Why GCA?

  • We believe in God, teach from the Bible, and pray.

  • We are academically rigorous. Our students have a track record of doing well on standards testing.

  • We value education and understand that our children need proper training.

  • We have dedicated teachers and a low teacher-to-student ratio.

Classical methods have stood the test of time, and fit with the age and development levels of the students. Learning should be a pleasurable endeavor, and one that presents a challenge. The learning environment at Grace Christian Academy enables each student to develop a true sense of personal accomplishment and an understanding of his or her God-given abilities.


Mission Statement

Grace Christian Academy is committed to providing an education that is academically rigorous and grounded in Scripture with a Biblical world view. Our goal is to raise up leaders who can think clearly and concisely, and express themselves in matters of both faith and life. Our plan to accomplish this goal is based on three principles.

  • The first principle is complete submission to our Lord Jesus Christ. We believe that God’s character is revealed in His Word and every facet of creation. All knowledge is interrelated and can instruct us about God himself. Therefore, we will teach all subjects as a part of an integrated whole with Christ at the center.

  • The second principle is to base our curriculum on the classical model of the Trivium, where the child receives rigorous instruction in the grammar of all subjects, the logic of such subjects, and the way such subjects may be presented in an elegant, persuasive, and appealing manner. This is performed at the three educational development stages of the child. We will also emphasize the grammar, logic, and rhetoric of each subject, in a proportion that gives full consideration to the age and abilities of the student.

  • Thirdly, the Bible clearly instructs parents to “bring children up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” Therefore, under the delegation of the family, we seek to teach and discipline in a manner consistent with the Bible and to ensure that the parental authority over the education of their children is respected and reinforced. This can only be accomplished through direct parental involvement in Grace Christian Academy.


Statement of Faith

THE WORD OF GOD.

We believe that the Bible, both Old and New Testaments, is the complete and revealed Word of God, fully inspired and without error in the original writings. We believe that it is wholly sufficient as Divine revelation and it alone has supreme authority in all matters of faith and conduct. (Psalm 12:6; 19:7-11; Isaiah 40:8; Matthew 5:18; 2 Timothy 3:15-17; 2 Peter 1:21; Heb. 1:1-3).

THE TRINITY.

We believe that there is one living and true God, eternally existing in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. These Three, being one in essence, are co-equal, co-eternal, and co-existing, and perform distinct but harmonious functions in creation, redemption, and providence. (Deut. 6:4; Matt. 28:19-20; 2 Cor. 13:14).

GOD THE FATHER.

We believe in God, The Father, an infinite personal spirit, perfect in holiness, justice, wisdom, power, and love. We believe that He is unchangeable in His being, all glorious in His nature, and absolutely sovereign over creation, providence, and redemption. (Deuteronomy 6:4; Jn. 4:23-24; Isa. 6:1-6; Psa. 115:3; 145:5; I John 4:16).

JESUS CHRIST.

We believe in Jesus Christ, fully God and fully man, God’s only begotten Son, conceived by the Holy Spirit. We believe in His virgin birth, sinless life, miracles, and teachings. We believe in His substitutionary atoning death, bodily resurrection, ascension into heaven, perpetual intercession for His people, and personal visible return to earth. (John 1:1-14; Acts 1:11; Phil. 2:5-11; I Corinthians 15:3-4; Hebrews 1:1-10; 4:14).

THE HOLY SPIRIT.

We believe in the Holy Spirit who came from the Father and Son to convict the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment, and to apply the benefits of Christ’s work to the elect in regeneration and sanctification. We believe that every believer is baptized by the Holy Spirit and indwelt at salvation. The Holy Spirit sovereignly bestows a spiritual gift(s), helps, teaches and guides every believer. (John 3:3-7; 16:8-14; 1 Cor. 12:13; 1 Cor. 3:16; Rom. 8:9; Romans 8:26; Ephesians 5:18).

SALVATION.

We believe that all men are sinners in Adam, by nature and by choice and are therefore dead in sin and under condemnation. We believe that God in His free and sovereign grace saves sinners as He wills. Salvation is by faith alone in Christ alone. True believers will persevere in faith and good works unto the end. This good news of salvation is freely offered to all and requires faith in Christ, which is enabled by the Holy Spirit, making those who are ordained to eternal life willing and able to believe. (Acts 13:48; Romans 3:10-18, 23; 6:23; Jonah 2:9; Eph. 2:8-9; Titus 3:5; Phil. 1:6; 1 Pet. 1:5; Heb. 12:14; Rev. 22:17).

THE CHURCH.

We believe in the universal church, a living spiritual body of which Christ is the head, composed of people who have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit and put their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. We believe in the local church, whose membership consists of a company of baptized believers in Jesus Christ, associated for worship, Bible study, prayer, the ordinances, fellowship, and the evangelism of a lost world. We believe in the autonomy and independence of the local church, although cooperation with other churches, associations, or organizations may prove beneficial. However, cooperation is voluntary and may be terminated at any time. (Matthew 16:18; Acts 2:42-47; Ephesians 4:1-15; 1 Cor. 16:1).

CHRISTIAN CONDUCT.

We believe that a Christian should live for the glory of God and that he should seek the well-being of his fellow-man; that his conduct should be one of pursuing blamelessness before the world; that he should seek to be a faithful steward of his possessions; that he should seek to realize for himself and others the full stature of maturity in Christ. We disavow a legalistic approach to the Christian life and believe in the liberty of conscience. (1 Cor. 10:31; Romans 12:1-2; Titus 2:11-13; Rom. 14:1-15:6).

THE ORDINANCES.

We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ has committed two ordinances to the church to be observed until the return of Christ: baptism by immersion and the Lord’s Supper. By baptism a believer publicly declares his forgiveness of sin, union with Christ, and new life in Christ. Baptism is only for those who profess faith in Christ. In the Lord’s Supper, the believer is dramatically reminded of the sacrifice of Christ for our sin. The Lord’s Supper is communion with God in Christ, as the believer spiritually feeds on Christ by faith, and communion with the body of Christ. We believe that these two ordinances are not means for salvation, but are visible signs of an invisible faith. (Matthew 3:13-17; 26:26-29; I Corinthians 10:16 , 17; 11:23 , 24).

LAST THINGS.

We believe in the personal and imminent return of our Lord Jesus Christ to earth. His coming will be visible, for the consummation of His eternal Kingdom. We believe in the resurrection of the body, the final judgment, the endless suffering of the wicked, and the eternal blessedness of the believer. (Matthew 24:1-51, 25:41; John 14:1-3, I Corinthians 15; II Corinthians 5:10 ; I Thessalonians 4:13 -18; Rev. 20:11-15).

CREEDS AND CONFESSION.

We adhere to the ecumenical creeds of the historic Christian Church: the Apostles Creed, the Nicene Creed and the Athanasian Creed. We also adopt the 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith as our confessional standard in which we are in substantial agreement. We recognize that only the Bible is infallible. However, these historic creeds and this reformed confession provide a clear basis for our doctrinal standard and unity.


Educational Philosophy

Below are the most important philosophical elements that we at Grace Christian Academy believe distinguish our approach to education.

  • We believe that the Bible clearly instructs parents, not the Church or State, to “bring children up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” The Church’s commission is essentially to spread the Gospel and train believers (Matt.28:18-20). The State has been directed to enforce God’s laws and protect the innocent (Romans 13). The Church trains parents and the State protects families. The Family raises and educates children (Eph.6:1-4). Therefore, we seek to teach and discipline in a manner consistent with the Bible and a godly home environment.

  • We believe that God’s character is revealed not only in His Word, but also in every facet of creation. Therefore, we teach that all knowledge is interrelated and can instruct us about God Himself. God wants us to love Him with our minds, as well as with our hearts, souls, and strength (Matt. 22:37 ). Therefore, we seek to individually challenge children at all levels and teach them how to learn, by using the centuries-old, proven classical method, incorporating instruction in Latin.

  • We want to support parents as they teach their children that all they do should be done “heartily, as unto the Lord.” Therefore, we seek to encourage quality academic work and maintain high standards of conduct. This includes biblical discipline principles.

  • We believe that as long as a child is under the parents’ authority and undergoing formal education, he should be trained biblically (Deut. 6:6,7; Prov. 22:6).

  • Above all, parents can be confident that their student, at every stage of his development in school, will be loved with Christ’s love at Grace Christian Academy.


Curriculum Goals

Kindergarten

Phonic training (early reading), math properties (patterns, adding, graphing), science units, community helpers/jobs/locations, Bible stories/characters/songs, integrated art projects, PE skills/games, integrated music

First Grade

Phonic training/literature reading, math problem solving/properties, integrated (with reading, math, art) science units, spelling rules/memorizations, parts of speech, history units (famous places in the world & U.S., etc.), Bible reading/memorizations, integrated art, PE skills/games, thematic music/rhythm instruments

Second Grade

Guided independent reading of books, math properties/problem solving, science quarterly units, spelling rules/patterns/memorization, cursive handwriting, basic English grammar, history units in early U.S./Nevada History, Bible readings/memorizations, integrated art projects, PE skills/games, thematic music/rhythm instruments

Third Grade

Guided independent reading of books, math skills/problem solving/integrated, science units (P/C/B/ES*), spelling rules/patterns/lists, cursive/essay practice, English grammar, Latin I (vocabulary/chants), U.S. Geography/early U.S. History units, Bible readings/memorizations, integrated art projects, PE skills/games, thematic music/recorders

Fourth Grade

Monitored, independent reading of books (integrated with history, science), math skills/problem solving/integrated, science units (P/C/B/ES*), spelling lists/patterns/rules, writing assignments, English grammar (integrate with Latin), Latin II (vocabulary/early grammar), U.S. History units (War for Independence to present), Bible readings/oral presentations, integrated art projects, PE skills/games, music/recorders

Fifth Grade

Monitored, independent reading of books (integrated with history, science), math skills/problem solving/integrated, science units (P/C/B/ES*), spelling lists/patterns/rules, writing assignments, English grammar (integrate with Latin), Latin III (grammar/translation), World Geography/Early World History units, Bible readings/oral presentations, integrated art projects, PE skills/games, music

Sixth Grade

Monitored, independent reading of books (integrated with history, science, Bible), math skills/problem solving/integrated, science units (P/C/B/ES*), spelling lists/patterns/rules, writing assignments, English grammar (integrate with Latin), Latin IV (grammar/translation), World Geography/Post-Medieval World History units, Bible readings/oral presentations, integrated art projects, PE skills/games, music

Seventh Grade

Monitored, independent reading of literature (may be integrated with history, science, Bible), Pre-Algebra, & intro to Geometry, Statistics, Probability, Scientific Notation, Trigonometry, physical science(exploring creation), US History, English Grammar Writing, Bible (Old Testament Survey), PE skills/rules of sport/fitness training, electives (computers & technology, chorus, practical Christianity, journalism/annuals, etc.)

Eight Grade

Monitored, independent reading of literature (may be integrated with history, Bible), Algebra I, World Geography, English Grammar, Writing, Logic Bible (New Testament Survey), PE skills/rules of sport/fitness training, electives (art, music, chorus, practical Christianity, journalism/annuals, etc.)

*Physics/Chemistry/Biology/Earth Science


Why Classical?

In the 1940’s the British author, Dorothy Sayers, wrote an essay titled “The Lost Tools of Learning.” In it, she calls for a return to the application of the Seven Liberal Arts of ancient education, the first three being the Trivium. We highly recommend that you read that essay.

A classical school is one that utilizes the Trivium as described in that essay in its approach to instruction. This methodology corresponds to the developmental phases a child grows through in school. These three phases correspond to the Biblical categories of knowledge, understanding, and wisdom. The grammar or knowledge stage is the “gathering information” stage in which children memorize facts and learn rules and instructions. This capitalizes on children’s high capability of memorization in early ages. In the logic or understanding stage, students learn discernment and good judgment. They learn the relationships within knowledge how particular facts are connected and related to each other. In the rhetoric or wisdom stage, students are taught how to apply knowledge and understanding to various circumstances and situations.

Children grow naturally through these developmental stages. A classical education takes advantage of these stages by combining them with the manner in which all subjects are taught. An acquisition of knowledge and understanding is thus supported by the natural developmental abilities of the student, helping content to be more easily mastered.



Why Christian?

Christian school is an educational institution that approaches the nature of knowledge from a Biblical perspective. In Colossians 2:3, the Apostle Paul tells us that “in Christ are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” Jesus Christ, Himself, is the source of all wisdom and knowledge. All wisdom and knowledge then are ultimately designed so that we come to the true knowledge of God’s Son (Col. 2:2). If all true knowledge finds both its source and its end in Christ, then education by necessity must be Christian, that is, Christ-centered.

A Christian school is secondly an educational institution that approaches the students from a Biblical perspective. The Presbyterian theologian of a century ago, Robert Lewis Dabney, noted, “True education is, in a sense, a spiritual process; it is the nurture of the soul.” All students are made in the image of God, and their education should encompass what they are as body-soul human beings. Thus, education is a spiritual process that sees the student as a whole person, mind, body, and spirit. A Christian school therefore, sees that all true education is Christ-centered it should point us to the Son of God, whether the subject be science, math, or P.E. It is the whole truth for the whole person, body, mind, and soul, that leads the student to glorify Christ in his life with his mind.

“The real difference between Christian schools and all other educational systems, public or private, must be traced back to its source in two antithetical worldviews: on the one hand, the worldview that takes the living God, Creator, Revealer, and Redeemer, as its starting point, listening dependently to His revelation in Scripture, creation, and providence; and, on the other hand, the worldview that, explicitly or implicitly, denies that the God of the Bible is the source of all reality and the measure of all truth.”
Dennis Johnson, Professor of Pastoral Theology at Westminster Seminary in Escondido, California and editor of the book Foundations of Christian Education.

A classical Christian school uniquely joins two vital tenets in primary school education: the classical methodology and the Christian worldview. By utilizing the classical method, the teachers at Grace Christian Academy are better able to pass on the invaluable “tools of learning,” which will be used to help build the foundation of education, with Christ as the cornerstone.

At Grace Christian Academy , we apply the classical method of education to every discipline (English, Latin, math, history, geography, science, music, art, and logic) through a variety of teaching techniques and hands-on activities carefully related to a child’s age and stage of development.



GCA Faculty & Staff

Gianna Grajeda

Kindergarten:
Gianna Grajeda ggrajeda@gcanv.com

Gianna Grajeda moved to Nevada from Houston, Texas in 2006. While in Texas, she received an Early Childhood Education (ECE) degree. She has specialized in ECE for 18 years, teaching Pre-Kindergarten through 2nd grade. After moving to Nevada and working with a deaf student, Mrs. Grajeda was inspired to obtain a degree in Deaf Studies, which she is currently working on. Mrs. Grajeda joined the GCA teaching staff after she discovered that the school curriculum is centered on the fundamentals of Classical Education. She says, “Classical Education fits perfectly with the developmental stages of the growing child. GCA’s Kindergarten and 1st grade provide the best reading and grammar programs I have come across in all my years teaching. It is not only fun to teach, but the students really enjoy the songs which help them to recall information easily. The reading curriculum makes the process of learning to read fun and easy for the students.” This is Mrs. Grajeda’s third year teaching at GCA. She not only loves the school, but her son who attends GCA has enjoyed the school and is a very proficient reader and writer. Mrs. Grajeda enjoys hiking, Bible studies, and spending time with her husband and 4 sons in her spare time.



Megan Wilhelm

1st/2nd Grade:
Megan Wilhelm mwilhelm@gcanv.com

Megan Wilhelm was raised in a loving, homeschooling family. As a homeschool ​​ ​​ student, she grew to love not only learning, but also to understand how learning occurs. After obtaining an Associate of Arts with extra coursework in American Sign Language, she began working towards an education degree. She then graduated from Western Governors University with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary and special education. She has worked in a wide variety of educational settings with diverse children ranging from preschool to 8th grade. Miss Wilhelm loves learning about her students and finding creative ways to help them internalize knowledge and skills. One of her greatest joys in the classroom is seeing her young students light up when they talk about the beauty of Christ’s love and the greatness of who God is and what He has done.












Mandy Frost

3rd/4th Grade:
Mandy Frost mfrost@gcanv.com

Mandy Frost was born and raised in Missouri. She holds a B.A. in Elementary and Deaf Education from Fontbonne University in St. Louis, MO, and an M.Ed. in Early Childhood Education from Brenau University in Gainesville, GA. Mrs. Frost has been teaching since 2005, and began her career in Seattle, Washington, before moving to Carson City in the summer of 2012. She is ecstatic to be serving at GCA, as she is a strong supporter of the foundations and fundamentals of Classical Christian Education. It is a thrill for her to see her students blossom in their walks with the Lord each year! Mrs. Frost has been married since 2008, and she and her husband have two boys, Emerson and Alexander. Mrs. Frost is a huge sports fan, often rooting on the St. Louis Cardinals and the Chicago Bears.



Lauren Dimock

5th/6th Grade:
Bertie Rice brice@gcanv.com

​​Mrs. Bertie (Roberta) Rice moved to Nevada from Minnesota with her husband, Vic, in 1999. Vic and Bertie met in Texas at LeTourneau University, where she earned a BA in Bible with a minor in History. Because Vic’s career as a project manager, they have lived in Ontario and Alberta, Canada, and in Rhode Island, Illinois, Minnesota and now Nevada. They were blessed to live in Minnesota for twenty-five years where all three of their children grew up and were active in the cold outdoor sports. Mrs. Rice enjoys reading, teaching, traveling and spending time with her husband, children and fourteen grandchildren. When her children were younger she became interested in and researched the Classical Education Method of teaching. She was delighted to be able to teach Kindergarten for six years, and then second grade one year at Grace Christian Academy. Her great desire is to see students not only learn the academics, but also to love to learn, and to love the Lord Jesus Christ.



Deana Madraso

7th/8th Grade:
Deana Madraso dmadraso@gcanv.com

Deana Madraso was born and raised in Nevada. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Biological Science from The Master’s College and a Master’s degree in The Teaching of Mathematics from the University of Nevada, Reno. She spent three years teaching 7th grade Life Science in Fallon, Nevada and later taught every level of math from 6th grade to Calculus in American schools in Venezuela, The Canary Islands, and Costa Rica. She also taught a year at Logos Christian Academy, in Fallon, which included 5th/6th science, Bible, and math. Ms. Madraso loves teaching students who are in the Logic stage of their learning and who are always asking “why?” She enjoys exploring design and analyzing the patterns and relationships found in God’s creation and through the language of mathematics.



Suzanne Barulich

7th/8th Grade English:
Suzanne Barulich sbarulich@gracenevada.com

Suzanne Barulich has lived in Nevada most of her life, making her home in Carson City for the past 27 years. Combining her love for teaching and Hispanic culture, she received her B.A. in Spanish from Lewis and Clark College in Portland, OR, along with her secondary education license. After college, Suzanne traveled to Spain and taught English to adults for nearly a year, which was the impetus to get her M.A. in Teaching English as a Second Language from the University of Nevada, Reno. Suzanne has a varied experience in education with a background as a homeschooling parent as well as a teacher in both public and private schools. When her oldest child was in 2nd grade, Suzanne discovered classical Christian education and methodology, and thus began her commitment to incorporating her faith in Christ, using a Christian worldview within the educational model of the trivium. Involved with GCA since its inception, Suzanne has served as a member of the curriculum committee and the board as well as a teacher. She is certified in the state of Nevada to teach English, Spanish and ESL. Suzanne is married with four grown children, and it with great anticipation that she once again teaches at GCA.













Erica Sufka

Latin/Math:
Erica Sufka esufka@gcanv.com​

Erica Sufka was born in Southern Nevada and grew up in the Carson Valley. She graduated from Douglas High School and attended the University of Nevada, Reno where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry with a major in Environmental Chemistry and a Master of Science in Environmental Science and Health. Her Master’s thesis was on the effects of hydrocarbons on high alpine lakes. Erica teaches math and Latin to upper elementary and middle school students. Her hobbies include photography and knitting. She and her husband, Stephen, have three daughters who all attend GCA.



Toni Sparks

School Secretary:
Toni Sparks tsparks@gcanv.com

Toni was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest where fishing, camping and other outdoor activities were the norm. While working on her parents’ farm was a priority, her parents made time for her religious education. While attending Vacation Bible School, she accepted Christ as her savior. The Lord had many exciting experiences in store for Toni. She married an Air Force service member, moved to South Carolina (which was a BIG change from the west) and spent 12 years there. While there, she felt a calling to quit her job at a credit union and become a church secretary. While working at the church she also accepted the duties of a deacon’s wife, with their ministry extending to 12 families. In 2013, after her step-daughter had graduated high school, Toni and her husband decided it was time to leave the east coast and move back west to be closer to family. Toni relocated in the fall of 2013 and is very happy to call Nevada home once again.



Rachel Fazio

Principal:
Rachela Fazio rfazio@gcanv.com​

Rachela Fazio was born in Italy and came to the USA in 1962. She holds a B.A. in Home Economics, Early Childhood Education, and Secondary Education from San Francisco State University. After teaching for three years at Highlands Christian Academy in the Bay Area, Miss Fazio went back to get a Master of Religious Education at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary. For almost 30 years, she was the Minister of Education at Tahoe Community Church, in addition to being the director and a teacher for the church’s preschool. For enjoyment, she travels with her family: throughout Europe and now is working on USA. “It is a privilege to be the principal at Grace. I believe that a Christian education is the best way to train our children to follow our Lord. At Grace, we teach the children to think for themselves and most of all, to love our Lord. Proverbs 22:6, ‘Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it.’ This is why I believe in Christian education: the foundation we give to our children will be in them forever.”