They are the first ones to greet students in the morning, and the last ones to say goodbye in the afternoon. This is one of the many reasons, the Centennial School Board and administration spent a few minutes to show their appreciation for all of the bus drivers that had gathered at Tuesday night's meeting.
"Every morning I say a prayer that the children get to school safely," said Superintendent Dr. Jenny Cressman. "Every night I say a prayer of thanks that you kept them safe on the way home."
The recognition of the transportation department's efforts was part of the district's participation in National School Bus Safety Week, which runs until October 26.
This year, the drivers not only had to deal with the usual transportation challenges, such as inclement weather and heavy traffic, but also manage strict schedule guidelines given by the board that had the elementary schools dismissing no later than 3:30 p.m. School board director Steven Adams specifically thanked them for taking the directives and finding a way to make them work.
The board also recognized the work of Carol Jerdan, executive secretary to the superintendent who is retiring from the district after more than 20 years as an administrative employee. A resolution was passed thanking Jerdan for her years of service, and several board members gave their own personal messages of gratitude to Jerdan.
"We pass this resolution not out of willingness to see you leave us," said director Kati Driban, "but a willingness to see you go and enjoy your retirement and future endeavors."
Jerdan was appreciative of the board taking the time to thank her. She enjoyed her time with the district, but is ready to spend more quality time with her grandchildren and her husband, Al.
"Centennial is a great place to work," said Jerdan. "I appreciate the trust they placed in me. I'm looking forward to getting a lot of reading done and traveling a lot."