It’s a sunny summer afternoon in the Peninsula School District (PSD) and Stephen Horwath and Michael Giordano are at Goodman Middle School, getting ready to install a whiteboard. A can of paint sits on a desk near them, and they both are looking at the wall where the whiteboard will be installed, carefully planning the job. As maintenance workers for the Peninsula School district, they have a strong work ethic.
“We care about what we do,” says Stephen, “we have a job and we want to do it well.”
There are 5 general maintenance workers taking care of 17 locations in PSD, which means there’s always something to do. Of course, emergencies come first, so when snowmageddon came last year in February, our fantastic maintenance workers were on tractors, moving snow for hours. They work hard until the job’s done and then move along down the line.
When there’s a maintenance problem in the district, the staff at the schools submit a work order, and the maintenance workers go out to fix it. They do everything from changing a lightbulb to getting a new school ready for use in the fall. In the summer, they remodel classrooms, bathrooms, and fix the little things they can’t do while class is in session. They work all over the district.
“The elementary kids are the best to work with. They’re so curious. You roll in with your cart with your tools and they’re just so interested in what you’re doing, and they always say thank you,” says Michael.
“Sometimes I’ll be walking through a school and a whole line of kids will be coming through and one of them will say, ‘thank you for fixing our school!’ and I’m like, ‘aww,’” says Stephen.
Stephen and Michael are always moved by the character of PSD students and staff. It’s a little different wherever they go, but they appreciate the kindness they see. They see elementary kids thanking them for their work, highschoolers holding doors for them, and laugh with the staff, all while doing work they love.
“I think the thing that blew me away about working here is the simplest thing that you’re fixing the teacher will thank you for working so hard. I think to myself, I used to work a lot harder on things and get nothing, and then I’m fixing this for them and they appreciate it.”
The little things go a long way for our maintenance workers, and they keep our schools up and running.
“You’re not in a cubicle every day, you know, same place same time,” says Michael.
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