Mission, Vision & Philosophy
The Family Ministries department exists as a way to minister to families as they navigate the many different roles required of parents in a University-Model School. Our vision is for Family Ministries to exist as the hub of a small town. We want to help families build and strengthen their communities at the school, provide avenues for families to connect, serve and pray, and walk with families through times of joy and sadness. Our vision is not to replace the church but to be a full extension of the body of Christ at school. Family Ministries creates a safe space where parents’ needs are met by listening, sharing, and learning more about God’s role in their families, thus continuing to foster a school community rooted in faith and love.
See details below about how our Family Ministries team exists to CELEBRATE, CONNECT, EQUIP and CARE for our families!
Meet Our Team
Contact Our Team
Ashley and her husband, Evan, are parents to Hayes (1st) and Harper (4th). Prior to joining the Family Ministries team, Ashley worked in the Women's Ministry at her home church for 5 years and in Human Resources for 12 years. Ashley loves the extra time that this collaborative model allows her to spend with her young children. Her desire is that the Veritas families truly find a connection with one another and constantly point each other to Jesus while navigating parenting and school. Her advice for Veritas parents is to "jump in." Find a place to serve and/or events to attend, and get connected! The more time you put into this school, the more you will bear fruit, and through serving, you will find community. In Ashley's free time, she loves to spend time with her family, explore small towns, swim, and cook.
Ellen and Glen, are the parents to a son (Troy) and two daughters (Erin and Alisa) and grandparents to eleven children, all of whom attend Veritas. She has served at Veritas since its inception. Prior to Veritas, she worked in AISD and as director of two schools in Oregon. In addition to serving as a Family Ministries Mentor, Ellen teaches her grandchildren on their home days, works for NAUMS (National Association of University Model Schools within NAUMS), and writes parenting books and articles. Her desire for all families at Veritas is that they seek Jesus first and foremost as their source of hope, joy and strength; that they are able to "lay aside every weight and sin which clings so closely, and run with endurance the race that is set before them." (Hebrews 12:1) Her advice for Veritas parents is to mentor thier children from a state of rest, yet with intentionality. The time parents have with their kids is very, very short and goes by quickly. She wants them to remember that their influence is rooted more in who they are than what they say or do. In Ellen's free time, she loves to knit, sew, bake, cook, garden, walk and read.
Amber-Rose and Adam (a member of the Veritas school board) have five children - Samuel (VA ‘18), Elijah (11th), Isaac (9th), Matea (7th) and Abraham (6th). Prior to joining the Family Ministries team, Amber-Rose worked at Veritas as a substitute teacher. Amber-Rose's heart for mentoring shines in her service in and around the Austin area. She is a deacon in her church; she and her husband have worked with engaged and newly married couples for over 10 years; and she served as a mentor in the underprivileged, teen mom community in East Austin. Amber-Rose loves that Veritas gave her the gift of time and a posture of intentionality with her children (especially as a mom who often felt stretched by the needs of a big family). She sees the fruit of both the classical and UMS components of the Veritas model in her children. Her desire is for Veritas families to find this gift of time and intentionality in each season of life. Amber-Rose's advice for Veritas families is to parent from a place of connection to the Heavenly Father, and also to see their role through a lens of faithfulness and not perfection. In her free time, Amber-Rose loves cheering on the sidelines of her kids' various sports! She also loves food, reading, hiking, exercise, the Pacific Northwest and being outdoors. As a mentor, Amber-Rose can particularly connect with parents of children with learning differences, behavioral challenges and with transracial families.
Amy and Alan are parents to Austin (22 - Senior at VA Tech), Aiden (19 - Army), and Ashlyn (a sophomore at Veritas). Prior to her role in Family Ministries, Amy was a teacher's aide for second grade. In addition to serving as a Family Mentor, Amy is a member of our Veritas Prayer Team. Amy loves the environment at Veritas and the partnership it provides for the families. It is Amy's deepest desire for families to grow in their relationships with Jesus foremost and with each other! When our eyes are fixed on Him, the other relationships in our lives look healthier. We are messengers of Hope to the world. Amy loves to see families serving in the name of Jesus. Her advice to Veritas families is to not hesitate to reach out, whether for a one-time connection or for continued prayer. We can't lift each other up and encourage one another if we don't know the needs! In her free time, Amy loves being outside, spending time with her family and cheering on her daughter in volleyball! As a mentor, Amy can particularly connect with new families (to Veritas and to Austin)! Having just moved to Austin last summer, she understands how it feels to be new and how it can, at times, feel overwhelming! Additionally, Amy can connect with those who have children who are graduating, as she understands the many decisions that come as teenagers prepare for their next chapter, and also the many emotions that parents feel in the process.
Kristin and her husband, Dustin, are parents to Isaac (9th), Eden (5th), Levi (PreK), and baby Samuel. Before joining the Family Ministries team, Kristin worked in both the software and food & beverage industries. She loves problem solving, navigating logistics, and bringing people together over a good meal or cup of coffee. Kristin's advice for Veritas parents is to "be intentional about being in community". She found some of her closest friendships were formed simply through volunteering with other moms, chatting in the school pick up line, or staying after pick up to hang out with other moms on the playground. The more interactions, the deeper the friendships. In her free time, Kristin loves to garden, tend to her chickens, cook, and grab lunch with a friend.
Care for those in our Veritas Community
Submit a Prayer or Care Request
These requests are confidential.
Family Ministry Connection Gatherings
Prayer Team - Every Monday morning, our Prayer team meets at 8:20 AM to pray over the community, school, and individual needs of our Veritas families. All are welcome to attend this small group, corporate prayer time.
Reflections and Connections - Each Wednesday morning, parents come together as a small group at 8:20 AM to spend time in the Word, pray, and reflect. There is no prep, and all are welcome to join at any time!
Coffee on the Grounds - Join us each month for a time of connection and coffee after drop-off! Check the calendar for dates.
Once per Semester
Tea on the Patio - Join us on Oct 20 @ 2:45pm for a time of parent connection and iced tea before pickup!
Check the calendar for upcoming dates and announcements pertaining to these gatherings.
Family Ministries Celebrations
We have many celebrations each and every year to celebrate the many milestones of our families and our school:
- Coffee on The Grounds
- Tea on the Patio
- Cheers and Tears
- Fall Football Games
- 12 Days of Giving Christmas Card Signing Party
- Defender Date Night
- Mother/Son Date Night
- Daddy/Daughter Dance
- A Very Veritas Christmas
- Last Day Of School Festivities
- Teacher Appreciation Luncheons
For a complete list of our celebrations and ways you can join the action team for many of our Celebrations, check out our Traditions Page.
Resources to Help Equip You In Your Parenting and Co-Teaching
Family Ministries offers one-on-one mentoring to help you reset as a teacher, leader, and parent. To set up a conversation with a Family Mentor, fill out our mentorship form.
Each year Veritas offers an August retreat with a keynote speaker as well as leaders within our community who offer sessions to equip parents to teach, lead, and parent their children while embarking on the journey of a University-Model Education..
Family Ministries Online Resources Bank
Family Ministries Vimeo Resources Showcase:
YouTube Equipping Videos featuring Ellen Schuknecht: