harrisTodd Harris
M.Div., Westminster Theological Seminary
Head of Lower School
Secondary Theology,  Latin

Todd Harris has been at Veritas since 2009 when he and his family moved to Oregon from Texas, where he has served for six years as headmaster at Covenant Classical School in Fort Worth. Todd is a graduate of Indiana University with a B.A. in Religious Studies. After finishing his M.Div. from Westminster Theological Seminary in 1995, he spent a few years studying and pastoring in Amman, Jordan. He has also worked as a fifth-grade teacher at a classical school in Delaware and as a youth pastor at a Presbyterian church in Pennsylvania. Todd and his wife, Lisa, have four daughters.  The oldest is a freshman at Wheaton College. The rest are students at Veritas.

Todd blogs monthly on school culture and family culture.

A message from our Head of Lower School:

Greetings! I am excited about what Christ-centered classical education can do in the life of your child; I love the way our curriculum and our culture helps to promote wisdom, the love of learning, and joy in the gospel of grace. The education we offer is a high calling, and I am continually encouraged as I see students with many different learning styles and strengths thrive here. I’m eager get to know you and your family and explore a partnership!

Todd Harris
Head of Lower School
Veritas School

 

Veritas Staff McNeill KindergartenKami McNeill
M.A., Concordia University; B.S., Southern Oregon University
Kindergarten/Afternoon Enrichment


I have been teaching either kindergarten, first grade, or third grade for over twenty years.  My joy and passion is working with the youngest learners. There is nothing more exciting than to watch a child’s eyes light up when they recognize their first words and can count to 100 by ones, fives, and tens! My husband and I have four children, and we were able to experience many different cultures and see the world while he was in the Army. 
I have taught in both private and public schools in several states and in Germany. Classical Christian education is by far the most complete, well-rounded education I have ever experienced.  My children are all grown and married and we have eight grandchildren.  We discovered Veritas School when our granddaughter started kindergarten.  I was able to substitute for a couple of years, and was blessed beyond measure when I was able to teach Kindergarten and Afternoon Enrichment at Veritas.


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April Wassei
Elementary PE
Middle School Cross Country

I was born and raised in Southern California and have always enjoyed an active lifestyle and interacting with people of all ages, especially children.  While working as a special education and adaptive PE instructional assistant in the public school, I was introduced to the joys of teaching and serving children in a classroom and wanted to become a teacher myself.

Soon after, I moved to the San Francisco Bay area to attend San Jose State University and specialize in Child Development, where I met my husband, Peter. We had four children under the age of five and decided to homeschool classically.  Teaching my kids to read, write, enjoy learning, and honor and serve the Lord was a privilege for me.  Seven years later, I was asked to join the staff at Tri-Valley Classical Christian School, where I supervised recess, taught PE, and eventually became the office manager.

Another privilege I had was to be a USA Masters swimmer under the training of the Bay Area’s finest coaches. I swam five to six days a week and shared my love of swimming with my children.  We raised our four children in the San Francisco Bay area for 15 years before moving to Newberg in 2014.

At Veritas, I have the pleasure of teaching Elementary PE and sharing God’s love and my passion of fitness with the students. I have also enjoyed working with the middle school cross country team.

 


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Heather Olander
B.S., George Fox University
First Grade

Loving Jesus and sharing His truths is one of my greatest passions. I am excited and feel incredibly blessed to be back in first grade! I taught three years of first grade in the Beaverton School District after graduating from George Fox University in 1999. I have also walked through first grade with my own three children. I love this age because there is an excitement to learn and kids are filled with a sense of wonder. I love the classical Christian education that Veritas provides. The strong curriculum that we use at Veritas lays a solid, Christ centered, foundation for years of growth and learning ahead. My prayer for our children is to love God deeply, to grow in knowledge and wisdom, and to choose to follow Christ all of their days! When not at school, I am spending time with my husband, watching our children play sports, listening to music, or taking care of our home.

 

veritas staff watilo second grade
Brittany Harmon-Watilo
B.S., George Fox University
Masters in Deaf Education, Texas Women’s University
Second Grade
Assistant Cross Country Coach


In 2004, I came to Oregon to attend George Fox University and was introduced to Veritas through the annual Ceili two years later. I started my career at Veritas in 2008, after graduating from George Fox University’s Elementary Education program. Over six years I taught 1st grade, 6th grade and 4th grade . During my time teaching at Veritas I completed my Masters in Deaf Education from Texas Women’s University, graduating in 2014.  I then left Veritas to pursue a position with the Willamette Educational Service District as a Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing (DHH) specialist. I taught a resource room class of Kindergarten-2nd grade students, worked with the 3rd-5th grade class as literacy support, as well as working in a mainstream class with our DHH students.  Veritas, however, beckoned me back, and when the position became available to teach 2nd grade, I was thrilled to accept it. I have also had the opportunity to work with the Veritas Cross Country team as one of the coaches.

Teaching and deaf education have been significant portions of my life since I was in middle school. The Lord put opportunities in my path to work at my church with the children who were deaf, continue my own American Sign Language education, and outside of the classroom, I love to dance, read, cook and exercise. Anything related to American Sign Language and the deaf community is an ongoing passion and pursuit as well.

veritas staff lynch third gradeAnn Lynch
B.A., Linfield College
Third Grade

Being one of the founding board members and the elementary curriculum coordinator from its beginning days, I am grateful to see Veritas School flourish. I knew from my junior high years that I wanted to be a teacher, and third grade has always been my favorite. 

I am thankful to be teaching third grade at Veritas School since 2000. I am blessed to be married to Bryan, headmaster at Veritas, and  mother to three adult children, Nolan (’05), Erin (’07), and Maureen’s (’12) , all Veritas grads and alumni of  of Wheaton College. I am also mother-in-law to Nolan’s wife, Emma (’05). I have a BA in elementary and early childhood education from Linfield College, and spend my time not teaching or thinking about teaching  cooking, gardening, chicken keeping, traveling, and reading a wide range of literature.

Brubaker-fourth-gradeLorie Brubaker
MAT, George Fox University
Fourth Grade 

I began my career in a gifted and talented classroom in 1978.  It was my freshman year of college in Long Beach, California, and  I was an instructional assistant.  I have always been drawn to study and learning.  I continued my education, finishing a degree in Liberal Arts from California State University at Long Beach.  I spent some time substitute teaching, and then moved to the northwest where I worked for the Newberg School District for over 15 years.  I was at Mountain View Middle School and then moved to Dundee Elementary to work in the Reading Resource Room.  I have always enjoyed helping students realize their potential and succeed.  2015 marks my fourth year at Veritas.  My first three years I taught 2nd grade.  I am currently team teaching part-time in the fourth grade.  I love seeing the uniquenesses of each student displayed in their approaches to learning and the work they produce.  It is a joy to be teaching in a school where the Lord Jesus Christ is acknowledged and honored daily.

Ashley Smith Fourth Grade

Ashley Smith
B.S., George Fox University
Fourth Grade

I  have taught at Veritas since 2009, originally in kindergarten, then in first grade, and now in team teaching in fourth grade. I truly value classical Christian education, seeing the benefit firsthand in the lives of my students. I am really privileged to teach at Veritas, because I get to tell children about the LORD!  He is the most important thing they will ever learn about.  I also have a passion for teaching children to read.  The phonics program we use at Veritas is so wonderful because it gives the children the tools they need to write, read, and spell successfully.

I  graduated from George Fox University with a BS in Early Childhood and Elementary Education and, before coming to Veritas, taught fourth grade for two years at another classical Christian school in the area.  In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my husband, our families and friends, baking, camping, paddle boarding, and reading.

veritas staff kozushko fifth gradeClare Kozushko 
B.A., Trinity Western University
Fifth Grade

I graduated from Trinity Western University in Canada with a B.A. in Christianity and Culture and a minor in P.E. I went on to complete an early childhood education minor and a teaching certification program at Simon Fraser University. I am originally from Vancouver B.C. where I taught kindergarten and third grade at Pacific Academy. After moving to Yakima, Washington, I opened a Kumon Math and Reading Center where I worked for three years teaching a wide variety of students. In 2000, I joined the Veritas staff as a math teacher. I have taught fifth grade for sixteen years. I am also trained as a Phono Graphix instructor and have tutored using the Barton Reading Program. Most recently I was certified as a PACE (Processing and Cognitive Enhancement) trainer.

I have a passion for inspiring students to love learning and master the grammar of the subjects they are studying.

veritas staff mcchesney sixth gradeKen McChesney 
M.A., Western Oregon University; B.A., University of Montana
Sixth Grade, Cross Country Head Coach

I love working with sixth grade students at Veritas School. Throughout my career, God has blessed me with a rich variety of experiences, working with all ages from kindergarten to college.  I returned to classroom teaching after serving three years as an assistant professor at George Fox University in the Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) department.  Each day, I am excited to teach in a Christian environment, preparing wonderful young people to serve in the multitude of ways for which God will them. Additionally, I am the head coach of the varsity high school cross country team. I have been honored with both Teacher of the Year and Coach of the Year awards. I enjoy playing, writing, and recording music; and hiking in nature, especially places new to me.

Brown-primary-artLucinda Brown
BFA, Marylhurst University
Elementary & Secondary Art Teacher/Verbatim Editor

One of my greatest passions is the connection between the arts and our Christian faith. Teaching art to young students is a genuine calling in my life that brings great joy and satisfaction. In addition to teaching K-8 art classes each week, I also teach high school art history labs that provide hands-on projects corresponding with the particular art movements students are studying.

Since coming to Veritas as a teacher in 2007, I’ve also assisted with graphic design layouts for the school and am the editor of Verbatim, our school’s quarterly newsletter. Over the years I’ve taught art to students of all ages as a private instructor, have served as a ministry leader at my church in areas such as curating visual art displays within the church, and leading support groups for Christians in the visual arts. I’ve been married to Michael since 1994, and we have five grown sons between us, a passel of grandchildren, and our youngest child, a daughter, who is currently in high school at Veritas. I hold a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Art (concentration in Painting) from Marylhurst University, and a Certificate in Electronic Publishing from the University of Oregon Continuation Center.

Staff Music Hegeman
Marjorie Hegeman 

Elementary Music & Choir

I’m from the San Francisco Bay area.  I wrote songs and performed them at a young age.  With the encouragement of a Young Life Area Director I recorded four solo albums before I turned 20 and sang for Young Life groups throughout North America.  I even had the privilege of singing my own composition at the Billy Graham Crusade at the Oakland Coliseum.  After college (Trinity Western JC/Westmont) I was able to live in Amsterdam and London for a year busking and singing in various venues.  In Toronto, Canada, I spent a year in a worldview program at the Institute for Christian Studies.  After a year in Seattle, I moved to Manhattan where I worked at a Broadway advertising agency in Times Square for seven years.  I was also involved with the New York Arts Group, and at one of their meetings, I met my husband, Dave, who grew up on Long Island.   We were blessed with three children before moving to Oregon.  A fourth child was born here and we homeschooled until we discovered Veritas School.  All of our children have since graduated from Veritas.  There was an opening in the music department and my son, Cornelius, who had recently begun attending Veritas said to me, “Mom, you can do that!”.  In 2004, I began my teaching career at Veritas.  During the summers I’ve been able to complete the Kodaly music certification levels I, II and III at Portland State University.  It is a great honor to serve the Veritas community, passing on the treasure of music to young precious students.