Recognizing our Unsung Heroes….
Every summer and throughout the year a team of school district facilities, maintenance, and operations staff quietly make things happen. Roofs are repaired, floors installed, and portables are renovated, moved and repaired. Fences are built and basketball hoops magically appear when needed….
“These are the unsung heroes who make things happen but often don’t get recognized,” New Westminster Schools Board of Education Chair Jonina Campbell said last week.
The workload was especially intense for a team of about 26 operations and 21 facilities staff in preparing for the 2016 school year.
Director of Facilities and Operations Dino Stiglich along with Managers Matt Brito and Mark Layzell and their teams helped ready the district’s new Fraser River Middle School to welcome more than 460 students on September 6 to a beautiful new school home.
They helped launch the seismic upgrading of F.W. Howay Elementary school.
They set up portables at Queen Elizabeth and Connaught elementary schools, and they cleared portables from Tweedsmuir Elementary school to meet changing needs as the district finalized its reconfiguration to a middle school system.
The team also prepared for the relocation of the board office as well as alternative and adult education programs from the previous Columbia Square location.
Above and Beyond…
And then there were the bubbles…
Facilities and operations staff were responsible this summer for renovating a washroom at Queen Elizabeth Elementary School for a young student with disabilities. Painter Robby Merk couldn’t resist putting final touches on walls that he painted blue by adding huge floating white bubbles.
It was a creative flourish that sends a message of caring for the students who learn and grow in New Westminster Schools. Carpenter Jordan McBride, pictured in the “bubble room” called Merk a ‘super creative guy. He’s got cool things all over the district’s schools.”
All of the work has been a source of pride for the staff. In creating new space for the Power Alternate Secondary School, serving students age 16 to 18, Stiglich explained that his team “tried to make it what they need. I’m really happy with this and proud of our guys. They did a great job.”
The commitment to working above and beyond was recently recognized and appreciated by New Westminster Schools’ Board of Education. Last week, the Board presented a certificate to the district’s Facilities and Operations Staff and thanked them for their on-going support and commitment to the students and staff of New Westminster Schools.
“You go the extra mile for our kids and that speaks to the pride you bring to the work you do,” Board Chair Jonina Campbell said at the board’s operations policy and planning committee meeting Sept. 20.