Welcome 2017-11-08T21:23:07+00:00

The Encore Philosophies

Encore High School for the Arts is a pair of sister schools grades 7 – 12 located in Hesperia and Riverside California.  Each campus offers a unique personality separate of one another (just like sisters) with the foundation philosophies being exactly the same (just like a family).

Both campuses are accredited through WASC (Western Association of Schools and Colleges) with the first campus opening in 2008.


Thank you for visiting our web site and exploring our Encore schools.  This organization has been a labor of love for all of the people that have helped to build it over the first ten years of operation.  I am humbled and proud at the amount of dedication that this team has given to make Encore the successful organization that it is.  As one of the three founders of this organization, I am constantly humbled by how quickly and how effectively our team has grown.  When Encore opened our first school in 2008, we had 44 employees.  Today we have over 250.

This organization has been built on the blood, sweat, tears, and love from all different kinds of stakeholders.  Literally, Encore’s success is attributed to thousands of great ideas that someone brought up to help us make the organization better.  Having a respect for everyone (whether they are staff, student, parent, community member, or alumni) is what has made the Encore organization successful.

Encore has a unique vibe that is really hard to explain.  We work very hard to try to teach the students how to respect the people and the world around them while also gaining a work ethic and an education that will prepare them for college.  (At the close of the 2017 school year, over 3 million dollars in scholarships have been awarded to our graduates.)  The vibe at Encore teaches students how to love their arts, earn their education, gain a work ethic, and accept everyone for their differences.  Yes, the students are still teenagers and there are lessons to be learned, but Encore works hard to make sure that the Encore Pirates are ready for the real world after high school.

Encore was created to help young people find their passion in art and then rigorously and actively explore the opportunities within that passion.  These are the art kids.  These are the people that will make sure art and music will continue for generations to come.

Think of a world without music, without art, without dance, without drama.  This world loses ingenuity, creativity, and the ability of innovation and invention.  It is important that the adults of the world support the art of the youth so creativity can continue.

Thank you for supporting arts in the Inland Empire and the High Desert and thank you even more for supporting youth arts within the Encore organization.  Go Pirates!  Encore is the place where academics and arts grow together.

-Denise Griffin
CEO and Founder, Encore Education Corporation


The mission of Encore High School for the Arts is to provide a creative, challenging, and nurturing environment that offers students an innovative preparation for a university education and pursuit of the arts.


Encore is a school where students are trained to realize their diverse potential both academically and artistically. World class education in a variety of arts conservatories are mixed with top rate academics in this tuition free, public school. From pre-med to performance, Encore supports students success.

Where academics and arts grow together.



Through the mastery of state content standards and the use of specialized art instruction, Encore will prepare students to THINK/SPEAK/ACT.

THINK – Be able to use both critical and creative thinking

  • Identify, locate, acquire, organize, comprehend, and use information or data
  • Analyze, apply, and evaluate information
  • Use acquired skills to solve complex problems
  • Demonstrate an appreciation for a variety of opinions and thoughts

SPEAK – Be effective communicators

  • Ability to use basic communication skills; reading, writing, speaking and listening to understand and convey ideas and concepts
  • Follow verbal and written instructions
  • Demonstrate the ability to use technology as a means of communication (internet, phones, text, etc.)

ACT – Be effective candidate employees

  • Use independent and group learning strategies to complete assignment
  • Learning the importance of completing assignments and tasks on time
  • Use of time management skills to develop timelines and establish deadlines
  • Use teamwork and leadership skills to work cooperatively in groups
  • Demonstrate the ability to use appropriate strategies to resolve differences and conflicts


Johnny and Denise Griffin were married in November of 1991. They were two professional artists and entertainment managers working in the corporate hospitality world. They would gain invaluable knowledge during their business careers and while spending a decade on tour of the United States that brought them to 27 states in the union. After the birth of their third child, they decided they no longer wished to travel. Johnny went into teaching and Denise became a marketing manager for a major publishing company. In 2004, Denise had a back injury that resulted in a two year period where she was under care and in a wheelchair. During this time, Johnny and Denise were forced to reevaluate their life. They decided they wanted to teach children what they learned while touring the country as professional artists and opened Star Quest Arts Academy, an after school program that focused on helping children get quality stage time throughout the state of California. Johnny and Denise were trying to find a way to be able to offer arts classes to students that may not have opportunity. (Living on one income with three children made it difficult for them to fund classes for their own children.)

In 2007, Encore Education Corporation was founded by Johnny and Denise Griffin, with the help of the third founding member Paula Gharib. At the time, the three were operating the after school program in Miss Paula’s drama classroom at Hesperia High School. (Paula had been teaching for seventeen years.) In the fall of 2007, HUSD approved the charter petition for the opening of Encore in the high desert. The first Encore was opened on 08/08/08 with 581 students. Encore Education Corporation is a non profit corporation.

As the success and reputation of Encore continued to grow, Johnny and Denise Griffin (COO and CEO respectively) realized the need for expansion. They realized that the amazing team that had created the Encore family was hungry to be able to offer opportunities to children across the state. This was a move to help the students of California and not a move for power and fortune. (All salaries within Encore are based on districts where Encore schools are located.) The expansion plan for the Encore family would give the team opportunity for growth within Encore creating lifelong career paths, AND an opportunity for students with diverse backgrounds to explore their passion for the arts. Did we mention that by doing this countless doors have been opened to major universities worldwide for students of Encore from Dublin University to UCLA to Nebraska University to Yale?

The organization goal for Encore Education Corporation is to create a series of Arts High Schools on the west coast (5 to 10 in California and Nevada) to be able to become a small district servicing about 8,000 students at the high school level. The growth pace will be slow, but the reward of seeing the students of Encore succeed is paramount.  Encore is moving into the ten year celebration and it is hard to believe that an idea that started on a kitchen table with three people has grown to an organization with over 250 employees serving just under 2,000 students each year.

At Encore, everyone from the staff to the parents to the students are considered family.
It is the magic of hard work and family spirit that has made Encore successful.


Both Encore campuses are accredited through Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)

Courses are approved through the University of California college board to satisfy A-G admissions requirements for most universities.

Encore’s high schools are publicly funded, tuition free, independent charter schools.
– Encore High School for the Arts – Hesperia is approved and registered through Hesperia Unified School District.
– Encore High School for the Arts – Riverside is approved and registered through Riverside Unified School District.

Encore Education Corporation is a member of the Victor Valley Chamber of Commerce.

Encore Education Corporation is a member of the Riverside Chamber of Commerce.

Encore Education Corporation is a member of the California Charter Schools Association.

Encore Education Corporation is a member of the California Department of Charter Schools.

Encore Education Corporation is a member of the Desert Mountain Charter SELPA (Encore Hesperia & Riverside)

Encore Education Corporation is a 501c3 corporation registered through the state of California.

Encore High School for the Arts – Hesperia is a Bronze medal school as listed by US News.

Encore High Schools for the Arts are Tier 1 military schools with alumni currently serving in all branches of the military.

Encore High School for the Arts is a member of the International Thespian Society.

Encore High School for the Arts is a member of ASCAP, American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers.

Encore High School for the Arts is a member of the National Honor Society.

Encore High School for the Arts is a member of the California Scholastic Federation.

Encore High School for the Arts takes part in the Community College Bridge Program.

Some of these institutions include:

  • UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles)
  • UCI (University of California, Irvine)
  • University of Florida
  • University of Oregon
  • California State University, Northridge
  • Cal Poly Pomona
  • Biola University
  • The Young Americans Performing Arts College
  • University of San Diego
  • Humboldt State University
  • Northern Arizona University
  • Victor Valley College
  • Azusa Pacific University
  • University of California, San Diego
  • California State University, San Bernardino
  • Orange Coast College
  • Trinity College
  • Case Western Reserve University
  • Yale University
  • Nebraska University
  • California State University, Fullerton
  • Pepperdine University
  • Berklee College of Music
  • Drexel University
  • Notre Dame de Namur University
  • Chaffey College
  • University of California, Davis
  • California State University, San Marcos
  • University of California, Santa Cruz
  • Riverside City College
  • University of LaVerne
  • University of California, San Diego
  • Dublin University


Encore endorses the use of donorschoose for classroom fundraisers.  If you are interested in donating, you can select a program that your student is directly involved in.  Donorschoose is a program where teachers can create a wish list for things they need within their classroom for a special project or a way to enhance their current program.  Classes throughout the organization have benefited from the ongoing use of donorschoose.org.


On most products that you purchase already, there is a small pink logo that says, “Boxtops for Education.”  When you collect these boxtops and turn them in to our treasure box in the front office, the school earns money.  This money is given to ASB.  ASB uses this money for student events and special products.


Encore Education Corporation is a non profit 501C3 organization.  Every year, we must raise money to fund the arts productions and arts programs at the school.  If you would like to donate to Encore and help us grow academics and arts together, please contact Steve Dekany at sdekany@encorehighschool.com.  We love donations of school supplies, working instruments and sound equipment, computer and camera equipment and other equipment that can help build the many programs at Encore.


Permission to conduct fundraising activities is controlled by the administration. Fundraiser request forms must be turned into the ASB Director.  Any fundraiser must be approved PRIOR to the start of the event.  Unapproved sales activities will be dealt with at the administration level and may result in “freezing” team activities.  Fundraiser requests must be submitted at least 14 days in advance.  NO OFF CAMPUS FUNDRAISERS ARE ALLOWED ON CAMPUS WITHOUT EXPRESS SCHOOL APPROVAL.


Mock Trial

California Scholastic Federation

National Honor Society

International Thespian Society

Theater Troupe

Academic Decathlon

AP Study Team


Associated Student Body


Dance Team

Junior High Playhouse

Production X


Street Team


Encore recognizes the importance of student organizations.  Organizations should exist for the benefit of all students and not to single out any.  All school sponsored organizations are directly responsible to the ASB Director.  Only school sponsored teams may meet on campus during school time or at school-sponsored events.  Only school sponsored teams may request permission to fund raise on campus.

SEE SOMETHING SAY SOMETHING – (from Department of Homeland Security)

Across the nation, we’re all part of communities. In cities, on farms, and in the suburbs, we share everyday moments with our neighbors, colleagues, family, and friends. It’s easy to take for granted the routine moments in our every day—going to work or school, the grocery store or the gas station. But your every day is different than your neighbor’s—filled with the moments that make it uniquely yours. So if you see something you know shouldn’t be there—or someone’s behavior that doesn’t seem quite right—say something. Because only you know what’s supposed to be in your everyday. Informed, alert communities play a critical role in keeping our nation safe. “If You See Something, Say Something™” engages the public in protecting our homeland through awareness–building, partnerships, and other outreach.


To report suspicious activity on campus, let a staff member know immediately.

Describe specifically what you observed, including:

  • Who or what you saw;
  • When you saw it;
  • Where it occurred; and
  • Why it’s suspicious.

If there is an emergency,
call 9–1–1.


Encore enjoys the pirate that is engaged and an active part of the programs offered at school.  Students wishing to become a favorite:

  1. Keep their grades up / Try their best
  2. Soak up all Encore has to offer
  3. Participate in after school events
  4. Follow directions
  5. Respect their teacher and staff
  6. Respect their fellow students
  7. Come to school every day
  8. Set goals for themselves and work to achieve them
  9. Stay positive, even when it is hard
  10. Take responsibility when they make mistakes