May 07, 2014 - As is the annual tradition, principals from each school honored Betty Campion nominees before the Oxford School Board April 16.
According to the Oakland Schools Education Foundation website, "The Betty Campion Distinguished Support Service Award was established in 1990 to recognize the many contributions support persons make to the learning community in Oakland County."
The award is named in honor of former Oakland Schools Board member Betty Campion. Mrs. Campion served on the Oakland Schools Board of Education from 1978 to 1992. Prior to serving on the Oakland Schools Board, Mrs. Campion served 10 years on the Board of Education for the Walled Lake Consolidated School District and 21 years as a PTA member."
Nominees of the Betty Campion Award are members of a local school district's support staff (transportation, maintenance, custodial, clerical, food service or classroom support and paraeducators) who go above and beyond the call of duty in creating a supportive learning environment. They are active not only in their schools, but in the community as well. Nominees must have at least five years of service in his/her current position.
First up for Betty Campion was Carol Micol, who works in the Human Resources Department.
"If you talk about customer service, you have to talk about Carol because everybody who has come into this district has seen Carol and feels her warmth and her welcoming. It is very (appreciated) in our department and everybody who remembers anything remembers Carol's name… We really appreciate her," said Deputy Superintendent of Human Resources Nancy Latowski. "She has been here many, many years and I think anybody in the district would say what a wonderful person she is."
Leonard Principal Paul McDevitt said he's been fortunate to work with a few of the employees honored and while he hasn't worked directly with Micol, she has been in the district ever since he came to Oxford.
"She just knows every single employee by name. It's amazing the things that she pulls off the top of her head and she's always been a big help if we ever have any questions or anything, we know right who to go to and she always has the answer right away," McDevitt added. "Carol, you're a fantastic Human Resources person."
Two Leonard Elementary employees were named Betty Campion nominees: Sheila Robertson and Melissa Musgrove.
Robertson, who a media paraprofessional at the school is "quickly becoming Mrs. Leonard," according to McDevitt.
"She has kids who have gone through school out there, she volunteered there before taking a (paraprofessional) position and she's been out there for a long time and knows the history and knows the village," he said. "She knows everybody around there, so if you ever have any questions about what's going on around Leonard you know exactly who to go to. She's got all the answers for us and she's been a fantastic resource to us out there."
Musgrove, is an instructional paraprofessional and Betty Campion Award winner for the district.
"She is also Mrs. Leonard. Her kids went through school there as well," McDevitt said whose known Musgrove for a long time and had her son on the wrestling team.
"The two years we've been able to have her out there (we have seen) just tremendous growth in our students because of some of the support she's able to give them," he added. "My kids love her, all the kids she's worked with in the school love her and she's very deserving of this award."
Lakeville Elementary Principal Kristy Gibson-Marshall nominated four from Lakeville, which included Paraprofessionals Michelle Anderson, Cathy Guy, Amy Wiinamaki and Cheryl Wright, but was disqualified because they nominated four together.
"Those four women who work with our autistic children are selfless every single day and put those little guys' needs in front of everything," Gibson-Marshall said. "They were nominated together because they are truly a team."
From Daniel Axford was Claudia Blasco.
"Claudia Blasco works in our media center and does numerous things throughout our building, whatever is asked of her," said DA Principal Chad Boyd. "(She is a) great person to have at DA."
Representing Oxford Virtual Academy was Teresa Eberlein, who joined OVA two years ago.
"I can't tell you what a blessing it's been. We didn't really understand as we grew exponentially each year that we didn't really have that one person who really brought the entire group together. She's really been that tying force for everybody there," Said OVA Executive Director Andrew Hulbert. "Anybody that needs anything she's always the first person that anybody goes to, especially me. We definitely appreciate her and we're very thankful to have her."
Oxford Middle School Principal Ken Weaver will tell you hiring Secretary Brenda Brown "is probably the best decision" he's made at OMS.
"I am proud to say she is an absolute pleasure to work with. It's almost like we're a married couple at times, we knock heads every once in awhile and go back and forth."
"She is always there. I have to remind her to go home," Weaver said. "Constantly, she is always going above and beyond. She is so helpful to everybody who works at the middle school. [S}he goes above and beyond trying to solve (problems). She is extremely concerned for all the students there. She is just wonderful and I can't say enough good things about her."
Weaver recalled when Brown got injured in a motorcycle accident and was out of work for about two months.
"I lost what little hair I had left while she was out," he said with a laugh. "It just once again (showed me) how valuable she is and how wonderful she is to work with. I just want to thank her personally and am very proud of her."
High School Principal Todd Dunckley felt the same about Sian Marshall, counseling secretary at the high school.
"Sian is not only very task oriented where she really cares for the job she does, she really cares about every kid. Sian will be working after school tutoring, she'll often be e-mailing students following up to see how they are if they've been sick, checking in with their parents," explained Dunckley. "When she brings information to the table, it's . . . her insight of how things can be better for kids. Everything is about what's best for kids. She really has made us a better place and we're very fortunate to have Sian Marshall."
Trevor graduated with degrees in English and communications from Rochester College. He wrote for his college and LA View newspapers before joining The Clarkston News in May 2007.