Formal principal takes on new role at PHS

Secretary fill in Charlotte Barnett answers the phone as she reads from the computer.

Photo by: Francisco Castaneda

Secretary fill in Charlotte Barnett answers the phone as she reads from the computer.

Story by Sarah Alcantar

Office secretary Kathryn Ehling delivered her fourth child and as a result is currently gone on maternity leave for the first part of the 2022 semester. Ehling is in charge of attendance records for all of the students at Pittsburg High School, and has worked in the office for three years. 

Administration hired a temporary replacement to help the office staff while Ehiling is gone. Former teacher and assistant principal at the Pittsburg Community Middle School, Charlotte Barnett, took the job, giving her the opportunity to relive her days back in the school system.

“I decided to accept Mrs. Heardt’s offer because sometimes I miss not being in the middle of the action,” Barnett said. “Fortunately, subbing in the front office at this time, places [me] in the very middle of the action.”

Barnett has been able to interact with the student body which has created opportunities that she hoped to experience. 

“My favorite part of being in the office at PHS is seeing students,” Barnett said. “It’s been a long time since I’ve been able to see so many students on a daily basis.”

Barnett started teaching at PCMS as a 6th grade teacher and then, in 1996, changed roles to become an assistant principal. 

My position mainly dealt with discipline but I wore many hats,” Barnett said. “I supervised breakfast and lunch areas, and evaluated teachers.”

Though Barnett has created some positive experiences at PHS, she has also encountered some obstacles while on the job.

“The most challenging part of working in the office has been Covid,” Barnett said. [I also have challenges] with the issues that arise while dealing with Power School.

Working as part of the office staff at PHS has allowed Barnett to reminisce and come back to her education roots. 

“Education has always been my love, but administration was my passion,” Barnett said. “The administrators in USD 250 were my mentors and gave me the opportunity to follow my dreams.”