Our School

Our Staff

Eliot Chapel Nursery School has friendly, creative teachers who love working with children. The staff is well-trained in creating a warm, welcoming environment for the children to learn through play. Staff members are continually expanding their knowledge by attending workshops, listening to speakers and enrolling in seminars. What they learn, they share with their fellow teachers and children alike. Children learn best through play and the staff creates an environment that fosters creativity.

Becky Steuby


Becky Steuby began her teaching career in 1999 teaching first grade. After a break from teaching to be a stay at home mom to her three children, Becky returned to the classroom at Eliot Chapel Nursery School when her youngest son began nursery school. She has been teaching multi-age classes at ECNS since 2008 and has recently assumed the position of Director at ECNS. Becky has a degree in Early Childhood Education from Webster University.

Becky Wooldridge

Becky Wooldridge

Becky Wooldridge has been with ECNS since 1992, first as a parent and then as a teacher. She has degrees in elementary and special education as well as education administration.

Ellen Johnson

Ellen has been a part of Eliot Chapel since 2011, when her oldest of three started in the beginner room. She previously taught preschool in Colorado, and currently teaches art at Camp Taum Sauk during the summer. She joined the staff as Lunch Bunch teacher in 2018. She has a degree from Elon University in North Carolina.

Gretchen Harleman

Gretchen has a bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education from Webster University and is a certified Montessori teacher. She began teaching toddlers and preschoolers in 1993. She has also worked training Montessori student teachers for many years. She is a mom to three school aged children. She has enjoyed teaching at Eliot Chapel Nursery School since 2015.

Jennifer Burrus

Jennifer began teaching in 1998.  She has been at ECNS since 2004. In addition to her regular classes, she shares her love of nature with the students through seasonal science classes.  Jennifer enjoys exploring new things with the children and isn’t afraid to get messy.

Kelly Schweiss

Kelly has been part of the ECNS family since 1994, first as a parent and member of the board and as a teacher since 1999. She is a pro at wrangling hungry preschoolers in Lunch Bunch, teaching them proper table manners and how to clean up after themselves. She attended St. Louis University.

Kristen McSwain

Kristen McSwain

Kristen has been part of ECNS since 2013, first as a parent and later as a substitute teacher.  She is looking forward to joining the permanent ECNS staff this year as she sends her fifth child to kindergarten.  Kristen has served on the board of a Washington, DC based non-profit aimed at improving the lives of low income children, as well as President of the board of a Virginia-based Day School. Kristen graduated from the University of Kansas.

Kristine Peters

Kristine has been a part of ECNS since 2017, first as a parent and now as a teacher.  Kristine’s work experience was as a Child Life Specialist, providing support and education to children and families in the hospital environment for ten years prior to having her three boys.   Play has always been the key ingredient in her work both at the hospital and now at ECNS.  Kristine graduated from Calvin College, in Grand Rapids, Michigan with a B.S. in Recreation and a minor in Social Work.

Libby Ryan

Libby Ryan

Libby has been a part of ECNS since her children started attending in 2008 and served on the board during that time. She has substitute taught at ECNS as well. She has a bachelors and masters in elementary education and worked for 10 years as an elementary teacher in Missouri and California. She loves working with preschool aged children and joined the staff for the 2014-15 school year.

Clare Hansen

Office Assistant

Clare joined the ECNS staff in 2014. She assists the entire staff with administrative tasks and organizes the school library. She has a BA from Kenyon College.

Susan Planck


Susan joined the ECNS staff in Fall of 2000. She is responsible for all financial tasks related to the school and is known to visit with her pal Oliver, an adorable mini poodle.

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