School’s chess tables will continue teacher’s creed
By Leland Ornelaz
December 18, 2006

Robert House used chess to turn his sixth-graders at Emilie Ritchen School in Oxnard into a classroom of thinkers.

To commemorate the teacher and the game he loved, fellow teachers on Monday dedicated two chess tables in honor of House, who died of cancer last year at 63.

“By sharing his love and knowledge of chess, he was able to reach children that no one else was able to reach,” Principal Caroline Neuhaus Wesley said during the dedication ceremony Monday morning.

About 700 students and 70 teachers, family members and friends attended the ceremony in the schoolyard where the tables were built.

House taught in Oxnard for 34 years. He retired in July 2004 from Emilie Ritchen after teaching there for about 12 years.

House focused on teaching his students responsibility and how to become independent workers, Neuhaus Wesley said. He used chess to help accomplish this goal.

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