Concerned about the state of the public education system, Amanda Loretta Walton felt compelled to contribute to the betterment of the field. She first needed to gain a better understanding of what she would be dealing with, however, so she earned an Associate of Arts from the Borough of Manhattan Community College in 1975. Ms. Walton supplemented her training with a Bachelor of Arts in political science and elementary education from York College, a Master of Science in special education from the City College of New York, and postgraduate coursework in school district administration from the City College of New York. She also became certified in school district administration, common branches, education for grades K-6, and medical aid through the New York City Department of Education.
Degrees in hand, Ms. Walton set out to achieve her goals. She started out as a staff developer and a teacher assistant at P.S. 200 Benson, and then became an auxiliary trainer for paraprofessionals at P.S. 132 Conselyea School, a teacher and staff development specialist at P.S. 274 Kosciusko School, a staff development specialist at P.S. 299, and a practitioner instructor of New York City teaching fellows at District 32. Although Ms. Walton loved working with children and having the abilities necessary to make a difference, she decided to step down in 2006. Her final role before retirement was assistant principal of P.S. 106 Edward Everett Hale in Region 4 of District 32 for the New York City Board of Education.
One of the highlights of Ms. Walton’s career was when she was asked to help with the breakfast program at P.S. 32 The State Street School. She worked with dietitians from the district to implement a supporting program using hydroponics, which diverts from the traditional methods of growing crops by replacing soil with nutrient formula. The program was a success; people from the Food and Drug Administration even showed up at the celebration. This was also the first time a lot of the young children had an opportunity to work alongside a scientist. It was an enriching experience for all involved, and she’s very proud of her role.
Outside of the classroom, Ms. Walton enjoyed using her skills to help out in her community. She was a grant developer for exploring hydroponics at Cornell University, a grant developer and adapter for the New York Board of Education, a grant developer for Cool Cats Don’t Smoke with the American Cancer Society, and a grant developer for The Men Behind the Pen. Additionally, she was a member of the Queens Village Bellrose Democrats, the Legislative Advisory Committee in Albany, N.Y., the National Association of Female Executives, the International Reading Association, and the Manhattan Reading Council, among other organizations.
When Ms. Walton has free time, she pursues hobbies like reading and bowling.