From the Elementary/Grammar Principal

I am honored to be able to take this opportunity to briefly introduce myself.  My name is Darla Blue and I have the privilege of being the elementary principal at Evangelical Christian Academy.  I have been in the field of education for the last 25+ years, and an administrator for the last five of those years.   Prior to taking this position I filled the position of substitute teacher in a variety of grades and became the 3rd grade teacher here at ECA for 10 consecutive years.  I am blessed to be in this role at this time.

As an elementary principal, It is my greatest desire for your children, along with our students to grow spiritually first and foremost, and then intellectually, physically, social and emotionally.  I realize the education of children is a difficult job, and cannot be accomplished without the assistance and partnership of parents, church, and the surrounding community.  I encourage parents to be active participants in the education of our students and engaged in building strong community within our families.  The easiest way is to pray fervently and maintain effective lines of communication and support of one another. 

In closing, we will continue to work diligently to provide an excellent Classical Christian educational experience for the students at Evangelical Christian Academy.

Blessed to be on this Journey,

Darla Blue

Elementary Principal

Elementary/Grammar Curriculum


Christian Schools International: K-6 The curriculum was written and is taught so that God’s people might know Him as He is revealed in His inspired and infallible Word.

Grades K-3 Walking with God and His People
Grade 4 Walking with God and His People
Grade 5 Witnesses to the Gospel
Grade 6 The House of Israel


Open Court (plus teacher supplements): Grades K-3 Accelerated Reader (novel based reading): Grades 3-6

Reading develops a student’s thinking, reading, and writing abilities using a core of authentic literature. These studies increase the student’s ability to read with comprehension. Comprehension skills and reading fluency are developed for fiction and nonfiction material as children use workbooks, study questions, and participate in class discussions. Comprehension skills are tested in 4th – 6th grades by means of computerized tests.

Open Court: Grades K-2 Houghton Mifflin: Grades 3-6

Language educates students in traditional grammar, standard usage and mechanics. It also trains students to be comfortable with correct grammar, pronunciation and usage in conversations and other forms of speech. Language teaches essential research skills, and refines and teaches listening and study skills. Grammar, punctuation, and usage skills are developed as students edit their own writing. Language is supplemented with a phonics curriculum, creative writing, and handwriting exercises. Research skills are taught for report writing and formal oral reports.


Zaner Bloser: Grade K ACSI: Grades 1-5

Spelling includes individually prepared teaching units at the appropriate grade levels.  The focus is on the most commonly used words in written work.

Veritas Bede’s History of the U.S: Kindergarten BJU Heritage Studies: Grades 1-6
*Supplement – Studies Weekly: Grades K-6

Social Studies teaches how man has carried out God’s command to rule over creation and how man has developed cultures. It reveals the Christian’s responsibility to his neighbor, his community, his country and the world. It emphasizes God’s plan throughout history.


Saxon: Grades K-6 Math is taught in a way that reinforces the understanding of God’s order in creation and develops an ability to function effectively, mathematically, in the world. Concepts are introduced incrementally, continuously reviewed, and provide a strong foundation for conceptualizing and solving problems.

McMillan Interactive Big Books: Grade K Bob Jones University: Grades 1-6

Science is taught to give students a solid foundation, anchored firmly in Biblical truth. Special attention is given to interesting scientific facts that reveal God as the Master Designer of the universe and confirm the accuracy of the Bible. The curriculum promotes an excitement for the acquisition of critical learning skills.


Specially designed units of instruction presented twice weekly, emphasize motor fitness skills, appreciation for the wonder of our God-created bodies and Christian conduct in sports.


McMillan Music and You A comprehensive unit approach to music appreciation and skill development is presented twice weekly. Students learn a hymn of the month that is sung in chapel each week. In addition, students work on two all-school programs during the year. Fifth and sixth grade students may choose either band or general music.


Standard of Excellence, sheet music The elementary band program, offered to 5th and 6th grade students, teaches basic music reading fundamentals and techniques for individual instruments, through full band and smaller ensemble rehearsals. Performance opportunities include concerts, chapel presentations, and solo and ensemble festivals.

LIBRARY: Grades K-3

The library provides materials which support and enrich our curriculum. Through storytelling, group discussion, book reviews, and oral reading, our students are encouraged to read and to think critically about what they are reading. Library skills are introduced and reinforced at each grade level in order to prepare students for greater research challenges as they advance from grade to grade.

Grades K-3 Integrated throughout the curriculum
Grades 5-6: Primers A and B Classical Academic Press: Latin For Children
Trains student in grammar, vocabulary, and English derivatives in a lively interactive way, utilizing workbooks, quizzes, songs and chants.


Grades 1-6 Boys’ Wrestling (after school: spring)
Grades 1-6 Boys’ and Girls’ Track (after school: spring)
Grades 1-6 Boys’ and Girls’ Landsharks Running Club (after school: fall)
Grades 5-6 Boys’ Soccer and Basketball (after school: fall & winter)
Grades 5-6 Girls’ Volleyball, Basketball, and Soccer (after school: fall, winter & spring)
Grades 4-6 Choir and Handbells (during school hours)
Grades 4-6 Keyboarding
COMPUTER (Keyboarding): Grades 4-6





Dr. Jim Johnson holds a Doctor of Ministry degree from New Geneva Theological Seminary and a Master’s in Business Administration. Dr. Johnson brings experience from the fields of university and seminary education, the pastorate, and public and private Christian education as he leads the administrators, faculty, and staff of ECA. Jim is a ruling elder at Village Seven Presbyterian Church. He and his wife, Helen, have two grown children and three grandchildren. He prays that the nurture and growth of students will yield graduates who are well-grounded in their faith and fully equipped for the challenges of spiritual involvement, family responsibility, college achievement, and career success.

Mrs. Darla Blue

Mrs. Darla Blue

Elementary Principal

Education B.S. in Elementary Education, Minor in Music: Chadon State College

Mrs. Blue has been a part of ECA since 1988; both of her daughters attended the elementary and secondary schools.  Mrs. Blue became our 3rd grade teacher in 2006.  She enjoys being in the classroom setting, where she feels like she can impact her students personally, spiritually, and academically.  Mrs. Blue sees it as a privilege to work with children, helping them develop as a whole person, to reach their fullest potential, and to be an integral part of His kingdom.

Office Staff

Shari Hartnett

Administrative Assistant

15 years at ECA


Sue Gaines

Office Manager

16 years at ECA


Elementary/Grammar Faculty

Mrs. Natalie Jagers

Mrs. Natalie Jagers

Pre-K Teacher

Education BM in Church music from Ouachita Baptist University

Mrs. Jagers was an aide at ECA for several years prior to becoming the Pre-K teacher. Previously, she taught music in several D11 schools, was a preschool, music and Bible teacher in LA and has been the Preschool director for the last 4 ½ years for Circle Drive Baptist where her husband currently works as the youth pastor. She is a Colorado Springs native who was lovingly nurtured by her parents, church family and community. She thinks Pre-K kids are especially fun to work with because they are filled with awe and wonder for life! She hopes to partner with parents and churches to fulfill the mission statement of ECA by showing the love of Christ while educating, equipping and empowering these little ones to pursue their purpose in Christ.
Mrs. Karen Stephens

Mrs. Karen Stephens

Kindergarten Teacher

Education B.A. in Elementary Education: Dordt College M.A. in Teaching: Grand Canyon University

Mrs. Stephens came to ECA in 1987 and has been teaching kindergarten since 1993.  From kindergarten through twelfth grade, Mrs. Stephens was a student at a Christian school in her hometown; she went on to graduate from a Christian college.  Mrs. Stephens still remembers many of her own elementary school teachers and knows that the impact of their love and commitment to the Lord has played a huge part in becoming the person and teacher she is today.  Because of that impact, Mrs. Stephens consistently desires to teach with the same love, commitment, and enthusiasm that her teachers gave to her.  It is also her prayer that each child who enters her classroom will thoroughly enjoy learning and that they will love serving the Lord in all that they do.

Mrs. Pam Gergen

Mrs. Pam Gergen

First Grade Teacher

Education B.A. in Education: University of Northern Iowa

The military brought Mrs. Gergen and her family to Colorado Springs in 2006.  She started teaching first grade in 2007, and she is honored to be a part of the ECA staff.  Mrs. Gergen has had many years of teaching experience, and she consistently desires to be a positive influence on today’s young children and help to build godly character in each one of them.

Mr. Dale Hart

Mr. Dale Hart

Second Grade Teacher

Education B.S. in Elementary Education: Michigan State University M.A. in Education Technology: University of Colorado

Mr. Hart has taught at ECA since 1989. As a teacher, Mr. Hart thinks it is critical to cultivate godly character and to teach the “whole” child: spiritually, mentally, physically, socially, and emotionally. He loves to be involved in his students’ lives and strives to minister to children’s hopes, fears, accomplishments, and challenges.

Miss Lindsay Geving

Miss Lindsay Geving

Third Grade Teacher

Education B.A. in Elementary Education from Covenant College in Lookout Mountain, GA.

Miss Geving feels extremely blessed to have attended ECA as a student from Kindergarten through 12th grade. In fact, it is due to the love and the impact of her incredible ECA elementary school teachers that she was inspired to become a teacher. Miss Geving’s prayer is to impact the lives of her students for Christ.
Mr. Jesse Smith

Mr. Jesse Smith

Fourth Grade Teacher

Mr. Smith has lived in Colorado Springs for most of his life. He went to college and graduated from Saint Olaf College in Minnestota, with a B.A. in Philosophy. Having been in and around the ECA community as a spouse of a teacher, parent and board member, he is thrilled to be teaching 4th grade at ECA Elementary. Prior to teaching at ECA he taught special education for over 10 years in the public school system. Mr. Smith has a passion for Christian education and loves that the school is a place where students can be immersed in the beautiful, life-changing truths of the gospel every day.
Mrs. Tricia Harbach

Mrs. Tricia Harbach

Fifth Grade Teacher

Education B.A. in Psychology and Business: Hardin Simmons University

Mrs. Harbach has been part of the ECA family since 1990; her four children all graduated from ECA. Mrs. Harbach has been employed by ECA since 2004; she has substituted for various grades and has taught 4th, 5th, and 6thgrade. She is excited to be back in 5th grade and is thankful for the opportunity to invest in the lives of her students. Mrs. Harbach’s prayer is that her heart for children and her love for our Lord will be evident on a daily basis in her classroom.

Mrs. Sarah Goldschmid

Mrs. Sarah Goldschmid

Sixth Grade Teacher

Education B.S. in Business Administration: University of Tennessee/Knoxville

Mrs. Goldschmid began working as a kindergarten aide at ECA in 2001 and began teaching 6th grade in 2002. Our 6th grade curriculum and Mrs. Goldschmid’s classroom programs are a vital part of preparing our 6th graders for the realities of junior high and high school. Mrs. Goldschmid considers it a privilege to teach at ECA and desires that her classroom be one of academic excellence and a place for her students to grow in their relationship with God.

Mrs. Jennifer Hoppe

Mrs. Jennifer Hoppe

Elementary Music Teacher

Jennifer Hoppe is a Colorado Springs native.  She attended Belmont University in Nashville to earn her K-12 Music Education degree. She was then hired to teach middle school and start a small band at Faith Christian School in Williams Bay, WI.  She got married and became a stay at home mom after 3 years of teaching.  She moved back to Colorado and has been working in the music department at the Get Set Preschool program at First Pres downtown for 11 years.  She loves teaching music to the preschoolers and is busy supporting her children in their musical and athletic activities.  She has 3 in college and 3 in high school. She considers it a blessing to be a part of ECA’s incredible team where we can love, guide, teach, and inspire the youth in the culture we live in.

Mr. Rob Howard

Mr. Rob Howard

Elementary Music Teacher

Education B.S. in Music Ed: Eastern Nazarene College Masters of Music M.M. in Choral Conducting: Butler University

Mr. Howard began teaching general music, choir, and handbells at ECA in 2006.  Prior to moving to Colorado, Mr. Howard taught elementary music at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Maryland from 1997-2006, where he created a comprehensive music curriculum for his Kindergarten through 8th grade classes.  Mr. Howard believes that music permeates the senses, captivates the mind, and opens the door to the soul, and that God’s love, His Word, and the traditions of faith and worship can be brought into the classroom in order to develop a biblical worldview.

Mrs. Judy Schaap

Mrs. Judy Schaap

Elementary Physical Education Teacher

Education BA from St. Andrews University

Mrs. Schaap grew up in Georgia and has been around ECA for 16 years as a mother of 3 and many years as a coach of multiple sports. Along with her passion for sports, she brings a high level of energy and creativity. It is her desire to foster an environment where students learn and develop skills for lifelong physical activity. When she’s not involved in sports, you can find her laughing with her family, heading into the mountains, or enjoying good music.

Mrs. Laura Wilson

Mrs. Laura Wilson

Bio to come