I attended Cascade Christian’s feeder elementary school in Spanaway, the junior high attached to the high school and the high school itself. I graduated in 2002. All three of my younger brothers attended Cascade Christian High School (Jordan was student body president, Justin was president of his 9th grade class). I also have two cousins who still attend Cascade. My 16 years spent in the Cascade Christian School system, as well as the rest of my families combined 50 years experience and the fact that my father was one of the three founding pastors of Cascade make me a uniquely qualified authority on this school system. My conclusion? Cascade Christian Schools is one of the worst academic institutions in the country and it’s religious teachings drive children as far from God as possible.
I would recommend parents looking for private schools in Washington to AVOID Cascade Christian Schools at ALL costs. I have multiple reasons for giving this advice, but I’ll start with the most important: the VERY poor quality of academics. While I attended Cascade, I had dozens of teachers and I would be surprised if any of them had adequate training to teach their subjects. For example, 2 of my 3 AP teachers were severely underqualified and openly admitted they didn’t know what they were doing. AP teachers are supposed to be the best in the school system. Mr. Bracher, my AP calculus teacher at Cascade Christian, had never taught Calculus before. A month before the nationwide AP exam, our whole class took a practice test and every student scored a 0 (worst possible) and Mr. Bracher himself received a 1 out of 5. At that point, I told Mr. Bracher I was no longer going to attend his class and my friend (Mark Rody) and I started studying by ourselves in the hall. I have always been good at teaching myself and managed to pull off a 4, but Mark needed a teacher’s help and scored a 1. Mark Rody is an extremely good student and worked his butt off, but Cascade Christian Schools utterly failed him. To be fair, there were also a couple very good teachers (Mrs. Aylard, Mr. Clevenger) who are passionate about what they do, but I believe they have retired since I left. I had a friend, Ryan Fancher, who was very sharp, transfer to the local public school, Rogers, because it had a MUCH better quality of schooling. Ryan Fancher went on to go to the Air Force Academy and is currently training to fly fighter jets in Texas. Most of the kids in my class ended up either not going to college, attending community colleges or just dropping out. The Valedictorian of my class did not go to college. Cascade Christian High School falsely reported that my senior class received millions of dollars in scholarships, but what they didn’t share was they were claiming ‘scholarships’ that kids would get AFTER they served in the military and had nothing to do with their high school performance. Cascade also included ‘scholarships’ automatically offered by private universities to all students. Cascade manipulates information to make them look better than they are, be very careful before accepting any numbers they tell you. Cascade Christian Schools will crush your child’s desire to learn and spirit.
Cascade Christian Schools has very poor spiritual training. Cascade claims to be a God-focused school, but talk is cheap and that is all they have to offer. Many teachers, administration and students are hypocritical about their beliefs. I had one teacher in a junior high history class who had a sadistic streak and entertained the class by having the students make balls out of tape and throw them at the fat kid, Allen. After high school, I attended the University of Washington and joined a fraternity. My fraternity held an event where sorority girls would come and get drunk and dance semi-naked. Guess who starred in the most scandalous skit? The girl who was VP of Spiritual Life for the student body my senior year. Cascade Christian Schools spiritual education consists of rote memorization of Bible verses and classes taught by teachers who do not understand basic theology. Mrs. Huth, a Bible teacher I had multiple times, had a curriculum that consisted primarily of cheesy personality tests that told me I was a “lion”. I’m surprised she didn’t give us horoscopes to read as homework.
Cascade Christian Schools (CCS) isn’t all bad, just mostly. The football program under Coach V was excellent. I only played my senior year (and primarily as a backup lol), but I learned a lot and had a great time. I met many great friends there and have good memories hanging out with them. However, school is supposed to be about education, and Cascade Christian sadly failed in the most important areas.
The Puyallup School District has much better schools academically with much better funding. Puyallup School District also has many spiritually focused student groups that are much more honest and less hypocritical than Cascade Christian Schools’ silly, force-fed version of Christianity. If you must have a christian school, investigate Seattle Christian. I have several friends who attended there and all have very good things to say.