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Meet Steve Barrett, Director of Outreach

Wildwood School’s home is Los Angeles, but our impact is felt far and wide–from Asia to Europe. That’s in part due to the work of Steve Barrett, Director of Outreach, who has traveled to and worked with schools in more than 25 states and a dozen countries (and counting), sharing Wildwood’s innovative and research-based approach to education.

Teaching and learning is Steve’s life work. He began his 30+ year career teaching history at large public high schools outside Chicago, while earning a Master’s Degree in Curriculum Development from DePaul University.


Upcoming Outreach Center Offerings

The Wildwood Outreach Center offers a broad menu of professional development workshops, school visits, summer institutes, and mentorship opportunities throughout the year.


Steve made his way west to be closer to family, and in 2003, joined Wildwood as an upper school humanities teacher and advisor before becoming Director of Outreach in 2010. It’s here at Wildwood where Steve has found his professional and philosophical home. 

“My ideas about learning are so thoroughly aligned with the Wildwood philosophy and practice that sharing our approach feels completely natural,” says Steve. 

What makes this approach successful is Wildwood's unwavering emphasis on relationships that connect students to their own learning, their peers, and their teachers, Steve explains. 

Steve uses his own experiences in the classroom, as well as those of his Wildwood colleagues, to design workshops and consult with individual schools and school districts, helping to build learning communities that emphasize inspired, research-based teaching and learning that represent the future of education.

“Much of my work is around helping teachers get comfortable with the reality that their focus needs to be on teaching children, not teaching subjects,” says Steve. “That approach might seem obvious, but it is still quite rare relative to traditional teaching models.”

It’s enjoyable and rewarding work. Through the years, Steve has learned that most educators appreciate guidance in identifying their strengths and gaining insights about how to grow into a practice that is more satisfying for both the teacher and the learner.

“I am constantly encountering teachers who care about how to make it matter every day,” Steve says. “It’s exciting to see these ideas and efforts take hold not just in Los Angeles, but worldwide.”