Middle School Educator Named 2010 Agnes Meyer Outstanding Teacher
POSTED: 10:22 a.m. EDT, April 05, 2010
By: FCCPS Communications
A 12-year veteran educator from Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School is this year’s Agnes Meyer Outstanding Teacher Award recipient. The Washington Post recognized 6th grade teacher Maryel Barry (right) as one of the finest teachers in the region by naming her the winner from Falls Church City.
“I’m proud to have Maryel Barry represent Falls Church as a Washington Post awardee,” Falls Church City Public Schools Superintendent Lois Berlin said. “Her quiet but firm and caring demeanor creates a safe, trusting and motivating learning environment for her students.”
The annual award is presented by the Washington Post to one teacher from each of the 19 metro area public school divisions and one private school. The award’s namesake, Agnes Meyer, was a staunch supporter and defender of public education and the wife of Eugene Meyer, who purchased the Washington Post in 1933. The goals of the award are to recognize excellence in teaching and to encourage creative and quality instruction.
Barry is credited with creating and implementing the history and language arts curriculum for classes at Mary Ellen Henderson and for leading students in both self-directed and group projects aimed at honing research, analytical and writing skills.
Her tenure with the Falls Church City Public Schools started in September, 1997. In addition to teaching, Barry serves as a mentor for new FCCPS teachers, is the creator and sponsor of the MEHMS Grandparents Club, and volunteers with the Homework Club.
Parents and colleagues submitted letters of support for Barry’s Agnes Meyer Award nomination.
“Ms. Barry is someone that I would refer to as a "silent force,"” Principal Ann McCarty wrote. "Her demeanor with students is always kind, caring and docile, yet her expectations are high."
“(Barry) knows that the way to spark a child's interest is through a mutually trusing relationship where each child feels valued and cared for," teacher Karen Post wrote. "Knowing a child's birthday, pet's name, or favorite hobby may seem like a small thing for an adult, but to a sixth grader, it can make their day!”
Barry earned her bachelor’s degree in history from Trinity College in Washington DC after beginning her studies at Oxford University in Oxford England. She also holds a master's degree in modern European and American social studies and history from Northeastern University in Boston, MA.
Barry is among seven Falls Church City public school teachers nominated for the award. She and all the nominees will be recognized by the school board at a reception on May 18, 2010 at 5:30 p.m. at Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School.
Barry will also be recognized along with other winners from the region at a Washington Post reception also in May.