Editorial: Custodians deserve more recognition

What goes on after school once we leave? The lights are shut down, and “save” is written on the whiteboard for tomorrow’s class announcements; however, as the life of WHS shuts down, the custodians’ night begins.

At approximately 7:50 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 10, custodians were alerted that water was flowing near the entrance to the pool. Roel Acevedo, lead maintenance, and supervisors reported to the building around 8:30 p.m. to find the water flowing across the softball field and the southeast drive.

A water main broke outside the pool facility, which almost canceled the next school day.

The third shift custodians worked past their typical protocol and through the night with service technicians to fix the water main.

Mr. Acevedo, Doug Dietrich, building and grounds supervisor and Ted Birren, custodians, stayed at WHS on their own time to make sure the problem was fixed in a timely manner.

The leak was located around 2 a.m. A pipe sleeve, designed for water main repair, was placed over the split in the pipe and bolted into place.

The hole was filled back in, the area was cleaned and about an hour later, swimmers were able to use the pool again.

Did you know that we almost did not have school on Tuesday, Dec. 11? Many students did not hear about the incident. The custodians work in a “behind the scenes” fashion that many do not see and therefore shed respect to.

While some students might have been upset that their “free day off” had not come, Spokesman would like to thank the maintenance and custodial staff for their hard work.

Staying until 4 a.m. went above and beyond their duties.

Spokesman staff encourages students and staff to thank the custodians for their hard efforts. The wrappers we leave on the floor do not magically vanish.

Custodians are one of the many “unsung heroes” at WHS, and our days would not function smoothly without them.

“This situation is a perfect example of how they pitch in and lead us in a way that might never be otherwise seen,” Kate Kraft, associate principal, said. “I am sure (especially in the middle of the night), it would have been a lot easier to shut off the water and close the pool for a period of time. One of the best aspects of Wheeling High School is how seriously the professionals in the building take on their responsibilities.”

So while you are sitting at the holiday assembly today, just take a minute and think about the preparation that had to be done by custodians just for one event. In the hallways, thank them.

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