Susan Hardwick - 5th and 6th Grade

Experience: Susan Hardwick earned an Associate's Degree in Liberal Arts while pursuing her studies in elementary education. Susan has taught Bible School, Sunday School, and works with the junior high youth group at her church.  She has taught physics at Gateways Summer School in Del Mar for the past three years. Wife and mother of three children, Susan has worked at Heartland for the past five years. An experienced home schooling mom of six years, Heartland is blessed to have her.


Interests: Reading, gardening, spending time with family, taking care of a farm full of animals, planning outings, and being outdoors.


Personal comment: “I love working with Jr. High students. To be a part of the growth process from the first day of school until the last is such a blessing. Watching not only their educational growth, but also the growth of Christ in them brings me great joy.  At Heartland I also have the opportunity to watch them grow through the years.  We are such a family here.  I hope to touch their lives, but I am always left blessed by them."


Principal’s comment: “Susan is positive, enthusiastic, and never says quit. Her love for her students and desire for them to grow academically and spiritually shines through in everything she does. Her creativity and energy know no bounds.”

Middle School 5th - 8th

Classroom diversity: Heartland has a great junior high. Because of the age of the students, parents often find this to be a more challenging time. That’s where we come in. Heartland offers a new set of caring adults to team up with you to guide your child through the learning process. Heartland junior high students are assigned to a homeroom instructor who overseers the overall education process, as well as scheduled classes with instructors for English and Math. We have an excellent P.E. class, coached by a world champion athlete. Special units of study are given in the afternoon, such as Shakespeare plays, art projects, and how to do a research paper step by step. Each year we offer SAT testing to assist you in tracking the progress of your student.

Field trips and activities: Heartland junior high begins the year with a trip to the beach so that everyone can get to know each other right away. Four fun fields trips can be earned by completing each quarter’s required work. Other after school activities may include basketball, flag football, talent show, crafts, music, or drama.  Heartland junior high puts on a Fall Festival for the rest of the school with the proceeds benefiting the junior high class. Teaching students creativity and responsibility, this annual activity has became a tradition of fun.

Spiritual and relational: The spiritual and relational side of Heartland middle school has a high priority. Our number one goal is for each student to come to know God for himself or herself. When they fall in love with their Savior, the hard things of life seem to fall into place. We have daily Bible studies and discussions as well as separate small group settings for the boys and girls. We place a strong emphasis on being the body of Christ, and endeavor to live together in harmony. We work very hard to create an atmosphere of family unity. We have a Moms-In-Touch group on campus that faithfully prays for our school. Our middle school students freely pray for one another, as well as for their families and the staff. All of our staff has a growing relationship with Jesus. We seek God for insight. It is our desire to cooperate with Him in loving your children, and to help them grow into the mature people of God they are destined to be.

Allegra LaPrath - 7th and 8th Grades

Experience:  Teacher for 14 years; youth leader for 33 years; volunteer clown for hospitals and gang neighborhoods for four years; home schooled her own children for 17 years.

Interests:  Gardening, landscaping, and cooking.


Personal comment:  "I believe junior high students have a lot to say and I respect their voice. I love their questions and working together to discover the answers. I especially enjoy exposing them to classical literature and creating a love of words."


Principal's comment:  "Soft spoken and sweet, Allegra commands the junior high classes with a quiet authority. She holds to a solid line of expectations, knowing the ability of each student. Allegra is determined to produce well-rounded students equipped for the destiny she believes is theirs. Field trips, games, encouragement, and new frontiers are all part of learning in this classroom."

Fran McKnight - Jr. High Math

Experience:  Fran is a preacher's wife, which has given her much opportunity to teach. She has taught Bible classes and women's Bible study groups for the past 15 years. Having homeschooled her own children for 4 years and worked at Heartland for 3 years, Fran found herself settling into the place that excites her most, the junior high and high school math classes. Having always excelled in math, schooled in honors and advance math courses, competing and winning math competitions, tutoring students in math from 1st grade through high school, Fran looks forward to helping others understand and love math.

Interests: First and foremost God and my family. I love hanging at the beach, parks and amusement parks. I also enjoy games!! I love figuring out strategy games, word games and of course numbers :).


Personal comment: I believe in math! I believe math is in our daily lives. I enjoy it and it has always been an interest to me. I am so grateful for the opportunity to be able to explain math to the students in a way they can understand it and carry it forward with them. I like to say, “If you understand it, you will use it."

Principal's comment:  "Soft, sweet, and enthusiastic, Fran has a heart of gold.  Willing to help, Fran has faith that all students can succeed in math.  She is hard-worker and can always be found with a smile on her face."

Maggie Hansen - Physical Education

Experience: Though Maggie has been an excellent student her whole life, exercise and good health have always been extremely important to her. While earning her A.A. at Grossmont College, Maggie took classes in sports medicine, physical education, and physiology. She understands the value of consistent, personal exercise. Maggie knows what these students are capable of achieving and wants to draw it out of them, and to bring them to a point of success. Involvement in sports during high school and college has inspired her to get the youth moving. Her experience with youth groups has shown that exercise can be fun and beneficial.

Interests: I have played the violin my whole life. Camping with my family is a must. Hiking enables me to see all of God’s creation. P-90 keeps me in shape to deal with the youth. My trade as a makeup artist makes me enjoy the softer things of life. I have recently discovered cross stitch, but my love is my family.

Personal comment: "My name is Maggie Hansen, a wife and mother of four beautiful children. I have discovered a love for working with high school students. As one of the leaders at my church’s high school group I believe I have something to offer this age. I’m looking forward to working with Heartland’s PE students. I have exercised and been health conscious my whole life. I want to build them up not only physically through sports and strength training, but spiritually through encouragement and example. I look forward to the coming year."


Principal’s comment: "Look out students, Maggie does not take “No” for an answer. She believes in her cause and is committed to seeing it through. She has faith that all can grow from where they are. Spending time with coach Frank and the students last year was inspiring and served to bring more creativity and excitement to her regarding this class. Organized, dependable, and patient, Maggie brings great assets to Heartland."