Barb Greene hanging up her chalk


It only makes sense that the more time a person spends in a community, the more of a connection they can make with others in the community. Teacher Barb Greene attended West High from seventh grade through high school and spent 14 years of her 32 year teaching career walking the halls of West High. During her career she has taught special education classes in the areas: Reading, Language Arts, Science and everyday living skills.
“It was weird when I first started teaching here because some of my high school teachers were still working here,” Greene said.
Greene is part of a West High legacy-her family. The first Home Ec teacher at West was her mother, Gail Atchison, and both of her children are West High graduates.
This year, Greene is retiring from teaching and moving on to a new chapter in her life.
“I am hanging up my chalk,” said Greene. “At this point I am unsure as to what I will do next. [I will] probably volunteer with Hospice, Miracles in Motion and travel. I already have three trips planned for this fall, which is exciting because I never get to go anyplace during the fall.”
While Greene is clearly not at a loss for things to do after her retirement, she admits she will miss certain aspects of her job at West High.
“[I have formed close bonds with] quite a few [personnel] from the custodial, kitchen and para-educator staff,” said Greene. “It will be hard leaving the West High Community, especially after all of the support I’ve had both personally and professionally.”
In addition to the close relationships she has formed with her fellow staff members, Greene will miss the personal connection she feels with many of her students.
“[My favorite part of teaching is] watching a student, that learning doesn’t come easy for, achieve. It is also interesting to hear my 10 graders come up to me and say, ‘I’m glad you made me toe the line as a ninth grader. I understand why now.’ [I also enjoy when they] come and visit after graduation and tell me what they are doing. Some even bring their children in to see me.”
While Greene will remember her time at West High as a positive time overall, one memory will stick in her mind as she travels the globe.
“[I remember] seeing one of my autism students get hired at a local business. That was special because he had been job shadowing at the business for two years and finally got the job.”