After working for 20 years in the Liberty Union High School District and 39 years overall as an educator, Christina Dalton has retired.
Most recently the lead counselor at Heritage High School, where she worked since it opened in 2006, she has also been a math teacher and department chair at Liberty High School and part of the lead team who opened Deer Valley High School in 1996.
“Educators should always be growing,” Dalton said. “Anything that makes students successful is where I’m at.”
She said she loved the challenges and intimate relationships that counseling brought her, but she also missed being in the classroom. She bought Learning Tree Tutors in 1985 after the previous owners were moving and looking to sell. It was then the only tutoring company in Brentwood, she said. Learning Tree enabled her to tutor students in subjects such as math and SAT preparation when not counseling her students at Heritage, which allowed her to hold on to the teaching aspect of her career she loved so much.
Her time in classrooms helped give her the eye for what students and teachers need, which she said enabled her to be a better counselor.
“It’s not just about academics,” she said. “Yes, at the beginning of the year, we make sure students are in the right classes, but we [as counselors] also keep communication strong with parents and offer emotional counseling to students. We advocate for them. We’re a safe place, and we try to be mentors.”
Looking back on her career, Dalton reflected on stories or students that stood out or affected her the most.
“Each child touches you, whether it’s their success or just trying to win them over,” she said. “It’s emotional. There was one student who told me he probably would have dropped out if it weren’t for me and how I guided him. It meant so much, because it’s like a wave . . . You just hope what you do matters.”
Since retiring, she still remains involved in tutoring students at Learning Tree Tutors. Dalton also looks forward to spending time with her new grandchild, being involved in the local community and staying active by playing tennis and golf.