Sandra White, Shelton Intermediate School House One secretary, comes out of her office each morning to greet the smiling faces of energized students.
She said she strives to contribute to the students’ overall experience in the school system in any way she can.
“I like kids,” White said, amongst the yells and talk of students in the hallway. “It’s the reason I work.”
White has been an employee in Shelton and its schools for nearly 42 years. Her work experience has ranged from working at Sunnyside Elementary School, Shelton High School and now her current position at SIS.
Throughout her career, she has worked under eight superintendents.
“She is a special person who’s dedicated to students and I think that’s what’s provided her long tenured years in the school system,” said Shelton Intermediate School Headmaster Ken Saranich.
White has worked with Saranich since the beginning of his career as headmaster of Shelton
Intermediate. Her responsibilities include monitoring the student’s behavior, checking if they need help and contacting the appropriate person to assist them.
“I want them to be comfortable coming to the office,” White said. “The office shouldn’t be a bad place to go to.”
White said she has a passion for helping the students and making sure they work hard to succeed. She keeps a good relationship with the seventh and eighth graders and creates a welcoming environment.
Recently, she checked up on the students at the school dance to see how they were doing.
“Personally she really bonds with the students, she manages the students [and] she is always looking out for kids,” said House One Housemaster, Carolyn Ivanoff. “Sometimes we have kids in crisis which have to be managed, she is always appropriate, she’s always professional and there is no grandstanding.”
White said she wants to remain accessible to the students and staff.
“That is what makes me like kids. They come in every morning they say, ‘how are you doing, how is your day,’” White said. “Two years with the same students makes a difference, you get to know them, you get personal.”
White’s motto, “Life is building memories,” is shown by the students who talk to her and her work to improve the their education and school experience.
“She won’t give up the idea of being around kids and helping kids and that makes her really special and an asset to us,” Saranich said.