360 9th Avenue

San Francisco, California 94118

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A Letter From the Head of School


As Christian parents, we own the God-given authority to nurture, train, and discipline our children. His Word calls us to teach our children to love Him with their hearts, souls, minds, and bodies. Many of us need support in that eternal work, particularly when it comes to education.​

Our family is from Austin, Texas, where we educated our children classically in a Classical Christian, university model school and later within a Classical homeschool community. In the summer of 2017, the Lord used my husband’s job to move us temporarily to San Francisco.  

Over the course of that year, the Lord filled us with wonder and amazement by the joy He gave us for life with five children here in this dynamic city. When it was time to consider whether we should remain in San Francisco or return to Austin, as originally planned, we realized a significant limitation to staying here: a school in San Francisco that partnered with us to train up and discipline our children in the Paideia of the Lord simply did not exist. So we planned to return to Austin because of our great love for the people of Austin and the various educational options available there to educate our five children. We found ourselves dreaming of a school that was both academically rigorous and spiritually robust and started to consider where we might send our children when we moved back. During a short vacation to Austin, the Lord softened our hearts toward Christian families and friends in San Francisco. We began wanting for Christian families in San Francisco what we wanted for ours; and we knew from experience the rich, Classical tradition of education that many here were missing.  

Do you ever imagine providing the opportunity for your child to engage in an educational academy where she can develop deeply her thinking skills, grow her debate skills, nurture her oratory skills, and flourish in her heart, soul, mind, and body?  Have you considered education rightly translating to the formation of the souls whereby teacher-shepherds lead young ones to rich pastures where they can be nourished as whole human beings?  ​

In the spring and summer of 2018, we joined with a group of faithful believers whose hearts God had already stirred to this end. Together, we sought the Lord in prayer for months, asking hard questions, and were blown away by His consistent and powerful responses. We then teamed with our missional founding partners who worked tirelessly to develop Donum Dei Classical Academy, a Gift of God. Without doubt, establishing Donum Dei Classical Academy in one of the most influential, progressive, and secular cities nationwide requires our consistent, humble submission to the Lord’s lead and favor, as well as our total reliance upon Him to provide and to draw others to join us on this missional work. We want to make a spiritual impact on this great city. We hope to instill in students a love for lifelong learning.  We desire that Donum Dei become a life-giving family to Christian families thirsty for godly community. We aim to support parents and to grow and develop students in ways that glorify our God.​

We believe you will find that there is no other school – public or private – in San Francisco quite like Donum Dei Classical Academy. We look forward to meeting you, introducing you to Classical education, and supporting you through the process of whether and how Donum Dei Classical Academy can serve as the best learning environment for your son or daughter.​ With that, I welcome you to get to know our leadership and teachers at Donum Dei.

For the glory of our great God,
Christine McLean, Ed.D.
Head of School

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Identifying a school that is the right fit for your child in San Francisco, one that will provide the best intellectual, creative, and spiritual growth can be a daunting task. However, we look forward to helping you navigate this process.