Genesis Christian School Staff
Dr. Scott Porter
Mrs. Tammy Porter
Mrs. Chrystal Harvey
Mrs. Christen Peterson
Mrs. Elizabeth Gonzalez
VPK Lead Teacher
Mrs. Gonzalez began teaching K4/VPK at Genesis in 2015. She was born in Cuba, and moved to the USA in 2007, where she started working with children, and has continued to this day. Her favorite thing about teaching preschool, is that she gets to teach children, while having fun at the same time through games, music and art! Elizabeth absolutely loves that she is able to teach about Jesus! Her favorite hobbies are: photography, drawing and painting! She is married and has two wonderful children.
Mrs. Cassia Merlos
Kindergarten Teacher/VPK Director
Mrs. Merlos began teaching at Genesis in 2017. Mrs. Merlos is also our VPK director. Teaching is her passion, and she’s thrilled to be a Kindergarten teacher at Genesis! She was born and raised in Brazil, and has been living in the U.S. since 2008. Cassia is fluent in Portuguese, Spanish, and English. She’s married and has three children - ages 10, 5, and 4. She loves spending time with her family, playing soccer and writing, cooking, singing, crafting, walking, and reading. She currently holds a Florida Care Professional Credential, and a Director Credential.
Mrs. Karen Wilkey
Mrs. Wilkey began teaching Second Grade at Genesis in 2013. She has a Bachelor's degree in Christian Education and over thirty years of teaching experience! Her students, past and present, describe her as a kind and caring teacher, who makes learning fun! Second graders have a natural curiosity about God's creation, so don't be surprised to frequently find playground lizards, or insects joining the class for identification and close observation. Mrs. Wilkey is an extremely important and loyal member of the Genesis Christian School Faculty and Team! Thank you for all you do!
Mrs. Jamie Kopp
Mrs. Kopp joined GCS as our third-grade teacher this year. She was born in Virginia and moved to Florida from South Carolina seven years ago. She has both a degree in psychology and elementary education and has been teaching for 15 years. Mrs. Kopp loves reading mysteries and children’s books. She also enjoys boating and traveling in her RV with her husband. She has three children and four grandchildren. She loves her third-grade students!
Mrs. Debra Denson
4th Grade/Curriculum Director
Mrs. Denson started here at Genesis Christian School in 1999! Mrs. Denson graduated from St. Leo College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education. Mrs. Denson's students, past and present, describe her as a kind and caring teacher, who makes learning fun. Another highlight is the chick hatching she does with her class in the spring. Mrs. Denson also leads worship for our K4-4th grade chapel and coordinates our yearly spelling bee! She is celebrating her 20th year here at GCS!
Mr. Donald Rattey
Mr. Rattey has been teaching 5th grade here at Genesis for 2 years. He was born and raised in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. He is married with 5 children. Mr. Rattey loves sports and was a coach for 33 years. He coached football and baseball, as well as basketball. His favorite football team is the New England Patriots, and his favorite baseball team is the Boston Red Sox. Mr. Rattey says his favorite thing about teaching at Genesis is that he gets to share Christ with his students everyday.
Mr. Bill Ingham
Mr. Ingham is one of our middle school teachers, he was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and moved to Florida in 2004 with his wife Ruth. They have four children and 10 grandchildren! Mr. Ingham likes to say he has been teaching “since the dark ages.” He has a degree in education and a master’s in ministry. He also enjoys being with his family as well as reading, shooting, building, and repairing things. 1 Thessalonians 5:24 “Faithful is he that calleth you who will also do it.”
Mr. Matt Short
7th & 8th Grade
Paul Von Gillern
Pastor Short is one of our middle school teachers and this is his first year teaching here at Genesis. He was born in Ohio and moved to Florida in 2019. He is married to his wife, Alyssa, and has two little girls Abigail and Madison. He has a bachelor’s in music. Pastor Short likes to read, write, play the piano, and paint. He is also a worship Pastor here in the area and we are blessed to have him lead our chapel worship times together. He says what he appreciates most about being at GCS is the family atmosphere among the staff, students, and families and we are thankful and blessed that he is a part of our GCS family.