Christian Heritage Academy

Christian Heritage Academy (CHA) is a private Christian school located in Del City, Oklahoma, United States. Established in 1972, CHA instructs its students in an American Christian philosophy of education through the Principle Approach methodology. Enrollment includes students from grades pre-Kindergarten through twelve.

Christian Heritage Academy
United States
Other nameCHA
MottoIsaiah 58:12b "and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in."
HeadmasterJosh Bullard
Color(s)    Red, white and blue

The mascot of the Christian Heritage Academy is the Crusader. The school colors are red, white and blue.


CHA's curriculum is based on the Principle Approach[1] developed by Verna M. Hall and Rosalie Slater.[2] This approach to education states that "the pinnacle of classical education was reached in [the United States of America]...two centuries ago".[3] The Principle Approach concept of "Providential History" maintains that "God commands us to make nations Christian" nations, that only "Providential history is true history", and that "the failure to teach Providential history has led to the secularization of America".[4]

Principle Approach uses Noah Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language and maintains that "It will equip you for Christian leadership, strengthen your vocabulary, give you an edge in communicating your view and become your foundation for thinking and reasoning Biblically".[5] Also, it is taught that for one "to understand principles of liberty, one must return to the thought and writings of those whom God used to establish the first Christian constitutional representative Republic the world has ever known".[6]



In spring 1972, Sunnyside Baptist Church pastor Harry Boydstun invited Mel and Norma Gabler to speak about their work at a Wednesday night service. The Gablers, who had only one year of secondary education, had achieved outsized influence over Texas school textbooks.[7] They claimed that America was losing its Christian heritage because children were never introduced to it in schools: "Allowing a student to come to his own conclusion about abstracts and concepts creates frustration. Ideas, situation ethics, values, anti-God humanism — that's what the schools are teaching. And concepts. Well, a concept will never do anyone as much good as a fact".[8] During the service, Boydstun sensed a mission to provide education within a Christian setting for the students of southwest Oklahoma City.

Boydstun also believed the school might help white parents avoid federally mandated desegregation programs such as busing.[citation needed]

After further discussion, the church established a committee to investigate the feasibility of a Christian school and later to begin developing the school program.[citation needed]

On September 1, 1972, Christian Heritage Academy opened with 200 students, first through eighth grades, meeting in the south Oklahoma City facilities of Sunnyside Baptist Church but separately incorporated.

Toward the end of the first year, Ralph Bullard was hired as headmaster[citation needed]. Bullard’s first meeting with O'Brien led him to adopt the school’s educational philosophy: The Principle Approach to America’s Christian History, Government, and Education[citation needed]. In her office, he saw two reference volumes: "Christian History of the Constitution of the United States of America" and "Teaching and Learning America’s Christian History." He ordered a set for the school[citation needed].

Among his advisors were R.J. Rushdoony; Hall and Slater, the authors of the books; and officers of The Foundation for American Christian Education in San Francisco, California; and later, John Talcott, member of the Evangelical Council for National Policy,[9][10] a director of the Ocean Spray Corporation and founder of Plymouth Rock Foundation, whose Plymouth Rock Seminars were foundational to the school’s philosophical development; Katherine Dang, then the principal of the Chinese Christian Schools of San Leandro, California, and teacher at the pilot school in Hayward, California, under the direction of CHA development contributor James B. Rose; and Ruth Smith of Pilgrim Institute. All provided advice as CHA developed its program and became one of the leaders in the American Christian History movement (see Dominionism).

Thereafter, a kindergarten was added and one upper grade each year until the school had a complete high school program, graduating its first senior class in 1977[citation needed]. Two senior traditions were established with the first graduating class: The American Christian Heritage Tour of the Massachusetts cities of Boston, Plymouth, Lexington, Concord, and Salem taken in the spring before graduation, and a graduation ceremony in which each graduating senior is lauded for their positive character qualities and impact within their class.[citation needed].

On October 20, 1978, CHA sponsored its first American Christian Teachers Seminar. During the seminar, faculty of CHA shared the Principle Approach and the American Christian Philosophy of Education with representatives from other Christian schools within Oklahoma. As of 2010, CHA remains the only Principle Approach school in Oklahoma.[citation needed].


Establishment of a Christian philosophy of athleticsEdit

The school wrote a "Christian philosophy of athletics" to guide students' athletic development and to reflect Christian values on the playing field and in the stands: "Since we are ambassadors for Jesus Christ, let us conduct ourselves in word and action just as Christ would conduct himself. Therefore, all that we do, we will do with a total release of our mental and physical abilities and our emotional energies towards our performance, having in mind that Christ is our only audience. Concerning our attitude towards players and fans of the opposing team, we will strive 'to love our neighbor as ourselves' and 'do unto them as we would have them do unto us.'[citation needed]"

In the early days of the homeschool movement, Cynthia Bower taught phonics classes to groups of homeschooling mothers in the summer, and the school began providing annual achievement testing. CHA developed programs to equip parents to teach, including the Home School Satellite Program, which also allows students to participate in some school events and/or classes. Many of these students later enroll in CHA proper.[citation needed]

While reading about the state of Christian education, Ralph Bullard noticed that suggestions for what Christian schools should do seemed shallow to him[citation needed]. He discussed his findings with Tom Elliff, the senior pastor of First South Baptist Church and a patron of the school[citation needed]. As they tried to answer the question, “What are we educating them for?” one of the answers was, “We are educating them to reach out to others, not just at home but abroad.”[citation needed] This led to an emphasis on missions, not just with money and local help but actually working with missionaries outside the United States. Since 1988, many students at CHA have participated in an annual mission trip to Mexico. There has also been one trip to Russia and two to Brazil.[citation needed]


In 1996, CHA hosted then-presidential candidate Pat Buchanan for his Oklahoma Republican pre-primary rally.[citation needed]

CHA published "God Fashioned the Continents for His Story," an essay that says, "Are there physical signs of the intentional hand of Providence? If the Lord truly has foresight (which He does), and if He planned the story that would unfold on earth (which He did), then wouldn’t it make sense that He would create the continents to oblige?" God is described as a "Master Painter" who is putting together the continents with a purpose, thus Asia, Europe, and North America are described as having been "admirably prepared" as opposed to South America, Africa, and Australia which are relegated to their plant, animal, and wildlife. It says the United States can be found in the Bible and that "His design should point to the work of Christ in human history — the story of liberty."[11]

Echoing R.J. Rushdoony and other Christian dominionists, it says Native Americans "occupied but did not possess the land" in spite of overwhelming evidence that tribes in North America had a history and civilization for thousands of years,[12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20][21] It says North America "was not designed to give birth and development to a new civilization but to receive one ready-made" and that it invited colonization through Manifest Destiny... "it seems to invite the European race, the people of progress, to new fields of action, to encourage their expansion throughout its entire territory."[22]

The publication also carries the following quote from Alexis de Tocqueville:

Although [North America] was inhabited by many indigenous tribes, it may be justly said, at the time of its discovery by Europeans, to have formed one great desert. The Indians occupied it without possessing it. The whole continent seemed prepared to be the abode of a great nation yet unborn.[22]


In 2007 CHA sued the Oklahoma Secondary Schools Athletic Association, seeking membership. In "Christian Heritage Academy v. Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Ass’n, 483 F.3d 1025 (United States Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit, 2007)" claimed that OSSAA's membership requirements for nonpublic schools violated the Equal Protection Clause".[23] "For athletics, OSSAA determines athletic divisions, sets eligibility rules, and holds state play-offs and championships".[23] Although one of the judges described CHA's argument as a "doctrinal morass", OSSAA's decision was remanded.[24]

As of 2009, CHA along with other private schools, will not be forced to move "up" in the Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association division classifications.[25]

As of 2011, CHA was categorized as an OSSAA 2A Football Program, with an enrollment of 216 secondary students.[26]

Association With Reclaiming America For ChristEdit

CHA's association with the right-wing evangelical and socially conservative political group called the Center for Reclaiming America for Christ centers around the controversial Rev. Paul Blair,[27] former OSU and NFL football player who became CHA's football coach and pastor at the Fairview Baptist Church in Edmond, Oklahoma, where he facilitates the CHA North satellite.[28] The Center was founded by the late D. James Kennedy of Coral Ridge Ministries and folded shortly after his death in 2007.[29][30] Blair took over the Center, and renamed it Reclaiming America for Christ, with the full support and blessing of Coral Ridge.[31] Over breakfast, Blair decided to form "Reclaim Oklahoma for Christ" with Charlie Meadows, a John Birch Society member, politically right-wing Evangelical activist, and former Oklahoma Congressional candidate.[32]

Notable alumniEdit


  1. ^ "The Edmond Sun", Fairview Baptist Church, Christian Heritage Academy open CHA North, The Edmond Sun
  2. ^ "The Foundation for American Christian Education", Our Founders, The Foundation for American Christian Education
  3. ^ "The Foundation for American Christian Education", Frequently Asked Questions, The Foundation for American Christian Education
  4. ^ McDowell, Stephen; Arcieri, Jim (2005). America's Providential History Teacher's Guide. Providence Foundation. ISBN 978-1-887456-17-3. Retrieved January 26, 2011.
  5. ^ "Principle Approach Foundation Bookstore- American Dictionary of the English Language, Daniel Webster, 1828". Principle Approach Foundation. Retrieved January 27, 2011. It will equip you for Christian leadership, strengthen your vocabulary, give you an edge in communicating your view and become your foundation for thinking and reasoning Biblically. This tool can be the turning point for you to be more effective in communicating Christian principles used in government, economics, and marketing or for your student to clearly understand how the Bible has influenced every area of life.
  6. ^ "The Foundation for American Christian Education", Study, The Foundation for American Christian Education
  7. ^ Holley, Joe (August 2, 2007). "Norma Gabler; Conservative Texan Influenced Textbooks Nationwide". ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved October 25, 2021.
  8. ^ Deckman, Melissa Marie (2004). School Board Battles: the Christian Right in local politics. Georgetown University Press. pp. 13. Allowing a student to come to his own conclusion about abstracts and concepts creates frustration. Ideas, situation ethics (sic), values, anti-God humanism - that's what the schools are teaching. And concepts. Well, a concept will never do anyone as much good as a fact
  9. ^ Dillen, Vicky. "Council for National Policy (CNP) Selected Member Biographies". Archived from the original on June 29, 2011. Retrieved January 11, 2011.
  10. ^ "Council for National Policy Membership Directory 1988", Council for National Policy Membership Directory 1988, Washington DC, 1988
  11. ^ "God Fashioned the Continents for His Story" (PDF). truView. Christian Heritage Academy. 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 25, 2011. Retrieved 2011-01-28. The fulness of nature's life is typified by Africa, with its superabundant wealth of [creatures], South America with its exuberance of vegetation, and Australia with its antiquated forms of plants and animals. However, in the grand drama of man's development, Asia, Europe, and North America, the “Continents of History,” have played distinct parts, for which each seems to have been admirably prepared.
  12. ^ Dickason, Olive. Canada's First Nations: A History of the Founding Peoples from the Earliest Times. 2nd edition. Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1997.
  13. ^ Deloria, V., Jr., (1997) Red Earth White Lies: Native Americans and The Myth of Scientific Fact.
  14. ^ Hillerman, Anthony G. (1973). "The Hunt for the Lost American", in The Great Taos Bank Robbery and Other Indian Country Affairs, University of New Mexico Press. ISBN 0-8263-0306-4.
  15. ^ D.E. Dummond, "Toward a Pre-History of the Na-Dene, with a General Comment on Population Movements among Nomadic Hunters", American Anthropological Association, 1969. Retrieved March 30, 2010.
  16. ^ ^ Fagan, Brian M. 2005. Ancient North America: The Archaeology of a Continent. Fourth Edition. New York. Thames & Hudson Inc. p418.
  17. ^ "Hopewell-Ohio History Central".
  18. ^ Chenault, Mark, Rick Ahlstrom, and Tom Motsinger, (1993) In the Shadow of South Mountain: The Pre-Classic Hohokam of 'La Ciudad de los Hornos', Part I and II.
  19. ^ Townsend, Richard F.; Sharp, Robert V., eds. (2004). Hero, Hawk, and Open Hand. The Art Institute of Chicago and Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-10601-5.
  20. ^ Woods, Thomas E (2007). 33 questions about American history you're not supposed to ask. Crown Forum. p. 62. ISBN 978-0-307-34668-1. Retrieved October 31, 2010.
  21. ^ Wright, R (2005). Stolen Continents: 500 Years of Conquest and Resistance in the Americas. Mariner Books. ISBN 978-0-618-49240-4.
  22. ^ a b "Christian Heritage Academy truView" (PDF), God Fashioned the Continents for His Story, Christian Heritage Academy
  23. ^ a b CHRISTIAN HERITAGE ACADEMY v. OKLAHOMA SECONDARY SCHOOL ACTIVITIES ASSOCIATION, No. 04-6342. 483 F.3d 1025 (United States Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit 2007).
  24. ^ CHRISTIAN HERITAGE ACADEMY v. OKLAHOMA SECONDARY SCHOOL ACTIVITIES ASSOCIATION, No. 04-6342. 483 F.3d 1025 (United States Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit 2007) (""it is not necessary to wade into this doctrinal morass").
  25. ^ "Private schools won't move up". Muskogee Phoenix. June 10, 2009. Retrieved January 27, 2011. Non-public high schools in Oklahoma won’t be forced to move into a higher classification for the next school year...Nineteen of the state’s non-public high schools are private.
  27. ^ PRZYBYLO, ROBERT (September 27, 2009). "High school notebook: CHA assistant Paul Blair, a former OSU player, ejected from Friday's game". The Daily Oklahoman. Retrieved January 27, 2011.
  28. ^ "Fairview Baptist Church: Announcements". Archived from the original on July 26, 2011. Retrieved 2011-01-11. Josh Bullard, Headmaster of Christian Heritage Academy, and Paul Blair, Pastor of Fairview Baptist Church in Edmond, would like to announce the opening of CHA North this fall at Fairview Baptist Church....The church sits on the corner of Sooner Road and Danforth. At this very location, immediately after the Land Run of 1889, the "Old Jack School" was established. Blair stated, "Until 1931, the facilities on this corner had a dual purpose. They served as a classroom to educate our youth from Monday through Friday and then as a Sunday School and Community Church on Sundays. We are thrilled to come full circle and return to that calling and work hand in hand with Christian Heritage Academy."
  29. ^ Samuels, Robert (September 21, 2009). "Coral Ridge Presbyterian votes to retain controversial new pastor". Miami Herald. Retrieved October 5, 2009.[permanent dead link]
  30. ^ "Powerful pastor D. James Kennedy dead at 76". South Florida Sun-Sentinel. September 5, 2007. Retrieved October 5, 2009.
  31. ^ "Reclaiming America For Christ: About Us". Archived from the original on December 22, 2010. Retrieved January 11, 2011. Although we are not affiliated or connected with Coral Ridge Ministries or its former initiative, the Center for Reclaiming America, we have been granted permission by those entities to use the name “Reclaiming America for Christ” as we expand this vision across America. We hope to honor the name and legacy of Dr. Kennedy as we strive for another Great Awakening in this nation.
  32. ^ "Reclaiming Oklahoma for Christ: About Us". Archived from the original on June 11, 2010. Retrieved January 11, 2011. Reclaiming Oklahoma for Christ is not a club to join. There is no membership list and there are no dues paying members. Reclaiming Oklahoma for Christ is not a para-church organization and is not an ecumenical movement. Reclaiming Oklahoma for Christ is an organized effort to remind pastors of our Pastoral Heritage...Fundamental, evangelical preachers nearly all agree that God established three great institutions on earth – the family, human government and the church. We know and preach that the family must be built on the Rock of Jesus Christ. We know and preach that the Church must be built on the Rock of Jesus Christ. So too, government was designed by God to be subject to and built on the Rock of Jesus Christ.

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 35°26′13″N 97°26′21″W / 35.436815°N 97.439035°W / 35.436815; -97.439035