Congratulations to our STAR Award winners for October!

Congratulations to our STAR Award winners for October!

The STAR Awards program recognizes support employees who go above and beyond the call of duty in performing their job responsibilities.

Nominees are evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • Made significant contributions improving job efficiency, quality of services, safety or conserving resources
  • Performed a humanitarian or heroic act
  • Responded proactively by anticipating needs and solving problems without specific direction

Zhirong “John” Zhong, Building Service Worker, Arbutus Elementary

Mr. Zhong is known as “Mr. John” to the students and staff at Arbutus Elementary. Despite his limited English, Mr. John strives to learn both written and spoken English while also sharing his language with the students and staff. He is often seen teaching Chinese greeting phrases to students in the halls. Students light up when they see him and are excited to learn from him. He grabs any opportunity to share his culture and Chinese language with the school community. Mr. John is a very special part of the Arbutus Elementary community.

Francine Clark and Lavinia Richardson, Bus Driver and Bus Attendant, Office of Transportation -Windsor Mill Bus Lot

Francine and Lavinia are a dynamic duo. During dismissal, they both observed a student in possession of an extremely dangerous item. They immediately reported it to the school, gave a full description with detailed information, and the individual was apprehended. This vigilant act on the part of both women prevented what possibly could have been a tragic event.

Gail Peterson, Accountant, Fiscal Services

Gail Peterson exemplifies Team BCPS! Ms. Peterson’s group is responsible for fiscal support and training for all school bookkeepers. Ms. Peterson facilitated the coordination and training for a new accounting software for all 170 bookkeepers. This also included dealing with the abrupt shutdown of the training lab at the Jefferson Building in the midst of training, which required moving and rescheduling numerous training sessions, and converting data from the old system to the new system, as well as losing an experienced staff member. This was a tremendous amount of work, but Ms. Peterson never let up. She saw the implementation through and completed it on time. Her determination is the primary reason for the success of this project.

Teresa Lynch, Instructional Assistant, Riderwood ES

Ms. Lynch is described by her colleagues as an employee who truly goes above and beyond expectations, every single day. She is considered the “go-to person” when anything needs repair. She manages to support students across multiple classrooms while being asked to problem-solve and support schoolwide initiatives. Ms. Lynch has a great rapport with the students. She anticipates their needs and meets one-on-one with those needing a mentor or tutor. She supports classroom teachers in a wide variety of ways and is the first to say-- how can I help? Her incredible knowledge, work ethic, and commitment to the students and staff at Riderwood are true gifts.  

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