Staff Editorial – Mason High School, it’s time to show some appreciation

October 2 was National Custodian’s day.

October 2 was a Saturday.

Nothing sounds more perfect than thanking our custodians on a day in which we aren’t even in school. Right?

The custodial staff has persevered through downsizing, school shutdowns, bottle flipping, extraordinary safety measures during the pandemic, and now devious licks. There has to be some greater way to show our appreciation in a more meaningful way. Creating a huge sign that says “thank you janitors” is not meaningful, nor does it show our true appreciation.

Our custodial staff is full of rockstars. From waxing floors to cleaning up after every soap dispenser someone tries to rip off the wall, the custodians work tirelessly to make the school a cleaner and safer place. They work seven days a week, with a morning and night shift with one person cleaning each pod. They work while we sleep, all so we can come work in a clean environment and often go unnoticed. They are a handful of people taking care of Ohio’s biggest public high school.
How do we thank them? By removing stall doors and shoving apples down urinals?

This is embarrassing.

It’s important to include that the staff has also persisted through major downsizing over the past few years. This downsizing occurred because the school wanted to provide students with more resources and opportunities. So those brand new chromebooks you’re complaining about? Chances are, those chromebooks probably came at a price far greater than their $60 rental fee.

The school wants to give us as many opportunities as possible, and that’s something we all should be incredibly grateful for. We should be thankful to live in a district that’s willing to go to such great lengths to create those opportunities for us. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t think about those who were the “cost” of our opportunities.

Sometimes it’s difficult to put ourselves in the shoes of other people, to give ourselves permission to feel what others feel. Purposefully destroying school property or refusing to clean up after yourself reveal a lack of empathy. It shows that you don’t care, that you’re willing to dismiss laziness under the premise of “it’s not my job.”

But it is your job. It is our job to understand that our actions have consequences.

As a student body, it’s time to take a step back and pay attention to the “little things’ ‘ like the newly-fixed pencil sharpener in Algebra ll or how clean the lunchroom looks at the start of every day. Let’s pay attention to those who have done so much for us, but whose efforts often go unnoticed. That’s not only how we build empathy but also how we build appreciation. Everything the staff does comes from a place of love and appreciation for us.

So, let’s do the same for them. Let’s show them some love and appreciation.

Mel, Barry, Jamie S., Nick, Carla, Dorothy, Jamie B., Kenny, Ryan, Paul, Jim, Lee, Terry, and the rest of the Mason City Schools custodial staff, thank you. We see you and we care about you. You are valued and appreciated.
Mason High School, it’s time for you to reciprocate.