Des Moines Christian School

Des Moines Christian School

Coordinates: 41°37′44″N 93°47′53″W / 41.629°N 93.798°W / 41.629; -93.798

Des Moines Christian School
"Equipping the next generation to think, discern and act through Biblically-directed, Christ-centered education"
Des Moines, Iowa
United States
Type Private
Established June, 1947
Superintendent Dr. Robert E. Stouffer
Principal John Steddom (Secondary),
Cade Lambart (Elementary)
Grades K-12
Colour(s) Blue and white
Mascot Lion
Affiliation Christian

Des Moines Christian School opened in 1948 on the campus of First Federated Church in Des Moines, Iowa, United States. In 1980, the school moved to the former Franklin Junior High School building, and in 1983 added ninth grade. In 1988, the State of Iowa granted accreditation to grades 7 through 12 (the elementary had already been accredited).




Des Moines Christian School was founded in June 1947 when forty-one people from various local churches in the greater Des Moines area gathered at the Des Moines YMCA to pray and consider establishing a private Christian school in the Des Moines area. It was decided to elect an evangelical school board, adopt a constitution, and formulate bylaws for a parent-inspired school. In 2006 the school moved to its current location in Urbandale, Iowa.

Early years

In 1948, classes opened in the basement of First Federated Church with fifteen students and one teacher. In 1949, expansion to Grace Baptist Church became necessary due to a need for more space. In 1951, both campuses consolidated and the parents decided to purchase a full city block (2.5 acres) at 62nd and Franklin Avenue, and erect a school building. In September, 1955, Des Moines Christian School opened its doors for the first time with approximately 135 kindergarten through eighth grade students and seven teachers.


In August 1980, Des Moines Christian School moved to the former Franklin Junior High School building located at 48th street and Franklin Avenue, where they rented it from First Federated Church, which was also occupying part of the building. In September, 1983, Des Moines Christian added a secondary school department, which included 9th through 12 grades. In 1987, Des Moines Christian School graduated twenty-nine students in its first senior high graduation ceremony. In January 1988, Des Moines Christian became accredited from the State of Iowa for grades 7-12 (the elementary had previously received accreditation.) In September 1995, they received accreditation from the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI). In the fall of 2005, Des Moines Christian School moved out of the rented space at First Federated Church and into their own facility in Urbandale, a suburb on the west side of Des Moines.

Recent years

Today, over 100 different churches are represented in the School's preschool through twelfth grade. The enrollment of Des Moines Christian School is over 600 students in grades K-12. In addition, over 200 children are enrolled in the preschool and day care program. The School employs approximately 90 full time and part time teaching and support staff.



The Superintendent of Des Moines Christian School is Dr. Robert Stouffer. Dr. Stouffer is a fifth generation educator who taught high school English and coached numerous sports teams in Mason City, Iowa and Pleasant Valley, Iowa. He also has 18 years of experience as a school administrator – serving as an Associate Principal, Principal, and Superintendent. He has earned an M.A. and Ph.D. in Educational Administration at Northeast Missouri State University (now known as Truman State University) in Missouri and the University of Iowa, respectively. Most recently, he has served as Principal of Urbandale High School (1992–2000) and Superintendent of Des Moines Christian School (2000 to present). Dr. Stouffer also serves as an Adjunct Professor in the Educational Leadership department at Drake University, and he has served on the Board of Directors for several area non-profit organizations.

Secondary Principal

The High School Principal is John Steddom. Mr. Steddom received his undergraduate degree in communications and education from Central College in Pella, Iowa. He began his career in education by teaching secondary language arts in the Cedar Valley and Floyd Valley School Districts. After receiving his first Master’s degree in counseling from Northwest Missouri State University, Mr. Steddom worked in elementary school settings and in private practice, counseling children and adolescents. It was during this time that he initiated the first Character Counts! program in the state of Iowa. His second Master’s degree and Superintendent Licensure in educational administration have enabled him to serve successfully as assistant principal in the Urbandale and Newton school districts, as well as attempting to open a private school of his own design, prior to coming to Des Moines Christian School in the 2000-2001 school year as Secondary Principal. Mr. Steddom is an active member of Valley Church in West Des Moines in a number of leadership roles, once serving as Superintendent of Children’s Ministries.

Elementary Principal

The Elementary Principal was Cade Lambart. Mr. Lambert received his BS in Elementary Education and Bible from Northwestern College in the Twin Cities. In addition, he graduated from Northwestern with a Middle School Social Studies Minor, and Kindergarten Endorsement. He has also earned his Iowa Coaching Endorsement through Heartland AEA. This fall, Mr. Lambert will receive his MA degree in Educational Administration from Iowa State University. After undergraduate training in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, Mr. Lambert began his teaching career at Urbandale Middle School as a Language Arts/Social Studies teacher. The three years prior to coming to Des Moines Christian School were spent serving in the Perry Community Schools as a fifth grade teacher and coach. Mr. Lambert is an active member of Perry Bible Church where he serves on the Leadership Board and is currently the high school Sunday school teacher. In summer of 2011, he moved to Minnesota to coach Football. The temporary elementary principal is Jerry Clutts.

The school's mascot is the Lions.

External links

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