FWCS is an interdenominational educational ministry of the First Wesleyan Church of Gastonia
Even though First Wesleyan Christian School is legally owned by and meets in facilities owned by the First Wesleyan Church, the school only promotes and/or teaches those common, central, Biblical beliefs that are shared by all conservative evangelical denominations. FWCS's governing School Committee members are elected annually from among the members of the First Wesleyan Church's congregation.
During any given school year, FWCS's staff and student body represent 30-plus churches and denominations. All staff members are required to be professing, evangelical, Christian believers who live conservative life styles consistent with their essential spiritual task of serving as Christian role models to FWCS's students.
Approximately 30 minutes per day is devoted to direct religious instruction. This instruction includes such activities as prayer, teaching from the Bible, singing of hymns and choruses, Scripture memorization, Bible games, and weekly chapels. An effort is made to lead each student to accept Christ as his/her personal Savior. Since students from many denominations attend FWCS, it is not the school's purpose to weaken their denominational ties but rather to provide them with an understanding of the fundamental principles of successful Christian living and the basic events, characters, and doctrines of the Bible.
First Wesleyan Church is a member of the Wesleyan Church International with headquarters in Indianapolis, Indiana. The Wesleyan Church was established in 1843 when a group of churches left the Methodist church with the twin goals of opposing slavery and promoting the doctrine of Scriptural holiness in the daily lives of Christian believers. The Wesleyan Church is a conservative, evangelical denomination which faithfully holds to all the essential, historical doctrines of Christianity such as the full inspiration of the Bible, the fallen state of man, man's need of spiritual rebirth, the deity of Christ, the biblical mandate that Christians are to live holy lives, the future physical resurrection, the historical gospel, etc. (I Corinthians 15:1-6) Additional information regarding the Wesleyan Church and its numerous worldwide ministries may be viewed at wesleyan.org.
FWCS is an active member of the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI), which is the largest and fastest growing fellowship of Christian schools in the world. ACSI has over 5,000 member schools which minister to over 1,000,000 students. ACSI is an interdenominational fellowship that provides its member schools with a variety of services, e.g., legal guidance, regional teacher conventions, curriculum, and various student activities such as spelling bees, speech meets, math contests, athletic tournaments, etc.
First Wesleyan Christian School is a member of GCACS which is an organization comprised of some 20 private Christian schools located in the Metrolina region of Charlotte, North Carolina, and includes schools from the city of Charlotte and six counties. The organization meets regularly for fellowship and professional development activities that enhance the quality of Christian education in member schools.
I feel so blessed to be part of the staff at FWCS. It feels like one big family with everyone on the staff working together to see that each student is successful—not only in academics but also in Christian values. I love the fact that we can talk about God and Jesus and get the students thinking about life skills and values that would glorify our Lord. After teaching in public schools for 20 years, I love being able to teach in such a loving environment.
— Ellen Taylor