News & Events

Living The Vision 2015

God is up to something BIG and people are showing up and jumping in!

Gardere Community Christian School’s annual “Living the Vision” dinner was held Tuesday, September 15th at the Renaissance Hotel in Baton Rouge. Over 300 guests attended, giving of their time, hearts and resources to serve His children in our community. GCCS’s work was presented through video and personal testimonies. Sharing were executive Director Nancy Zito, and talented and dedicated faculty members Paula Walker, Lauren Darden, and Travis Howard. Guests also enjoyed an original poem by GCCS 1st Grader Dereon Ross, praises to the Lord through song from the GCCS Upper-school Choir, and prayers from Rev. Raymond Jetson (Star Hill Church) and Rev. J. Scott Lindsay (South Baton Rouge Presbyterian Church). The stirring evening ended with a call-to-action form GCCS Board Member Ryan Forsthoff. What a great night together!

Thank you to all who joined us. While we are still hearing from attendees and other partners, we have currently raised a total of $142,355 of our $150,000 goal!

Blessed by the open hearts of our community, the generosity of our supporters will be thoughtfully and prayerfully used as we help our students grow into the people God has created them to be. Please continue to pray for our students, faculty, and staff. Our names lifted in prayer is the greatest gift of all.

Thankful for God’s blessings and your support.  See our video and pictures from the event below.

Leaders celebrate official opening of Gardere Community Christian School

WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports
A new school and a new playground are bringing positive energy to the Gardere community.

The first students at the new Gardere Community Christian School were on hand as school leaders had a ribbon cutting and building blessing on GSRI Avenue Friday morning.

The kids and teachers were in a temporary location downtown and now, after four years of dreaming about it, their own school is a reality.

“We’ve had to move from building to building but now we are here in a permanent place in the area that we want to serve and it’s real special, especially as I saw the children singing, I just thought, ‘Wow, you know, this is for them,'” said Principal Nancy Zito.

Zito added she hopes the new school will bring the Gardere community together and give people living there hope for the future.

View the article at

Private school offers hope for children living in Gardere community

Click here to see the video and read the full article from NBC 33

BATON ROUGE, LA (NBC33) — In East Baton Rouge, many parents want other options when it comes to educating their children. Magnet or private schools are options, but they’re pricey.

Now, one new private school is solving a lot of parent’s problems in the Gardere community. One woman who moved here a few years ago saw the need for a school for Gardere children, so along with a lot of faith and support, what started as an idea has finally taken flight.

Now, once failing students are succeeding in a private school setup, only for the children of Gardere.

Nancy Zito is the principal of The Gardere School, a school that started out as an idea three years ago, and is now a full-fledged institution.

“I didn’t expect it to blossom so fast I am excited it has because we help the children and families because work w families I visit them in their homes and we pray with them,” said Zito.

With three classrooms, K through 5, the 30 students currently enrolled get a personalized private school education that teachers say has made a huge impact in the student’s lives.

“I have seen tremulous changes to these students they have grown in so many different ways,” said Gardere School teacher, Susan McClain.

Tuition doesn’t seem to be a problem, or a deterrent. Two volunteer hours are required each month, and tuition will reduce an additional five dollar for every extra hour of volunteer work. And with tuition assistance, students can attend Gardere regardless of their financial situation.

“The parents need to be involved we make that clear up front,” said Zito. But where did this idea come from, to start a school from scratch?

“Within the first couple weeks of moving here I drove around and through Gardere and felt the tug for Gardere, I feel in love.”

So she started a tutoring program, then two years later found dedicated teachers, volunteers, and a location. “I just feel in love with the concept for the school and the fact there was a need in the community for the students,” noted McClain.

So now one person’s dream to help a community, is finally coming to fruition. “God put in on my heart to open a private school for the children in Gardere.”

There’s a waiting list this for the school, but with financial support, the sky is the limit. The Gardere School will be moving back into the community in August. They will have room at their new location at the house of repentance church to possibly expand to pre k through 8th grade.

First Presbyterian Church Board of Elders Welcomes GCCS

At their June 14, 2012 meeting, the board of elders from First Presbyterian Church unanimously voted to house Gardere Community
Christian School for the 2012-2013 school year at their facilities downtown. The students are bused from the Gardere area to First Presbyterian Church. GCCS now has three classrooms, a cafeteria, an indoor recess area and an office. The space has allowed us to expand while we
continue to search for a place in Gardere.

Less than three months ago we were still looking for a location, wondering how God would provide if we were to continue. Once again He has provided beyond our expectations and has shown us that His ways are perfect. The encouragement and support of First Presbyterian have been so very important over the last three years and now they have given us a place to continue and grow. We are grateful to the church staff, without exception, they have been extremely welcoming and accomodating.

Seven students make it into Greater Baton Rouge Children’s Choir

Many of our fourth and fifth grade students auditioned for the Greater Baton Rouge Children’s Choir (GBRCC). Seven students made the cut and will be a part of the impressive children’s choir. We are so excited and thankful to the director of the choir, Jennifer Ellis, for letting us know about the auditions and giving our students who love to sing a wonderful and special opportunity. What a great blessing to be able to use their God-given talent in such a special way.

GBRCC has been offering choral education since 1997 and is known for its highly eclectic and artistic repertoire as well as its collaboration with local performing artists and composers. GBRCC presents two choral concerts during the season, collaborates with other arts organizations, and performs at community functions. GBRCC has performed with Baton Rouge Symphony, Baton Rouge Ballet Theater, Baton Rouge Little Theater, and Louisiana Sinfonietta.

GBRCC’s mission is to unite children in the community, building not only musical, but also character skills through choral singing. We are blessed to have some of our students be a part of such an outstanding program.