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Being on the Light Team - Aristoi Family Spotlight

Light Family Photo
“Great schools are built by great people, great families, and great teachers. And, Aristoi is outstanding because of the people.”  That was the beginning of the conversation with David and April Light, an Aristoi Cypress family, who have been icons at the school since the doors opened in August of 2020.  April continues, “The awesome curriculum is a bonus.”
Researching schools and educational options were not always on the Light’s agenda.  David and April attended good Texas public schools themselves. As the Light children got older, “classical education” and “public charter school” became commonplace in their daily conversations, especially when the Aristoi signs went up at Aristoi Cypress’ Perry Road location.

Says David, “I never thought we’d be so bought into education.  This is something we talked about a lot.  We talked about it, and Aristoi, daily for half a year.” After pouring over April’s research on classical education and checking out the school, the Lights decided to give Aristoi a try.  Two years later, David is a champion for Aristoi and classical education and emphasizes, “Education is really the most important thing we can do for our children. And, so, we do everything we can to support Aristoi.”
The Lights show their support for Aristoi by being involved in Watch D.O.G.S., PTO, volunteering, fundraising, and spearheading many other activities. “After seeing Aristoi in action, and having great conversations with our kids,” says David, “we thought, ‘What else could we do to support this school?  How can we help this school grow?  How can we share this with others?’ ”
David joined Aristoi’s School Board at the beginning of the 21-22 school year.  “I wanted to support the school at the district level and support the staff there.  I wanted to contribute and bring any talents and insights I had to help Aristoi as a system be successful.” He continues, “Being on the School Board has expanded my love for Aristoi and all that it’s doing to raise “responsible citizens of virtuous character.  That mission is embedded in everything that the school does - from the Board down - and that is what creates this culture and the environment that is so unique.”
The Aristoi Cypress campus has been filled with Griffins for less than two years.  In that time the school has more than doubled in size and continues to expand, adding more classes to each grade level and its first 7th grade class in the 2022-2023 academic year.  That success is attributed not 
only to the incredibly hard-working staff but also to the outstanding families who have made Aristoi their home.
April chimes in, “Aristoi has been more than we expected.  Aristoi has exceeded our expectations from the curriculum to the staff to the teachers.”

“The people that bring their kids to Aristoi, as well as the staff, everybody is there because they are seeking something more, something different than what public and what private schools offer,” says David.  “One of the beautiful things about Aristoi is that we are all seeking something 
different for our children and our families, yet we come from all walks of life. That creates an environment for learning that doesn’t exist elsewhere.  I don’t think you can replicate it at any other school.”
“That’s another reason why we wanted to get involved,” April explains, “I wanted to have an impact on the school.  I wanted to have an impact on making the school great and helping the staff out as much as I could, to make the best school for our children.”
Because of classical education at Aristoi, there’s a lot more discussion in the Light home. April gives an example, “The dialog that happens in the classroom resonates with students.  It’s not about turning the pages.  Classical education makes it exciting for the kids to learn.”  She 
continues, “Sometimes at home, if the kids are fighting, one will blurt out, ‘That’s not humility!’. A lot of people don’t know what humility is or what virtues are - and our kids are learning about all of that at school!”
April describes another aspect that makes Aristoi unique.  “Over the past year, our son’s speech therapist has noticed a difference in him.  Jonathan had Mrs. Kormash last year, and she taught phonics.  That’s one of her favorite things, and that’s exactly what Jonathan needed the most.
Jonathan’s improvement in his speech was dramatic.  The therapist was surprised.  She didn’t know that phonics was still taught at school.  Based on everything we told her, she thought we were going to the most expensive private school in Houston.”
April states, “One of the other things that really impressed me - Aristoi really does what it says it will do.  For example, Aristoi really does employ Love & Logic.  Other places mayday they use Love & Logic but don’t necessarily implement it.  Aristoi does. It seems like it’s too good to be 
true.  Aristoi is for real.”
David agrees, “When the kids come home from Aristoi, you don’t have that worry about what’s being taught in class.  You know teachers are talking about virtues and character.  We are aligned.  We need all the help we can get raising these kids.  Aristoi is part of our team to raise these kids, 
For prospective Aristoi families
The Lights were new to classical education when their children enrolled at Aristoi Classical Academy and realized that it can be a bit intimidating.  David advises new parents not to worry, “Don’t be scared of what classical education is.  Don’t feel uneasy.  Be open-minded and learn as 
your kids learn.  You understand the foundations of it, then the kids start bringing stories home, then you talk about it.  That’s when you start living it.”
For current families
Both David and April implore families to look for ways to get involved and support the school. David is adamant, “School support is needed now more than ever - especially to be able to provide classical education.  We’re at a pivotal point in the Aristoi story.  We’re starting to build more facilities and establish a flagship campus.  We’re going to write history in the next few years and we’ll be able to look back and say, ‘I was a part of that.  We were a part of that.’”
April nods her head in agreement, “I continue to promote the school because we really do believe in the mission.  Friends ask why we’re doing all of this.  It’s because we want to do our part.”

David finishes, “We’ve got something special here.”