Thank the Custodians

Luis Batista, Scott Davenport, Tom Smith, Adrianna Daros, Sarah Merrill, James/Mick Ruggerio, and Cody Bell


Brittany Chapman

Luis Batista, Anne Arzuaga, and Scott Davenport

Not many people take a second to think of who cleans the school. Who thinks about who is cleaning up the overflowing trash in the bathroom? Who cleans up all the food that you leave on your table after you’re done eating lunch? I bet you just thought of a custodian. These custodians have names: Luis Batista, Scott Davenport, Tom Smith, Adrianna Daros, Sarah Merrill, James/Mick Ruggerio, and Cody Bell. Also, Anne Arzuaga has been helping our custodians, when she normally works at Joel.
Although you may see these custodians every day, there are even more that run the show. The custodians are fully staffed right now with 7 people, 4 at night and 3 during the school day. However, they do not have any subs on the custodial staff. This means that if there is one staff member missing, someone needs to work a double. Mr. Davenport and Mr. Batista are in charge of the downstairs bathrooms, the teacher’s room, the athletic director’s hall, and the varsity locker rooms. Mr. Smith does the second floor, the left side of the first floor, and all 3 custodians work on lunch together.
Seniors Daniel Jones, Fabio Silveira, and Hemerson Moura all said that the custodians’ job was “to clean”. When asked, none of these students knew their names.
Although you may know the faces of the custodians working during the day, there are four custodians who work during the evening. Their names are Sarah Merrill, James/Mick Ruggerio, Adrianna Daros, and Cody Bell. Ms. Daros is a para in Branford during the day and comes here to clean our school at night. Mr. Batista, Mr. Davenport, and Mr. Smith, the day crew, said that the night crew “runs the show”. Mr. Davenport is also a part of the fire department and works on ambulances as well. The jobs of these custodians is a lot more than just cleaning. They also do the setting up and breaking down of all indoor sports games and other after-school activities.
How can you help the custodians and show your appreciation? Pick up after yourself when you’re done eating lunch, and put your chairs away after lunch. I asked the students why they thought the bathrooms and cafeteria were left with garbage on the floor and tables. Some boys in our school explained to me that it was because of the students being “pigs”, “snobs”, and “rancid”.

Brittany Chapman

When it comes to outside the lunchroom, the Gentlemen’s Lounge has become a large problem. Some boys in our school are now taking the nice things provided to them in the bathroom and shoving them in the toilets. The custodians had to take anything that could fit in the toilet out of that bathroom because the privileges that were given to these boys were obviously too much. The fact that the enjoyable things that were brought to the bathroom had to be taken out because of some intolerable teenage boys in our school who have decided to start shoving things into the toilets is upsetting to those who enjoyed these luxuries.
Before this year, our school received free soap dispensers whenever we had one break. Now the school has stopped receiving free soap dispensers because of the number of soap dispensers broken at the beginning of the “devious licks” trend.
The custodians wish the students would simply pick up after themselves. They do not need to sweep or wipe their table down, obviously, but they should not leave your half-eaten lunch on the table for the custodians to clean. When throwing away garbage in the bathroom, if they miss the trash can, pick it up. These are things we learned as children: PICK UP AFTER YOURSELF.

However, according to the custodians, the boy’s varsity locker room has been terrible for the whole football season. The custodians understand if it is a little messy because of how tired the boys are after the game; however, it has gotten way past the point of a “little messy”.
Taking the two seconds to clean up after yourself would make the custodian’s jobs a tad bit easier. Because of Covid, their jobs are already hard enough. Working as a custodian since Covid has started has changed quite a bit. Mr. Batista, Mr. Davenport, and Mr. Smith explained that the work has become more tedious. They also have more responsibilities because of lack of staffing when someone is injured or ill.
The custodians need more respect. Plain and simple. They come in every day and clean our school in order to keep us safe. Make sure you are cleaning up after yourself at lunch and in the bathrooms. When you see a custodian pass you in the hallway, be kind, say thank you, and consider everything they do for you.