Richard Barton

Richard Barton, Middle Group Lead Teacher, came to Agassiz over thirty years ago as a founding teacher. In addition to his extraordinary experience, his uncommonly gifted way of relating to the children makes him a deeply treasured teacher at Agassiz. “I like to be straightforward, not act differently with the children,” Richard explains. “I want them to develop social competence.”

“I also coach high school students,” Richard continues, “ and they deal with the same issues as my three and four-year olds. They need to learn to deal with their feelings, stand up for themselves, in- teract with others. We all do. I try to help them with these skills. It is the social part that causes the biggest challenge for people. If young children can master that, they will be successful in whatever they do throughout their lives.”

Richard is an avid runner with a family of his own (children ages 29, 26 and 18). When people ask why he is still teaching, Richard responds, “Yes, I have to work two jobs to make it work financially [he coordi- nates state wide high school volleyball and Junior Olympics.] But I’m rewarded everyday at my job. I don’t hear that from most of my friends. I find great satisfaction and value in what I do.”