Elementary | Physical Education Teacher
It’s not often that you meet someone who has happily held the same exact position for three decades…and wouldn’t change a thing. Kristy Shelton and her husband, Cliff, walked onto the GAC campus 34 years ago and have never looked back.
Most would think Shelton’s days are filled with kickball, setting up obstacle courses, and keeping track of Presidential Physical Fitness requirements. But, Shelton says her biggest calling is to teach her students that Christ is in all things. She shares, “I don’t have the urge to ever leave the elementary school. This is the time when kids have pure hearts and are ready to learn about God.” Shelton’s classes know what God teaches about healthy bodies and healthy minds as students proudly recite scripture during each class and before competitions. Shelton expects the best from her young students, but she stresses kindness and sportsmanship above everything else.
Known as “Coachy” around campus, Shelton has served as head coach for softball, track, basketball, and is currently serving as the head volleyball coach. In 2015, she celebrated her 400th win on the volleyball court. “I enjoy teaching our youngest Spartans, then reconnecting with them on the volleyball court. Seeing them as young adults, excited about service and God, is the best part of my job.”
Off the volleyball court, Shelton has a passion for service. She serves as the main faculty sponsor for the annual Honduras mission trip. Working with the Peche Indians of Honduras, Shelton, along with her team of students and volunteers, get to change lives. “We always come back ready to serve and share how we saw Jesus at work.” Back at school, Shelton leads fundraising efforts for Jump Rope for Heart, an annual campaign for the American Heart Association. In 2016, elementary students raised almost $41,000 to give back to the national non-profit.
Shelton says she wouldn’t change what she does for anything in the world, “My colleagues are incredible men and women of God. When a family enrolls their child at GAC, I always tell them that their child will see the heart of Jesus – no matter what grade, no matter what subject – every day.”