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Emily Miles

Dr. Carolyn Doolittle

Research in Education

ED 723

Reflection on Interview

In order to further my understanding of classical education and to

make contact with local classical schools, I decided to interview Mrs. Kelli

Huslig, administrator at Veritas Christian School in Lawrence Kansas. In the

following reflection, I will discuss the highlights of the interview as they

relate to my teaching philosophy and to my research topic.

Veritas Christian School is a unique environment unlike any I have seen

before. With a student teacher ratio of 12:1, this school places a high

emphasis on relationship and building relationships between parents,

teachers, and students. Mrs. Huslig, emphasized the importance of

relationship and how it is vital to students academic success and character

development. Kelli provided further evidence of this by mentioning several

examples of community building during the school day such as student-

student mentoring, parent-student mentors, teacher-student mentors, and

grade level Bible studies. At the end of the discussion on relationship, Kelli

reflected upon her first days as an administrator at Veritas. She said that,

without the relationship piece, we would loose the [character of the]

school. I strongly agree with Mrs. Huslig, and I believe that Veritas does an
exceptional job at building relationships with each member of the learning


Because of the importance of the whole community to character

development, I asked many questions about how parents and teachers

collaborate to instill virtue in students. At Veritas, parents are encouraged to

regularly visit the school and are required to complete 50 service hours each

year. It is not just the parents who are working to build relationships at this

school. Teachers and administrators are involved from the beginning. The

faculty wants to know the students and families, so they hold informal

interviews to learn about each family and most importantly, about the


I asked Kelli how the parents serve as role models for their students

and she provided several examples. Such examples included classroom

volunteers, running the library, and driving students to and from school. It is

exciting to see that parents are given a large window of space to lead by

example and build relationships with the kids. I believe that by having the

parents deeply involved in the school community, that the children at Veritas

will have an advantage over other kids, whose parents are significantly less

involved in their daily lives.

To add to my research, I asked Mrs. Huslig about character education

within the classical model and how that relates to student achievement. She

enthusiastically stated that the rigor of classical education and the character
education embedded in the curriculum greatly influences the achievement

levels of the students at Veritas. I was unable to get specific ACT scores, but I

was able to learn about the pinnacle experience of the students academic

career; which is the senior research thesis. The students, having reached

senior year, are given the task of researching and presenting a controversial

topic.. Within the context of that research, the students must address the

Biblical view on the matter as well as their own perspective. This project

takes a year to complete and at the conclusion of the year, the research

projects are presented to peers, family, teachers, and pastors. It is a rigorous

process that effectively showcases the students hard fought disciplines,

intellectual curiosity, writing craft, and spiritual maturity. To get a picture of

the type of people Veritas graduates, I am very interested in speaking to the

seniors about their time at Veritas and watching them present their senior


The interview with Mrs. Huslig was motivating and thought provoking.

The ideas discussed in the interview have inspired me to think deeper about

the focal points of my research topic. For example, after the interview, I was

further convinced that an emphasis needed to be placed on the importance

on how belief in God further aides in the effort to instill strong virtue into the

heart and mind of a child. Without the faith aspect, education is only partially


In the end, I hope to observe at Veritas Christian School and immerse

myself into the culture of the school. I plan on interviewing students,

teachers and parents in regard to their experience with classical education.

With the help of Kelli Huslig and many others at Veritas, I am looking forward

to launching the research study and along with that, I am excited to uncover

time tested ways of engraving character, using literature, and the Trivium,

onto the hearts and minds of students.