and successes of the group, someone to administer the group (take notes, direct, and organize the plans and decisions of the group, as well as keep the objectives before the group), and someone to evaluate the group (document who was in each role, why they were chosen for that role, who contributed what towards meeting the objectives, how each person was a good “follower” in the group, and how each person demonstrated being “faithful in small things.”) The objective was to come up with one idea per group on how to be a servant leader to the school during their senior year, bearing in mind the phrase “how are you practicing Christianity with your sleeves rolled up?” Each idea was to be generously motivated, outwardly focused, and legacy minded. We executed these ideas, and evaluated their success based on peer and faculty review.

Christi Wilson

Christi Wilson graduated Magna Cum Laude with a BA in English Literature and Language from Texas Tech University and a Doctor of Jurisprudence from the University of Texas School of Law. Christi is married to John, and they are parents to four children: one son, Coby, (Veritas Class of 2018) and triplet daughters, Sydney, Catie, and Jenna, (Veritas Class of 2021). Christi has had several years of School Board experience, Christian classical school administration and teaching experience. She has studied at L’abri and is currently completing the Colson Fellows program.

Classical Education Structured for Special Needs

Heather Lloyd

Heather Lloyd aided in the foundation of the Conservatory of Music at New Saint Andrews College, she has founded several Christian and Classical K-12 schools across the nation, and a variety of programs that accommodate special needs students at existing Classical schools. Among these projects is The Jubilee School, which is a private, Christian school located in Moscow Idaho that is steeped in Classical pedagogy. The Jubilee School facilitates students that, traditionally, have a more difficult time integrating into conventional Christian Schools. These students, whether they have special needs, are advanced for their age, or are neuro-typical, work together in the classroom for a synergistic learning experience that isn’t just Classical, but also enables Romans 15:1 to happen inside the classroom—where the strong take care of the weak. Heather is the founding partner and the Executive Administrator of Concordis Education Partners whose vision is to equip start-up schools, schools transitioning to the Classical method, and existing Classical schools with the tools needed to make their students, teachers, and administration successful. Working hand-in-hand with its partner schools, Concordis has helped institutions across the country uphold the premise that excellent education should serve all.

Seven Lessons in Seven Years: Lessons from the Logic School

Seven years ago, I was a bright-eyed freshman teacher, embarking on my teaching career as a classical and Christian educator. I was confident that classical Christian education was the best form of education, and I was full of ideals. And then I met my Logic School students. Suddenly, I was thrust into a world wherein neither students nor parents were always well-behaved, many were not actively pursuing the good, the true, and the beautiful, and in the midst of this, I sometimes found myself floundering, unsure of how to control my class, discipline my students, and point them toward virtue and wisdom.

How do you keep a class of 8th graders under control? How do you offer correction without co-opting class time? How do you capture the imagination of the uninterested? How do you teach 7th and 8th graders to love the good, the true, and the beautiful? This session will be an exploration of seven practical tools I have learned to help teachers gain the control of their classrooms, the trust of parents, and the love of their students.

Aaron Fudge

Aaron Fudge works at Trinity Classical Academy, in Santa Clarita, California, where he is the Dean of the Upper School, the Chair of the Language Department, and a member of the Upper School Humanities and Language faculty. Aaron is also an associate pastor at Christ Church Santa Clarita. He is the husband of Elisabeth, and the father of three classically educated teenagers. He surfs as often as possible and is currently reading All Hallows Eve, by Charles Williams.

Maintaining Your School’s Culture in the Midst of Culture

Over 20 years ago, historian Gertrude Himmelfarb asserted in her One Nation, Two Cultures that “America is confronting at least six challenges: ‘the collapse of ethical principles and habits, the loss of respect for authorities and institutions, the breakdown of the family, the decline of civility, the vulgarization of high culture, and the degradation of popular culture.’” She forecast a culture in crisis. These challenges are not new as they were set in motion decades ago, but on top of this, COVID-19 hit, making for a very demanding year. How does a school maintain its culture in the midst of culture and a pandemic? Mrs. Kathleen Kitchin toured the United States interviewing heads of school for her book First Things First: Keeping Your Classical Christian School on Track (2020), gathering & gleaning best practices from healthy schools who endeavor to keep first things first in or out of times of crisis. She will outline key principles to stay on track and share potential red flags that can derail schools, drawing on case studies and her 20+ years of teaching experience. How do we grow a culture that loves God and the classics and is not swept away into contemporary culture & social media’s enticements? How do the various members of our school community contribute to the sweet aroma of our schools and preserve it from the pollution of the world? Our focus will be encouragement & biblical counsel with Christ at center.

Katheen F. Kitchin

Kathleen F. Kitchin has been an educator for 20+ years, having taught in public school, community college, homeschool, private classical Christian school, & homeschool tutorials, as well as having volunteered & substituted in classical Christian schools at every grade level. A graduate of Bucknell University, she also pursued graduate studies at Middlebury College|Bread Loaf School of English and University of Maryland. In 2020, Dove Christian Publishers published her book First Things First: Keeping Your Classical Christian School on Track. Also in June 2020, she was interviewed on the BaseCamp Live podcast. Her webpage/blog can be found at Her husband David & she live in North Carolina where they lead a young adults fellowship group. Both their adult children were trained in the Classical Christian model through all three stages of the Trivium.

Leading Student Leaders

A house system sounds great in theory. They are supposed to foster community, instill the school with fun, spirited activities, and enable faculty to directly mentor student leaders. But in practice, a house system can often frustrate students, create activities more annoying than pleasant, and make overwhelming demands of even committed faculty. How do we avoid the pitfalls and fulfill the promise of the house system? After nine years of running a now thriving house system at our school—and taking a few lumps along the way—we have some hard-won lessons to share. Student life directly impacts school culture and the success of our efforts in the classroom. This session will focus on the practical ways a house system can inject your school with purpose and focus the atmosphere of student life to the goal of forming mature adults capable of growing beyond us and flourishing.

Christopher Leigh

Christopher Leigh has called Santa Clarita and Trinity Classical Academy home since 2008. Over the years, he has helped to build the rhetoric school, while teaching across the full spectrum of humanities courses; in normal times, he also helps to lead the senior trip to Italy. In 2012, he helped to co-create and launch Trinity’s house system, and in 2016, he became the Dean of the House System. He and his wife Sheri have seven children, six of whom will be students in the fall, spanning kindergarten to 11th grade. He loves to travel, is an enthusiastic amateur chef, and spends as much time as he can manage in the company of good friends and fine discussion.

Charlotte Mason’s Practice of Habit Training as an Alternative to Classroom Management

Patrick Egan

Dr. Patrick Egan is an administrator at Clapham School in Wheaton, Illinois. He has worked previously at Providence Classical Christian Academy in St. Louis as well as teaching New Testament courses at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and Kings Evangelical Divinity School in the UK. In 2016 he published his first book, Ecclesiology and the Scriptural Narrative of 1 Peter (Wipf & Stock). Dr. Egan regularly writes on the intersection of ancient wisdom and modern research at Educational Renaissance.

Grading Narratively

Two years ago I led our team in moving away from the modern letter/number grading system to the use of an all narrative grading system for our kindergarten through 6th grade. We held parent forums, meetings, created informational videos, trained our teachers, and launched the new format. From this change we have seen a tremendous growth in our students in the area of their “love of learning.” The pressure of an “A” was removed and our students are flourishing. While this system goes against what all modern educators know, narrative liberates the students from a label and fosters a love of the content rather than the final grade. It has transformed our school and is a model that could transform other classical schools.

Rebekah Shaffer

My husband, Dr. Jeremy Shaffer, work as a team in ministry at our church, where he is the executive pastor. We have two children, Grace (15) and Luke (12), who have both been in our classical Christian school since kindergarten. I hold a BS in elementary education from Pensacola Christian College and am currently working on my Masters in classical education from the University of Dallas. I taught first grade at Pensacola Christian Academy from 00-04' then stayed home to raise my children till 13' when I began working part time at Covenant School. In 15' I moved to full time as the Kindergarten teacher and in 17' I moved into the role of Lower School Principal in addition to my kindergarten role. I lead our church's thriving children's ministry and have lead them for 12 years. I also lead a weekly women's Bible study and work with my husband leading a small group for families.

“Take up and read!” Fostering Life-changing Encounters with the Scriptures for our Students

Laura Davis Werezak

Laura Davis Werezak is a teacher, writer, and mother. Laura grew up in church with a voracious hunger for the Scriptures, which she’s never been able to satisfy. Like a bee gathering honey, she has collected creative study methods. For over ten years she has led studies for women, children, and teens, as a youth pastor, classroom teacher, and church leader. She’s currently leading the Read Mark Learn Bible Study at Emmanuel Anglican Church, New York City, as well as teaching Fifth and Eighth Grade Bible at The Geneva School of Manhattan. She holds a Master of Arts in Education and a Master of Christian Studies in Christianity and the Arts. She is also the author of Attend: Forty Soul Stretches Toward God, a book about how to find God in everyday life. She lives in Harlem with her husband Clint, a minister and youth worker, their two daughters ages 7 and 10, and their pandemic kitten Hazel Minerva.