International Student Program

Thank you for your interest in the Desert Christian Schools (DCS) International Student Program (ISP).

Desert Christian Schools has been welcoming F-1 Visa international students to its campuses for over a decade. Our growing ISP has included students from Argentina, China, France, Germany, Iraq, Japan, Russia, Spain, South Korea, Sweden, Taiwan, Turkey, and Vietnam. Hosting international students on our campuses and in our homes causes real growth in understanding other cultures. Through diversity, all parties have the opportunity to recognize cultural differences and become more globally-minded.

Upon acceptance, DCS pairs each international student with a well-vetted, American host family who will assist the student with acclimating to life in the United States.

For more information regarding 6-12 grade international admissions, please contact our ISP Admissions Department at by emailing Amy Garelick at

International tuition and fees will apply.

Why Choose Desert Christian Schools?

Because of the small class sizes, the International Student Program at DCS provides personalized attention as we endeavor to meet every student’s unique learning needs. We desire to educate and equip students for the challenges of college, university, and the workforce. International students are taught the importance of a well-rounded outlook through academic rigor and fostering relationships among staff and students by joining clubs, participating in fine arts, and competing in athletics.

To accomplish our mission, an ISP Team has been assembled. Each person on the ISP Team brings specialized training and abilities through education and experience in their field. We hope that each member’s expertise will explicitly enhance the overall experience of all those involved in the ISP while providing a concerted effort to assist each international student in their academic and social growth. It is the goal of DCS to pursue excellence in all that we do! Members of the ISP Team consist of:

  • High School Admissions Director and ISP Coordinator- Amy Garelick
  • PS-8th Admissions Director- Jesse Hauser
  • Campus Principals- K-8: Aaron Jansen, High School: Casey Robinson
  • Registrars- K-8: Traci Garcia, High School: Merri Tavares
  • Guidance Counselor- Maureen Flores
  • Bookkeeper- Leslie Hatch

Meet our International Student Program Team

Mrs. Amy Garelick

International Student Program Coordinator

Admissions profile insights


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English Language Learners (ELL)

The DCS ELL support program includes ELL English I/II and III/IV. The curriculum focuses on reading, writing, listening, and speaking academic English. Each student is required to take the iTEP Slate test twice per academic school year to monitor English language acquisition. Extra tutoring may be provided to those students who need it.

Host Families

Desert Christian Schools has a unique opportunity to bring students from around the world into our caring, Christ-centered community. We are always looking for families who might like to open their hearts and homes to a young person (6th - 12th grade) from another country.

All interested parties must be fully aware of the role the home unit (American host family) plays in partnering with the school and a local evangelical church in accomplishing our mission. Host families provide the opportunity for students to experience life as a member of an American family. Family connections allow for many experiences with athletics, fine arts, and other community activities while providing transitional and educational support throughout the homestay.

If you have any curiosity about participating in the homestay program, please complete our Host Family Inquiry Form, and we will be sure to contact you about the application process!


Desert Christian Schools is located on the east side of Tucson, a city of over a half-million people that sits in the Sonoran Desert surrounded by numerous mountain ranges. Full of rich history and diverse cultures, Tucson offers a wide variety of activities year-round. From shopping to hiking, concerts to athletic events, and movie sets to museums, there is something for everyone in Tucson!

DCS’s location affords its students a variety of educational opportunities. Students can take trips to the world-famous Grand Canyon, Arizona's capital of Phoenix, and it only takes a few hours to get to the California coast! Tucson is also home to its very own international airport, as well as the world renowned University of Arizona. The University of Arizona is classified as a R1: Doctoral Universities with very high research activity. The University of Arizona has a College of Medicine, College of Law, and is affliated with two acamedic mediacal centers.