German School Ventura

c/o Unitarian Universalist Church
5654 Ralston Street

Ventura, CA 93003

School Director E-mail: Denise.Ilktac@gasaschool.org


Welcome to our GASA School in Ventura, which opened its doors in September 2015.
We offer classes for children ages 4 – 17.

Our school currently offers 3 different classes / levels for children:

  1. Vorschule / Kindergarten
  2. Unterstufe / Mittelstufe ( A1 Level)
  3. Mittelstufe  ( A2 Level +)

We prepare the students for the AATG Test and the DSD (Deutsches Sprachdiplom) levels, A1 and A2.

Please contact us for further information about the online classes for children and adults.

Follow our school on Instagram:  instagram.com/germanschoolventura


Denise Ilktac: Principal  / K-teacher 

I was born and raised in Berlin. After graduating from the “Gymnasium”,  I have been working as an actress, speaker and host on stage. In 2002 I also began teaching “camera and theater acting” to children and teenagers. From 2008-2012 I studied Deaf Studies, German Sign language and Rehabilitation Sciences at Humboldt-University, Berlin. During that time I also worked as a social services case worker for families with disabilities. I was teaching language classes for people with disabilities and I also held interactive workshops for children and teenagers about alcohol and drug prevention. In 2012 I moved to beautiful Ventura, California with my family. I joined GASA in 2016. I am currently teaching our youngest students at our Saturday School. During the week I am teaching German classes for adults via Zoom. I love teaching and I am looking forward to meeting you soon.  

Ariane Karakalos: A1- teacher

Born and raised in a small town close to Kassel, Germany, I spent my college years in several locations including Leipzig, Germany, Indianapolis, Indiana and Tucson, Arizona. I earned my degree in Cultural and American Studies. In 2006 my husband and I settled in Ventura where I enjoyed working in the exhibition department at the Museum of Ventuta County for several years. Concurrently, I discovered the joy of teaching my native language to children and adults with GASA in Thousand Oaks, California. Soon after, I shifted my attention to raising my two children. I am now excited to be back in the ‘teaching saddle’ with GASA in Ventura!

Sabine Schafer-Mitchell: substitute teacher 


After growing up in Baden-Baden, Germany and finishing my apprenticeship in Admini- stration, I attended Freiburg University, earning a teaching credential to instruct middle school English, Geography, Social Studies.  Upon graduating, I took a two year assignment in North Carolina to teach ESL, after which I moved to Ventura, CA – got married and had two sons. In addition to raising two active boys, I have been working as a part time German, ESL and substitute teacher. I also earned my Single Subject Credential in German. In 2014 I joined the GASA school in Thousand Oaks and a year later pursued the opportunity to open this GASA school in Ventura. It has been a wonderful experience and I am looking forward to many more years with GASA!

Claudia Kane: substitute teacher 

I am a German language and Special Education high school teacher with seventeen years of experience working in public schools in California and Texas.  My academic background  includes a Bachelor’s Degree in Germanic Studies and a  Master’s Degree in Education with emphasis on Special Education. As a German immigrant from Lower Saxony, I have lived  most of my adult life in Southern California where I first connected with the German American School Association (GASA) as a parent in 1995. Shortly thereafter, I became a substitute teacher at the former Brea Saturday School and eventually accepted a teaching position for Level A1 students aged 6 – 10.  At GASA, I discovered the rewarding nature of teaching and my passion for working with children, which prompted me to pursue a full time teaching career. After an almost twenty year hiatus from working for  GASA,  I once again look forward to supporting the staff and students at the Ventura Saturday School in their German language teaching and learning endeavors.

About Us

Multilingualism is the norm in most of the world and we believe that children who speak and write more than one language will be better prepared for life in the 21st century with its growing global economy. The best way to master another language is to start learning at an early age.

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    Student Policy

    GASA admits students of any race, color, and national or ethnic origin.