Dixon, Illinois (population 16,000) is located along the Rock River in Lee County in
Northwestern Illinois. Illinois Routes 2, 38, 26 as well as U.S. Route 52 and Interstate 88 all
lead you to the "Petunia Capital of the World". The "Overland Route" of the Union Pacific railroad
runs through the south part of town and the Illinois Central once did.
Educational studies were not too far to find for Dixon residents. In addition to primary education, Dixon
was also home to the Rock River Military Academy, Rock River University, Steinman Institute, Dixon Business College, and Northern Illinois State Normal School.
The city is located on both sides of the Rock River, settled on the North side and the South side. The
Bethel Evangelical Congregational Church is one of the oldest churches and Dixon, and is currently located on North
Court in the north side of Dixon. For many years, the church offered grade school education, and in the late 1970s and early
1980s, talks of expanding its curriculum to offer high school education were in the works.
High school classes started in the church basement before the building of
the ministry center. By that time, junior high students from the Faith Christian School (run by the Faith Assembly Church
of Grand Detour) began attending Bethel.
When a new Faith Christian campus opened north of nearby Grand Detour in
1986, the junior high students began attending that school. High school students were moved to Faith from Bethel in 1988,
bringing an end to high school education at the Bethel School.
Today, Bethel Evangelical Congregational is a strong supporter of the
Faith Christian School, which continues to operate today. The ministry center building which housed the high school students
continues to serve the needs of the church.
High School "Quick Facts"
Year opened: 1981??
Year closed: 1988