Unsung Heroes

Students and teachers, yup they’re important, but there’s so much more to a school. We need food, clean toilets and floors, dead batteries and lightbulbs replaced, phones answered, transportation, special events set up, working copiers and technology, bills paid, orders placed, lawns mowed, snow shoveled, boo-boos soothed. Support staff: they’re the backbone of any school.

Today, I’d like to acknowledge Dion. Though not exactly invisible, he quietly and unassumingly goes about his job in the most efficient way, always with an eye to make sure that we have what we need. When I needed a new clock, an extra desk in my classroom, new batteries–within minutes, the familiar “Where would you like this?” When kids need to ride the school’s transport, they know to talk to him. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen him relaxing or even stopping to chit-chat with others.

He just keeps on keeping on.

Which makes his in-depth knowledge of the people at our school that much more impressive.  I realized just how much he pays attention, when I scraped up the roof of my car by driving into the parking garage at home with a bike in the rack. He not only knew that my car was damaged, but also that it was mine. And no, he’s not snooping, he took the time to ask if we were okay.  He also knows not only who my daughter is, but that she speaks German and that she’s new to the school.

Dion gets empathy and that’s what makes him so good at his job.  He approaches every task with empathy, and our school is a better place because of him. Thanks, Dion.

Thanks to Elvin and Flicker for the image of Captain America.


2 thoughts on “Unsung Heroes

  1. Hi Valerie,

    Thank you for sharing this. I think the way we support our support staff says a lot about what we really value. I hope Dion feels appreciate and knows that we all know our school couldn’t run without him. Thanks for reminding me that we all have a role to play in making empathy go viral on campus.
    Kind Regards,


    1. No, thank you for the suggestion. T’was a good exercise, which I think I we should practice every now and then. As you said in today’s blogpost to your students, “You’ve given dozens of [compliments] this year…Each and every one of you is a better listener…Each one of you has made someone else feel heard this year.” And that goes a long way to improving this place we call school.


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