At the close of the 1978-1979 school year, the school accommodated grades K-9 with a total of 310 students and a faculty and staff of 20 people. PCA began a soccer team and its first junior varsity basketball team.
In October 1980, the newly consructed school building was dedicated. The faculty, students, and staff of Plymouth Christian Academy had their own building and would no longer have to rent space from other schools.
The class of 1985 had 24 graduates and the library boasted 3,579 volumes. By 1986, enrollment in preschool through grade 12 had increased to 504 students with a staff of 31. Space continued to be a problem with not enough room for music or science classes. The small gym in the church building could hardly accommodate P.E. classes and necessitated “begging and borrowing” gyms for games. Fields for soccer, baseball and softball were also rented.
The church and school began the “Lifetime Stewardship” campaign to fund a four-classroom addition and the construction of a new school gymnasium. In the fall of 1993, the new classrooms and gymnasium were dedicated. When the building was complete, the total construction cost of $1.3 million was paid in full. The school and church families had witnessed God’s miracle of a large, beautiful facility.
In the summer of 1994, the Lord provided four modular classrooms. Designated for secondary usage, the modular buildings were moved to an area behind our gymnasium and were renovated with a great deal of “elbow grease” from staff, board members and parents. The school earned North Central Association (NCA) accreditation in the spring of 1994. The nationally recognized NCA seal of approval is awarded to schools that meet a rigorous set of education standards.
During the 1995-1996 school year, PCA began a six-classroom addition to the elementary wing, an expansion of the library, and the installation of cables throughout the campus for a school-wide computer network.
During the summer of 1996, a new playground was installed. The library moved to a newly renovated “Media Center” for the 1997-1998 school year.
The 1999-2000 school year started with the construction of new additions – a weight and locker room were added to the athletic facility along with the multipurpose room (now known as the Activity Center). The large multipurpose room would serve as a much needed second gym and secondary lunchroom and would be flanked by four first floor classrooms.
In the spring of 2000, God opened the door for the purchase of the 19 acres adjacent to the school. A baseball field, a softball field, and soccer field have been constructed on the property. In 2002, the property to the south of the campus became available and once again God blessed our school and enlarged our borders with the purchase of that property. The total church and school campus now covers 44 acres.
In the fall of 2009, swings and basketball hoops were installed near the baseball field. The fall of 2010 brought the opening of our new nature trail with a ribbon cutting ceremony, followed by our first 5K run on Saturday, October 2, 2010. The summer of 2011 was marked by more construction as a new athletic wing and locker room were built.
In March of 2012, we earned Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) accreditation. As stated on the ACSI website, this accreditation is used to validate PCA’s quality and verify that PCA is striving for excellence based on a solid Christian philosophy of education foundation.
During the spring of 2014, PCA received certification from the U.S. State Department to serve as a school for foreign exchange students. This certification allows us to reach out to students around the world who would like to attend Plymouth Christian during their high school years. We are excited about the worldwide reach and ministry that this program brings to PCA.
The 2014-15 school year was marked by a tremendous gift and investment in technology at PCA as we launched the “Bring Your Own Device” program. Every incoming 9th grader during this year received a device from the school. The 10th-12th grade students were required to bring their own device and our teaching staff began to integrate technology into their classrooms to enhance learning.
PCA underwent the reaccreditation process with ACSI during the 2015-2016 school year. The accreditation process is rigorous and required a huge team of administration, faculty, staff, students and parents. PCA received a very strong report and a five-year accreditation certificate, the longest time frame available.
In the spring of 2016, the PCA security system installation began with the addition of security doors in the church building leading to the Frank Smith Lunch Room and the lower level classrooms. In the secondary building, security doors were added, providing lock down capabilities for all classrooms. Staff were provided key cards for entry.
Construction on a new secondary science lab began in the summer of 2016 thanks to a very generous donation from a faithful PCA partner. This space will serve as the biology lab to further prepare PCA students for the challenges ahead during their college years.
During the summer months of 2017, the elementary computer lab was converted and became home to the PCA Elementary STEM Lab. Two elementary computer carts were also purchased, allowing greater flexibility for our elementary computer teacher and classroom teachers. This process has given PCA elementary students the great opportunity to visit the STEM Lab on a weekly basis, expanding their hands-on STEM activities, all taught through the lens of the truth of God’s Word.
The need for a new school logo was recognized and work with a graphic designer and the PCA Advancement Team began during the 2017-18 school year. This project, lasting several months and traveling through a variety of committees, ended with the adoption and introduction of a new school brand for the fall of 2018. New school signage was purchased for the exterior of the secondary building and Joy Road. Signage updates continued throughout both buildings, bringing an updated look with the new school logo becoming prominent.
Security doors with a card pass system, further securing both buildings, were added in the winter of 2018. Staff and students quickly adapted to this increased layer of security.
During the spring of 2018, PCA began working with Enrollment Catalyst, Dr. Rick Newberry. By putting in action many of his recommendations and the grace of God to bless that work, the fall of 2018 brought a 14% increase in enrollment. The Variable Tuition model was adopted, a full-time Enrollment Coordinator was hired, and a new website was built.
Several upgrades were made within our athletic department, with new signage, and new scoreboards.
Over the span of four days in April 2019, 550 PCA students and staff traveled over 600 miles across Metro Detroit to serve at food banks, shelters, fire departments, senior centers, and much more.
When PCA students returned to campus in the fall of 2019, they found several campus upgrades that had occurred over the summer months. The elementary playground had a fresh, new look. Gone was the chain-link fence, and instead there was a new brick sidewalk and new planter boxes with trees. A few new pieces were added to the playground structure, as well. Once school began, the purchase of benches for the playground and picnic tables for the swing area took place to finish this portion of the project.
Entrance ramps into the church building were refinished, providing easy access for all families and guests. In September, parking lot banners and new building signage were installed.
The year 2019 brought the 10th anniversary of PCA’s Homeschool Partnership Program. 2019 also introduced a new event into the life of our school; the induction of members into the Athletic Forever an Eagle Hall of Fame. Born out of a vision of the Athletic Booster Board, Steve Bauslaugh, Rod Windle, Leigh Nowicki, and Roland DeRenzo, were the inaugural inductees into this hall of fame.
Winter of 2020 brought changes that no one could have predicted when the news of a spreading virus became the headline on news reports around the world. This virus would quickly grow into a global pandemic, forcing the shutting down of entire nations, including the United States. Thankfully, the Lord had prompted the hearts of PCA administration to begin preparations that would position the school to be ready to transition from in-person instruction to online instruction over a weekend. PCA students never lost a day of school during the school closure that lasted throughout the entire spring semester. Our hearts broke for the Class of 2020, the seniors who lost the most during that spring. That May, the idea of a Senior Parade through Plymouth was born and quickly became one of the bright spots for every member of that class.
When school began on August 24, 2020, PCA staff, faculty, and students were back on campus for the first time together in 163 days. Teams had worked tirelessly over the previous five months to prepare to return safely to school in the midst of the continuing pandemic. Public schools surrounding PCA remained online or with hybrid schedules, making PCA a very hopeful place for parents who wanted their students to attend school in person. Over 150 new students were welcomed to the PCA family this year, causing many classes to reach their capacity limits, and creating waiting lists for the future.
In addition to the safety measures added over the summer, several technology upgrades were added as well. Cameras were added to every classroom, giving the capability of live-streaming classes to students who decided to enroll in our brand new online option, Eagles at Home. All faculty and staff transitioned to Google classroom, further streamlining our learning management system.
Throughout the summer months, major athletic improvements including new baseball and softball dugouts, permanent softball fencing, and a new baseball backstop were installed.
Weeks prior to returning to campus, the PCA parking lot was resurfaced; a much needed and greatly celebrated campus upgrade!
Truly we have God’s faithfulness, provisions, and blessings during these 44 years! We look forward to seeing how He will lead in the future.