Dr. Joshua D. Reichard serves as the Vice President of Academic Affairs at Valley Christian Schools in Youngstown, Ohio. As a state-licensed school superintendent, educational leader, scholar, and theologian, Dr. Reichard integrates his faith and society by leading a private, nonprofit, Christian school system serving more than 700 students in grades K-12 in a city with one of the highest concentrations of children living in poverty per capita in the United States. Valley Christian Schools are a publicly-funded voucher-driven alternative to the public school system, which has historically been in academic and fiscal emergency and among the worst-ranked in the state of Ohio; it is also the eighth most segregated school border in the United States. Despite these factors, Dr. Reichard has helped lead growth and continuous improvement of Valley Christian Schools, which now serve a racially, socioeconomically, and ability-level diverse population of students. Dr. Reichard has helped the school exceed national accreditation standards and become a model for the nation of how faith-based private schools can serve the under-served: students who are socioeconomically disadvantages and educationally disenfranchised, 75% of whom meet federal poverty guidelines, 70% of whom are minorities, and about 20% of whom have some diagnosed learning disability. In spite of these challenges, over the past seven years Dr. Reichard have led the high school to meet all state achievement benchmarks and to exceed the national averages on AdvanceED (NCA) and ACSI accreditation standards. Valley Christian Schools have consistently outperformed the schools in their community in academics, graduation rates, retention rates, and virtually every other measure.
For more information about Dr. Reichard’s work at Valley Christian Schools, please see the following report from the Fordham Institute: Tenacity and Pluck: How Five Private Schools in Ohio have Adapted to Vouchers or a more concise summary article (EducationNext). A similar article was also featured in the National Review. Dr. Reichard serves on the Thought Leader forum and President’s Advisory Council for the Association of Christian Schools International and is a founding board member of The CAUSE (Christians Addressing the Under-Served in Education). Dr. Reichard’s published scholarly work related to school choice (and theology and philosophy) can be found on Google Scholar.
Oxford Graduate School shaped Dr. Reichard’s perspective on how to integrate his faith in creative ways that solves social problems and meets pressing social needs. Dr. Reichard earned his DPhil from OGS in 2007. He also holds a PhD in Human and Social Studies (Religion and Theology) from the University of the Western Cape (South Africa) and an EdS degree from Liberty University.