Our Teachers

Our teachers are the heart and soul of our school, the people who have dedicated the better part of their lives to providing a safe, challenging, exciting, Christ-centered learning environment for your children. We’d like you to meet them.

Kelly Schipper, Preschool Teacher 

I feel called to do this work. Preschool is the foundation for future learning and an opportunity to gain confidence, social skills, and a strong sense of spirituality. I’m honored to have the opportunity to introduce the youngest students to St. Paul the Apostle School and blessed to be part of the dedicated staff.
  • Master of Education in the Practice of Teaching, Early Childhood concentration
  • Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education, minor in Language Arts
  • Continuous professional development through the Grand Rapids Diocese, Kent ISD, and online courses.

Andrea Ceglowski, Kindergarten Teacher 

I am very blessed to be teaching Kindergarten at St. Paul the Apostle. I get to work with some of our littlest learners helping them to grow physically, emotionally and spiritually.
  • Bachelor in Education, University of Michigan
  • 30+ graduate hours taken at Universities in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan
  • Continuous professional development through the Kent ISD
  • Lifelong learner

Melissa Klunejko, First Grade Teacher 

I enjoy sharing my knowledge and experiences with the children to help them become enthusiastic about learning. I love helping them on their daily path with Jesus. I appreciate the fact that high expectations and standards are the norm here at our school.
  • Master of Arts, Reading Specialist Endorsement, Grand Valley State University
  • Bachelor of Arts, Early Elementary Education, Early Childhood Endorsement, Central Michigan University
  • Continuing educating includes DIBELS workshops, an assessment that Michigan public schools are using for detecting early childhood reading levels and diagnoses
  • Love and Logic.


Eric Remington, Second Grade Teacher 

I am so excited to be teaching at St. Paul the Apostle School. Having the opportunity to work with second graders is a great experience because I get to witness God’s love firsthand as the students prepare for Reconciliation and First Communion. I always look forward to a faith-filled, fun and exciting school year.
  • Master in Education, Aquinas College
  • Bachelor of Arts, Grand Valley State University
  • Experience administering DIBELS and EBLI
  • Love and Logic

Kathleen Swain, Third Grade Teacher 

In a Catholic school, a God-centered education is primary to the learning experience. Expectations are high spiritually, socially and academically and the children rise to the challenge.
  • Graduate studies, Western Michigan University, Central Michigan University
  • Bachelor of Science, Grand Valley State University, Psychology and Special Education
  • Highly Certified Religious Education recipient
  • Tutoring experience at Severe Learning Disabilities Center

Martha Adams, Fourth Grade Teacher 

What a wonderful gift I have been given here at St. Paul the Apostle School as I attempt to promote a love of learning in light of the Catholic faith. I have been a part of the St. Paul community for a long time, and am honored to now be a part of the school.
  • Graduate Studies, Michigan State University
  • Bachelor of Arts, Aquinas College
  • Majors in Social Studies and Elementary Education
  • Minor in Language Arts

Sarah Gott, Fifth Grade Teacher 

St. Paul is a very nurturing and engaging school. The parents are involved, and help in many ways. The students are top-notch and make it easier to teach the curriculum. I like being involved with the students and knowing more about them as individuals. With smaller class sizes, that is definitely possible!
  • Master of Education, Aquinas College
  • Bachelor of Arts, St. Mary’s College, Notre Dame
  • Learning Disabilities Endorsement

Caroline Strong, Junior High Language Arts Teacher 

I believe being a Jr. High teacher is God’s calling for me. I love working with the young adults of St. Paul the Apostle and watching them grow as readers, writers, and people. I am honored to play a role in their lives and am blessed to be at such a wonderful school.
  • • Grand Valley State University Teacher Certification program
  • • Graduate Studies, Grand Valley State University
  • • Bachelor of Arts, Grand Valley State University
  • • Major, English with literary emphasis and Secondary Education
  • • Minor, Psychology
  • • Reading and Writing Workshop approach to teaching English

Kevin Maitner, Junior High Science Teacher 

As a science teacher, I strive to create learning experiences that both engage and spark intrigue in learners. It is my belief that the more students are afforded hands-on experiences and taking learning into their own hands, the greater their understanding and achievement of the concepts will be.
  • Bachelor of Science, Ferris State University
  • Education Major
  • Integrated Science and Mathematics Minors
  • Next Generation Science Standard Aligned Curriculum Development at Michigan Tech and GVSU
  • Van Andel Institute Learning Model experience

Suzanne Petz, Junior High Math Teacher 

Having taught in public schools, it is a very comforting feeling to know I am in a place where you can stop and pray with the people you are with anytime there is a need. I enjoy sharing my love for mathematics. It is evident that St. Paul students are here to learn as is apparent by the large number of our students who achieve Honor Roll. It is the cooperative spirit between parents, students and teachers that make us successful in our mission to educate the whole student; mind, body and soul.
  • Bachelor of Science Degree, Mathematics major, Business Administration minor, cum laude, Aquinas College, Elementary Certification
  • Social Science endorsement, Aquinas College
  • Professional Certification, Western Michigan University
  • Diocesan Catechetical Certification, Diocese of Grand Rapids
  • Graduate level mathematics and science classes
  • Member of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and the Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics for over 20 years

Erica Emelander, Junior High Social Studies and Religion Teacher 

Teaching here at St. Paul is the ideal job for me. Not only do I get a chance to teach a great group of kids, I also get a chance to discuss the Catholic faith with them, which is something I have always wanted to do. I am looking forward to being a member of the St. Paul community.
  • Bachelor of Arts, Aquinas College
  • Major in Social Studies, minor in Language Arts
  • Catechist in the Grand Rapids Diocese

Christina Dugan, Junior High Spanish Teacher 

It doesn’t get any better than teaching the Spanish language at a Catholic school with interested, eager and respectful students. I’m so thankful for the opportunity to be with the St. Paul the Apostle School community.
  • Bachelor of Arts, University of Toronto, St. Michaels’ College, German & French
  • Fluent in five languages
  • Owner, Languages Alive!
  • German born

Barb Saumier, Elementary Spanish Teacher 

Learning a foreign language at an early age is beneficial to the growth of our student’s language development. I love to teach the St. Paul’s children and see how eager they are to learn. Sharing my knowledge of the Spanish language and culture to a student body that values their education is rewarding.
  • Masters – Curriculum and Instruction, Michigan State University
  • Bachelor of Arts, K-12 certified in Spanish/Education, Potsdam State University, New York
  • Continuing Education, Member of MIWWLA (Michigan World Language Association)
  • Twenty two years teaching Spanish (20 of those years at the K-5 level)

Mary Balke, Choir Teacher, Reading Resource Tutor 

The best thing about working at St. Paul is that it feels like “home”. It is a place where people truly care about each other and the well-being of each student, individual and family.
  • Bachelor of Science, Special Education, Central Michigan University
  • Continuing Education: Response to Intervention, Orton-Gillingham, Dynamic Indicators for Basic Early Literacy Skills

Carla Graham, Librarian 

With my pediatric nursing background, I am very grateful for the opportunity to bring my joy of working with children and my personal love of reading together in the role of school librarian. I look forward to breathing new life into the library and making it a fun and exciting place. The goal is to discover what each student enjoys while finding the perfect books to spark their interest in becoming life-long readers.
  • Bachelor of Science, Nursing, Florida State University
  • Pediatric Nurse licensed in the states of Florida and Michigan

Judith Snow, School Counselor

As a private practitioner, I have provided counseling services to children and families in the Grand Rapids area since 1990. It is a wonderful opportunity that I’ve been given to work with the students at St. Paul the Apostle School. The students and families are clearly valued, the environment is positive and supportive, and the children are delightful.

  • Master of Arts, Counseling Psychology, Western Michigan University
  • Bachelor of Science, Psychology, Aquinas College
  • Limited Licenses Psychologist
  • Certified Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor

Lori Salva, Principal 

Being an administrator in a Catholic School is an incredible opportunity to make a difference. St. Paul’s is a wonderful faith-filled environment and I am very fortunate to be a part of this community.
  • Masters of Arts—Educational Leadership, Western Michigan University
  • Bachelor of Arts, Aquinas College
  • Certificate of Religious Studies, Aquinas Institute of Religious Studies
  • Diocesan Catechetical Certification—Master Level
  • Continuing Education Workshops, Michigan State University and Kent Intermediate School District
  • Twenty-plus years in Catholic Education both as a teacher and administrator