Dear Families,

Thank you for your interest in learning more about Shepherd of the Desert! Research shows that participation in a high quality early childhood program is a huge indicator of future success, and we take this research very seriously as is evident in all that we do at SOTD.

Our school serves families with children from ages 18 months through 5 years old and provides an outstanding educational experience in a Christ-centered, caring community with a comprehensive, creative curriculum. By talking, reading, singing, playing, drawing or using other ways to communicate, we focus on developing STEM skills through play and exploration. It is never too early to start! Our goal is to inspire students to become life-long learners both spiritually and academically.

In our 36th year of exemplary education, Shepherd of the Desert has touched thousands of families and provides a safe and loving environment for little ones in a developmentally appropriate setting. Our staff is highly motivated and provides a well-rounded, hands-on early childhood program with an emphasis in social and emotional growth as well as literacy, math, science, technology, engineering and the arts. Every day a student enters our facility, he or she grows spiritually, socially, independently and academically by working together, asking questions, and exploring the world around us.

I would personally love to share with you all of the great things that are happening here at Shepherd of the Desert and welcome you into our family! Please feel free to contact the preschool office at (480) 860-0488 to arrange a tour of our campus or allow us to answer any questions that you may have about our program.


Debbie Osman
Preschool Director

Who We Are

Shepherd of the Desert Preschool serves children two to five years old, offering half-day, full-day, with two, three or five days/week class options.  Before and after-care is also available to our families on a regular or as-needed basis.  At Shepherd of the Desert Preschool, we work with you and your child’s schedule to provide the most appropriate and convenient education experience in our loving, Christian environment.


Shepherd of the Desert Preschool is a non-profit, Christian preschool partnered with Shepherd of the Desert Lutheran Church.  Our mission at Shepherd of the Desert Preschool is to lead people to follow Jesus and provide the premier Christian educational experience focused on advancing academics for children ages 2 through 5 years old.  Your child will have the opportunity to know and experience the unconditional love of Jesus through Bible stories, prayer, songs, and weekly chapel time. Our program enhances cognitive, social, emotional language, and physical development in a hands-on, center-based STEM inspired environment.


At Shepherd of the Desert, our goal is to provide a loving environment and facilitate a positive introduction to formal education.  We believe a child’s first school experience is important because it lays the foundation for all future educational experiences.  Therefore, we offer an encouraging atmosphere conducive to individual growth and development.  We believe that each child is a unique gift of God, and our approach involves the whole child recognizing that each one develops at his or her own pace.  We strive to create an environment that is safe, loving, and rich in opportunities for learning and growth through age appropriate, hands-on activities.


Shepherd of the Desert Preschool is licensed by the Arizona Department of Health Services.  In addition, we have earned EXEMPLARY STATUS ranking through the National Lutheran Accreditation commission on multiple different times in the history of our program.  Accreditation is granted when nationally-recognized criteria for high-quality programs have been met.  Extensive self-study and validation visits are required to complete this process.  Lutheran School Accreditation encourages and recognizes Lutheran schools and preschools that provide quality Christian education and engage in continuous academic and ministry improvement, and we are honored to be recognized for this achievement.

Out of the more than 2,500 LCMS schools nationwide, only five percent have been honored with EXEMPLARY STATUS recognition.  This honor is earned every five years, and we look forward to continuing to improve our program in order to maintain this achievement.


The staff at Shepherd of the Desert uses a variety of ways to keep families informed of the events and activities that occur throughout the day during the school year. Each day your child attends school, parents have the opportunity to interface with teachers and staff at drop-off and pick-up.  Teachers also compose and send daily emails to families letting them know what happened in the classroom that day, including photos of different activities and centers.  We also have an “open-door” policy which allows parents of an enrolled child access to our facility any time during our hours of operation.  In additional, parent/teacher conferences are scheduled twice throughout the school year to assess and keep families updated on their child’s progress.

Get Started on Enrollment Today!