About

Who We Are

Basic Skills was founded in the 1980s by Curt and Jenny Bumcrot, Christian educators who recognized the needs of families in the community looking for support in the education of their children. They started Basic Skills with the commitment to provide professional support and encouragement to those in the home, private, and public school community. Basic Skills Assessment & Educational Services now provides testing materials and services, curriculum, and educational programs to help meet the needs of families nationwide.

CURT BUMCROT

Position: Basic Skills Director, SHSP Grades 5-6, Diploma Program Advisor, Private & Group Testing

Education & Experience: Curt Bumcrot is the founder and director of Basic Skills. He has earned a degree in Biblical Studies from Grace Institute in Long Beach, California; a BA in English from California State University at Dominguiz Hills; and an MRE (Masters in Religious Education) from Grand Rapids Baptists Seminary. He has been active as a both a teacher and administrator in Christian schools. Curt and his wife Jenny have four grown children, and live in Oregon City, Oregon.

JENNY BUMCROT

Position: Basic Skills Co-Director, Private Testing, SHSP grades 3-4

Education & Experience : Jenny Bumcrot has worked in the field of education for over thirty years. She has worked in Title I schools in California and Oregon. Currently, she teaches elementary classes at Basic Skills.

JO EDWARDS

Position: Privately Developed Plan (PDP)/PDP Diploma Program, Special Needs Testing

Education & Experience : Jo Edwards holds both BA and MS Ed. degrees in special education and is a licensed teacher. In addition to home schooling her children through high school, she has taught in public school and eleven years at a small Christian school. Her specialty is teaching in a multi-age classroom that includes students with special needs.

TINA ARCOUETTE

Position: Manager of Testing Services

Education & Experience:

LAUREN SHEARER

Positions: Client Services, Registrar

Education & Experience: Lauren is the client services representative, the main person you’ll see at the Basic Skills office front desk. She previously worked for Exodus Books as a curriculum consultant and customer service manager. She is pursuing a business degree with Western Governor’s University.

Meet Our Teachers

THELMA ENGLISH

Teaches: Classical Literature, Old Testament Survey

Education & Experience: Thelma attended Western Seminary in Portland part-time for four years. Thelma has been teaching home educated teens for over 14 years. Thelma’s goals are to make the study of literature relevant to Christianity and to help students learn how to engage their culture in positive, life-changing ways.

LINDA HITZ

Teaches: Jr High and High School Drawing, Principles of Design, Color in Art, Watercolor

Education & Experience: Linda worked in Child Development and in Art throughout her Senior year in high school. She also studied Interior Design at Bassist College.

JERRY JONES

Teaches:  Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Geometry, Intro to Calculus, Chemistry, Physical Science, Physics & Electronics

Education & Experience: Jerry has 3 years Engineering Studies at UCLA; BS in Mathematics at Warner Pacific College and a Masters of Religion/Pastoral Studies at Warner Pacific College. In the past Jerry has taught many core Junior High & High School classes, including the Sciences, Math, English Grammar & Literature, History/Geography/Government, as well as Biblical Studies. Now in his 17th year teaching in Christian high schools, Jerry has also been a homeschool father for 24 years. He and his wife, DaniJo, have four children.

RANDY SOUDERS

Teaches: Jr. High & High School World History and Geography

Education and Experience: Randy graduated from Warner Pacific College in 1978. He has taught US History at Basic Skills for the last 7 years.

NATALIE TRUST

Teaches: Writing Fundamentals, Interpersonal Communication

Education & Experience: Natalie Trust has enjoyed teaching various levels of high school English, Literature, and Drama courses over the past four years. She is passionate about instilling a love for learning in her students and encourages them to continually challenge themselves. She has also privately coached students for contest/scholarship writing. Most recently, one of her writing students received a full ride scholarship to OSU and several other students received numerous cash awards for the Oregon Lincoln Bicentennial Essay contest and The Veterans of Foreign War National Essay Contest. Natalie received her B.S. in Human Development and Family Studies from Warner Pacific College. She enjoyed a variety of internships during her college career, including Girl Scouts Beyond Bars, The Early Learning Center, and The Dougy Center. Natalie lives with her beloved dog Libby and enjoys writing, theater, and music. She loves spending time with family and friends, especially over cups of coffee. She is currently working on publishing her first book.

EMILY BECKER

Teaches: Biology, A & P

Emily Becker has a Bachelor’s in Microbiology with a Minor in Chemistry. She volunteered as a lab research assistant at OHSU, Developmental and Cancer Biology Department.

GEORGE SHUBIN

Teaches: Algebra 1, Algebra 2, Math Tutoring

George Shubin comes from a family of  engineers, mathematicians, and astronomers. He has been our resident math tutor since April 2017, teaching everything from 6th grade math up to introductory Calculus.

MADDIE SHEARER

Teaches: Barton Reading & Spelling, Elementary Phonics

Education & Experience: Maddie also teaches at Paideia Classical Christian School in Gladstone.

JEANNETTE WRIGHT

Teaches: Pre-Algebra

Education & Experience: