- Leeann Friesen
- Becky Neal
- Jacquie Fernandez
- Karen Goetz
- Yvonne Martens
- Suzanne Asman
- Cathy Angelo
- Amber Gutierrez
- Maari Nesper
- Brittany Farinelli
- Pamela James
- Lauren Tienken
- Emily Roberts
- Katie Ferreira
- Melanie Efird
- Ashlee Turner
- Corey Hoover
- Emily Sorensen
- Teri Schletewitz
- Melissa Hillner
- Tisharra Gunlund
- Anthony Villarreal
- Andrea Suttles
- Jose ElaGarza
- Michelle Bondurant
- Sean Bennett
- Cheyenne Huerta
- Brenda Horton
- Amanda Renney
Meet Mrs. Friesen:
Hi, my name is Leeann (Pauls) Friesen. I was born into a family of six with one younger sister and two older brothers. My father is a farmer and so naturally my family spent a lot of time working with him on the farm in the Reedley area. I grew up attending Reedley Mennonite Brethren Church and going to Reedley Schools (Washington & Riverview). For high school, I had the privilege of attending Immanuel. During this time, I decided that I wanted to be a teacher. After graduating high school, I continued my education at Reedley College and then Fresno Pacific University. I received my B.A. in liberal studies from FPU. I completed one more year of graduate studies and received my credentialing through FPU. Following my completion of the credential program, I was hired at Lincoln Elementary School in Reedley. I taught there for 11 years. Most of my experience is in Kindergarten and I love it! God opened a door for me to teach kindergarten at Immanuel Elementary. Step by step I followed his lead and I was hired to teach here in the fall of 2016. I feel so blessed to be a part of the IES staff. Immanuel is truly a special place. It is not just a school. It is a family, a strong community bound together by our faith in Jesus Christ.
My husband, Scott, and I reside in Reedley. We have been blessed with two spirited boys, Peyton and Carson. I enjoy physical actives such as biking, swimming, and running. I also like drinking coffee and reading a good book. My family enjoys taking trips to Shaver Lake and camping in our travel trailer.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13
Meet Mrs. Neal:
Welcome to kindergarten at Immanuel Elementary! I have been teaching kindergarten for many years and feel blessed
to have joined the Immanuel family in 2011. My husband and I live in Visalia where he teaches high school math. We
have three adult children and two sons-in-law. We love to spend time together as a family. We love sports, musicals,
museums, movies, reading, and spending time at the beach.
Your children are a precious gift and it brings me great joy to be their teacher!
In Matthew 19:14 Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven
belongs to such as these.”
Meet Mrs. Fernandez:
Hi, my name is Jacquie Fernandez. I was raised in Kingsburg in a family of four, I have two older brothers and an older sister. I attended Windsor Christian Academy for elementary school. When I was in 6th grade, Windsor became Immanuel and I continued my education at Immanuel, graduating in 2011. After graduating from Immanuel I attended Fresno Pacific University and graduated in 2015 with a B.A. in Liberal Studies and a minor in Peacemaking and Conflict Resolution. Ever since I was a little girl I knew I wanted to be a teacher. I continued this dream of mine and completed the FPU credential program. I spent two years teaching kindergarten in Orosi and three years teaching first grade in Clovis. In 2019 I married my husband, Nick, who is also a teacher. We have been blessed with a sweet and loving little boy, Maverick.
I was so excited to hear about Immanuel’s expansion and even more excited to be hired to start in the fall of 2021. I can’t express how blessed and thrilled I am to become part of the Immanuel staff. Immanuel has always been a second home for me. The staff at Immanuel did so much for me as a student and I can’t wait to offer that same experience to my students.
"Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.” Proverbs 16:3
Meet Mrs. Goetz:
The best part about my classroom is whom I share it with!
Greetings! I’m Karen Goetz and am so blessed to be a part of the wonderful Immanuel Schools family.
I am married to Daniel Goetz and we have 3 grown children: Stephen (with his dear wife, Melanie), Jonathan and Hannah. All three of our children attended Immanuel Schools.
I have taught fabulous First Graders for 16 years with Kings Canyon here in Reedley and another four years in Texas. I began teaching at Immanuel Schools in 2017 and I absolutely LOVE it! The students, the supportive and caring families, our phenomenal staff, AND being able to share and apply our Lord’s wonderful life and person into academics is so rewarding and refreshing. Together, and with the Lord’s shepherding, I pray this will be an eternally rewarding year for all of us. Thank you for entrusting your child to my care.
My classroom is a caring-laughing, exploring-discovering, brain-stretching, independence-building, Jesus honoring and loving kind of place where everyone matters!
“But Jesus said, allow the little children and do not prevent them from coming to Me, for of such is the kingdom of the heavens.” Matthew 19:14
Meet Mrs. Martens:
There is definitely something special about this campus and community! Having lived in Reedley most of my life, I am accustomed to small town living, but there is nothing like the warm and comforting feeling you get from being a part of the Immanuel family. As an Immanuel Alumni, I am excited to teach here and also to have my two children attending the school. Go Eagles!!
I earned my BA and teaching credential at Fresno State. Throughout my career in education I have been fortunate enough to experience teaching many different grade levels. Each grade and age has its special characteristics. They are all unique and exciting in their own way.
As a young student, I really struggled with reading, but I excelled in mathematics, so I was able to keep afloat through my school years. As I ventured through my liberal studies courses, my eyes were opened as I learned all these fantastic phonics rules that I had, somehow, never been taught. It was a late bloom… but I blossomed into a reading fanatic! Because of my own experience, I have developed a passion for teaching young students to read and decode. We work hard everyday, striving to become confident readers, cultivating a love and desire for knowledge through the power of reading. And!! We get to do that with the Lord’s help. We get to talk and discuss and learn how our God is a part of everything we do, from learning sounds, to interacting with our classmates, to discussing His plan for our lives. We have the privilege to walk with Jesus together as we learn and grow!
Special verse: “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Colossians 3:15-17
Meet Mrs. Asman:
Hello, My name is Suzanne Asman and I would like to welcome you to first grade!
I am delighted that God has led me to Immanuel Elementary School. My journey to Immanuel began in Visalia, where I was born and raised. My husband and I moved to Reedley in 2004 after we were married. We have been happily married for seventeen years. In that time, God has blessed us with three little ones.
My teaching career began after I graduated from St. Mary’s College of California in 2001. I decided to continue my education at Fresno Pacific University and earned my multiple subject teaching credential along with a Master’s Degree in Reading and Language Arts. I have had the opportunity to teach kindergarten and first grade during my twenty years in the classroom.
My passion is to teach young readers the fundamentals of the reading process and watching them grow into confident readers. I am thrilled to be part of the Immanuel First Grade team and truly enjoy the energy that our first grade students bring to school every day.
I am inspired by the words in Matthew 19:14. Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
Meet Mrs. Angelo:
I am so blessed to be a part of the teaching staff at Immanuel Schools. I began teaching at Immanuel in 2010, and before moving into 2nd grade, I taught 3rd, 6th, and Technology to students from Kindergarten to 6th grade. I am excited to see what God will do in the lives of this group of second graders. Every year I look forward to learning new things and getting to know the students I see each day. I love teaching and I am thrilled that God chose me for his place! Over the years I have been blessed to work with students of all ages. Prior to teaching at Immanuel, I taught 5th and 3rd grade for 19 years at another Christian school.
I have been married to my husband, Bruce, since 1970. We have two grown children and I love being Grandma to four adorable grandchildren, three of which live in the Seattle area. I miss them terribly, but am able to connect via social media, texts, e-mail, and our trips to the Pacific Northwest.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13
Meet Mrs. Gutierrez:
Hello! My name is Amber Gutierrez and I am so blessed to be a part of the Immanuel family!
My teaching career started in 2005, right after graduating from CSU Fresno. I taught 1st grade for ten years in Fowler before taking time off to stay home with my own children. During that time off I worked as a substitute teacher in K-6 for the Kingsburg Charter School District. I was an Awana leader and also taught Sunday School at our church. In 2019 I began teaching 2nd grade here at Immanuel.
My husband Adam and I live in Kingsburg with our three children, Gavin, Olivia, and Colette. We are so thankful that I have this opportunity to do what I love, which is teaching, and still be near our own kids every day.
“He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge” - Psalm 91:4
Meet Mrs. Nesper:
Hi, my name is Maari (Gould) Nesper and I am so excited to be a part of Immanuel Schools! I was born in Shakopee, Minnesota, but have lived all over California for most of my life. I was born into a pastor’s family, so from the time I was five days old, I spent a lot of time at church, enjoying faith-based activities with my extended church family. During my junior high years, my father was led to lead a congregation in Tollhouse, a small mountain community. I attended Sierra High School and graduated in 1992. After high school, I began my college career at California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks. After graduating from CLU in 1996 with my bachelor’s degree in Theater and a music minor, I worked in youth ministry, serving junior high and high school students.
After 6 years, I felt the Lord calling me into education. I enrolled at Fresno Pacific University and received my Multiple Subject Credential in 2003. That summer, I was hired to teach at James Garfield Elementary School in Selma. I have spent 18 years at the same school; four years teaching 6th grade, one year in fifth grade, three years in kindergarten and intervention and nine years in first grade and the last two years in second grade. I found my true passion for education is teaching emergent readers, so in 2016, I decided to further my education and returned to Fresno Pacific as a student in the Master of Arts in Reading and Language Arts program. I received my reading specialist certificate in 2017 and my master’s degree in reading and language arts in 2018.
I met my wonderful husband, David Nesper on the worship team at the church where we attended in 2002 and we have been married since 2005. We have two beautiful girls: Claire and Ruby, as well as one handsome son; Levi. We moved to Selma in 2016, and love entertaining friends and family, playing music and swimming in our pool! The Lord put Immanuel on our hearts in 2019 and Ruby and Levi were enrolled in 2020. We soon discovered that Immanuel is such a special place that we also enrolled our oldest daughter, Claire. We are so blessed to be a part of what the Lord is doing in this community.
“Let us not become weary in doing good, for in the proper time, we will reap a harvest if we do not give up!” Galatians 6:9
Meet Mrs. Farinelli:
Hi, my name is Brittany Farinelli and I am so excited to be a part of Immanuel Schools! I was born in Fresno and have lived in the Central Valley my entire life. As a student, I attended Clovis schools and was very involved in athletics. In 2004, I graduated high school and began my college journey as a Fresno Pacific Sunbird. I was blessed to attend Fresno Pacific on a Cross Country and Track Scholarship for all four years and enter into the Multiple Subjects Credential program in 2008. In 2009, I took my first teaching position in 8th grade in Selma Unified and then in 2012 was able to return back to my hometown of Clovis. I spent 6 years teaching 7th/8th Grade Academic Block at Granite Ridge Intermediate, which is located within the Clovis North Educational Center. During my time in Clovis, I decided to further my education and returned to Fresno Pacific as a student in the Master in Arts of Teaching program.
I met my wonderful husband, Dominic Farinelli, at Fresno Pacific and we have been married since 2009. We have two beautiful girls: Giuliana and Capri. We moved to the Sanger area in 2015, and love living out in the country. We had been praying for guidance as to where the Lord wanted us to send our girls to school, and the Lord put Immanuel on our hearts. Immanuel is such a special place and we knew that this is where we wanted to connect as a family. We are so excited to be part of the Immanuel Family and we feel so blessed to be a part of this community.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.“ Jeremiah 29:11
Meet Mrs. James:
My name is Pamela James. I am thrilled to be at Immanuel Schools as a teacher and as a parent. I was born and raised in New Jersey. I attended Nyack College in New York where I received my Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education.
For the first 11 years of my teaching career, I taught in public schools in New Jersey and New York. In 2001, God called my family into full-time ministry in Buffalo, New York. Following this move, I home schooled my children for 11 years. God then opened the door for me to teach in a private Christian school for 2 years.
In August of 2014, my husband had a job opportunity in Fresno, and we made the big move to California! I have been teaching at Immanuel since 2015, and I am so thankful for this school and its warm community. I love educating young minds and sharing the love of Jesus with them! My husband, Joel, and I have three awesome children: Eden, Hannah, and Josiah.
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” Deuteronomy 6:5
Meet Mrs. Tienken:
Hello! My name is Lauren Tienken and I will be teaching third grade this year! I grew up in Easton on a ranch with my parents and two older siblings. All three of us Belt kids began attending Immanuel when I was in third grade, and we are all Immanuel graduates. It was during my high school years that I decided I wanted to pursue a career in education. After Immanuel, I attended Biola University and received my bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies with a minor in Theology. God truly paved the way for me to be at Immanuel again and I am beyond excited. I feel so blessed to be able to teach in such a wonderful, Christ-centered community.
I married my high school sweetheart in May. In our free time, my husband and I enjoy going to antique shops. I also love baking and drinking a good cup of coffee!
“You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock”. - Isaiah 26:3-4
Meet Mrs. Roberts:
My name is Emily Roberts. I grew up in Reedley and attended local schools. It was when I was in 1st grade that I knew I wanted to become a teacher. After high school I went to Fresno State and earned my Bachelor's Degree in Liberal Studies and my Multiple Subjects teaching credential. After a few years of teaching I continued my education and received my Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction and earned my Administrative Services credential.
I taught for 10 years in a local public school and have been teaching at Immanuel since 2018. I am teaching 4th grade again this year and loving it. I am so blessed for the opportunity to teach at Immanuel helping students learn about God’s truth and developing their Biblical Worldview. The Immanuel community is such a special place to be a part of as a teacher and as a parent. It has been a wonderful experience and I am so thankful the Lord made it happen and He deserves all the Glory for it.
When I am not in school, my husband and I along with our kids love traveling to new places seeing God’s wonderful creations.
My favorite verses are from 1 Peter 5: 7 - Cast all of your anxiety on him because he cares for you and from Exodus 14:14 - The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.
Meet Mrs. Ferreira:
Hello, my name is Katie Ferreira. My husband, Rob, and I have lived in the Kingsburg area for 17 years. We have 2 boys, Cole (11) and Carson (8), and they both transferred to Immanuel last year. We fell in love with this school and we are so excited to be here. I grew up in San Luis Obispo and I am the oldest of 7 in my family. I attended Grace SLO Church from birth until I left for college when I was 20. I became a Christian in my grandmother's Good News Club at the age of 4 and thank the Lord for my godly grandparents and my mom who loved me like Jesus would and modeled how to live a life serving the Lord.
I earned a BA in Liberal Studies at CSU Fullerton and returned to school 2 years later to pursue a teaching credential at CSU Fresno. My first teaching job was in Hanford at Lincoln Elementary School where I taught 2nd grade. I taught for three years before deciding to stay home and raise my boys. Eight years later, I started working part-time at Kings River Elementary as a Reading Intervention Teacher for 1st-5th graders who struggle in their reading. At Kings River, I shared a classroom and worked alongside Melanie Efird who is now my job-share teaching partner in this 4th grade position at Immanuel. We have been friends for years and we are excited about this opportunity to teach together.
Our family currently attends First Baptist Kingburg where I have volunteered for many years in Sunday School, AWANA and Mom's Time Out. The local church has been such a blessing in my life over the years and has helped me grow as a follower of Jesus. I look forward to the opportunities that Immanuel will provide for me to continue growing as an educator and as a Christian. I look forward to meeting many Immanuel families this year and trust that God has amazing things planned for our school and our students!
"Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying." - Romans 12:12
Meet Mrs. Efird:
Hello, my name is Melanie (Stanley) Efird. My husband, Adam, and I moved to Kingsburg about 11 years ago. We have three children, Addison (13), Camdyn (11), Luke (8) and they all transferred to Immanuel last year. As we had our tour of the school we felt a sense of peace and home instantly and are so blessed to be here. I grew up in Caruthers and I am the middle of three girls. I grew up attending Calvary Christian Fellowship in Caruthers. After we moved to Kingsburg we started attending Kingsburg First Baptist Church where we have been members now for the past nine years.
I attended California State University, Fresno where I earned my BA in Communicative Disorders with an option in Deaf Education. I continued at Fresno State to pursue my multiple subject teaching credential with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education. My first teaching job was in Riverdale at Fipps Primary School where I taught Kindergarten. I continued teaching Kindergarten for seven years, until I decided to stay at home with our young children. Three years ago I started working part-time at Kings River Elementary as a Reading Intervention Teacher for 1st-5th graders who struggle with reading. At Kings River, I shared a classroom and worked alongside Katie Ferreira who is now my job-share teaching partner in the 4th grade at Immanuel. We have attended church together and have been friends for the past 10 years and are very excited to be teaching together at Immanuel.
In my free time, I love to watch my children play sports, relax at Shaver Lake, bake, and spend time with our extended family.
"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." - Joshua 1:9
Meet Mrs. Turner:
Hello, my name is Ashlee Turner. I am so excited to be a part of the Immanuel family. I grew up in Dinuba and attended Dinuba schools. Dinuba is also where I began my teaching career and taught kindergarten, third grade, and fourth grade for a total of 10 ½ years.
I attended Fresno State where I earned my Bachelor of Science degree in criminology with an option in victimology. In my last semester of college I began substitute teaching and decided my heart was with children. Upon graduation I earned my teaching credential through CalStateTEACH Fresno.
My husband Jared and I live in Kingsburg where we are raising our two daughters, Lia and Carly. I am truly grateful that God has blessed me with the opportunity to teach at Immanuel. Over the past year I have really leaned into Him and prayed for guidance and He led me here. I look forward to an exciting year of new opportunities. May all glory be given to God.
“Let all that you do be done in love.” 1 Corinthians 16:14
Meet Mr. Hoover:
My name is Corey Hoover, and I am extremely pleased to be part of the Immanuel family. I am a graduate of Fresno Pacific University and am currently completing my Master’s of Arts in Teaching. I live in Hanford with my wife Elaine and our youngest son Gavin. Our oldest son Christopher lives in San Diego, and attends Point Loma Nazarene University.
I was guided to Immanuel by The Lord after working three years in alternative education. While I was blessed to be a part of that mission field, I longed to share the Gospel openly with my students. I am thankful to The Lord for providing me an opportunity to do so, and I am mindful not to take this blessing for granted.
I am passionate about raising up a godly generation, who can stand firm in the Truth. Teaching through a Biblical perspective is important to me, as it helps our students understand the depth and scope of our God’s sovereignty, power, and faithfulness. It is my hope that each student under my care will grow in their relationship with Jesus Christ, and realize the awesome potential their Creator has endowed them with.
“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” - Romans 8:28
Meet Mrs Sorensen:
My name is Emily Sorensen and I am thrilled to be teaching 5th grade at Immanuel. I grew up in Kingsburg California and got my B.A. in Liberal Studies at Fresno Pacific University. I am married to my husband Cole who teaches at Immanuel High School. A few of my favorite things include chocolate, coffee, fall weather, and camping.
One of my all time favorite Bible verses is Joshua 1:9: "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Meet Mrs. Schletewitz:
Hi, my name is Teri Schletewitz. I grew up in Reedley and attended Reedley schools. After graduating from Immanuel High School, I attended Fresno State where I earned my teaching credential.
My husband Jeff and I live in Reedley and have 4 children.
Favorite verse: “Delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4
Meet Mrs. Hillner:
As a literature enthusiast and writer, it is my joy to bring hidden writing abilities to the surface, to welcome children into the depths reading, and engage with their minds in the freshly abstract ways that sixth graders are capable of for the first time in their development. Students quickly realize that my favorite question is why, and we bring this level of intellectual tenacity to our exciting look at ancient cultures, to our fascination with the ways in which God has made our planet, to the elegant patterns in number systems, and even to our relationship with the Lord. It is a privilege, an honor, and a blessing for me to share my Jesus with students in Bible class; not only is devotions my favorite part of the day, but it is usually the most meaningful for students and myself. Our God calls us into depth and into a thousand whys; it is my prayer that, by the end of the year, every student finds Jehovah, the I AM, as the unique answer to every question and the source of his/her identity.
I grew up and studied in Boston, where my husband and I got married after meeting in Bible school in Southern California in 2014; God called us to Reedley and Immanuel in the summer of 2017. I taught at Christian schools in the Greater Boston Area for three years before moving to Immanuel, and I enjoy integrating my Expeditionary Learning training into my work here, as well as continuing to learn more about EL Education. In our spare time my husband and I enjoy reading a wide range of literature, working on various writing projects, and exploring the mountains.
John 21:17: “He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep".
Meet Mrs. Gunlund:
My name is Tisharra Gunlund, and I am thrilled to be teaching 6th grade here at Immanuel. I was born in Superior, Wisconsin and spent my early childhood there. I moved to Kingsburg, California when I was 8 and have lived there ever since. I am married to my husband Lance and together we have 8 children combined and two sweet grandsons.
I graduated from Kingsburg High in 1990. I completed my BA in Child Development from Fresno Pacific University in 2011 and went on to obtain my Multiple Subject Teaching Credential in 2014 from Fresno State.
I have worked with and loved on children of varying ages over the span of my lifetime in both the educational and spiritual settings. I started in a daycare setting where I taught for 10 years. I taught preschool age children about the unconditional love of Jesus and His teachings in my home church of New Life Ministries for 15 years. I have 9 years combined experience with elementary age children in both a Special Day Class and the regular classroom. I've also assisted in an Adult Transitional Program for 3 years. The development of children has always been my passion and teaching has always been the avenue by which I connect with young people.
God opened the door that led me to Immanuel Elementary School in the summer of 2021. It is a great joy for me to be here and play a role in developing the minds and souls of my students and the fellow students on campus. I am excited to build a classroom community with students and parents alike. I thank the Lord for entrusting me with each student. I am looking forward to threading our educational curriculum with the Word of God and equipping students with the tools to thrive academically and Spiritually. I am looking forward to teaching, exploring, investigating, and asking questions about our world through the eyes of Jesus. I am humbled and honored to be apart of the Immanuel family and I am looking forward to seeing what God is going to do. He is good, always.
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” - Joshua 1:9
Meet Mr. Villarreal:
Hi, my name is Anthony Villarreal. I am the eldest brother of four. My family and I grew up in Reedley. I attended Jefferson, Alta, Navelencia, and Reedley High School. After my freshman year at Reedley High, my family moved to Dinuba. I have always had a strong passion for God, baseball, math, and science. After I graduated from Dinuba High School, I continued my educational journey by attending Reedley College then Fresno Pacific University. While attending FPU, I received my B.A. in Liberal Studies and my teaching credentials in Teacher Education.
Most importantly, I have attended Orange Cove Christian Center since 2012 and shortly after dedicating myself to the Lord. He has given me a calling towards teaching. I am extremely grateful for receiving this opportunity to teach at Immanuel Elementary. I am excited to be in an environment that loves God, family, and community.
My wife, Samantha, and I are blessed with three wonderful children; Serenity, Anthony Jr., and Andre. We enjoy camping with family and friends.
Favorite verse: Isaiah 41:10 - "So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."
Meet Mrs. Suttles:
Hello! My name is Andrea Suttles and I was born and raised in Dinuba. My mother was an elementary school teacher, my dad was a full-time law enforcement officer and a part-time farmer. Our family was actively involved in the Dinuba First Assembly of God Church, as were my grandparents and great-grandparents. My mother taught at Monson-Sultana School, so my brother and I spent our elementary and middle school years there.
At Dinuba High School I was active in band and choir and volunteered at the local hospital. After high school I attended College of the Sequoias in Visalia and graduated from Fresno State. I soon married my husband, Tom and lived in multiple states during his career with Ford Motor Company. We have two sons, our oldest is employed in Kingsburg, our youngest is working on finishing his degree at the University of Arizona.
My husband has taken an early retirement and we are back in the valley after living and working a number of years in southern California. After many years of substitute teaching, I am thrilled to have my own music classroom in a private, Christian setting. God has been so good to our family and I am thankful for this opportunity to worship Him through music!
Favorite verse: Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, “The LORD has done great things for them.” Psalm 126:2
Meet Mr. ElaGarza:
My name is José M. ElaGarza, and I teach kindergarten through second grade music here at Immanuel. I am on campus Tuesdays and Thursdays.
I grew up in a small farm town near Monterey, called Salinas. Growing up I could always find joy in music. I gravitated towards music very young, and in the fifth grade I took up the saxophone. Music came somewhat naturally to me and in high school I discovered I can pick up most instruments and quickly learn them. I have an A.A. in Music, and a B.A. in Media Production from Fresno State.
I married my gorgeous wife, Alexandra in 2011 and have 3 amazing children. Graham(10), Calvin(8), and Miles(5). We have one lovable goldendoodle, Cocoa(2). We live near the Clovis area and have a nice community of friends and family nearby.
I work professionally as a Production Manager for the Fresno State Music Department. I’ve been there for a little over 12 years. I work with professors, students, and award winning guest artists from all over the world. I also record various ensembles, instruments, and concerts throughout the academic year. The eclecticness of different cultures and music has brought me even more appreciation of God’s amazing gift of music. It’s a very enjoyable job, but God has been stirring in me the desire to teach music since my wife and I started having kids.
While working for Fresno State I have had endless resources through professors and have sat in many music education classes, tutorials, and have taken workshops on elementary school teaching. I am fascinated by how kids learn through movement and music. I am constantly learning new ways to teach elementary music in this approach. I have recently been captivated by the Orff-Schulwerk teaching techniques and am using them in our classrooms today.
I am beyond blessed that I’ve been given this opportunity to teach and happy to be a part of the Immanuel campus. My hope is to instill your children with God’s truths through music, using lyrics or scriptures, and of course having fun.
In my free time, I enjoy watching, coaching, and playing sports with my family. We dabble with a little bit of everything, such as, hockey, basketball, baseball, soccer, football, and pickleball. Our family enjoys the Shaver Lake and Dinkey Creek area. We are very hopeful to one day catch a fish.
Favorite Verse: Matthew 6:26 - “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?”
Meet Mrs. Bondurant:
Hello my name is Michelle (Fernandez) Bondurant. I was born and raised in Reedley, and grew up attending Reedley First Baptist Church. My childhood was filled with music, and art. My father (Steve) worked for a printing company, and my mother (Connie) was an Art and Computer Design teacher for Reedley High School. Growing up, my sister and I enjoyed listening to my father play piano for our church on Sunday mornings.
I attended Reedley schools: Great Western Elementary, Grant Middle School, and Reedley High School. I continued my education through Reedley College, and Fresno State; where I graduated with a BA in liberal studies. After college, I accepted a job at Chapter One Preschool as a Preschool Teacher. Throughout my time at Chapter One, I worked with many students with exceptional needs, and became passionate about working with exceptional children. During that time, I received my Masters in Special Education.
God has blessed me with the opportunity to be a part of the SOAR team for Immanuel Elementary School. I will be working as the teacher aid for the SOAR Program. God has brought together an amazing group of teachers to reach every child's learning needs on the Immanuel campus. I am truly blessed to be a part of the IES staff.
I currently live in Reedley with my husband Drew. We have two dogs Kuiper and Minnie. I enjoy a good cup of coffee, a Disney movie, and snuggling with my dogs. I love spending time with my husband at the beach and Disneyland.
"Be still and know that I am God." - Psalm 46:10
Meet Mr. Bennett:
Hello, my name is Sean Bennett. I grew up on the East Coast and moved to the Central Coast of California my senior year of high school. It was there that I met and married my beautiful wife as well as graduated from Cuesta College. I then transferred and completed my studies at San Francisco State with the goal of becoming a physical education teacher. After obtaining my Bachelor’s I moved to Clovis and did my student teaching in Clovis while getting my teaching credential.
My desire to become a P.E teacher flows from the love for sports and the valuable lessons about life that God can teach us through sports and fitness. I participated in football for two years in high school, as well as track and field in high school and college. My passion and belief about physical education is that it is incredibly important in developing the skills and knowledge needed to build and maintain a healthy and active life at any age. I also believe physical education provides a wonderful opportunity to build respect, responsibility, and a excellent work ethic. I am so excited to be teaching at Immanuel Elementary School, and I feel so blessed that the Lord has given me the opportunity to be a light to so many children’s minds and hearts.
My wife, Savanah, and I currently live in Clovis but are hoping to relocate closer to Reedley. The Lord has gifted us with a wonderfully energetic and joyful boy named Parker. My favorite sports and activities are exercising and just about any sport or physical game. Our family enjoys spending time in with family and friends whether that is out in nature or in the city.
"Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
Meet Mrs. Huerta:
Hello families and friends! My name is Cheyenne Huerta and I am excited to be part of Immanuel Schools to share my love and passion for health and wellness in a God centered environment. I grew up in the Madera Ranchos attending middle school and high school in the mountains. Throughout my educational experience grew my desire to teach and make sure others are blessed with a positive educational experience as well.
I was a three sport athlete playing volleyball, soccer and softball all four years. I also played softball in college so needless to say I’m competitive. I have a background in Broadcasting (radio, television, newspaper) as well as Criminology and Recreation. I began my teaching profession in 2014 where I’ve taught elementary through high school both in classroom and as a physical education teacher. I’m blessed to have had the opportunity to coach volleyball, soccer, softball and wrestling. I love coaching as it gives me an opportunity to really pour into my athletes and love them and guide them just as God guides us daily.
I am proud to say that I have served in the United States Army and it was through my military service that I met my husband. We are blessed with an incredible son, and two fur-babies. I love being physically active and am up for most challenges or adventures. My family and I love sports whether it’s playing or watching. We are huge baseball fans as we are on a quest to go to every MLB field...we are well on our way to accomplishing that dream...Go Giants!
My family stands on Faith, Family, Freedom where we believe that God is first and foremost, Family is second to God followed by love for country with the freedoms and blessings God has provided. We accompany this with Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you”, declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”.
Favorite Verse: “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength”. - Philippians 4:13
Meet Mrs. Horton:
Hi my name is Brenda (Pauls) Horton and I am so grateful to be part of the Immanuel family. I grew up in Dinuba and attended Dinuba Mennonite Brethren Church and graduated from Immanuel High School. I completed my teaching credential at Fresno Pacific and have worked in various ways in education; as a Kindergarten teacher, tutor, and research analyst at an educational research company. During that time I also pursued a degree in Theology at the Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary. God has given me a passion to know Him more through his Word and I’m excited to share that passion with the children I work with. I’m also excited to help students know their value in the Lord, and help them find joy and confidence in learning.
My husband, Brian, and I live in Clovis and have a beautiful girl named Abby. As a family we love to camp and hang out at the beach. Our favorite week of the year is spent up at Hume Lake Christian Camp during the summer, enjoying all that Hume is.
It is because of (God) that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Therefore, as it is written: “Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.” 1 Corinthians 1:26-31
Meet Mrs. Renney:
My name is Amanda Renney. I was born and raised in Orosi, California. As an Immanuel student I was active in the Immanuel Community, sports, and music.
After graduating from Immanuel High School, I attended Fresno Pacific University where I received my BA and my Multiple Subject Teaching Credential. My first teaching job was at Immanuel Elementary School as the 4th grade teacher. I have experience teaching a variety of grades in both private and public school.
My husband and I live in Reedley with our three girls, Ella, Adeline, and Marjorie. I love being outdoors, working in my rose garden, sports, coffee, and spending time with family. I am so excited that the Lord directed me back to Immanuel in 2020. Being a part of the Immanuel staff and community has been such a blessing to me and to my family.
Philippians 3:14 is a favorite bible verse: "I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus."