Monday, March 17, 2014

The Custodian Made Them Walk: School as a Community!

The other day I was on my way to pick up my students from Special. Our custodian, older gentleman, was speaking to two kindergartners.

He stated firmly, "Ok, now walk down the hall."

The two kindergartners looked at him, looked at me, and began walking.

He turned to me, shaking his head, and said, "They were running down the hallway!"

I said, "Good for you. They could have hurt themselves."

Another adult might  have watched those kids run, and thought, "They're not my kids."

Too often, our school is just that, a school. A place where everyone has a position, and they don't budge from it.

The custodians clean, administrators lead, lunch staff serves lunch, teachers teach etc...

But it shouldn't be that way, we should all be involved in the well-being of our students. Not just the ones in our classroom, but the students in our school.

I speak to every student I see in the hallway, even if they don't answer. Sometimes, I get a big, cheery, hello. Other times the eyes are averted, or downcast, and a squeak of a hello comes out. And then there are the times, I get no answer, but I still speak, because I consider all of the kids in the building my own.

One of my colleagues "mentors" a student in a lower grade, trying to get him to be successful. Not because she was asked, but because she saw his struggles and wanted to help.

One of our custodians is a coach, so he makes a habit of talking  to the kids while he's in the lunchroom waiting to clean up.

A parent, who don't even have kids in the school anymore, reads to students.

And forget about our secretary, she is everyone's mother!:)

I attended a union conference Saturday, and the president stated, "When I talk about the union, I'm not just talking about teachers. I am talking about custodians, lunch personnel, bus drivers, any, and, everyone who supports the schools."

"It takes a village..."(African proverb)

It does. And that's the way our schools should be, everyone, from the administrator to the custodian, should have a sense of  responsibility for the success and well-being of all our students.

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