Winning Beyond the Scoreboard: Athletics and Character Development at Christian Middle Schools

a team picture of the coed private middle school soccer team at Lakeside Christian School pose in their black home game jerseys while standing on a green soccer field with their two Christian coaches

At Lakeside Christian School, a private middle school in Clearwater, FL, we believe that athletics is about more than just winning games. It’s a vital component of our approach to education, nurturing not only physical health but also character development in our students. In this article, we’ll delve deeper into the profound impact of our Christian middle school’s athletics program, exploring how it fosters teamwork, resilience, leadership, and values that last a lifetime.

Fostering Teamwork and Sportsmanship

In our middle school athletics program, teamwork and sportsmanship are not just buzzwords; they are fundamental principles that guide everything we do. Whether it’s on the basketball court, soccer field, or track, our students learn the importance of collaboration and respect for their teammates and opponents alike. Through practices, games, and competitions, they develop essential communication skills, cooperation, and empathy. We believe that these qualities are invaluable not only in sports but also in all aspects of life, laying the foundation for successful relationships and endeavors in the future.

Encouraging Growth and Resilience

Athletics provide numerous opportunities for personal growth and resilience. At Lakeside Christian School, we challenge our students to push past their limits, face adversity head-on, and strive for excellence. Whether they win or lose, they learn valuable lessons about perseverance, determination, and grit. Through setbacks and successes alike, they develop the resilience to navigate life’s challenges with courage and resilience. These experiences help them build confidence in their abilities, develop a growth mindset, and cultivate a willingness to embrace challenges as opportunities for growth.

Promoting Leadership and Responsibility

In our Christian middle school athletics program, leadership is not reserved for team captains; it’s something that every student is encouraged to cultivate. Whether it’s leading warm-up drills, organizing team events, or mentoring younger athletes, our students learn the importance of taking initiative, making decisions, and setting a positive example for others. These experiences help them develop essential leadership skills such as communication, decision-making, and problem-solving, preparing them to be effective leaders both on and off the field.

Emphasizing Character and Values

At Lakeside Christian School, we believe that athletics is a powerful tool for instilling Christian character and Biblical values in our students. Through our coaches’ guidance and mentorship, students learn essential virtues such as honesty, integrity, and respect. They also learn the importance of fair play, sportsmanship, and self-discipline. These values form the bedrock of our school’s culture, shaping the way our students conduct themselves in all aspects of life. By emphasizing character development alongside athletic skill, we aim to nurture well-rounded individuals who are not only competent athletes but also compassionate and responsible citizens.

Building Community and Camaraderie

Athletics play a crucial role in building a sense of community and camaraderie among our students. Whether they’re cheering on their teammates from the sidelines, celebrating victories together, or consoling each other after defeats, our students form lasting bonds and friendships through sports. These shared experiences create a supportive and inclusive environment where every student feels valued and accepted, fostering a sense of belonging that extends beyond the playing field. The sense of unity and camaraderie forged through athletics enriches the overall school culture and contributes to a positive and uplifting atmosphere where students thrive academically, socially, and emotionally.

Middle School Sports Programs at Lakeside Christian School

At Lakeside Christian School, we are proud to offer a diverse range of middle school sports programs designed to engage and inspire our students. From football to soccer, basketball to volleyball, baseball to softball, cross country to cheerleading, we provide opportunities for students to explore their athletic passions and develop their skills in a supportive and nurturing environment. Our middle school sports teams compete in various leagues and tournaments through our memberships in the Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) and the Sunshine State Athletic Conference (SSAC), allowing our students to test their abilities against other schools and athletes.

Lakeside’s Athletic Philosophy

At Lakeside Christian School, our athletic philosophy is grounded in our commitment to helping student-athletes develop a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ. We believe that athletics provide valuable opportunities for students to apply God’s Word and principles to their lives, both on and off the field. Our dedicated Christian coaches play a crucial role in guiding our athletes in integrating their faith with their athletic endeavors, encouraging them to do their best for God’s glory in every aspect of their lives.

In addition to spiritual growth, Lakeside Athletics also emphasizes the development of important values and character traits in our student-athletes. Through discipline and physical training, we seek to instill values such as commitment, unity, responsibility, discipline, respect, and integrity. These core values serve as the foundation for our athletic program, guiding our students as they navigate the challenges and triumphs of athletic competition and preparing them to become principled leaders and citizens in their communities.


At Lakeside Christian School we recognize the profound impact that athletics can have on a student’s comprehensive development. Through our Christian middle school athletics program, we strive to cultivate not only skilled athletes but also resilient, compassionate, and morally upright individuals who are prepared to make a positive difference in the world. By emphasizing teamwork, resilience, leadership, and values, we aim to inspire our students to excel both on and off the field, equipping them with the tools and values they need to succeed in life. As educators and mentors, we are committed to providing our students with opportunities for growth, character development, and personal excellence, ensuring that they are well-prepared to face life’s challenges with courage, integrity, and grace.

If you’re interested in learning more about Lakeside Christian School and how our middle school sports programs can benefit your child’s education, we invite you to schedule a tour of our campus. During your visit, you’ll have the opportunity to meet with our faculty and staff, explore our facilities, and discover firsthand what sets Lakeside apart as one of the premier Christian middle schools in Clearwater, FL. Contact us today to schedule your tour and take the next step in your child’s academic and athletic journey with Lakeside Christian School.

To schedule a tour of our campus or to learn more about Lakeside Christian School, one of the best private Christian middle schools schools in Clearwater, FL, contact us now.

December 2022- School Newsletter

2nd Quarter Highlights

The 2nd quarter was a success with students being challenged in their core subject classes,
growing deeper in their faith during bible class, developing healthy habits and strong friendships through athletics, and having fun while learning in a Christ-centered environment.

Lakeside Gives Back!

October 2022 – School Newsletter

1st Quarter Highlights

Our campus beautification project has made a huge difference and creates a welcoming environment.

Thank you to all of our staff and volunteers for their time, energy and talents to make this possible!

Lakeside Christian School is Growing!

The school year began with a 19% increase in students compared to last school year. We are thrilled to have added new students to our Lakeside family…

The Role of Athletics in Your Child’s Education

As private and public schools across the country build their budgets for the next school year, they’ll be allocating millions of dollars in spending plans to fund scholastic sports. This includes the cost of coaching salaries, equipment, transportation, facility rentals, and other items necessary to provide students with the opportunity to participate in athletics at school. During the time of a pandemic that’s quickly morphing into a major economic crisis, it’s clear why some parents and teachers alike may be questioning whether athletic programs are worth the cost.

To answer this question, we have to consider the role of athletics in your child’s education. In this article, we’ll explore why Lakeside Christian School, one of the top private high schools in Clearwater, FL, and many other schools believe that athletics has a profound impact on your child’s school performance, values, and well-being. For more information or to schedule a tour of our campus, please give us a call at (727) 261-0937.

School Performance

Contrary to the widely-held notion that athletics is detrimental to a student’s academic performance, recent studies have shown that student-athletes are just as successful if not more successful than non-athletes in terms of academic achievement. In a report published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), physical activity was consistently related to positive outcomes, including academic achievement, cognitive skills (memory and concentration), and academic behaviors.

Increased time spent on physical activity also did not detract from academic performance even when less time was devoted to subjects other than physical education. This strongly aligns with the National Association for Sport and Physical Education’s recommendation that students participate in at least 60 minutes of physical activity daily.  In addition to improved concentration and academic achievement, those who participate in high school sports are also 15 percent more likely to attend college as a result.

Related: LCS Athletics Quick Facts


The athletic program at Lakeside Christian School, one of the best private schools in Clearwater, FL, plays a crucial role in teaching our students to act with discipline, respect themselves and their peers, assume responsibility, apply God’s word and his principles to their lives, and develop a commitment to their team and the school as a whole. The student-athletes at Lakeside Christian School serve as role models for their fellow classmates and members of their community. Other essential life skills students frequently take away from athletic programs include:

  • Determination
  • Teamwork
  • Time management
  • Integrity
  • Commitment
  • Unity

Related: What Sets Lakeside Christian School Apart From Other Private Schools in Clearwater, FL?


Finally, athletics also plays a role in the well-being of your child. Since student-athletes have a greater sense of personal responsibility and initiative, they are more likely to build stronger relationships with their peers, have higher self-esteem, and participate more in volunteerism. A recent study conducted by Gallup on behalf of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) found that students who competed in athletics were more likely to report as “thriving” when it comes to community engagement, job satisfaction, and relationships.

If you’re looking to reap any of the benefits of including a strong athletics program in your child’s education, reach out to Lakeside Christian School — one of the best private high schools in Clearwater, FL that currently offers varsity football, volleyball, baseball, softball, basketball, cross country, and more.

If you would like to learn more about Lakeside Christian School, one of the top private schools in Clearwater, FL, please give us a call at (727) 239-7808 or schedule a tour of our campus.


Outside the Classroom at Lakeside Christian School

The activities students partake in outside the classroom is as equally important as what they do inside the classroom. School athletics and extracurricular programs help boost your child receive a perfectly balanced educational experience. Students participating in one of our school’s seasonal productions or taking the field for their respective athletic team learn how to be a part of something larger than themselves. 

Lakeside Christian School offers a variety of other extracurricular activities, including tutoring lessons and educational programs to ensure that your child is receiving an excellent education at one of the top private high schools in Clearwater, FL.       

Athletic Opportunities

The benefits of participating in high school athletics have been studied across the country. Athletic programs provide students with real-life problem solving skills, character building, and a great opportunity to bond with their peers. At Lakeside Christian, we offer a full complement of seasonal sports, including but not limited to: football, basketball (for boys and girls), baseball and softball, soccer, and track and field. 

High school students aren’t the only age group that can participate in athletics. Middle school and elementary level sports are also available for students to enjoy, including coed soccer, flag football, volleyball, and many more options. Our devoted staff of coaches build strong relationships with our students by teaching them the fundamentals of each sport and  encouraging them to strive for their very best. 

Lakeside Christian School is a member of the Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) and the Florida Christian Association of Private and Parochial Schools (FCAPPS) competing against other private high schools in Clearwater, FL, and the surrounding Tampa Bay area. We want our students to take full advantage of all the opportunities they’re presented at our school.

Related: LCS Athletics Quick Facts

The Arts

Personal expression through art can be one of the most powerful and thoughtful exercises in the world. At Lakeside Christian, we encourage all of our students to unveil their creativity. Our private high school in Clearwater, FL, boasts a full theatre department that produces three outstanding productions each year. We also provide students with the opportunity to helm their own production with a set of student directed plays. In the past, our student led productions have included works from Shakespeare and a musical of the acclaimed novel “Bridge to Terabithia.”

Related: LCS Fine Arts Quick Facts

Along with our theatre program, we take great pride in our visual technology department, where students learn how to produce, film, and edit videos. Students in the past have crafted commercials, music videos, and various other video projects as part of this program. At Lakeside Christian, we offer a variety of creative and artistic after-school programs, including music lessons (guitar, piano, singing). Any of our students who sing or pursue a musical instrument are given the opportunity to play at our chapel service.

Other Extracurriculars at Lakeside

Daily tutoring sessions outside the classroom are strongly encouraged at Lakeside Christian, as we want to enhance your child’s success in their academic pursuits. Our afterschool homework program allows students to focus and work through coursework that may be particularly challenging. Extracurriculars at Lakeside Chrisrtian School provide our students with a constructive outlet to excel in. As a smaller private highschool in Clearwater, FL we are able to focus on our modest number of students to better understand your child’s interests so that they can excel in and out of school.   

If you would like to learn more about private high schools in Clearwater, FL, like Lakeside Christian School, please give us a call at (727) 239-7808 or schedule a tour of our campus.


Why So Many Parents Choose Lakeside Christian School

Lakeside Christian School is a small private school offering a comprehensive education program from kindergarten through 12th grade. Parents who choose to send their children to Lakeside Christian often describe our school as one big family that truly cares for each other. Our mission is to educate, mentor, and inspire children to be the best version of themselves. 

We know that there are many schools to choose from, including Christian high schools in Clearwater, FL, but we separate ourselves from the pack by providing students with a scholastic experience that is second to none. Throughout this article we will provide a selection of parent testimonials to give you a better understanding of what life is like at Lakeside Christian School.

A Closer Connection

As a faith-based school, Lakeside Christian School prides itself on strengthening our students’ self belief and personal bond with their community. Some of the advantages offered by our school include a better student ecosystem, elevated teacher satisfaction, and more individualized attention for disadvantaged students. A modern approach in the classroom allows our teachers and faculty to build a rapport with our students and find the right tools to foster their academic and spiritual growth. 

Related: The Benefits of a Christian Education

Listed below are a few brief testimonials from parents and alumni explaining why Lakeside Christian School is one of the best Christian high schools in Clearwater, FL.

 On selecting the right environment for your child:

“Lakeside Christian School was the best decision that I made when choosing a school for my son! They are so loving and genuinely care for all of their students. My son loves being in school and is actually sad on the weekends that he isn’t at school!”

Submitted by a parent in December 2016


On administrative staff and teachers dedicated to their students:

“My son has been in this school for 3 years now and I can only say that he loves this school. I have seen him the way he feels when he is around his teachers and all the children in the school. I have the most respect for every administrative person and the teachers too. This is the best school we have found so far. Keep up the good job!”

Submitted by a parent on September 29, 2015


On the comprehensive school experience we provide our students:

“Lakeside Christian School has great academics, great class sizes that help with one-on-one attention to the students, a wonderful athletics program and excellent Biblical instructions and teaching. The school also offers a wonderful chapel meeting once a week for all the grade levels.” 

Submitted by a parent on September 28, 2015


On our classroom environment and extracurricular activities:

“Lakeside Christian School provides exceptional education tailored to the needs of the individual students. The environment is fun, caring, and Christ centered. In addition to the classroom, there are many fun extracurricular activities. I recommended this outstanding school.”

Submitted by a parent on June 30, 2019


On graduating from our school:

“I am proud to say that I am a 2015 graduate of Lakeside. Being at Lakeside was the most influential time of my life. Lakeside is not only a school to me the close one on one interaction makes it like a family. They display a strong Christian atmosphere not only through words but through their actions. I would highly recommend Lakeside Christian school.”

Submitted by an alumni on July 17, 2015


At Lakeside Christian School, we believe strongly in providing students with a well-rounded education and the opportunity to thrive in extracurricular activities. If you are still unsure how your child will fit in at a Christian high school in Clearwater, FL, be sure to give us a quick search online. We’re confident that our excellent reviews will prove to you why we’re the perfect fit for your child.

If you would like to learn more about Lakeside Christian School, a Christian high school in Clearwater, FL, please give us a call at (727) 239-7808 or schedule a tour of our campus.


What Colleges Look for in Your Child’s School

Everyone knows that college application season is the most stressful time for parents and students. College admissions offices are always changing their criteria for what they look for in an applicant, but a few constants remain the same. At Lakeside Christian School, one of the best Christian schools in Clearwater, FL, we know what colleges are looking for in your child’s education. We work with students to properly prepare them well in advance of the college application process. This article will discuss what colleges will specifically look for in your child’s high school. 

1. Diversification and Rigor of Classes

Class selection is a crucial component for any high school student’s career. The rigor of your child’s classes will stand out when admission offices look over applications. Lakeside Christian School offers a comprehensive course load with small class sizes in order to better develop your child’s strengths. Diversification has never been more important when it comes to applications. Now more than ever, college admission boards are looking for someone who not only focuses on one subject but also challenges themselves by expanding their class selection. We strongly encourage our students to branch out and explore new curriculum so that they may expand their knowledge.  

Related: College Visit and Application Tips

2. Extra Curricular Activities

Activities outside of the classroom should be featured in your child’s application as much as their coursework. Participating in sports and other school activities showcases to colleges that your son or daughter is a go-getter who is eager to be involved with their school, community, and peers. Lakeside Christian School offers a full complement of competitive athletic teams for all grades ranging from elementary to highschool. As a preeminent Clearwater, FL, Christian school, we want our students to strive for greatness in all of their endeavors, whether it be on the courts or as a member of one of our school clubs. We enable our students to boast a plethora of experiences to call upon when it is time to apply to universities.

Related: Lakeside Christian School Athletics 

3. Leadership Roles in the Community

Community is the foundational piece that Lakeside Christian School was built on. In order to be accepted into most colleges today, your child must be involved in some form of service for their community. As a faith-based school, we strongly encourage our students to love and care for those around them. College admission offices search for well-rounded students who have a solid grasp on what it takes to be an exemplary student. From their first day of elementary school up through their graduation day, we mold all of our students into leaders and work to prepare them for the next stage of their lives.        

If you would like to learn more about Christian schools in Clearwater, FL, like Lakeside Christian School, please give us a call at (727) 239-7808 or schedule a tour of our campus.


LCS Athletics Quick Facts

We’ve already established Lakeside’s excellent academics and biblical foundation. You may want to know about some of our extracurricular activities. Here are ten quick facts about LCS athletics:

  1. Lakeside’s varsity football team has made the FCAPPS state championship game four out of the last eight years.
  2. Lakeside offers 24 sports teams for elementary, middle, and high school students.
  3. Lakeside currently has six graduates playing college athletics.
  4. 64% of  students participate in Lakeside Athletics.
  5. There are six former Lakeside basketball players that have scored over 1,000 points during their high school careers at Lakeside.
  6. From 1979 – 1985, the Lakeside boys soccer team won the Suncoast Christian Conference State Championship.
  7. Since 2008, two Lakeside Football players have been awarded the FCAPPS league MVP.
  8. In the last eight years, Lakeside has added six elementary sports teams: four middle school sports teams, and four varsity sports teams.
  9. Next school year (2016-2017), Lakeside will add elementary soccer, baseball, flag football, volleyball, and basketball for kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd grade students.
  10. Lakeside is a part of the Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) and the Florida Christian Association of Private and Parochial School (FCAPPS).

Lakeside Christian School has a talented and caring coaching staff that builds healthy relationships with the students while encouraging them to do their best, always for God’s glory. If your child enjoys athletics, consider booking a tour with LCS today and find out more about their athletic program!

Special thanks to our Athletic Director, James Coffman, for the information!


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