Staff Spotlight: Whitney Spencer

Staff Spotlight: Whitney Spencer

Whitney Spencer teachers 6th grader English and School Success and enjoys both passing on her love for literature and equipping her students with the organizational and time management skills they need to be successful in life.

When asked to share a memory from her own school days, Whitney was quick to recall multiple performing arts events. In elementary school, she was selected to participate in a play put on by the Virginia Ballet Company. Whitney was a dwarf in their rendition of Snow White and the EIGHT Dwarfs. Perhaps it was this twist on a classic tale that gave Whitney her passion for literature! During her middle and high school years, Whitney was home-schooled which gave her the time necessary to continue her pursuit of acting, and during her teen years, she was a member of a community theater apprenticeship. Homeschooling also gave Whitney the opportunity to participate in a lot of hands-on and trip-based learning experiences and she remembers first-hand the impact these “out-of-the-classroom” experiences had on her desire to learn.

Whitney’s desire to be a teacher has been present since kindergarten. She admits to lining her stuffed animals up and “teaching them” what she was learning in school. She was motivated by many who taught her as well as her mom, who passed away four years ago. Whitney loves working at GRACE and says it is the best Christian school she has taught at. She loves the level of professionalism and our loving and Christ-centered community, and she loves coming to work every day!

As a teacher, Whitney enjoys building relationships with her students. She shares that not only does she love being able to reach her students both academically, but loves having the ability to speak truth into their lives and love on them in Christ! Whitney has a strong desire to see them believe in themselves and strive for their best! She wants her students to know that that hard work and effort are the keys to overcoming, but more importantly, she wants them to know that they need Christ as their Savior, that their self-worth and identity should be found in Christ, and that they should view learning as the greatest journey they could ever take. She also wants them to know that they, like she, are not a finished product and there is always time to improve because they have the power of “Yet” on their side!

During her own teen years, Whitney remembers being teased a lot for not doing things that her friends were doing. She recalls, “I knew they were things I shouldn’t do, and I knew the Lord wouldn’t want me to participate, but it was hard to stand on the outside of the circle and feel like I was missing out.” During this time, her favorite Bible verse was Proverbs 23:17-18, “Let not your heart envy sinners, but continue in the fear of the Lord all the day. Surely there is a future, and your hope will not be cut off.” Whitney explained that these verses helped remind her that she wasn’t missing out! she was doing exactly what her Savior would have her do!

As an adult, Whitney’s favorite verse changes with whatever season she is walking in. Currently, her family is facing some hard times, and her verse has been Exodus 14:14 “The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.” Whitney explained that this verse is a great reminder that sometimes the Lord calls us to stillness and resting in His promise to take care of our circumstances. Whitney and her family have allowed themselves to be part of God’s care for children who are hurting, have been hurt, or who need for basic amenities that aren’t supplied to them. Their family is proactive in helping care for the hurting through their church, and on their own. The Spencer home is currently a refuge to some in need. In this capacity, the Spencer’s are part of God’s provision for those in difficult circumstances.

Whitney was born in Richmond, Virginia and lived there until she was nine. At that time, her family moved to northern West Virginia, near the Snowshoe and Canaan Valley Ski Resorts. The timing of this moved seemed providential as Whitney was nine years hold when she met the man she now calls her husband. They started dating when they were juniors in high school, broke up during their college years, reconnected after college­­, reunited, and were married five years later! They are parents to three boys, Hunter (4), Thorin (2), and Lincoln (newborn).

Whitney has many hidden talents including being a featured artist on a southern gospel CD that her dad recorded. He has recorded three CDs and is working on a Christmas album this summer. Whitney also shares that she was, in fact, a princess in the Mountain State Forest Festival that takes place in Elkins, West Virginia each fall! Elkins is a small, sleepy, Gilmore-Girls-like town with a year-round population of 7,000 and attracts more than 70,000 visitors each year to the festival. Whitney was selected by both city and state officials to be part of the royal court.