School Spotlight: Desert Christian Schools

Desert Christian Schools Tucson | School Spotlight: Desert Christian Schools

Desert Christian Schools is a Preschool-Grade 12 covenant school system in Tucson that aims to "pursue excellence in Christian education, foster Christ-centered relationships, and endeavor to meet the unique learning needs of every student."

The high school was founded in 1986. The middle school was eventually added in 2000, followed by the elementary school in 2004. There are two campuses – the high school campus is at 7525 E. Speedway and the preschool, elementary, and middle campus is at 9415 E. Wrightstown.

Desert Christian Schools AT A GLANCE

Type of School: private, Grades K-12

Accreditation: North Central Association and Association of Christian Schools International

Location: TWO CAMPUSES – Preschool, Elementary, and Middle at 9415 E. Wrightstown and High School at 7525 E. Speedway.

Number of students: 43 in preschool, 238 in K8, 160 in high school

Preschool Options:

  • 3-4 Years Old Morning Program (3, 4, OR 5 days/week): 8:00am – 11:50am
  • 4-5 Years Old Morning Program (5 days/week): 8:00am – 11:50am
  • 4-5 Years Old Bilingual Program (5 days/week): 8:00am – 11:50am

Kindergarten: Full-Day only

Student/Teacher ratio:  7:1 to 25:1, depending on grade level 

Distinctives of the Preschool:

  • CHRIST-CENTERED – DCS recognizes Jesus Christ as the author, revealer, and sustainer of reality.
  • PARTNERS WITH PARENTS – DCS strives to “aid parents in their God-given responsibility to train their children in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.”

Distinctives of K-12:

  • CHRIST-CENTERED – DCS recognizes Jesus Christ as the author, revealer, and sustainer of reality.
  • TRADITIONAL LIBERAL ARTS CURRICULUM – Emphasizes the Lordship of Christ in the totality of life. Values truth, goodness, and beauty as embodied in the western Judeo-Christian heritage. Teaches the skills of thinking, communicating, and learning.
  • PARTNERS WITH PARENTS – DCS strives to “aid parents in their God-given responsibility to train their children in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.”
  • PARTNERS WITH CHURCHES – 65+ churches are represented among the student body.
  • COMMUNITY-MINDED – DCS aims to “help students grow in their responsibilities and duties as citizens to become a source of leadership and service to their neighborhoods, communities, and nation.”
  • COMMUNITY SERVICE – Freshmen are required to complete 18 hours. Sophomores: 21 hours. Juniors: 25 hours. Seniors: 30 hours.
  • OUTSTANDING MUSICAL THEATRE/DRAMA PROGRAM – Named “Top Musical Theatre” in State by USA Weekend


Church attendance and reference forms are required of all students. One parent/guardian must be a practicing believer in the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.

Students are considered for admission to Desert Christian Schools once they have completed the entire DCS Admissions process. Prospective students must complete the (1) DCS Inquiry Form, (2) Application, and (3) Interview process, prior to their application being reviewed by the Admissions Committee.

Applicants who are admissible will be mailed an acceptance letter regarding admissions to DCS once all admissions requirements are complete and the DCS Admissions Committee has met and determined an admissions decision. Parents of students who are accepted will be required to return the tuition contract and 1/2 of first month's tuition which is non-refundable. Parents of students who are accepted after the second week in July, or anytime throughout the academic year, will be required to return the tuition contract and a full month's tuition, which is non-refundable.

Upon completion of the online application and all paperwork, interviews will be set. Placement Screening in reading and mathematics are required for 2nd-12th grade applicants, as part of the DCS Admissions Process. DCS utilizes a screening instrument created by the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA).

Tuition for Preschool: Annual tuition rates are as follows –

  • 2 days a week: $180/month
  • 3 days a week: $255/month
  • 5 days a week: $375/month
  • Parent/Toddler Class: $50-70/month (meets once a week)

Tuition for K8 and High School: Annual tuition rates are as follows -

  • K-5th: $8,158
  • 6th-8th: $10,100
  • High School: $11,335

Tuition assistance, scholarships, and tax credits are available to help with funding. There is also a 50% pastor discount for those in full-time ministry. 

Uniforms: DCS Wrightstown Campus has a uniform .

Bus service: None.

Cafeteria: K-12 students bring their own lunch or can purchase a hot lunch. Juniors and Seniors have the option of going off-campus.



Big Ideas: 5th – 12th
Math expressions: K- 4th

English/Language Arts:
Excellence in Writing K-8th

Foreign language: Bilingual program available for Preschool. Students in 6th-8th grade take a Spanish language lab thru Rosetta Stone. High school students have a two year requirement.

AP/Dual Enrollment: Desert Christian High School offers 21 units of university level credit through a dual-enrollment partnership with Colorado Christian University; a nationally recognized institution.

Homework: Kindergarten – 12th grade students have regularly assigned homework.

  • Average time for Kindergarten through 5th grade: 30 minutes
  • Average time for 6th – 8th: 1 hour to 1 hour and 30 minutes
  • Average time for 9th – 12th: 1 to 2 hours

Desert Christian Schools Skills Center: The Skills Center at Desert Christian Schools offers a broad range of educational services, designed to support the success of all students.

International Student Program: International students, grades 6-12, seeking an F-1 Visa are invited to apply for admission to Desert Christian Schools. Once admitted, international students are placed with a well-vetted host family. International tuition is all-inclusive which covers all extracurricular fees, host family stipend, and medical insurance. English Language Learners classes are provided at the high school level.

Sports: K-8 sports include Co-Ed Flag Football, Girls Volleyball, Soccer, Softball, Boys/Girls Basketball. High School offers Volleyball, Soccer, Swimming, Basketball, Golf, Softball/Baseball, Track, Tennis. Numerous state and regional athletic titles.

After-School Clubs & Care: Desert Christian’s Wrightstown Campus offers the EduCare after-school care program. This program is available for preschool – 8th grade students. Students are encouraged to participate in many different athletic, extracurricular, and social opportunities. At the middle school level, students are also encouraged to participate in the competitive sports program. Desert Christian’s Wrightstown Campus also partners with TGA Sports, an after-school athletic program.

Teachers: All teachers are certified by the State of Arizona. 30% of faculty have masters and/or doctorate degrees.

School Hours: Preschool hours (flexible) are from 8:00am-2:45pm. K8 hours are from 8:00am – 2:45pm. High school hours are 8:15am-3:00pm.

Social Media: Follow Desert Christian Schools on Facebook and Desert Christian Schools on Twitter.



Browse the Desert Christian website or check our calendar for upcoming info dates!

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