When Mission Viejo Christian School (MVCS) added a full day kindergarten program to their existing 1st through 8th grade campus at the beginning of the 2017-18 school year, they had great expectations, but nothing could have prepared them for the overwhelming success of the program in such a short time. This past week MVCS’s kindergarten program received accreditation from both the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) and Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This rigorous process reflects that MVCS is meeting the highest standards in education, which includes a clear focus on high levels of student learning and the needs of the whole child. MVCS is thrilled that their kindergarten program now joins the rest of the school as ACSI and WASC accredited and is proud to have achieved this status in record time!Principal Bob Sladek said, “The tremendous benefit of having an 11-acre campus to accommodate the addition of a full-day kindergarten program means that parents can now have all of their school-age children on the same campus. Next year, we will expand to two kindergarten classes, both in large classrooms with their own bathroom and a spacious play area proximate to the classrooms. More importantly, our kindergarten students will benefit from the enrichment programs available to all of our students – art, music, technology, STEM, library, and PE. Above all, our students will be trained from a biblical perspective that focuses on their character development and manners equally as with their academic development. Our goal as a school is not merely to raise smart children, but rather children who are wise, because their hearts – kindness, respect, compassion – are nurtured along with their minds.”
MVCS enrolls just under 400 students from kindergarten through 8th grade, with two to three classes per grade. Small class sizes are a hallmark of the school (approximately 20 to 25 students per class), which includes a full-time instructional assistant in the kindergarten classroom. Principal Sladek added, “We are in the sweet spot for school size. We are small enough to offer a family-oriented culture, where I know each student by name and teachers are able to meet the individual needs of students; but we are also large enough to host an expansive extra-curricular program, including a STEM Learning Lab, performing arts program, instrumental band classes, athletic teams, before and after school care, and numerous after school clubs.”
MVCS’s inaugural full-day kindergarten class is just weeks from graduating and advancing to first grade. Lori Flores, MVCS kindergarten teacher, said, “Teaching kindergarten at MVCS is such a joy! The children have displayed incredible growth both academically and spiritually this year. Whether they are singing and dancing to their sight word songs, investigating and building as engineers during STEM lab, or studying God’s word, the kindergarten students are developing a lifelong love for learning. I cannot believe our first year is coming to an end. I am so excited to stay connected to this class and their amazing families as the children continue to excel all the way through 8th grade and into higher education.”
Amy Chaffin, parent of a MVCS kindergartner, commented, “Mission Viejo Christian School has far exceeded our expectations during our first year here. The sense of community and family is present in everything they do. Ms. Flores is nurturing, caring, loving, and is always thinking about what’s best for the children. It’s incredible how much our son has grown and progressed in just one year.”
Hailey Zeilfelder, another MVCS kindergartner parent, added, “Our daughter began the year unsure and a bit behind academically having only attended a two day per week pre-k for one year prior to coming to MVCS. Her growth as a scholar and a believer has been in leaps and bounds. She is leaving kindergarten a confident, curious, literate child with valuable biblical exposure, for this, we are SO grateful.”
Mission Viejo Christian School began 25 years ago as a ministry of Mission Viejo Christian Church and remains committed to its founding purpose of educating the whole child and preparing servant leaders for success in high school, college, and future career paths. More information about MVCS is available on the school’s website (https://www.missionviejochristian.com) or by contacting Kari Hollerbach, Assistant Principal and Director of Admissions at 949-465-1950 or firstname.lastname@example.org.