It’s been Mr. Plotnik's pleasure to serve as your High School Principal since the 2006-07 school year when we moved from the Black Mountain campus and started 9th and 10th grade at our present location. He possesses a Master of Arts in Educational Leadership: Educational Technology and Learning from Azusa Pacific University. His undergraduate work was completed in 1980 at CSU, Long Beach, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences: Geography. He relocated his family from Los Angeles to San Diego in 1991, when Haley, the youngest of three children, was born. (She was one of six in our first graduating class - 2009). Four years later he 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. Science, especially Chemistry, became his passion as a teacher, but one of his proudest accomplishments was taking his Boys’ Cross Country team to the CIF State Championships in 2005, where their 14th place finish was the highest placement for a school their size at the time.
- Elizabeth Apodaca
- Melissa Bauer
- Samantha Belgum
- Krystle Brown
- David Cabral
- Virginia Chasey
- Autumn Gray
- Maribel Hillmer
- Mike Holguin
- Ryan Jackson
- Anita James
- Madison Madewell
- Eric Martin
- Richard Mendoza
- Edward Miller
- David Navarette
- Kevin Pratt
- Britnie Reid
- Joelle Schwartz
- Sarah Shanmugam
- Miryam Sullivan
- Kelly Taylor
- Janet Williams
- Jeannie Wood
Elizabeth “Liz” Apodaca joined the MCS team in the 2015-2016 academic school year. Liz is a native of Fresno, CA, has a B.S. in Biology from the University Of Pacific (UOP) and recently acquired her Masters in Biology from Point Loma Nazarene University. Prior to teaching at MCS, Liz spent over 20 years in Biotech as a manager in operations working with teams who manipulated viruses such as HIV, HCV, West Nile Virus and other pathogenic strains of microorganisms 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 students here at MCS.
Mrs. Bauer joined MCS staff in 2017. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Theological Studies from The King’s University, Los Angeles, and a Master of Divinity degree from Regent University, Virginia Beach, VA. Melissa has taught at the collegiate level since 2008, and is now enjoying teaching at the High School level at MCS. She loves connecting with the students and seeing them grow in their relationship with the Lord. She has a passion to make prayer and worship integrated into everyday life. Melissa and her husband have been in pastoral ministry since 2002 and currently pastor Grace Church in San Marcos, CA. She has four children who all attend MCS…and love it!
Miss 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. Miss 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. Cabral has been serving the students and families of MCS since the creation 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 of 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 MCS in 2016 and serves as part time English Literature teacher for grades 10 and 12. She is originally from upstate New York, but moved with her husband to CA 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 US State Department, American School of Warsaw in Warsaw, Poland. She holds a BA 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 saying “Not yet” – 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 newborn Abigail Grace and loves to travel and play golf.
Mrs. Gray joined the MCS team in 1995 after graduating from San Diego State University with her B.S. in Child Development. Mrs. Gray has served in many divisions at MCS including starting the PE program, after school program, and the preschool. Mrs. Gray’s classroom career began in First Grade but then moved 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! Mrs. Gray has two children that have been at MCS since kindergarten and feels blessed to call this place home both as a parent and as a teacher.
Ms. Hillmer was born in La Paz, Bolivia. At a very early age she fell in love with languages. She did language and linguistics studies in Bolivia. In 1991 she married Doug Hillmer and moved to Canada where she earned her Masters in Divinity degree. Later she 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 so 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.” Prov. 3:56
Mr. Holguin joined MCS during the 2015-16 school year. He graduated from the Navy School of Music in 1992. He is a professional musician with quite an impressive resume. He has performed with The San Diego Symphony Orchestra, Grammy award winners Natalie Cole and Celia Cruz, Phil Vasser and Little River Band to name a few. He is also an accomplished arranger/composer for percussion and band. Mr. Holguin is a worship team member at The Church at Rancho Bernardo and a member of the local band The Mighty Untouchables. From 2003-2016 he taught music at San Diego State University, Rancho Bernardo High School, Mira Mesa High School and Francis Parker. He left all his other teaching positions to focus all of his attention here. He is thrilled to bring his extensive musical background to MCS and help our students grow.
Mrs. James joined MCS in 2010. She has a BA in Mathematics and Computer Studies from Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia. She has a California Teaching credential for K-12 Mathematics from UCSD. She taught Years 7-12 Mathematics in Sydney. Prior to teaching Mrs. James spent 20 years working as a Systems Analyst implementing computer accounting systems where she traveled extensively through Australia and Southeast Asia. Mrs. James is married and has 2 children. In her spare time, Mrs. James enjoys hiking, sailing, tennis, and golf. Mrs. James is blessed to teach the students at MCS and serve our students and parents.
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 bachelor’s degree 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/become MCS Eagles.
Mr. Richard Mendoza joined MCS in August 2015. He has worked in the Information Technology field as a Computer Technician, Network LAN/WAN support, and served as a Teacher Staff Development instructor in technology. After 25 years in the IT field, he began to sense a re-direction in his life, and began to study his hobby – Creative Media Arts. His passion for Digital Media in Photography and Video Production has now turned into a new career. Mr. Mendoza is assigned as the Digital Media Teacher at MCS. This includes AP Photography, Art Photo, and Video Production. He has earned his BA with an emphasis in film at San Diego Christian College. His education goals have now extended into earning a MFA degree in Digital Cinema. He has also served in various Youth Ministries, and has helped develop young musicians with a concentration in worship improvisation teams.
Mr. Navarette joined the MCS team in 2003. A retired Navy chief, with 23 years of active duty, Mr. Navarette has seen the growth of MCS from its beginnings, first as a parent of two children who attended MCS in the mid 1990’s to his role as teacher since joining the staff in the fall of 2003. A graduate of Azusa Pacific University with a Biblical Studies and Psychology degree, Mr. Navarette has served in all three MCS departments, Elementary (4th and 5th grade); Middle School (Math Course 1 and Algebra I); and High School (P.E., Government, 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 MCHS since fall, 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, especially. Athletically, he is an award-winning distance runner.
Miss Reid joined MCS in 2017 to teach Sheltered 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!
Mrs. Schwartz started teaching English at MCS during the 2012-2013 school year. She earned her Bachelors from APU in Communication Studies with a minor in Marketing, and spent 5 years working as a Sales Manager where she began to realize her passion for helping people to develop their strengths. Through her time working in that role, God spoke to her and lead her to work on her Master's degree in Teaching from USC, where she graduated Summa Cum Laude. Mrs. Schwartz completed her student teaching at High Tech Middle and High Schools in North County San Diego where she developed a great love for project-based learning and other innovative teaching approaches. Mrs. Schwartz is married and has two young children, and in her spare time she loves playing silly games with her kids, biking and boating at Mission Bay, exploring new music, sipping cappuccinos, and working on creative projects of her own.
Miss 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. In her spare time, Miss Shanmugam enjoys running, the beach, visiting art galleries, teaching private lessons, and creating her own artworks.
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. Two of her children have been blessed with the opportunity of attending MCS since the first grade and now, her oldest will be graduated in May 2014. Mrs. Sullivan considers herself blessed and honored to be a part of this wonderful ministry.
Mrs. Williams joined MCS at the start of the high school in 2006. She has a BA 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, CA, 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 the last 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 Maranatha Christian and is extremely excited to share her passion for science and the Lord.