I know you know that we have a Portrait of a Graduate, but did you also know that printed in the RS Handbook is a commentary on the Portrait? In case you didn’t, over the next few weeks I will reprint the commentary. First, see below a copy of the portrait followed by a preamble to the commentary:
A Geneva graduate is a disciple of Jesus Christ, exhibiting excellence, passion, and integrity as he leads for Christ’s cause in the world. He is a critical, logical thinker, able to discern absolute truth from cultural trends and philosophies. As one who loves the Lord with all his mind, the Geneva graduate will be a lover of learning, and have the ability to grasp new ideas throughout his lifetime in pursuit of truth. These qualities, clothed in humility, create a foundation that will enable him to present engagingly articulate and persuasively winsome arguments. A Geneva graduate honors God’s image within himself and thus, is interested in all people because of God’s interest and image in them. The classical education and biblical worldview gained at Geneva will equip the graduate to exhibit vocational excellence to the glory of God.
Regarding the overall portrait, the first thing that you need to notice is that this statement is incredibly lofty. Indeed, it is beyond anyone to fulfill at all points at all times. This, however, is intentional. We know that none of us will measure up completely, but the high target will help to insure that we never settle or become complacent in our striving.
Secondly, you need to notice is that the portrait mentions nothing about college admission or what kind of college our students will or should attend. I think all of us know that Geneva is indeed prepping students for success in college and that our students will shine at whatever schools they attend, but that is not the primary goal. That is merely what happens along the way.
Finally in regards to the portrait as a whole, notice that none of the lofty goals in the portrait is quantifiably measurable. That is, they are all beyond the evaluative language of mathematics. There is no standardized test to measure whether this portrait is achieved. Rather, the lives, influence, and legacies of our graduates will dictate whether we are hitting the goals at which we are aiming.