Matthew Barbier hadn’t stepped foot into a Webster Groves school until this summer, but he’s already excited to change education and stop it from being run like a business.
“Education shouldn’t revolve around money. It should revolve around helping students and giving them what they need,” Barbier said.
Barbier said what encouraged him to go into this field was seeing how many students are overlooked by a system not designed for them. “I’m not okay with that,” he said.
Babier works with special education students on a daily basis. He graduated high school in St. Louis. He went on to the University of Missouri at Columbia for his undergraduate and graduate degrees, which are in K-12 Special Education and 1-6 General Education. His graduate degree is in mental health practices in schools. After he graduated, he worked as a special education in Columbia, Missouri, for a while. There, he taught special education math and English.
Barbier said his favorite thing about Webster so far is the staff, who he describes as welcoming and nice. He works with Crystal Elze, an SSD instructional coach, who said about him, “He is very energetic with his students.”
As for the future, Barbier said, “I’m not really sure. I am still so busy, I can only think about today. I see myself in an educational leadership role of some kind. At least that’s my hope.”