Administration

Daniel Gibson

Head of School

Daniel C. Gibson is the founding Head of School of Columbus Classical Academy. Prior to joining CCA, Mr. Gibson was a partner at the law firm of Bricker & Eckler LLP in Columbus, where he was a litigator and appellate lawyer for more than 15 years. He also served as an Associate Director at the Hudson Institute in Washington, D.C. immediately following graduation from law school. Mr. Gibson earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy, cum laude, from Davidson College and a Juris Doctorate from Stanford Law School.

Read Mr. Gibson's welcome message.

Sarah Spaulding

Principal

Sarah E. Spaulding joins Columbus Classical Academy as its founding Principal. Prior to joining CCA, Mrs. Spaulding was a founding faculty member of Northwest Ohio Classical Academy in Toledo, Ohio where she taught literacy, literature, grammar, and composition as well as worked to develop the faculty’s mastery of the literacy curriculum. She has also had several years of experience teaching humanities in a private school, but she cherishes most the six years she spent teaching her children classically from home. Mrs. Spaulding holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications from Bowling Green State University and a pedagogy certificate from The Ohio State University.

Rob Minch

Operations Manager

Mr. Minch, an Army veteran, has a long history working in operations, but also has a passion for education that brings him to Columbus Classical Academy as the Operations Manager. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics with a Management Focus and Religious Studies from Ohio Wesleyan University. During his undergraduate years, Mr. Minch was a member of Capital University’s ROTC program. He went on to earn a Master of Arts degree in Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina Charlotte. Mr. Minch’s favorite books include Pressfield’s Gates of Fire, Hemingway’s For Whom the Bell Tolls, and all the Sherlock Holmes stories; he also loves 19th century literature. In his leisure time, Mr. Minch loves anything that gets him outdoors: fishing, kayaking, gardening, hiking, and more. If he is not enjoying the outdoors, he may be found cooking or out and about trying new restaurants, and traveling as much as possible. He is so excited and honored to be a part of the creation of CCA.

Chloe Campbell

Administrative Assistant

Mrs. Campbell is excited to bring her experience in school office administration to Columbus Classical Academy. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in music from Cedarville University. Mrs. Campbell’s favorite genre to read is historical fiction (especially WW2), true crime mystery, medical mystery and inspirational fiction. The Anne of Green Gables series is a favorite of hers, too. In her leisure time, Mrs. Campbell enjoys crocheting, knitting, playing the piano & flute, cooking, baking and taking care of her many plants. She and her husband also enjoy camping, finding new coffee shops to try in Columbus, visiting antique shops, and traveling abroad.

Faculty


Miss Erin German

Lower School - Kindergarten

Miss German is a Columbus native who will bring her experience to the youngest CCA Patriots. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from The Ohio State University and went on to earn an Early Childhood and Administration Certificate from Columbus State Community College. During her time at OSU, she raised and trained service dogs for children with disabilities. Miss German loves to read; two of her favorite series are the Little House on the Prairie and the Chronicles of Narnia. In her leisure time, Miss German enjoys the Columbus Zoo, spending time outside in the garden and with her dog, Beatrice, exercising, knitting, reading, and learning new homesteading skills.

Miss Emily Bauer

Lower School - 1st Grade

Miss Bauer brings her love of learning and desire to serve as well as influence those around her for the good to the first grade classroom. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Early Education from Ball State University and had the opportunity to do her student teaching on an Air Force base in Germany. Miss Bauer went on to earn a Masters in Psychology from Divine Mercy University. Her favorite book which makes her laugh, smile, and cry all at once is Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables, and in her leisure time, Miss Bauer may be found sipping coffee with a friend. She enjoys trying new things, exercising, making music, practicing hospitality, and collecting eggs from her chickens. After spending nearly a decade working as a missionary to college students, Miss Bauer is ready to shift gears and is so excited to be with first graders who will learn reading skills and so much more!

Miss Regan Hodgson

Lower School - 2nd Grade

Miss Hodgson’s love for the classroom, especially the lower elementary setting, began when she volunteered as an undergraduate at the Mary Randall Preschool in Hillsdale, Michigan. Miss Hodgson earned a Bachelor of Science degree, magna cum laude, in Biology with a minor in Spanish from Hillsdale College and a Master of Science degree from Coastal Carolina University in Coastal Marine and Wetland Studies. Miss Hodgson loves to read historical fiction, and in her leisure time, enjoys hiking, doing puzzles, and watching movies. Miss Hodgson is looking forward to making connections with her second graders and growing their love for learning.

Miss Gretchen Birzer

Lower School - 3rd Grade

Miss Birzer, a graduate from Hillsdale College, earned a Bachelor of Arts in English and a minor in Classical Education in 2023 where she was consistently on the Dean’s list and participated in Hillsdale’s Collegiate Scholars Program. During her time at Hillsdale, Miss Birzer served on the board of the Catholic Society Women’s Outreach. Miss Birzer’s favorite books are Pride and Prejudice, Lord of the Rings, and anything by C. S. Lewis. In her leisure time, Miss Birzer may be found reading and discussing good literature and movies, enjoying the outdoors, singing, and spending time with her friends and family. She is honored and excited to be teaching 3rd grade at CCA and can’t wait to meet her students.

Mrs. Rachel Bartelmay

Lower School - 4th Grade

Mrs. Bartelmay is excited to be a part of the CCA community! She has a passion for all students big and small and cannot wait to learn together. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Grove City College and intends to pursue a Master’s degree soon. Mrs. Bartelmay’s favorite authors range from Jane Austen to C. S. Lewis; she enjoys historical fiction as well. In her leisure time, Mrs. Bartelmay may be found playing and watching sports, taking scenic walks with her husband, daughter, and dog, having a good cup of coffee, and trying new restaurants. She loves volunteering in her church community from leading worship to volunteering in the youth and children’s ministries.

Mr. Lucas Cone

Lower School - 5th Grade

Mr. Cone brings writing, teaching, and leadership skills that he has honed in his pastoral residence to the 5th grade classroom. Mr. Cone earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Bible Translation and a Master of Divinity degree with an exegetical emphasis from Grace College and Seminary. He is outgoing, conversant in French, and has lived, studied, and traveled abroad. Mr. Cone’s favorite genre of books is historical fiction and in his leisure time, enjoys playing the piano, singing, running, and playing board games. Mr. Cone is married and they are expecting their first child.

Mr. Jeffrey Burghauser

Upper School - Literature

Mr. Burghauser is a highly experienced teacher and expert in traditional forms of poetry whose most recent publication, The Heavy Lifting: A Boy’s Guide to Writing Poetry, is just one of a long list of works he has authored or been published. Mr. Burghauser earned a Bachelor of Arts degree, magna cum laude, from the State University of New York at Buffalo and went on to earn a Master of Arts in Victorian Literature at the University of Leeds (UK). His favorite book is the classic campus novel, Lucky Jim, by Kingsley Amis, and in his leisure time, Mr. Burghauer loves to read, write, and play the 5-string banjo which he has studied various Appalachian techniques for more than a decade. Mr. Burghauser’s favorite quote about writing comes from Alexander Pope’s An Essay on Criticism - “True ease in writing comes from Art, not Chance, As those move easiest who have learned to dance”.

Mrs. Gina Marie Gavin

Upper School - Grammar & Composition

Mrs. Gavin, mother of five and 16-year homeschooling veteran, brings her love for Grammar, the written word, and art of articulating ideas to Columbus Classical Academy. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree, summa cum laude, in Philosophy and Contemplative Studies from the University of Dallas and went on to earn a Master of Science degree, summa cum laude, in Pastoral Counseling from Loyola College of Maryland. Mrs. Gavin loves to read and has many favorite authors which include Thomas Aquinas, Dante, C. S. Lewis, Charles Dickens, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, and Sigrid Undset. In her leisure time, along with spending time in a good book, Mrs. Gavin may be found listening to Baroque music, having deep, probing conversations, or hiking with her family and her dogs. She cares deeply for others and has had the privilege of walking through pregnancies with women via a pregnancy resource center in Columbus. Mrs. Gavin looks forward to walking with students as they journey into analyzing and diagramming sentences as well as practicing the art of writing well.

Mr. Matthew Hoenig

Upper School - Science

Mr. Hoenig, an Eagle Scout with Silver Palms and published scientist, earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology with a minor in Chemistry from Hillsdale College, and then went on to earn a Masters of Science in Earth and Environmental Science from Wright State University. Mr. Hoenig reads quite a bit and finds it hard to narrow down just what his favorites are, but the authors he reads the most are Rudyard Kipling, H.P. Lovecraft, J.R.R. Tolkein, Isaac Asimov, and Michael Pollan as well as most any book published by Dorling Kindersley. In his spare time, Mr. Hoenig enjoys fishing, reading, gardening, hunting for fossils, cooking, and beating his friends at computer games. He has excavated two dinosaurs and has a sizable fossil collection.

Miss Kathleen Litt

Upper School - Math

Miss Litt comes to Columbus Classical Academy as an accomplished 21-year veteran middle school mathematics teacher. She has been nominated for her school’s Educator of Excellence award and has a proven track record of improving numeracy in her students by whom she is well loved. Miss Litt earned a Bachelor of Science degree from The Ohio State University and went on to Otterbein College to complete the teacher certification program. Her favorite book is Hinds’ Feet on High Places by Hannah Hurnard, which is an allegory about the Christian walk. In her leisure time, Miss Litt thoroughly enjoys knitting, hiking, and exploring national parks.

Mr. K.A. VanDerMolen

Upper School - Latin

Mr. VanDerMolen has more than thirty years of experience teaching Latin and History. His knowledge and love for classical languages runs deep and wide. Mr. VanDerMolen earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Studies Education with minors in Greek and Latin languages and a Master of Arts degree in History from The Ohio State University. Mr. V, as most students call him, is a formerly ranked powerlifter and avid SEC football fan who loves reading and translating classical Latin and Greek texts as well as reading American history and novels. In his leisure time, Mr. VanDerMolen enjoys working out and listening to old radio programs and music.

Mrs. Erica Blecke

Upper and Lower School - Art

Mrs. Blecke is a talented artist and teacher dedicated to training the hearts and minds of young people through art education. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Art Education from Bowling Green State University and spent nearly a decade in the classroom. Mrs. Blecke is an entrepreneur who is the owner of Art with Erica where she teaches students from across the Columbus area. Her favorite books are whatever she is reading with her sons which includes King Arthur for Boys, Robin Hood, and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. They love a good mystery, too. In her leisure time, Mrs. Blecke can be found spending time with her husband at their sons’ sporting events and being active outside. She enjoys anything related to arts such as painting, decorating, and finding great art and antiques. Mrs. Blecke is so excited to meet all of the Columbus Classical Academy students and share her expertise and passion for the arts!

Mr. Sean Buller

Upper and Lower School - Physical Education

Mr. Buller or Coach B, as many students in his career have called him, comes to the Midwest from California after a long career coaching baseball and teaching Health Science in Los Angeles. Mr. Buller earned a Bachelor of Science in Exercise Physiology from the University of San Francisco where he was a pitcher for their baseball team. He has been blessed to live all over the country when he played professional baseball finishing his career with the Toledo Mud Hens. Mr. Buller also holds a Masters of Education degree from the University of Phoenix. One of Mr. B’s favorite books is Alan Jaeger’s Getting Focused Staying Focused and in leisure time, he enjoys playing and coaching baseball, watching drag racing, and spending time with his girlfriend and two kitties. Mr. Buller is excited to meet, connect, instruct, and motivate students to develop their minds and bodies.

Mrs. Crystal Traini

Upper and Lower School - Music

Mrs. Traini is a multi-talented musician who has many years of experience in music education as a band director and a choir director as well as a private studio teacher where she taught saxophone for more than a decade. Mrs. Traini earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Education from Capital University and a Masters of Music Education degree from Boston University. She loves the Chronicles of Narnia series and the biblical books of Ecclesiastes and Acts. In her leisure time, Mrs. Traini enjoys studying the Bible, gardening, traveling, and listening to classical music of course. She and her husband are beekeepers and lead a ministry that feeds students on the weekends.

“A dogmatic belief in objective value is necessary to the very idea of a rule which is not tyranny or an obedience which is not slavery.”
~ C.S. Lewis, The Abolition of Man