Staffer shares cafeteria experience
I was running through the hallways, no older than six or seven years. It was getting dark outside, but my mom wasn’t finished. No she wasn’t a teacher but something more valuable in the running of a school: a janitor. Yes my mom was the one who made sure that the school always stayed clean. She picked up after everyone else. I always thought of it like a mom for the school. I loved roaming the halls as she checked them and turned the lights off for the night. At that age, I never realized all the hard work she needed to get done. My mom isn’t the only person who worked as a janitor; my aunts did also.
I walk through the lunchroom, a regular day, food being thrown around, boys playing around, girls chatting away 100 mph; yes just a regular day. Nobody sees the lady going table-to-table wiping each one down, the lady with the broom picking up food that was dropped, or the lady mopping up spills. These ladies, our janitors, are a fundamental part of our school day.
I’m sitting at lunch, chatting with my friends when I see pieces of food flying across the room. I look around searching for the culprit, yet I see no one. I turn my attention back to my friends when in the corner of my eye I see another piece fly. I quickly spin around and catch a group of boys throwing food at each other. I shake my head sickened by their behavior. I ignore them until the piece of meat flies straight by my ear. I turn back around with an evil glare.
“Pick all that trash up,” I tell them calmly.
They look at me as if I am joking.
“Clean it up,” I say again a little more harshly.
“Why? I didn’t do it. Plus, it’s not my job,” a young boy has the decency to answer back.
I almost explode right then and there.
“A janitor is not your mother. She is not paid to clean up after your mess. If I were you, I would clean that up,” I say as evenly as I can manage.
“Ooooh,” the rest of his group started chanting.
He pretends that I never said a word and walks away with his group right behind him. They leave the table a mess of pizza crusts here, a spill over there and meat all over the floor.
I don’t like knowing that some of our students abuse the fact that we have janitors who do their job very well. We need to keep our school clean and tidy, because let’s face it, we spend more time there than our own houses. The faculty needs to enforce more cafeteria rules to try and put a stop to these shenanigans, but also the students have the duty to speak up as well. If you see students leaving trash behind or littering, tell administration. Keep our school clean; help the janitors and pick up after yourself!