Alta Vista, founded by Dr. Al Greene in 1970, has enjoyed a long, rich history of serving Christian education. Over the years the central question driving the work of Alta Vista has been - What makes Christian education distinctive?
A Christian school,
The following year this committee incorporated as Alta Vista College and Al Greene (co-founder of Bellevue Christian School) became its director.Lacking the funds to establish a four-year college, Al Greene devoted his time to teaching undergraduate & graduate courses and seminars & workshops often in partnership with an area college.The focus of Alta Vista College under Al Greene's leadership was on combating the tendency in many Christian schools to separate education into two separate arenas-the neutral, public arena in which all people participate, supposedly without religious bias, and the spiritual arena in which people live out of their religious convictions.This model of reality often led Christian education into a curricular model of teaching neutral, and often fragmented, subjects with a religious and often moralistic application.Al Greene through his teaching and writing introduced many educators to a philosophical model of curriculum which accounted for each aspect of creation being unique and yet the fundamental unity of all of these aspects throughout creation.The first twenty years of Alta Vista College witnessed a growing number of educational leaders in Christian education throughout the U.S. and Canada working (often together) to create a distinctly Christian curricular model and to produce educational materials to implement that model in the classroom.
During Al Greene's tenure as director of Alta Vista College, many Christian educators started seeing that there was not only a need for a Biblically-based curricular model but a need for Christian educators to examine all the components of the educational process-instruction, assessment, organizational structures, architectural design of an educational facility and the designing process for generating goals for Christian education.When Al Greene retired as director of Alta Vista College in 1992 there were many exciting developments in Christian education not only in North America but now throughout the world.
Albert E. Greene is a former missionary to China, pastor, co-founder of Bellevue Christian School and Alta Vista College.A Christian philosopher, he was born in Seattle on October 19, 1916.Al has resided in Medina since 1920.He School in 1932.In 1940, he graduated Magna cum laude, from the University of Washington.Al and his wife Thelma were teaching missionaries to China from 1942-48.During that time, Al earned a B.Th. from Dallas Theological Seminary (1945) and a S.T.M. from Faith Theological Seminary, Wilmington, Del., in 1946.He preached at Burke Avenue Chapel in Seattle from 1949-50, and was acting pastor of Juanita Community Church from 1959-1971.He is now acting pastor of Grace Fellowship church in Kirkland.Al returned to the University of Washington to earn his M.A. in 1963, and finally a Ph.D. in Education in 1974, at the age of 58.His doctoral thesis was the embodiment of the concept he has preached, as he submitted the first paper on the philosophy of education, which had ever been done from a Biblical basis.A co-founder of Bellevue Christian School in 1950, Al served as a teacher and headmaster for 29 years, establishing a philosophy of Christian education, which makes BCS distinct among private schools.A former student who went on to become an astro-physicist characterizes Al as the "most inspirational teacher"he ever had because "he imparted such an excitement about learning."In his Ten Touchstones to Distinctly Christian Thinking, Al attempts to make Christians aware of the extent to which secular philosophy had permeated their thinking, causing life to seem divided into "religious" (i.e. prayer, church) and "non-religious" (occupations, politics, everyday life) segments.He founded Alta Vista College, which offers graduate education courses in conjunction with Seattle Pacific University.Since his retirement from BCS in 1979, Al has worked full time as executive director of the college, teaching courses in the Seattle area and in Canada, and editing "The Mind Field" and "The Alta Vista Letter to Teachers."He is currently in demand as a lecturer, and has presented his series, "A Christian Mind in a Secular Age."
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