Why Choose Grace Christian Academy?

Why you’ll love
Grace Christian Academy


Faith in God enriches all we do, including teaching from the Bible and time in prayer.

Small Class Sizes

With our dedicated teachers and small classes, our children get the attention they need.


Our rigorous academics have a track record of preparing our students to do well on standardized testing.


We believe in raising up our children in character as well as knowledge.


Student Teacher Ratio

Our Mission

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.

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.

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.

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.

You Tube Screenshot

Why choose Classical Christian Education (CCE)? Watch the video (link) created by the Association of Classical Christian Schools. Part 1 highlights the beginning of the movement with testimonies from key figures and parents; while Part 2 shows why CCE is the best form of education for every child.

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.

Statement of Faith


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).


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).


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).


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).


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).


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).


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).


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).


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).


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).


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


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

Faculty & Staff

Ashley Feathers

Ashley Feathers



Ashley’s roots run deep with Grace Christian Academy (GCA). Her family helped found the school, sparking in Ashley an early passion for teaching and Classical education. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education from Nevada State College in 2012. Soon after she joined the GCA staff teaching 5th and 6th grade. Even as Ashley and her husband, Seth, were having their children, Ashley remained involved at GCA as a substitute teacher and in conducting teacher evaluations. As Ashley returns to GCA as its principal, she brings not only her passion, experience and in-depth knowledge of the workings of GCA, she also brings her three boys to receive the life-changing benefit of a classical, Christian education.

“It’s not about teaching children random information; it’s about teaching children how to think for themselves. We want to prepare our children to think discerningly in a difficult world and, most importantly, we want our children to be ambassadors for Christ with a Christian worldview.”

Christine Kessler

Christine Kessler

Office Administrative Assistant/Bookkeeper


Christine and her husband, David, recently moved back to Northern Nevada. When they lived here before, their 2 sons attended GCA in its early years. In 2008, they returned to Pennsylvania, where they were both born and raised, to help care for aging parents. During that time, their 2 sons attended and graduated from Veritas Academy, a K-12 classical Christian school in Leola, PA. At Veritas Academy, Christine served as a parent volunteer and eventually became employed as a Bookkeeper/Office Assistant. Having seen firsthand the benefits obtained from a classical Christian education, she wants to help keep that opportunity available to others. Christine loves the outdoors and is happy to be near Lake Tahoe again!

Alex Metzler

Alex Metzler

Administrative Assistant
Tori Mengel

Tori Mengel



Tori was born and raised in Carson City, Nevada. She was homeschooled up to 7th grade and then attended Sierra Lutheran Highschool, graduating at 16. She obtained various certificates and an associates degree in early childhood education from WNC. Tori values success through hard work and discipline.  She says that it’s always fun to find new ways to serve others.

Michelle George

Michelle George

Kindergarten Classroom Assistant


Michelle and her husband Charlie have lived in Nevada for over 20 years. Having just retired after 21 years from the pharmacy at Costco, she welcomed the opportunity to help work with the children here at GCA.  She has for a short time volunteered at the school and looks forward to helping the children grow in their education with a biblical worldview. She is passionate about reading, missions, church life and her grandchildren.

Kimberly Burdick

Kimberly Burdick

1st Grade


Kimberly Burdick was raised, and currently lives in Minden, NV. She has a wonderful husband, Ricky and two amazing kids, Brandon and Kylie; who currently attend GCA. Kimberly worked for the Douglas County School district for six years where she worked with a great group of students in Special Education. She has always had a passion for watching children develop into God-Loving, Christ- Focused kids and has spent almost 10 years volunteering in the children’s ministry at her local church. She has a genuine heart for seeing children discover Jesus and grow closer in relationship with Him. She is excited to be a part of the GCA team providing children with a classical Christian education.

KatyRuth Taylor

KatyRuth Taylor

2nd Grade, Before School Program


KatyRuth Taylor has lived in Nevada for most of her life. As a child, she was homeschooled alongside her 11 siblings using the classical Christian approach, which, in turn, provided her with the necessary tools to teach Latin at a classical school in Fallon, NV. After educating students on the significance of learning the so-called “dead language,” she determined to move to Minden in order to teach second grade. As one who has instructed many young children, including siblings, it is always a joy for her to see kids revel in learning about creation and the Designer and Sustainer of it. Whether it be through math, science, or some other subject, children can be led to see the mighty hand of God working for His glory. Ms. Taylor’s free-time is spent in devouring books, hiking up weathered hills, and vying for her youngest sister’s attention.

Alicia Mason

Alicia Mason

3rd Grade, After School Program


Alicia Mason is excited to join the GCA team teaching 3rd grade. Ms. Mason has lived in South Lake Tahoe for her whole life. She earned her A.A. Degrees at Lake Tahoe Community College and then went to The Master’s College for her B.A. in Liberal Studies and her Elementary Education Teaching Credential. In 2019, she received her Masters of Arts degree in Education. Ms. Mason has always loved working with children, helping with Children’s Ministry at church with her mom who was the director. She has been teaching in South Lake Tahoe for nine years and is very excited to join the team at Grace Christian Academy! When she is not in the classroom, Ms. Mason loves to spend time with her family, playing games, reading all types of books, and curling up with her dog, Banjo and her cat, Watson.

Mandy Frost

Mandy Frost

4th Grade


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 has been on staff at GCA since 2014 and is ecstatic to be serving here, 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 particularly loves teaching history and English grammar! Mrs. Frost has been married since 2008, and she and her husband have two boys, Emerson and Alexander.

Alex Lafferty

Alex Lafferty

5th Grade


Alex Lafferty has been teaching for 26 years and strongly believes that Christian Schools are the only real way to get an education that focuses on the whole student: spiritual, mental, and physical.  She and her husband, Mike, moved to Carson City in 2021 and are happy to be in Alex’s “home land” after many years in California. Now she’s only one hour away from visiting most of her family! Her son, Sean, is an artist living in Seattle. She loves her dogs, working on crafts (particularly crochet), and playing puzzle games on her iPad. Alex is incredibly grateful for the opportunity to come alongside parents through Grace Christian Academy!

Fred Roush

Fred Roush

6th Grade


Frederick (Fred) Roush was raised a Protestant by loving Christian parents in northwest Pennsylvania. After his family relocated to Southern California, he earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice from the California State University at Los Angeles. During his thirty year law enforcement career at the Anaheim Police Department, he became a member of the department’s training staff and Mr. Roush graduated from the F.B.I. National Academy. His teaching experience extended to the community college level where he was a member of the adjunct faculty at Fullerton Community College and Rancho Santiago Community College. While part of the adjunct faculties, Mr. Roush served as a classroom physical fitness and defensive tactics instructor. After retiring, Mr. Roush and his wife moved to Douglas County and subsequently became members of the Grace Community Church in Minden, Nevada. While serving as a substitute teacher at Grace Christian Academy, Mr. Roush grew to know and love the Grace Christian Academy students in whose eyes he observed the hunger and thirst for the Lord. Mr. Roush was also motivated to re-enter the classroom upon observing the inspiring work of the teachers, members of the dedicated office staff and the volunteers bringing the children closer to God, while instilling strong Christian values within the students.

Deana Madraso

Deana Madraso

7th/8th Grade STEM


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.

Margot Nyberg

Margot Nyberg

7th & 8th Grade Humanities


Margot Nyberg is a brand new Nevadan, having just moved to Carson City after recently getting married! She is a Cal Poly graduate and has previously taught at another Classical Christian school on the Central Coast. Margot thoroughly loves teaching logic students to love the classics as much as she does. In her classroom, Margot seeks to recover a classical and Medieval way of reading and thinking that she hopes will bring delight to her students. Margot has been enjoying the mountainous landscape here in Northern Nevada, and cannot wait to see what God has planned for her in this season of being a newlywed and starting at GCA!

Lisa Shafer

Lisa Shafer



Lisa Shafer is a trained teacher and administrator, and has worked in education for 14 years.  She received her BA from Chapman University with a minor in Studio Art, and began her educational career in 2001.  While serving as a teacher and principal, she earned her Masters of Arts in Teaching from Chapman University and Doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of Southern California.  Lisa has taught various grades at the elementary and middle school levels.  Shortly after getting married, she and her husband, Jon, moved to Minden, NV in 2014 with the hopes of starting a family in the freedom of the Sierra Nevada. Lisa took a position with Douglas County School District teaching middle school math and science. Once their daughter Tjaden arrived in 2015, Lisa took a break from teaching to raise her. They were blessed to welcome Jonny to their family in 2019. She is excited to be part of the GCA team and give back to our gracious community by teaching a love and appreciation of art.

Lily Kaftan

Lily Kaftan



Lily Kaftan was born in Taiwan and moved to the States when she was 12. She graduated from Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, CA with a B.S. in Engineering. She then worked for a defense contractor in Rancho Cucamonga, CA as a Design Engineer and later Product Manager, training domestic and foreign military personnel. Lily has been to 16 different countries, and moved to Germany after getting married to a German helicopter pilot. She came back to the States in 2008 with her family; after living in Hillsboro, OR and Las Vegas, they eventually landed in Gardnerville, NV in 2015, where they became members of Grace Community Church in Minden. Lily speaks four languages and also teaches piano. Her musical training and exposure to different cultures since childhood gave her a love for languages. She is excited to be part of a school that not only teaches great academics but, more importantly, about the one true God.