About CMDS

A Word of Welcome

On behalf of the entire Christ Methodist Day School family, I would like to welcome you to our website. As you look through the site, you’ll see students, parents, teachers and staff members who are devoted to faith, discovery, leadership, joy and so much more.

CMDS, as we like to call it, was founded in 1958 for the purpose of providing boys and girls a Christian education in a coed environment. Its dedication to educating the whole child has helped CMDS flourish and grow over the past 58 years, starting with three kindergarten classes and evolving into today’s comprehensive Early Childhood and Grade School (2K through sixth grade). We also offer an Early Education Program that serves children six weeks through two years; a before-school, after-school and summer camp program; and the Maxine Moore Music Academy, which offers voice and individual and ensemble instrument instruction.

Our primary goal is to guide our students as they develop in the four key areas of our mission: spiritual development, academic excellence, social responsibility and personal integrity. As a result, our graduates are sought after by some of the area’s highest performing middle and high schools, where they go on to excel academically, lead confidently and thrive socially. Faculty and administrators at these schools often comment on our students’ academic preparedness and strong character. I often hear from alumni who share about their time at CMDS with great joy and nostalgia. They commonly refer to the strong spiritual and academic foundation and well-rounded educational experience that prepared them for a life of success.

We invite you to come see why we are the primary choice for academic excellence in Memphis by scheduling a tour or attending one of our Admissions events. I hope and believe that you’ll find CMDS to be a warm and welcoming place where your child will be encouraged, nurtured and prepared for a life filled with learning and discovery.

Serving Him,

Dr. Bryan Williams
Head of School

Mission Statement

Christ Methodist Day School is devoted to exceptional Christian elementary education for boys and girls through spiritual development, academic excellence, social responsibility and personal integrity.


Our vision is for all students at CMDS to develop into students who:
• embrace the love of God as demonstrated by the life and sacrifice of His son, Jesus Christ, and who strive
to grow in spiritual maturity as they follow Him;
• take responsibility for excellence in their own learning by pursuing academic challenges, and who learn to think
critically and creatively under the guidance of nurturing and qualified teachers;
• value and respect diversity, and who treat others with the love of Christ;
• and conduct themselves with honesty and integrity.


• Each student is a unique creation of God with spiritual, intellectual, physical, emotional and social needs.
• Success is best achieved in a safe and stimulating environment with an atmosphere of acceptance and support.
• Each student is encouraged to develop a sense of Christian values toward family, school, society and self.
• Children’s talents and abilities need to be acknowledged and reinforced allowing them to develop fully.
• Developmentally appropriate teaching methods and challenging expectations help students reach their potential as independent learners.
• The learning environment should respect ethnic, cultural and religious differences.
• An atmosphere of cooperation among church, teachers, parents and community enhances the learning experience.


Christ Methodist Day School began in the hearts of several people who, after realizing that the area served by Christ Church (East Memphis) didn’t have a coed Christian school, recognized that “a school where boys and girls could have daily help in understanding the greatness of God and His love, while teaching the Christian way of life” would add much to Memphis and the surrounding community. Among them were Dr. Charles Grant, CUMC founding minister, Harry A. Johnson, Chairman of the CUMC Commission on Education, and charter member Ella McVean, who was able to realize her dream of “being part of a school with high standards and high ideals.”

After a great deal of hard work and many hours of prayer, Christ Methodist Day School opened its doors in 1958 to 75 kindergarten students, with Mrs. McVean serving as its first headmaster. CMDS thrived under her leadership from 1958-1974, and has continued to grow steadily since under the leadership of four administrators: Sam Drash, 1974-1984; David W. Fox, 1984-2002; Steven T. Jackson, 2002-2013; and current Head of School, Dr. Bryan Williams, since 2014 (Associate Head Teena Maginn served as Interim Head during academic year 2013-2014).

In addition to grades 2K through sixth, the school also offers an Early Education Program for children ages 6 weeks to 2, before- and after-school program, summer camp program and music academy. For nearly six decades, CMDS has continued to progress in the areas of technology, research and educational trends, yet maintain its essence, hold on to its rich traditions, and remain steadfast to its mission.