Mrs. Beckman holds firm to the belief that all students can learn and has a strong track record of success. She works hard to ensure every student who enters ACA will receive an exceptional education. Mrs. Beckman has been with ACA for seven years and considers it an honor to be ACA’s principal. She looks forward to continuing to see ACA grow and reach new academic milestones while continually increasing opportunities for all students.
Mrs. Beckman has been in education for over ten years, with the past two years in administration roles. She began her career in education with Teach for America moving to Chicago for her first teaching assignment in the Chicago public school district. During this time, Mrs. Beckman was part of the Erikson Institute for Early Childhood education, Early Mathematics project and Guided Reading pilot program. After her time in Chicago, she was offered a teaching position Colorado and came to Arizona over 7 years ago. During her time in the classroom, Mrs. Beckman has taught primary, intermediate, and middle school students and demonstrated her passion through strong test scores every year. She has also held many leadership positions including instructional coach, team lead, and has managed grant and after school programs.
Mrs. Beckman is a certified principal through Arizona Department of Education. She holds a Bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University, a Masters in Early Childhood Education from Dominican University, and a Masters in Educational Leadership from Arizona State University.
Dean of Students
Mr. Sandoval currently serves as the Dean of Students at ACA. As a life-long learner, he holds to a philosophy that those in education should strive to inspire and empower youth to reach their full potential. Mr. Sandoval began working in this field as an undergraduate at San Diego State University where he had the opportunity to work with teens during an after-school program, and it was then he realized that his true calling was working with youth. After completing his double major and earning a Bachelor’s degree, he moved to Arizona where he completed his teaching certification and taught history, economics, and government at an inner-city high school in Phoenix.
Mr. Sandoval’s 17-year career span includes working as a middle school teacher to holding multiple administrative positions such as athletic director, principal, and Title I Director in various schools in Arizona and California. He is also the proud father of four children and is devoted to his wife Brenda, who is an elementary teacher. During his spare time, he enjoys the outdoors with his family and likes volunteering at his local church serving in the children’s ministry.
Mr. Sandoval holds a Masters in Educational Leadership from Arizona State University and is currently working to earn a Doctorate of Education in Organizational Leadership at Grand Canyon University.
Chief Academic Administrator
From a young age Mrs. Henderson had a passion for teaching. She is an award winning educational leader with over 15 years’ experience in instruction, special education, school leadership, training and data analysis. Mrs. Henderson oversees the academic, professional development and Special Education areas of the school along with leading the elementary students, staff and teachers.
Mrs. Henderson believes in creating an educational environment that develops students who are critical thinkers who can articulate their viewpoints backed with evidence to make a difference in their community.
Mrs. Henderson holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Special Education K-12 and Master’s Degree in School Leadership. She is a certified principal and has spent several years overseeing elementary schools, high school, and alternative schools. Heather’s focus on data-driven decision making and professional development of teachers has significantly increased student achievement. .
Mrs. Henderson’s drive for excellence and desire for every child to succeed has been recognized both at ACA and the education community. She was one of eight selected in Arizona as a 2015 Rodel Exemplary Principal and was honored by the Arizona State Charter Association as the 2014 Transformational Leader of the Year.
Chief Operations/Executive Officer
With over twenty years of leadership experience in for-profit and non-profit enterprises, with the last 14 years in charter school operations and management, Mrs. Holdaway believes effective and strategic business practices are essential to support the educational needs of the students. Leaving the corporate world in 2001 to make a positive impact on education, she believes every dollar that can be saved on the operations side of the school can go directly in the classroom.
Mrs. Holdaway, along with all ACA leaders, believes in creating a positive culture where students and staff fell valued, appreciated, challenged, and have the support to grow exponentially. As a result ACA has received many awards including being recognized by Phoenix Business Journal as one of the Valley’s “Best Place to Work" as well as Arizona Business Magazine's Arizona's Most Admired Company's for the last four consecutive years. They also received the prestigious "Top 100" companies in Arizona and recently the CareerBuilder Top Companies to Work for in Arizona for the schools’ positive culture, diversity, academic achievement, community involvement and mission to build leaders and inspire change in students.
Melissa earned a Bachelor’s degree in management and received an Executive MBA from Grand Canyon University.
(see GCU Alumni Spotlight Video below)
Prior to moving to non-profit education, Melissa was the director of underwriting for Insurers Administrative
Corporation where she managed the direction of two internal departments and satellite offices in multiple states.
Mrs. Holdaway is passionate about partnering with the community to create opportunities for students. As a result, Mrs. Holdaway serves on multiple boards and commissions including the Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce (Board Chair), Grand Canyon University Colangelo College of Business Advisory Board, Arizona Charter Schools Association Advisory Board, Honorary Commander at Luke Airforce Base/Fighter Country Partnership., Steering Committee for the Boys and Girls club, and the Mayors Business Roundtable. She is an active member of Leadership West, Surprise Rotary, Sun City Elks, and Arizona Association of Business Officials (AASBO). Melissa also has served as a and Commissioner for the Arizona Commission for Postsecondary Education, Commissioner for the Surprise General Plan Commission and numerous committees for the Arizona Department of Education.
Melissa was recently named as one of the 2016 Outstanding Women in Business by the Phoenix Business Journal. In addition, her awards include the Arizona Charter Schools Association 2015 Business Leader of the Year, and the 2014 City of Surprise Citizen of the Year. In 2013, Melissa was inducted into the Grand Canyon College of Business University Hall of Fame, was Leadership West Alumnus of the year, and Sun City Elks Citizen of the Year. Additional awards include Ken Blanchard College of Business Inspirational Leadership Award and Leadership West Project of the Year.