Since 1974, Paradise Valley Christian Preparatory has striven to create a community of spiritual nurturing and academic excellence for students from preschool through upper school. Students arriving on campus immediately encounter caring staff and faculty who enthusiastically embrace the challenge of mentoring them towards outstanding academic achievement. Equipping young minds at PVCP and grounding them in biblical truth is not only our mission, but our passion. This results in graduates who perform at top levels intellectually and are critical thinkers who pursue God’s truth throughout their lives.
PVCP takes seriously the spiritual development of the students, recognizing individual needs in the process of their spiritual growth. Through a non-denominational approach that emphasizes understanding, articulating, applying, and defending Christian worldview, PVCP prepares students to be salt and light in an age of unbelief. Students leave PVCP understanding their purpose in the world and in God's Kingdom.
In addition to all subjects being approached through a Christian worldview, students progress through Bible classes that increase their knowledge, deepen their faith, and sharpen their ability to defend God’s Word. Lower school students explore biblical themes and key stories from the Old and New Testaments, while middle school students learn to approach the Bible as a cohesive narrative of God’s redemption of mankind, and culminate with an apologetics course their eighth grade year. Upper school students go even further, surveying competing worldviews and philosophies while studying the historical roots of the Christian faith. Seniors finish with Systematic Apologetics and Theology, emerging as skilled biblical scholars capable of reaching out to a fallen world with confidence and grace. All students attend weekly, age-appropriate chapels, and regular service opportunities allow students to practice putting others before themselves.
Commitment to Academic Excellence
At PVCP, the responsibility for student learning is mutually shared between the school, parents, and students. This intentional partnership develops students who learn to practice accountability and embrace a lifestyle of learning. PVCP’s curriculum exceeds state standards, and students routinely test above grade level, finding themselves exceedingly well-prepared upon entering college. As students continue through PVCP, they are introduced to Socratic discussion forums, providing an outlet for exchanging ideas and challenging their classmates. This approach teaches students to think critically, articulate their beliefs, and root all assumptions in objective truth. Nearly half of all upperclassmen are enrolled in dual enrollment programs, providing students college credit upon graduation from PVCP. All upper school students participate in a once-weekly tutorial group with five to six other students in which a faculty member-mentor monitors students’ academic progress and assists students in developing personal plans to achieve academic excellence.
Schedule a campus tour
There’s no better way to learn more about PVCP’s truly unique approach to Christian education than visiting our campus! We would love the chance to meet you in person and learn more about your goals for your child’s education, so please consider taking the next step and schedule a campus visit today.
PVCP was established in 1974, when founders Robert and Barbara Fraley set out to establish a school where they could ensure that their children, including six adopted children, would receive a Christ-centered education and learn from teachers committed to their spiritual and academic development. As the Fraleys sought the Lord’s counsel, they were moved by Psalm 1:1-3, and it became clear that they were being called to move across country to ensure their children had an education that truly taught them to delight in the law of the Lord. The Fraleys arrived in Arizona, and, through a series of events, partnered with several other families to found Paradise Valley Christian School, now Paradise Valley Christian Preparatory.
From these humble beginnings and just 37 students enrolled when the doors opened, PVCP has expanded to include preschool through upper school with over 350 students in attendance. As a testament to the lasting impact of PVCP on the lives of alumni, many early students return to educate their own children at PVCP. Graduates are in high demand, receiving average scholarship offers to college exceeding an average $135,000 per student.
Sheryl Temple, Head of School
M.A. Educational Administration and Supervision; B.S. Elementary Education; Summer Graduate Studies, Harvard University
In 1998, the Lord opened the door for Sheryl and her family to move to Arizona to take the helm of PVCP after serving in teaching and leadership roles at a premier Christian school in Annapolis, Maryland. Sheryl arrived at PVCP with a vision to develop PVCP into a leading Christian school that stretches students’ minds, transforms their hearts with the love of Christ, and challenges them to pursue truth in all avenues of life.
In 2009, after years of seeking the Lord and conducting intensive research, PVCP’s upper school was launched, which has quickly developed a reputation as a leading Christian liberal arts school. Today, the upper school continues to grow as parents seek an institution that immerses children in a rich, humanities-based education grounded in a Christian worldview and the western tradition. Sheryl’s prayer is that as students move throughout their time at PVCP, they develop a steadfast, personal covenant of salvation and are fully equipped to counter false worldviews of knowledge, existence, and ethics. Under Sheryl’s leadership, every student at PVCP is loved, valued, and challenged to discover that all Creation and fields of knowledge reveal God and His glory.
Ryan Lalonde, Middle and Upper School Principal
B.A. History, M.Ed.
As a graduate of a Christian high school himself, Ryan understands and values the tremendous blessing of having a Christ-centered education and the impact it makes in ones life. Prior to PVCP, Ryan spent several years working in public charter schools in Phoenix, teaching in the West Valley, and serving in athletic administration at a school in the Arcadia area. In 2019, God brought Ryan back to a Christian environment to serve at PVCP.
Ryan is excited to see how the Lord will continue to shape the next generation of Christian learners and looks forward to seeing that each student who attends PVCP knows of his or her calling in Christ in any capacity He calls them to serve. Ryan’s prayer for the middle and upper school is that each student grows in their faith, that by the time they graduate as seniors they can articulate and defend their Christian faith and worldview; that they be “Doers of the Word,'' as James 1:22 states. Ryan values building and strengthening relationships with faculty, students, and the school community. Ryan prays that each student he meets understands the importance of their walk with Jesus Christ, that they stand firm in their faith and ultimately make Christ known to the world around them.
Alessi Grace Ramirez, Lower School Principal
B.A. English, M.A. Evangelism and Leadership
An Arizona native, Alessi attended Paradise Valley Christian Preparatory’s lower and middle school and understands the importance of having a solid Christian education. After finishing her undergraduate degree at Biola University in the Torrey Honors Program, Alessi co-started and ran a private, one-room school. After launching and overseeing this start-up school for three years, Alessi transitioned into ministry, spearheading community outreach amidst the COVID-19 pandemic for a church congregation in the East Valley. During this time, Alessi began her Master’s degree in Leadership and Evangelism through Wheaton College. In June 2021, Alessi moved back to the Phoenix area and began teaching middle school English at PVCP.
Alessi is excited to see how the Lord will continue to work and shape her life and those of PVCP’s students. PVCP holds a special place in her heart, and she is eager to cultivate a safe place for young learners and families to understand the goodness, truth, and beauty of the Creator. Alessi loves spending time with Jesus, drinking coffee, and spending time with her husband. Alessi’s prayer for the lower school is that students will create long-lasting friendships and have a strong foundation and understanding of who Christ is and what He has done in their lives. She prays that students will be encouraged in their own walks of faith as they learn how to have real, personal relationships with Jesus. Alessi prays the teachers and families work together to guide young learners to glorify Christ and understand the depth of how much He loves them.
Brant Nyhart, Dean of Humanities, Director of Development and Communications
B.A. History and Italian, M.Ed. in Educational Administration
Brant attended Paradise Valley Christian Preparatory through the eighth grade before PVCP launched its upper school. Following stints in both the non-profit and government sectors, including an internship at the U.S. Embassy in Rome, Italy, Brant is honored to be in leadership at the institution he credits with helping establish his Christian worldview.
In addition to leadership responsibilities, Brant teaches upper school American History, Church History, and Government. Brant shares the belief of America’s Founders that proper education is necessary for self-government, and he strives to use the humanities to prepare students to be leaders in both the church and society. Brant finds fulfillment in seeing students realize that history is not simply the memorization of facts, but is a path to understanding the present, enabling them to make prudent decisions in the future.
Gil Nadolny, Teacher Mentor
B.A. Psychology and Education
Gil has served at PVCP since 2005 and has over 35 years of teaching experience. Gil is drawn to PVCP because of the unique position it holds in the world of Christian education. As Gil states, “Academic rigor is stressed, but not as a student’s only endeavor. PVCP tempers workload so students can maintain family time and pursue other interests to be fully equipped for their distinct calling.” This unique emphasis on developing the whole child is why Gil chooses to serve at PVCP.
It is Gil’s prayer that students realize that through a redemptive relationship with Jesus Christ, they can play a leading role in building God’s Kingdom through hard work and putting aside selfish desires and adopting the mind of Christ to serve Him in all they do. One of Gil’s greatest joys is helping young men understand and strive to fulfill their God-given role in his Kingdom. He has seen his investment in students’ lives bear much fruit as they mature in Christ and become even more faithful in their service to Him. These mentoring relationships often continue on even years after students graduate from PVCP.
Rebekah Cornelius, Director of Admissions and Guidance
B.S. Family Studies, M.S. Leadership
Rebekah joined PVCP in 2020 after many years working in higher education admissions and leadership. Through her work at two local Christian universities, Rebekah discovered her love for helping families find Christ-centered education for their children. Her years in university admissions are not only a benefit in welcoming new PVCP families but have also equipped her to guide Upper School students through the college selection process. Rebekah serves PVCP enthusiastically each day knowing that this is an institution raising up the next generation of Christian leaders that will proclaim the gospel around the world.
Rebekah’s prayer is that PVCP will be a place every student will grow in his or her knowledge of Christ’s love and learn that their true purpose comes from Christ alone. As a parent herself, Rebekah knows the value of “training children up in the way they should go...” (Prov. 22:6) and is committed to PVCP’s partnership with home, church, and school in the spiritual and academic growth of the students.
Casey Thorpe, Director of Athletics
B.A. Biblical Studies, M.Ed.
From the time he was young, Casey knew he was called to work in faith based vocations where he could serve others. Once he got into college, the opportunity to use athletics as a platform to share the Gospel captivated him. Casey played D2 Baseball as well as one summer playing for an outreach ministry, Athletes in Action’s International team. It was during that formative summer in the Dominican Republic that Casey felt The Lord was calling him to step out in faith and pursue full time ministry and coaching. For the next decade, Casey would do just that.
Prior to moving to Phoenix in 2020 with his wife, Sydney, Casey was very involved with the local community that he grew up in. He was a youth pastor, Young Life leader, HS baseball and football coach, and was also a HS English teacher in the WA State Public School System. Casey has a heart and passion for people with the desire to use the platform of administrative leadership, faith based vocational ministries, and coaching, as vessels to share the Gospel and grow in his own walk as a follower of Jesus Christ.
Most recently, Casey taught 8th grade Bible at a local Christian school and coached baseball at Arizona Christian University. Casey is excited to lead the athletic programs at PVCP in this new season. He prays that every coach will recognize the opportunity they have to impact their players for the Kingdom of God, both on and off the field. He believes the ultimate goal for every player, coach, and fan at PVCP is to learn to live and compete for an audience of One, which is Christ alone. Casey believes the core biblical values of integrity (Proverbs 11:3), service (John 13:1-17), and teamwork (Philippians 2:1-4), will lead to successful programs for the PVCP student athletes to be proud of when they graduate and leave their legacy behind.
Board of Directors
Mr. Mike Allen
Pastor Chris Harper
Mr. Tom Dorn
Mrs. Anne-Marie Carlier
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