Meet Our Staff
Director of Campus Programs
My name is LaTash Long- Barnette and I have been in the field of education for the last 23 years. In obtaining a Master’s in Education I have been afforded the opportunity to be a regional director for the last 3 years in preschool and now the Director of Campus Programs here at LeafSpring school Matthews.
I have been married to Pastor Charonn Barnette for 23 years and counting. In our blended family, I am proud to be called mother to 6 wonderful children, Shay 27, Qua 24, Zion 21, Joshua 20, Jasmine 19, and Zariya 10. In my spare time, I love to coupon, singing and shopping.
It is my true passion to be a spokesperson and advocate for children to learn in an atmosphere that offers differentiation in learning at every age.
It is my goal to be a leader that does not create followers but motivates others to rise to leadership.(704)390-7011Email
Regional Director of Operations
I have been a member of the LeafSpring School family since August of 2011. I have served as the TK Lead Teacher, Assistant Preschool Director, Preschool Director, and I am so excited to now be the Regional Director of Operations for both the Ballantyne and Matthews campuses. I graduated from Francis Marion University in Florence, SC with a B.S. Degree in Early Childhood Education. I completed my Administration Credentials through Stanly Community College. Before coming to LeafSpring School, I taught in a private school as a Preschool teacher for 3-4 year-olds and have also taught in the public school as a first grade teacher.
My husband Gene and I enjoy spending time with our three children, Marleigh, Gabrielle, and Kyree as well as family and friends. In our free time we love watching football, bowling, and playing pool.
My mission is to provide staff with the support needed to ensure that the children have meaningful experiences every day. My goal is to build relationships with children, parents, and teachers and to focus on the partnership with one another to make our school successful. I believe that educators are lifelong learners and I will continue to educate myself to be more effective as a leader here at LeafSpring School.(704) 481-6158Email
Regional Director of Curriculum and Training
I am the Regional Director of Curriculum and Training for LeafSpring Schools in Charlotte. I have been a part of the administrative team since opening in August of 2008. I received my Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from South Carolina State University and recently received my Masters in Education with an emphasis on Leadership in Early Care and Education. Over my career as an educator, I have taught children from infancy through eighth grade. I discovered several years ago that my passion lies with early education and having a part in helping children develop a strong foundation for learning and confidence to build on that foundation in their formative years. Prior to coming to LeafSpring School, I worked as a Program Quality Specialist where I provided technical assistance and training for over 20 Preschools throughout Mecklenburg County and assisted teachers and directors in improving quality and programming in their schools. I am fortunate to be able to use those skills in my current position to support teachers through training, mentoring, and professional development.
This past year I received two honorable appointments that allow me to expand my efforts and love for advocacy throughout the state on behalf of children, families, and teachers. I was appointed to the North Carolina Child Care Commission and serve on the board of the North Carolina Early Education Coalition.
I am happily married to my wonderful husband of 23 years, Craig. We are blessed to have three amazing children, Caylee, Kendall, and Preston. I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, traveling, attending sporting events, and dining out! In my spare time, I chair an organization that mentors to local high school girls and organize community service projects and leadership training for them. I am also very involved in various leadership roles in our area public schools, as well as my church. I am blessed to be in a profession that I am passionate about, and I feel even more blessed to work for a school that represents everything that I believe in.(704) 909-4535 Email
Afterschool Planning and Curriculum Coordinator
I am the Afterschool Planning and Curriculum Coordinator for LeafSpring School at Matthews. I have been with LeafSpring since 2011 and I am loving every minute of it. I have worked almost all positions here, from floater to Lead Teacher of the Green Room. I earned my Associates’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from Central Piedmont Community College then went on to complete my BA in B-K Education from Catawba College. I will be pursuing my Early Childhood North Carolina Master’s Degree with an Emphasis in Early Childhood Leadership and Management from the University of North Carolina Greensboro.
I have 3 wonderful children, Bree Arabella, Bryson Grey, and Brantley Cade. They are a handful and keep my husband and I are very busy. I have also been actively involved in the local chapter of NAEYC as Secretary from 2013-2015. My family and I really enjoy visiting nearby cities or exploring the outdoors. We are always on the go but always take time to enjoy the outdoors, whether simply playing outside or taking a walk for firewood in our backyard. My children also attend LeafSpring School and I can truly say that, as a parent and staff member, it was the best decision I have made.704-390-7013Email
I was born in Sarasota, Florida but have been in North Carolina going on 12 years now. My time away from childcare was spent pursuing my cosmetology career. Shortly after my love for children grew stronger and I knew my heart was with children and I’ve been in childcare ever since. I have 4 years’ experience working with children as a lead teacher in a 5-Star, AdvancEd accredited school. My current position before coming to LeafSpring was my entry into management. I strive to bring my love for children and expertise to LeafSpring every day!
I am currently pursuing my Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education at UNCG. During my free time, I enjoy studying, being creative, shopping, and spending quality time with my wonderful family. My sister Lacey (4) currently attends preschool at LeafSpring and I’m so thankful to be a part of her amazing experience.
What INSPIRES me is my love for children and the sense of community. I enjoy the ability to grow meaningful relationships with children and their families while having the opportunity to see every child grow in their own individual ways. I adore the desire to provide families with a sound and safe learning environment. I must also say that I’m inspired by the positive influences of my Admin team here at LeafSpring!