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
- Miriam Catron
- Virginia Chasey
- Maribel Hillmer
- Ryan Jackson
- Madison Madewell
- Eric Martin
- Edward Miller
- David Navarette
- Kevin Pratt
- Stephen Regner
- Britnie Reid
- Sara Rogers
- Jon Self
- 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.
Mrs. Catron received her B.A. in Jazz Studies from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, though her initial course of study was as a flute performance major. While living in North Carolina she opened a Performing Arts School that eventually grew to over 400 students and 50 instructors. Mrs. Catron believes there is a musician in all of us and inspires her students to discover their individual musical gifts. She has proven to be a blessing for the Music Department, developing the Concert and Jazz Bands. Mrs. Catron is also very passionate about worship and has been part of multiple worship teams since 1999.
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. 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).
Ryan Jackson has attended Southern Evangelical Seminary and Veritas Seminary where he is currently completing his Masters of Divinity in Apologetics and Biblical Studies. He graduated with a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design, and before that attended Liberty University and Florida Bible College. Ryan has exhibited work in galleries throughout the East Coast and in California for the past 20 years, illustrated several published children’s books, and has created 2 award-winning art programs. He has taught for over 20 years, developed a high school Bible curriculum which he plans to publish shortly, and currently loves getting to teach from God's Word and help build his student’s faith in Jesus Christ.
Ms. Madewell joined MCS in 2018 after graduating from the University of La Verne with a B.S. in Athletic Training and receiving Magna Cum Laude and Athletic Training Departmental Honors. Following this degree, she passed the National Board of Certification Exam to become a Certified Athletic Trainer (ATC) and moved down to San Diego to pilot MCS’s first Athletic Training program and Sports Medicine course. Ms. Madewell has served a variety of athletes at the high school, junior college, and university level at various schools through internships since 2012. During this time she also played collegiate tennis, served on Athletic Training Committees and served in the Children’s Ministry at church. At MCS, Ms. Madewell serves as the Athletic Trainer for all the sports’ teams, leads the Athletic Training Club, and teaches high school Physical Education and Sports Medicine. It through these avenues that she shows her passion for service and relationship building as she teaches and cares for the students on campus.
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. Miller joined MCS in 2018 after twenty years as a public and Christian school teacher. He holds a Masters of Education degree from National University and Bachelor of Science degree in Business/Accounting (Summa Cum Laude) from San Diego State University. Mr. Miller is a former Marine, husband to a wonderful wife who allowed him to become a teacher, father of six (including quadruplet sons who graduated from Maranatha in 2019), grandfather of one, and most important, a follower of Christ. In addition to teaching, he also enjoys being one of the announcers for high school sports events held at MCS. Mr. Miller has an incredible passion for Maranatha and loves working with the amazing students in his high school history and statistics classes!
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 joined the teaching faculty of Maranatha Christian School in 2014. Holding a Master’s degree from Harvard Graduate School of Education and a Bachelor’s degree in English from Brown University, he is passionate about teaching God’s Truth through the discipline of English. Teaching all content through a Biblical worldview, Mr. Pratt has equipped hundreds of students with fundamental skills in writing, language, and literature. He earnestly strives to teach his students to love English and to trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. In addition to his academic teaching, he has ministered to students through many other ways, including coaching for five years as an assistant for Girls’ Basketball, coaching for speech competitions, facilitating small groups, and assisting with the High School Retreats. Mr. Pratt enjoys studying Scripture, reading literature, playing violin, and learning languages. He faithfully attends Maranatha Chapel and serves on the Worship Team.
This 2020 - 2021 school year is Mr. Regner’s first year at MCS. He holds a BA in General Studies with an emphasis in Mathematics Education from National University. Before Mr. Regner chose to serve MCS students, he spent nearly eight years active duty Army. When he is not spending his time in the classroom or on the baseball field, Mr. Regner is out with his dog Nikko at their favorite beach or park. He enthusiastically loves his students and daily lives out his favorite verse; John 15:13 “Greater love has no man than this, than to lay down his life for a friend”.
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. Rogers joined the MCS family in 2020. Originally from Upstate NY, she taught in Texas for 3 years prior to moving to California. She holds a BFA in Photography from the New Hampshire Institute of Art and is currently pursuing an MFA degree in Photography at the New England College Institute of Art & Design. Before teaching, Ms. Rogers was a Media Producer for various youth music organizations across the country. With a background in music as well as art, Ms. Rogers has been spending the last few summers teaching a drum corps out of Mobile, Alabama called Southwind. Outside of school, Ms. Rogers is a natural light photographer specializing in weddings and senior portraits. Her husband is currently stationed at MCAS Miramar and is a trumpet/bugle musician in the 3rd MAW Band. Ms. Rogers has two adorably cute dogs named Stella and Luna.
Mr. Self joined the MCS staff in August of 2020 after working for 31 years as a teacher, administrator, and coach in both public and private education. He has a B.A. in Sociology from San Diego State University; a B.A. in Social Science from California Baptist University; and an M.A. in Education from Point Loma Nazarene University. He also holds California teaching credentials in Social Studies and Special Education. Mr. Self loves spending time with his family, especially going to good restaurants or hanging out at the beach. During his “free time” he loves to swim-bike-run…and surf! His life verses are Hosea 6:6 and Joshua 1:9.
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. Shyu is originally from the LA area (Chino Hills), and moved to San Diego for her undergraduate studies at UC San Diego. She received a B.A. from UCSD in Communication with minors in Business and Education, and just finished her Masters in Teaching at PLNU in 2020. Mrs. Shyu joined MCS in the fall of 2019 after finishing her single subject English teaching credential program at Point Loma Nazarene University. In their spare time, Mrs. Shyu and her husband love going to the San Diego Zoo to enjoy God’s creation and creative design, and they also love cooking together at home.
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.
Ms. Taylor joined MCS in 2018. Growing up with a heart murmur the Lord opened the doors to American Sign Language and lead her to have passion for the language. She holds a B.A. in Deaf Studies with a focus in Deaf Literature from California State University Northridge. She is currently working on earning her M.A. in education from National University. Ms. Taylor started the ASL Honor Society here at Maranatha in 2018, and continues to grow the program and bring excitement for American Sign Language and the Deaf Community at 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.