West Michigan Christian Schools Blog

WMCS Teacher Tuesday Q & A with New Era Christian School’s Chris Kelley

WMCS Teachers are Extraordinary!

It takes extraordinary people, living extraordinary lives to proclaim the truth of the Gospel through their work as teachers. At WMCS we have MANY such people and we love to celebrate them!

New Era Christian School

Last year we launched, Teacher Tuesday and it was a wonderful way to highlight a very special teacher from all five West Michigan Christian Schools every week. We’re excited to start the campaign again, so be sure to check our social media every Tuesday to see who will be featured that week. Teacher Tuesday is a GREAT opportunity to encourage these PK-12 teachers, drop off their favorite drink (see blog post for what that is) and thank them for their service! Our faculty collectively use their giftedness to teach children how to SHINE and RISE UP to their God-given potential. They shepherd the WMCS students to GROW as Christians and default to leaning on ALWAYS CHRIST. It’s a teacher’s goal to encourage every student to LOVE. LEARN. LEAD.

CELEBRATING CHRIS KELLEY OF NEW ERA CHRISTIAN SCHOOL (PK-8th):

In the words of Phil Morse, NEC Administrator:

Mrs. Kelley’s classroom is a model for an authentic, caring community where every student feels like they belong.

Q: How many years have you taught there? 

A: I am in my fifth year teaching at NECS

Q: What classes/grades do you teach?

A: I teach 7th/8th grade, all subjects.

Q: Do you have kids there? Graduated from there?

A: Three of my four sons have attended NECS.  One graduated from here in 2016 and my youngest son is currently in the 6th grade.

Lucky mom of 4 boys: Jonah (21), Ben (18), Andrew (15) and Eli (12)


Q: What’s your favorite teaching moment(s) to date?

A: Last year one of my students prayed to receive Christ as her personal Savior.  When asked what led her to choose Christ, she cited conversations with her dad, Mr. Morse and a presentation of the Spirit-Filled life we had in class. The transformation in her attitude, work ethic and general outlook on life have been significant and a joy to watch.

A wall of books behind me and great kids alongside me-I love learning, growing and pursuing Jesus with my amazing students.

Q: What’s something fun that most people do not know about you?

A: I was a member of the University of Michigan Synchronized Swim Team for a year.

Q: What do you love most about your job and why? 

A: Hands down the best part of my job is doing life together with the students in my classroom.  Growing together as compassionate Christ Followers, sharing each others’ burdens and learning alongside one another gives purpose and meaning to my days.

Q: What’s the best part of your day? 

A: Prayer time in the morning and math block are my favorites.  My students share real struggles and praises and it serves as a time of connection for all of us.  Even though my major in college was English, math is my favorite subject because I love problem-solving.

Time with friends is my favorite hobby.


Q: How specifically has the Lord gifted you as an individual and how does that help you as a teacher?

A: The Lord has allowed me the privilege of many life experiences that help in my teaching.  Academically, I have taught in the public school, I have homeschooled my own kids and now I teach at NECS.  My teaching position is also unique because I teach all subjects in middle school. I am a curious learner so I feel fortunate to be diving into subjects that may not be my “specialty”.  Divorce, foster care, and special needs parenting have all played a significant role in my life, as well, and help me in understanding people. Personally, discipleship was transformational in my own life and spiritual formation, so my heart is bent toward seeing the hand of God in people’s lives.   

Q: If there was anything you could change about your job, what would it be? 

A: Without a doubt, I would outsource GRADING!

Q: What are you most grateful for when it comes to your job?

A: I am most grateful that in my current position I have the freedom to address issues in the classroom and with students from a spiritual perspective.  On a practical level, I enjoy my co-workers, the school is close to my home and the work is flexible and family-friendly.

My husband of 25 years, Duane and me, enjoying gaining a daughter-in-law at our oldest son’s wedding in August 2019.

AS A BELOVED FACULTY MEMBER, CHRIS IS PART OF THE HEART OF WMCS. WE ARE BLESSED AND FAVORED TO HAVE HER AS PART OF OUR SCHOOL FAMILY!  

A SMALL TOKEN OF APPRECIATION

A heartfelt THANK YOU, from all of your colleagues at WMCS and the school families!

We have a couple of small tokens of appreciation for you, Chris! It’s two $10 gifts from our two WMCS retail fundraising partners, DIBS! on Resale and B2 Outlet Store Muskegon.

To redeem, please check-in at the front desk at DIBS! on Resale in Muskegon so they can award you this token of appreciation — $10 goes a long way, so enjoy the shop!

To redeem your $10 off at our B2 Outlet Store, go shopping and then submit your B2 sales receipt to your school principal and we’ll send you a check to reimburse you!

Relocated to a new store in Muskegon in January of 2019, DIBS! On Resale proceeds benefit our local West Michigan Christian Schools (WMCS). In the fall of the same year, we also celebrated the opening of our second retail fundraising partner, B2 Outlet Store. Both stores exist to help raise funds for all five of our schools including Fremont Christian (PK-8), Muskegon Christian(PK-6), Grand Haven Christian (PK-8), New Era Christian (PK-8) and Western Michigan Christian (7-12).

West Michigan Christian Schools (WMCS) is a collaborative system of five schools throughout the Lakeshore region of Western Michigan, that work under a “Better Together” philosophy, offering a top-quality, PK-12 Christian education experience and a full scope of academic and extracurricular programs. Benefiting from close cooperation and a seamless curriculum, our schools collaborate to formulate strategy and execute the necessary plans to achieve, elevate, and sustain Christian education in West Michigan.

Curious about starting your child at NEC or any of our 5 schools?

LEARN MORE.