Posted on December 16, 2010 at 4:00 PM
Saturday, Dec 18 at 4:06 PM
CIBOLO -- Often some of the best teachers are educating students in unconventional settings. Take James Barber, this week’s winner of the KENS 5 Golden Apple ExCel Award.
At an assembly at the alternative school in the Schertz-Cibolo-Universal City Independent School District (SCUCISD), Barber picked up a $1,000 check from SACU.
Barber loves history. He’s trying to pass on that love to the student at the Marion Dolford Learning Center. The students here have discipline problems and stay for one to three months.
“Trying to turn that around and make student who aren’t invested in their education feel like it’s something that’s important to them and something that they enjoy being part of, that’s the challenge,” Barber commented.
The 35-year-old social studies teacher tries to keep geography and economics and history relevant. And while he uses classroom time to impart academic information, his true skill is in pulling at-risk students back from the edge.
“I hope that when they leave this place they feel good about being in school,” he added, “that they feel positive about the education that they’re getting and they feel confident.”
His students range from seventh graders to seniors. They leave with life lessons, as well as book knowledge.
“It’s been pretty terrific,” Barber said.