For some school workers, the closure of schools in March due to COVID-19 meant things were slowing down. Not for Lucerne Valley USD’s Food Services employees. Their work was just getting started.
At the LVUSD Board of Trustees meeting on Thursday, the school district’s Food Services staff was honored as Employees of the Month for working week after week for last six months to make sure Lucerne Valley’s students had “Grab and Go Meals.” The five Employees of the Month are Cindy Lattin-Oliveira, Amanda Nichols, Amy King, Joei Miller and Allee Lattin.
Superintendent Peter Livingston presented the awards to the employees during the meeting held in the Sgt. Brian L. Walker Memorial Gymnasium at Lucerne Valley High School.
Of Cindy Lattin-Oliveira, Mr. Livingston said: “Cindy is a proficient leader and has the respect of her employees. She is always prepared and ready for the school day. She accepts change readily and is constantly looking to improve. Cindy displays good judgement through her decision making skills. When we were told school had be too be closed for the Spring, Cindy did not wait around to be told what to do. She jumped right into action mode, made a plan, consulted and executed.”
“Amanda Nichols has proven to be my right hand,” according to Cindy. “She really stepped up during the shutdown and gave me her all. Even though she has young children at home that missed her, she was here every day going above and beyond. Amanda even delivered food daily to students that were unable to come to the site to get their food. I never asked her to. She offered. I am so grateful to have her on my team and by my side as we navigated these difficult times.
“Amy King also stepped up and became someone I could rely on and depend on. She was there serving through the whole shutdown. She also delivered food to students of her own accord, even though she has elderly parents and a son at home. I am grateful to have her to depend as well.
“Joei Miller dropped what she was doing numerous times to come and help get us out of a staffing bind. She too was willing to leave her children at home and come help us feed our future. She is a blessing to our food service department.
“Allee Lattin was our go to girl for last minute staffing issues as well. She has been a sub for Food Service for many years, not to mention she has worked on and off as a volunteer and as a student aid for around 14 years. She helped out for the whole shut down in every aspect from delivering food to students at home to preparing and serving our families. Allee was there to step in so the other staff could take off much needed days.”
MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING
During the meeting, the School Board approved a Memorandum of Understanding between the school district and the Lucerne Valley Teachers’ Association regarding the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic. The MOU is from August 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021.
“The District and the Association recognize that the COVID-19 pandemic necessitates significant modifications to the operations of schools to minimize the health risks associated with COVID-19 infection for all students, staff, and their families while also providing equitable access to education for students,” the MOU reads.
Topics of the document include “Reopening and Change in Instructional Models,” Quarantine and Illness,” “Duties and Hours,” “Delivery of Instruction,” and “Evaluations.” Mr. Livingston complimented Lucerne Valley Teachers’ Association President Cindy Lazenby for how smoothly and quickly the MOU was created and agreed upon.
RESOLUTION No. 2021-02
The school board also approved Resolution No. 2021-02, which authorizes the superintendent to pursue the opening of the district’s Middle and High schools. The document also included the approval of the District 2021-21 Plan and the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health “Elementary Education Waiver Packet,” which paves the way for the opening of Lucerne Valley Elementary School to in-person classes beginning on Thursday, August 20th.
LEARNING CONTINUITY AND ATTENDANCE PLAN
Also during the meeting, a public hearing was held to solicit the recommendations and comments regarding the specific actions and expenditures proposed to be included in the 2020-2021 Learning Continuity and Attendance Plan. Mr. Livingston credited LVMHS Co-Principal Kelly Boeing for working hard on the plan, which describes the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has made, stakeholder engagement, in-person instruction offerings, the distance learning program, access to devices and connectivity, pupil participation and progress, distance learning, professional development, staff roles and responsibilities, and more.
“Thanks for always stepping up,” Mr. Livingston said.
Assistant Superintendent Nate Lambdin, who also serves as Middle High School Co-Principal with Kelly Boeing, said that 80% of students are currently logging in daily for their distance learning classes.
“My hats off to the faculty,” he said.
Mr. Lambdin also credited the maintenance staff for their outstanding contributions to the LVMHS campus and noted that employees have helped in different areas. “People are pulling together. It’s pretty exciting.”
LVES Principal Ricky Anderson, who was recently interviewed on a KABC-7 news video regarding the school’s opening to in-person instruction, gave a slide show presentation entitled, “Hybrid 8/20.” In the video he talked about how the school has developed a comprehensive plan for hybrid education which includes masks, an isolation room if a student has a temperature over 100.4 degrees, sneeze guard partitions, hand-washing stations, reminder signs on every door, a supervision room for all essential employees’ children, and spraying down of all classrooms and play areas.
New Assistant Principal Joanna Mora commended on the “great staff” at LVES and the collaborative effort of everyone.
School board president Tom Courtney said, “I’m so proud of our teaching staff,” during his report. “We’re not just a district. We’re a family.”
At the LVUSD Board of Trustees meeting on Thursday, August 13, the school district’s Food Services staff was honored as Employees of the Month for working week after week for last six months to make sure Lucerne Valley’s students had “Grab and Go Meals.” The five Employees of the Month are Cindy Lattin-Oliveira, Amanda Nichols, Amy King, Joei Miller and Allee Lattin. Pictured are, from left, Superintendent Peter Livingston, Allee Lattin (and baby), School Board President Tom Courtney, Cindy Lattin-Oliveira, School Board Member Jessica Risler, Amanda Nichols, School Board Member Jim Harvey, Amy King, Joei Miller and School Board Member Chelsea LaGrange. Photo courtesy Doug Beaton