It has been Mr. Plotnik's pleasure to serve as the High School Principal since the 2006-2007 school year when the school moved from the Black Mountain campus and started 9th and 10th grade at the present location. His undergraduate work was completed in 1980 at Cal State University Long Beach, where he earned a B.A. in the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences: Geography. He also possesses an M.A. in Educational Leadership: Educational Technology and Learning from Azusa Pacific University. He relocated his family from Los Angeles to San Diego in 1991, when Haley, the youngest of his three children, was born (she was one of six in the first graduating class). A few years later after moving, Mr. Plotnik entered the teaching profession after earning a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential. He taught multiple subjects at the junior and senior high school level, coached cross-country and track and field, and served as Athletic Director for another Christian school where he took his Boys’ Cross Country team to a CIF State Championship. Science, especially Chemistry, is his great passion as a teacher!
- Elizabeth Apodaca
- Samantha Belgum
- Joshua Blakeley
- Krystle Brown
- David Cabral
- Virginia Chasey
- Jacob Gantos
- Autumn Gray
- Gabino Guerrero
- Maribel Hillmer
- Mike Holguin
- Ryan Jackson
- Madison Madewell
- Eric Martin
- Edward Miller
- David Navarette
- Kevin Pratt
- Britnie Reid
- Sarah Shanmugam
- Judy Shyu
- Miryam Sullivan
- Kelly Taylor
- Janet Williams
- Jeannie Wood
Ms. Elizabeth “Liz” Apodaca joined the MCS staff in the 2015-2016 academic school year. Liz is a native of Fresno and has a B.S. in Biology from the University Of Pacific as well as a Masters in Biology from Point Loma Nazarene University. Prior to teaching at MCS, Ms. Apodaca spent over 20 years in Biotech as a manager in operations. She worked with teams who manipulated viruses such as HIV, HCV, West Nile Virus and other pathogenic strains of micro-organisms to create test kits to screen the blood supply and support diagnostic testing. Liz has worked previously with the Salk Mobile Lab and San Diego City College and now feels blessed, excited and honored to teach biology and share work experiences with the students at MCS.
Ms. Belgum joined the Performing Arts team in Spring 2019 after graduating from Biola University with a B.A. in Music and Biblical Studies. She boasts an impressive performance resume which includes numerous musical theatre performances, singing competitions, Legoland appearances and singing the national anthem for the San Diego Padres. Ms. Belgum has lead worship at Hume Lake Christian Camps and at several local churches as well. Her great rapport with children and passion to teach music and drama makes her a dynamic addition to the department.
Mr. Blakeley is an experienced teacher having taught for 10 years in Brisbane, Australia across Elementary, Middle and High School in Mathematics, Music and Science. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Education (Secondary) majoring in Mathematics and General Science and a Graduate Certificate in Music from Queensland University of Technology in Australia. He also has been involved in school musicals and Live Sound Production and loves to play guitar and is involved in Rugby League as well.
Mr. Cabral has been serving the students and families of MCS since the beginning of the high school in 2006-2007. He has a B.A. in Economics from Wheaton College, a J.D. from the University of Notre Dame, and a California Single Subject Credential in social studies from the University of San Diego. Mr. Cabral has taught at one time or another all the social studies classes offered at the high school. Outside of the classroom, Mr. Cabral has served as the head coach for the boys’ varsity soccer team since its’ inception in the 2007-2008 season. In his free time, Mr. Cabral enjoys spending time with his family, fishing, and playing European board games.
Ms. Chasey joined the MCS staff in 2016 and serves as an English Literature teacher for 10th and 12th grade. She is originally from upstate New York, but moved with her husband to California in 1983. She has been involved in education for over thirty years as a secondary history and English teacher, high school librarian, high school vice principal and Washington lobbyist on behalf of educational issues. Her last position was teaching high school world history and literature for fourteen years, at the U.S. State Department, American School of Warsaw in Poland. She holds a B.A. degree in Secondary Education/World History and English, an MLS degree in Library and Information Science and Secondary Administration Certification, from the State University of New York at Albany and the University of Washington. Although she had planned to retire, the Holy Spirit kept telling her to wait and led her to MCS where she hopes to use her God-given talents and experiences to inspire her students. She is the proud grandmother of her sweet granddaughter and loves to travel and play golf!
Mrs. Gray joined the MCS staff in 1995 after graduating from San Diego State University with her B.S. in Child Development. She has served in many divisions at MCS including PE, the after school program, and the preschool. Mrs. Gray’s classroom career began in first grade but then transitioned to the sub list as she began her family. It wasn’t long before she was back to full time teaching in her favorite grade, Kindergarten! She now serves as the Student Life Coordinator and ASB advisor. Mrs. Gray has two children that have attended Maranatha since kindergarten and have since graduated. She feels blessed to call MCS home, both as a parent and as a teacher.
Mrs. Hillmer was born in La Paz, Bolivia and at an early age, fell in love with languages. She went on to study language and linguistic in Bolivia. In 1991, she married Doug Hillmer and moved to Canada where she earned her Master’s degree in Divinity. She invested in her family and became a full-time mother to her three children. As her kids grew up the Lord opened doors for Maribel to teach in a variety of settings, both at church as well as in the secular realm. Maribel marvels at how God knits each individual’s story with love and much care, she trusts that God brought her to MCS to use all she has been given by Him to bless others. Her favorite verse is, “Lean not on your own understanding but in all things acknowledge Him and He will straighten your path” (Proverbs 3:5-6).
Mr. Holguin served as a member of the Navy Band for eight years traveling the world. He has been a professional musician for the past 24 years and has previously taught at San Diego State University and Rancho Bernardo HS as a percussion instructor and Jazz Band teacher. Mr. Holguin’s drumline at Rancho Bernardo High School was recognized as one of the top drum lines in Southern California. He has faithfully been a part of the Church at Rancho Bernardo’s worship team for the past 20 years. Mr. Holguin joined MCS in 2015, bringing a wealth of knowledge and currently teaches JH band, HS worship and 5th-grade band classes. The school always looks forward to Mr. Holguin’s shows and his concerts are always a highlight of the year!
Mr. Martin joined the MCS staff in 2017 after teaching for 11 years in private and public schools throughout San Diego County. He started his teaching career as an elementary school teacher but found his true calling as a high school math and science teacher. He has a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California, Davis and a Master’s degree in Education from San Diego State University. Mr. Martin is an avid sports fan, a capable home cook, a mediocre video gamer, and a pop culture geek. He has been married to his wife since 2009, and they have two young children who are excited to be a part of the MCS family as they grow!
Mr. Navarette joined the MCS staff in 2003, as a retired Navy chief, with 23 years of active duty. Mr. Navarette has seen the growth of MCS from the beginning, as a parent of two children who attended the school in the mid-1990s to his role as a teacher since joining the staff in the fall of 2003. A graduate of Azusa Pacific University with a Biblical Studies and Psychology degree, he has served in all three MCS departments. Mr. Navarette has taught Elementary (4th and 5th grade), Middle School (Math Course 1 and Algebra I), and High School (P.E., Government, and Economics). When he is not teaching, Mr. Navarette loves being “Papa” to his two wonderful grandchildren and singing in an amazing 120 voice choir/orchestra with his wife of 34 years.
Mr. Pratt has been an English teacher at MCS since fall of 2014. His teaching responsibilities include Sophomore English and the Dual-Credit and Advanced Placement English courses. Moreover, he has served as an assistant coach for Varsity Girls’ Basketball and Junior High Girls’ Basketball since 2014. Mr. Pratt holds a master’s degree in Teaching and Curriculum (Harvard Graduate School of Education) and a bachelor’s degree in English (Brown University). While at Harvard, he researched school choice policy. Academically, Mr. Pratt loves teaching literature of the Medieval and Renaissance eras, and athletically, he is an award-winning distance runner.
Ms. Reid joined MCS in 2017 to teach Bible courses and ESL for the International Student Program. Originally from South Carolina, she received her M.A. in Christian Studies from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and her B.S. in Psychology from North Greenville University. She has a heart for helping young people fall in love with God's Word and has been a part of mission work for over 10 years, leading short-term missions trips to India, Alaska, and Kenya. She served in South Africa for 2.5 years as a teacher in township schools before moving to San Diego in 2005 to minister to international students. When she is not teaching, she loves adventuring outdoors - playing tennis, hiking, kayaking, & relaxing on the beach!
Ms. Shanmugam came to MCS in 2012 after graduating from Graceland University, a private Christian liberal arts school in Iowa. Miss Shanmugam graduated Summa Cum Laude with degrees in Graphic Design and K-12 Art Education and a minor in Publication Writing and Design. She recently lead the High School yearbook team to receive a national award from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association. In her spare time, Miss Shanmugam enjoys running, the beach, visiting art galleries, teaching private lessons, and creating her own artwork.
Mrs. Sullivan began teaching at MCS in 2002 after more than 5 years of experience teaching High School Spanish in Orange County. Subsequently, she joined Maranatha Christian Schools as a part-time teacher while also teaching at a different Christian school in Rancho Santa Fe. It didn’t take her long to realize that MCS was where God was calling her to be and decided to make it her full-time home, teaching High School Spanish and Spanish AP. Although she was born in the USA, she was raised in Guatemala where she grew up and went on to receive her B.A. in Spanish and her teaching credentials. Mrs. Sullivan enjoys traveling abroad, cooking, reading and spending her time with her family and friends. Her two children have been blessed with the opportunity of attending MCS since the first grade and her oldest has since gone on to graduate. Mrs. Sullivan considers herself blessed and honored to be a part of the wonderful ministry of MCS.
Mrs. Williams joined MCS at the start of the high school in 2006. She has a B.A. in Mathematics, a California Single Subject Teaching Credential both from San Jose State University and an MBA from San Diego State. She has taught all levels of high school mathematics at MCS and currently teaches the upper-division mathematics courses. Prior to joining MCS, Mrs. Williams spent over 20 years as an IT Programmer/Systems Analyst supporting business financial applications, most recently with Qualcomm Inc. Mrs. Williams feels extremely blessed to be able to use the gifts God has given her to help others and her best days are the ones when a student brightly sits up and say “Oh, I get it now!"
Mrs. Wood joined Maranatha Christian School in the 2017 school year. She was raised in Carlsbad where she attended both middle school and high school. In 1986, she earned her Bachelor of Arts in Science from Point Loma Nazarene with a credential in both Chemistry and Biology. Starting in the fall of 1986, she worked at San Marcos High School for thirteen years teaching AP Biology and Chemistry. She also worked for Escondido Charter High School for six years as a Biology and Chemistry educator. While teaching, she has enjoyed coaching high school softball and volleyball. Throughout Jeannie's career, her continuous goal has been to foster a lifelong love of learning in her students about God’s amazing world. Thus, she looks forward to getting to know both students and staff at MCS and is extremely excited to share her passion for science and the Lord.