YGNACIO VALLEY CHRISTIAN SCHOOL
Dear Interested Family,
If you are a family with children from Preschool through Eighth grade, I would like to invite you to our campus to meet with me and our wonderful teachers! I would be delighted take you on a personal tour of our classrooms and campus while your child "shadows" a class for a morning or afternoon. This is the best way a child can meet students they may already know and develop a comfort level about attending our school.
We are a Christian school dedicated to providing a biblically centered education in collaboration with Christian families to equip students to become followers of Jesus Christ, serving God in their homes, church and community.
For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? Mark 8:36
This verse has challenged me to think of my role as an educator. Why teach what we teach? What is the goal of education? Education to be gain information, secure a good paying job and life comfortably as an adult was not a worthy end for me. It is void of meaning. This struggle informed by choice to want to become a teacher to help children know God and His purpose for creating each individual unique.
I am blessed to be part of this community who teaches the whole child and emphasizes the development of Christian character and faith in God as the foundation for all we do. We endeavor to partner with parents to provide a biblically centered education to equip students to be followers of Jesus Christ, serving God in their homes, church and the community.
There are four areas in which we consider ourselves distinctive in our purpose. FAITH, FAMILY. EXCELLENCE. SERVANT LEADERSHIP. We look forward to showing you how these distinctives impact our daily schedule and teaching.
Principal + Preschool Educator
GREETINGS FROM OUR PRINCIPAL
Established in 1972, and located in Concord, California, Ygnacio Valley Christian School is dedicated to providing a biblically centered education in collaboration with Christian families to equip students to become followers of Jesus Christ, serving God in their homes, church and community. Our programs are designed to provide students with the mastery of the fundamental concepts necessary for achievement in each academic subject area.
year YVCS Began
Our school is non-denominational and independent of a church. We believe in Jesus as the world’s only redeemer and the Bible as God’s inerrant word. We believe that Godly character is an outflowing of the redeemed heart and not the basis of salvation. Instruction from God’s Word and dependence of the Holy Spirit is the foundation of everything we do.
The Bible establishes the family as God’s primary educators of children. We provide an environment that will serve Christian families by collaborating with parents to educate and disciple their children.
Each student is encouraged to discover God’s design and purpose for his or her life and learn to lead by serving others, therefore, influencing the world for His glory.
The measure of Excellence is individual. We expect students to do their best within their capabilities and striving toward personal excellence regardless of their peers. Our staff pursues excellence in all we do.
Preschool - Mrs. Ilyn Kagawan + Mrs. Dina Sanchez
Kindergarten - Mrs. Kristy Nass
1/2 - Ms. Kate O'Keefe
3/4 - Mrs. Inga Gonzenbach
5/6 - Ms. Megan Fetterly
7/8 - Mrs. Marjorie Kerr
Mathematics + Science - Dr. Neethi Jonathan
Physical Education - Mr. Noel Lingad
Spanish - Mrs. Dina Sanchez
Ilyn Kagawan Principal
Arisai Navarrete Office Administrator
Charlotte Miller BookKeeper
Alysse Tanovitz - Chairwoman
Ben Lou - Vice Chairman
Carly Kimmel - Secretary
Virginia Siegel - Treasurer
Tom Grayson (Honorary)
Paula Frost, Classroom Assistant
Harold Frost, Grounds Keeper
I wanted to be a teacher for as long as I can remember. I graduated with a degree in Elementary Education from the University of Wisconsin in Madison and taught upper elementary grades in Minnesota for four years. When we moved to California, I enrolled at Hayward State to complete a 5th year, emphasizing reading instruction and clearing a California teaching credential. For 19 years I applied this knowledge in home schooling my 5 children from K through 8th grade, and now for the past 20 years I have been teaching Kindergarten at YVCS.
Our Teaching Staff
It seems I’ve never left school and that’s OK with me!
I earned my B.A. in Liberal Studies from CSU East Bay with a Minor in Environmental Studies in 2012. Since then, I’ve gained much experience with children as a school aide, substitute, and third grade teacher. Every step was led by God. Ygnacio Valley Christian School offered me a great opportunity to work for them and I jumped at the chance in 2015.
I am a pastor’s wife of 21 years, and a mother of 4. I earned my B.S. in Human Development from UC Davis, have worked with children since my early teens, taught preschool and kindergarten for several years in my early twenties, and home-schooled my own children for ten years using Classical philosophy and methods of education, and have taught every grade level from kindergarten through graduation. For the last 9 years I have also served my small but growing church as the Children’s Director. Since the 2018-19 school year, I have had the joy of teaching 4th Grade at YVCS!
I am a proud K-8 YV alum, and I know that this school set the foundation of my faith in stone. I have an AA degree in Early Childhood Education from Diablo Valley College, and a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies from Liberty University. I have attended two special workshop forums on accommodations for students with learning challenges, and 5 professional development conferences on education. I taught junior kindergarten for three years prior to taking the third grade position at YVCS in 2016.
More than fifteen years ago, as a recent Cal. State East Bay
graduate, I interviewed for a job at YVCS. When the Lord led me to teach in that first middle school classroom I had no idea what I was in for. I have experienced profound satisfaction in helping my students navigate the curriculum, develop confidence, and most importantly, nurture a personal relationship with the Lord which allows them to really understand WHOSE they are.
Science + Math
I'm a Christian, wife, mom, educator, and engineer, in that order. I grew up in India, and completed my Ph.D. in Applied Mechanics from the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology, Madras. Then, I was an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at SSN College, India where I taught fundamental engineering courses for 2 years. After moving to the USA, I was a Research Scientist at an engineering firm in New Jersey for 4 years. My passion has always been to teach, and share my God-given love for Math and logic with youngsters. I'm so blessed that God found a way to reunite me with my passion after I moved to California, in a way only He can. I teach Math for grades 1-3 and 5-8 here.
Preschool + Immersion Spanish - Bio coming soon
Preschool Teacher + Principal
I completed my Bachelor of Science in Family Life & Child Development from the University of the Philippines and went on to pursue a Master of Arts in Christian Education from Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary in Mill Valley, California. I served as the Education and Music Director for Faith Bible Church in San Francisco for 15 years, working with volunteers, training teachers and choirs. I worked as the Children’s Ministry Director for Fair Oaks Church in Concord for 3 years. I first taught in Ygnacio Valley Christian School as the Choir teacher for 12 years before becoming 2nd grade teacher, Preschool Director, and now, Principal of the school. I am married and homeschooled our 4 children through Jr. High. I enjoy walks by the beach, black coffee with French pastries, cooking for my family, and having tea with friends.