Pat Ham lunch aids do a stellar job

Published 8:00 am Thursday, May 14, 2015

Imagine a snowy, blowy day at school.

Students are restless from being inside and trying to focus when all they want to do is play in the fresh snow. They rush to the lunchroom to eat their lunches. Then, they start getting dressed for the weather — hats, boots, gloves, snow pants, scarves, coats. Finally, they get outside and run in the drifts.

Who helps our students with all of these tasks?

Lunch aides, that’s who!

Being an elementary lunch aide might be one of the most difficult jobs we have at Patrick Hamilton. Helping with trays and difficult-to-open milks, assisting students with gloves and other winter gear, keeping the playground safe at all times, administering first aid for scrapes and bumps, and entertaining the students with activities during their lunch recess is quite a task, but our team is exceptional here at Pat Ham.

Alexa Batty, Mary Starling, Julia Klann, Elizabeth Haskell, Courtney Swisher, and Melissa Nearpass come to work every day prepared for whatever the day brings.  They have to be dressed for the weather themselves, sometimes bundling up like Eskimos. They use walkie-talkies to talk with each other and communicate what is happening in each of their areas.

More than that, though, they create relationships with all of our students, listening to problems and encouraging students to be their best. They serve as mentors to many students, and they always arrive with a positive attitude.

Many of these ladies serve double duties, picking up other jobs throughout the building as well.

What a great resource we have in these individuals!

When I think of what it takes to make a difference in a child’s life, I think about this team of women and their dedication to Pat Ham. The entire Patrick Hamilton staff greatly appreciates them and would like to thank them for continuing to help shape our student’s futures.


Heather Nash

Principal, Patrick Hamilton Elementary