In the late 1950s a small group of people from First Christian Reformed Church in Guelph gathered to dream and pray about the possibility of a Christian school in their town, a school that put the Christian faith as the guiding philosophy for every part of school teaching and life. Many of these people were immigrants from The Netherlands, where they have a long tradition of government-funded Christian schools, inspired by the theological vision of Abraham Kuyper in the latter half of the 19th century.
John Calvin Christian School was named after the 16th century Protestant Reformer who proclaimed the sovereignty of God in Christ over all things. The school began meeting in the First CRC basement on Water Street in 1961, moving into a new building they built across the street in 1964 with 52 students and Ray Klapwyk as principal.
Guelph Community Christian School (GCCS) is owned and operated by The John Calvin Christian School Society, Guelph. This Society is registered as a charitable organization with the federal government. Its Board of Directors (the Board) is elected by the membership, which is primarily made up of parents. These parents represent 30 different church backgrounds in the city of Guelph and surrounding area.
To recognize and reflect the many Christian backgrounds represented by the school, the operating name of the school was changed by the membership to “Guelph Community Christian School” effective July 1, 2008.
In fall 2012, GCCS moved from its Water Street location and our building on College Avenue was purchased and renovated, with 37,000 square feet of rooms and 10 acres of land—three times the size of the previous building. In 2021 the school continued to expand as it launched the Little Eagles Preschool.
GCCS is a community project with much to celebrate. The central motivation and passion of GCCS remains Christ-centred teaching and learning. What that means for the next chapter of its history is largely decided by the board in concert with the principal, the staff, and the wider JCCS membership.
We worship a God who holds the future in His hand, and we trust that His Spirit will continue to guide us that we may be a place where students and teachers flourish together for the sake of God's kingdom in Guelph and far beyond.