Welcome to our website! We hope you will soon take the next step and visit us in person, if you are not already part of the Manzanita family.
Our special school provides a unique, educational environment that promotes and expects learning excellence, while also providing individualized support. Manzanita gives its students generous boundaries. The boundaries we provide scholars are intended to empower their learning. As a staff, we believe in our scholars, forgive their mistakes, provide growth paths, praise effort, ask them powerful questions, and work, every day, to earn trust.
In response to these efforts, we expect, from all our scholars, a consistent classroom effort and a healthy dose of adult respect.
As the school leader, I believe the Manzanita teaching and support staff is a committed group of professionals who fight tirelessly for our scholars. We fight to ensure all scholars are achieving at grade level with our re-teaching periods, after school math learning camps, and AVID program. We fight to help emotionally struggling students find healthy ways to deal with issues with our social-emotional programs, including DESSA and Peacemakers. We fight to make sure that scholars experience creativity, beauty, and passion in their learning, with our music, drama, Spanish, and fine arts programs.
Each year, Manzanita Public Charter School has drawn its student body from an ever larger and more-diverse applicant pool. Since August 2008, enrollment has increased to the current 425 students. Manzanita’s demographics are quite diverse, including 20% military dependents, 33% English Language Learners, 60% socio-economically disadvantaged, and 10% GATE/Honors students.
This diversity is something that makes us special…and strong. Over time, MPCS’s instructional model has evolved and established a Strength-Based curriculum Workshop model (“SBW”) which is designed to both build learning independence as well as to help scholars develop individual learning strengths. As scholars are taught to recognize and accept their own learning strengths and challenges, this internal acceptance often transfers to the larger community. Manzanita scholars come from all walks of life; it’s truly inspiring to see children seek to not only understand their differences, but actually celebrate those differences with unlikely friendships that continue into middle, high school and beyond.
The Manzanita school experience is designed to empower our scholars to find the best version of themselves. We look forward to traveling this developmental journey with each child and encourage our community to partner with us whenever possible! After all, the power of words has historically shown that a life can be launched with as little as a single phrase, an uplifting word, or an act of kindness.
Come join us in making that difference for our scholars.
Suzanne Nicastro, Superintendent/Principal
Manzanita's mission is to provide an enhanced educational environment that promotes learning excellence while allowing scholars to thrive in a 21st-century world.
Our vision shapes and develops a school culture that promotes creativity, deep development of learning independence and strengths, while providing personalized services in a results-driven environment.