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Our History

In 1978, Reverend Mike Stephens founded Immanuel Center for Christian Education (ICCE) as a ministry of Immanuel Baptist Church (IBC). The school name and mascot were rooted in Scripture. Athletics teams became known as the Immanuel Rams—Immanuel (or “God with Us” from Matthew 1:23) and Rams (or “God will provide” from Genesis 22:13-14).

Over the years, the school grew and flourished under the leadership, prayer, and support of Reverend Stephens, Immanuel Baptist Church, and the many families in the community who invested in it.

ICCE was originally located on 18th Avenue in Columbus, along with the church and a full-service daycare. Rev. Stephens wife, Sara, was the Daycare Director, while IBC staffers, Karl Novak and Gary White, served as administrators over the course of the first 25 years.

In 2004, IBC purchased property in Steens and built a new facility, where the school sits today. The church began worshiping in the gym on Sunday mornings and later inherited a facility across Military Road, donated by Grace Tabernacle, where it later moved and currently meets to this day.

Effective June 30, 2014, the school and church separated to allow each organization to independently pursue the unique missions God had placed in the hearts and minds of leadership at both places. ICCE officially changed its name to Columbus Christian Academy (CCA) and fell under the direction of an independent school board.

Since that time, CCA has continued to flourish—while remaining both academically and spiritually strong—and faithfully serves the students and families in the Columbus area with a true, Christ-centered education.

With a focus on excellence, CCA has become the only educational institution in Mississippi (K3-Grade 12) to achieve the accreditations of Christian, public, and private school academic associations: Midsouth Association of Independent Schools (MAIS); Cognia (formerly AdvancEd and Cogniga); and Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI).

We continually thank God for His provision in the past. We're grateful for how He loves and blesses us today. And we look forward with expectation to all that He has awaiting us in the future!


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