Welcome to the 23-24 School Year, from Dr. Cary Shaw, Head of School


As we are on the cusp of another year, an old familiar adage comes to mind – it takes a village to raise a child. However, I would phrase that differently. “It takes a team of committed Christ-following teachers to work alongside families, and their churches, to properly raise a child.” Sure, that’s a mouthful, but it is true. I’m glad to take a few moments to talk about the wonderful team God has assembled here at Twin Tiers Christian Academy to work alongside our families. Three individuals, in particular, were added to the team this year.

Many of our students will know Tracy Howard, a veteran teacher and former staff member at Horseheads Christian School. Miss Howard will assume two primary areas of responsibility as our sixth grade teacher in the mornings and our girls physical education and health teacher in the afternoons. Miss Howard received her training at Clarks Summit University where she earned both a bachelor and master’s degree in Christian education. It means a lot when someone seeks to return to where they started. It indicates that they value what was there and want to be a part of good things moving forward. So, it’s great to welcome back Tracy Howard, a member of the TTCA Class of 1992.

We are thrilled to welcome Melissa Branscome as a full-time member of the team. Miss Branscome was with us last year but only in a part-time, non-faculty role. However, it seems that the Lord used that time to prepare her to join our team this year as one of our mathematics teachers when a position opened. Mrs. Branscome studied at Salisbury State University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and a master’s degree in Post-Secondary Education. In the past, she taught math in schools in Maryland and North Carolina. In addition to her role in the classroom, she will assist Coach Shanks with our varsity girls soccer team. We are happy to welcome back Mrs. Branscome, and her two daughters, to TTCA.

Pastor Andy Shanks is no stranger to TTCA. For the past four years, he directed one of our school choirs. But this year, Pastor Andy will take on a more active role as he instructs our junior and senior Bible classes in addition to directing the senior high choir. For the past 20 years, Pastor Andy has served in church ministries in New Jersey and New York. Since 2018, he has held the position of the Youth and Worship Pastor at Breesport Baptist Church. Pastor Andy received his training in Bible and pastoral ministries at Clarks Summit University. He loves the Word of God, and he loves working with teenagers. Serving as one of our Bible teachers seems to be a perfect combination for him. We are glad to have Pastor Andy on our team!

In all, we have 17 full and part-time teachers who make up the TTCA Team. Each of us would contend that we consider it a privilege to link arms with families in the awesome task of training and transforming the next generation. All parents will attest, children are our greatest blessing this side of Heaven. It is, therefore, a wonderful privilege that parents and families share their greatest blessings with us. We are excited to see what the Lord will do with all of our children.

Dr. Cary Shaw
Head of School