Behind every thriving school district, a team of dedicated professionals works tirelessly to ensure the educational engine runs smoothly. While teachers and administrators often take the spotlight, the classified staff members quietly play an instrumental role in the day-to-day operations.

As a new Assistant Principal, I worked with the best administrative assistant. She was the heart and soul of the department. As a member of the original staff, she had worked with and trained multiple new APs. So, when I joined the team, she was ten steps ahead of me.

I remember my first week on the job. I was trying to enter data into our tracking system, but I could not get into the system. After about 30 minutes, I finally asked our administrative assistant for help. She smiled and said, “I was waiting for you to come and ask.”

Over the next twenty minutes, she walked through the entire process. During my tenure in the Student Affairs office, I spent much time learning how to do my job from our administrative assistant.

From keeping the school environment clean to managing administrative tasks, classified staff member’s contributions are vital in creating a conducive learning atmosphere. Today, we’ll delve into the unsung heroes who support school operations and lay the foundation for educational excellence.

Classified staff members encompass a diverse range of roles, each contributing in their unique way to the functioning of the school district. These roles include administrative technicians, custodians, food service assistants, and bus drivers. Let’s explore some of these roles and the impact they have:

1. Administrative Technicians:

Behind every organized school administration, administrative technicians work diligently to keep the gears running smoothly. They handle many tasks, from managing schedules and correspondence to maintaining records and assisting with logistics. Administrative technicians shouldering these responsibilities free up valuable time for teachers and administrators, allowing them to focus on what matters most: providing quality education to students.

2. Custodians:

A clean and safe environment is essential for effective learning. Custodians play a critical role in maintaining school facilities to ensure they’re conducive to physical and mental well-being. Their dedication ensures that classrooms, hallways, and common areas are hygienic and inviting, creating a positive atmosphere for students and staff. Their efforts go beyond cleanliness; they contribute to the overall aesthetics and comfort that foster an environment of learning and growth.

3. Bus Drivers:

For many students, the school day begins and ends with a bus ride. Bus drivers take on the crucial responsibility of safely transporting students to and from school. Their vigilant attention to road safety, punctuality, and rapport-building with students ensures the education journey is smooth and secure. Their role extends beyond driving; they often become familiar faces and sources of comfort for students during their daily commute.

The seamless operation of a school district owes much of its success to classified staff members’ dedication and hard work. Their roles might not always be in the spotlight, but their impact is undeniable. A clean and organized school environment, punctual transportation, and efficient administrative support all contribute to the overall quality of education.

As we applaud the efforts of teachers and administrators in shaping young minds, let’s also take a moment to acknowledge the classified staff members who ensure the wheels of education turn smoothly. Whether managing administrative tasks, maintaining a clean environment, or providing safe transportation, their contributions are indispensable.

“Individual commitment to a group effort — that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.”

Vince Lombardi

The holistic functioning of a school district relies on the collective efforts of every team member, and the dedication of these classified staff members truly keeps the heart of education beating strong.


Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own and do not represent those of my employer or any local, state, or federal government

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Dr. Kim Moore

About the author

I'm Kim, your Educational Leadership Guide. I equip educational leaders with research-based and experientially learned educational leadership principles and best practices to promote student success.