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Missouri Association of Rural Education



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Rural School Board Member

Janet Barton, North St. Francois Co. R-I

Outstanding Rural School Board Member

Janet Barton

North St. Francois Co. R-I School District

When administrators and teachers are asked about “what makes a great board member” they will collectively answer “one who listens.”  When those at North St. Francois County R-I, in Bonne Terre, Missouri, discuss their outstanding board member, it is always Janet Barton.  Janet Barton has the spent the last three years serving the students, parents, patrons and staff as a School Board Member working to improve and support the North St. Francois R-I School District.

Mrs. Barton, a retired secondary teacher (Social Studies Instructor- total of 26 years ) of the district, mother, grandmother and community activist, knows what it takes to keep a district running efficiently and effectively.  The words “a true advocate for kids and education as a whole,” best describe the dedication that Mrs. Barton has provided to not only her time on the board of education but to the district and community as a whole.  She is described as one who is very supportive of the district’s employees – always wanting to do more for the staff, while at the same time, being very knowledgeable of the financial constraints on public education.

As a board member, one sometimes has to make decisions that are not all that favorable.  When listening to appeals, she asks questions when appropriate, and supports responsible decision making – even when it is a difficult, unpopular choice to be made.  Mrs. Barton always makes her decisions and votes based on what is best for the children of the district, staff, parents and the community.  She is described by a member of the staff as one that is not afraid to tackle obstacles and issues, while at the same time maintaining dignity and a professional attitude.

Born and raised in the Bonne Terre community, Janet has always had the betterment of the school and community in her heart.  She is currently serving on the Bonne Terre Park Board, Co-Chair of the Community Betterment Group, Chairman of the Bonne Terre 150th Anniversary Celebration scheduled for 2014 and has been working to publish a Bonne Terre MO History and Families Book.

Janet Barton has always represented the North St. Francois Co. R-I School District and the Bonne Terre community, as a Board member with integrity.  With the great love she has for the students in the district and her main goal of improvement of the education for those students, makes her deserving of the honor as the Missouri Outstanding Rural Board Member for 2012.