About GCA

Our Mission, History, Objectives, and more.


Gateway Christian Academy is a private Christian school owned and operated as a ministry of Gateway Church in Virginia Beach, Virginia

It is the mission of Gateway Christian Academy to educate the whole person under the authority of God’s Word. We believe GCA can best achieve our mission by training young people spiritually, academically, socially, and physically. Gateway stands hand-in-hand with parents and the church in fulfilling this biblical mandate to train up children in the way they should go. 


GCA began in 1966 as American Christian School under the direction of Pastor Dale Burden. The founding church was Fairmount Park Free Will Baptist Church at that time. The church and school both relocated to property in Virginia Beach in the late 1970’s, and the new ministry name “Gateway” was born. The 1960’s were full of unrest, politically and spiritually, in America. Virginia public schools actually closed their doors for a time due to racial struggles over the newly adopted civil rights laws. Many private schools sprang up at that time for the wrong reasons (mainly to flee forced racial integration). This was not the case with Gateway, as it was founded for a much purer cause! Pastor Burden simply wanted a place where his kids (and many others) could still learn God’s Word and pray. He wanted a place where Jesus was still the focal point at school Christmas and Easter programs. He wanted a place that would proudly proclaim Jesus Christ as God’s Son, teaching boys and girls to do the same. 

Gateway Christian Academy is still proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ. Thousands of students have walked these halls who are now pastors, missionaries, Christian school teachers, professional businessmen and women, and Christian people in nearly every walk of life scattered around the world who have graduated from GCA!


The following is a summary of the basic objectives of Gateway Christian Academy: 

Bible Teaching The objectives of our Bible program are to win students to Jesus Christ, to teach students the contents of the Scriptures, to apply the principles of Scripture to their lives, to develop a love and respect for the Word of God, to help them hide the Word in their hearts, and to make the Word of God the major rule of faith and practice when they become adults. 

Academic Excellence The curriculum stresses academic excellence and encourages the development of individual talents. Emphasis is placed on the basic fundamentals. We agree that a student’s education, in the final analysis, must be measured largely in terms of his ability to read and interpret intelligently, communicate effectively, compute accurately, write legibly, and spell correctly. 

Christian Americanism We teach our students to appreciate and love America and its Christian heritage. We incorporate teaching principles of individuality, self government, conscience as property, and political union upon which our forefathers founded this great republic. 

Character-building Discipline The Bible teaches our goal for our youth is to see them “conformed to the image of His Son” (Romans 8:20). We are dedicated to the goal of turning out a special product—a young person with Christian character and self discipline, academically equipped to go out into a lost world and lift up Jesus Christ without fear or apology. 

Leadership It is our desire to instill within students the ability to distinguish between right and wrong, to take the responsibility to personally do right and to exercise initiative in leading others in the right direction. We feel that the greatest need of our nation and world today is well-trained Christian leaders. 

Manners and Courtesies – Unconsciously practicing good manners and etiquette is our goal for GCA students. Good manners and courtesy are the consideration of the rights and feeling of others and not drawing attention to oneself. 

Statement of Faith

We believe in the plenary, verbal inspiration of the Scriptures which guarantees their accuracy and establishes them as man’s only authoritative source and guide for life and faith. 

We believe in the One, True, Living and Eternal God Who exists equally in three persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. 

We believe in the deity, virgin birth, vicarious atonement, bodily resurrection, and the imminent return of Jesus Christ for His bride, the Church. 

We believe in the necessity of the new birth for all fallen men, which is a work of grace wrought by the Holy Spirit conditioned by a personal faith in Jesus Christ as one’s own Lord and Savior. 

We believe in the local church and the church universal. The local church is constituted of an assembly of born-again believers who assemble to preach the Gospel, administer the ordinances, and practice Christian discipline. The universal church is made of all born-again believers of all areas and ages. 


In addition to a quality education, it is our goal for each student to adapt these 5 Foundations: 

INTEGRITY: Do what is right simply because it is right 

Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil (Proverbs 4:26-27). We should each strive to live an honest life of the highest character regardless of consequences. We should take special care to ensure that we are doing what is right in all circumstances no matter how important or trivial they may seem.

RESPECT: Genuinely value others and their property 

Whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them (Matthew 7:12). We can live out the golden rule by building others up, giving them the benefit of the doubt, and seeking to resolve conflict privately and efficiently. 

SAFETY: Look out for the well-being of yourself and those around you 

Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others (Philippians 2:3-4). One of the primary purposes of the body of Christ is to meet the physical needs of others. Our own comfort or convenience should never be more important to us that the well-being of others. Everyone has a responsibility to promote a safe environment while actively avoiding actions that could cause harm.

RESPONSIBILITY: Be accountable to yourself and others for what you can control 

But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor. For each will have to bear his own load (Galatians 6:4-5). Maturity is marked by the ability to make wise decisions regarding use of time and resources to accomplish specific goals. Only through self-sufficiency and hard work can one take pride in individual effort and the results of labor. 

HUMILITY: Follow Christ’s example of self-denial by being a servant to others 

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men (Philippians 2:5-7). Jesus valued the salvation of man more than His own identity as God, His position in heaven, and His own physical life. Gratitude for His sacrifice should drive every Christian to think of others before self and live out this attitude through service of God and man.