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The employees who keep Ohio County Schools operating effectively and efficiently are being recognized for their outstanding efforts.

Ohio County Schools Service Personnel Day is being celebrated today (Sept. 23) throughout the school system, and each building will give its own pat on the back to the accountants, aides/paraprofessionals, bus drivers, child nutrition staff members, custodians, facilities and maintenance staff members, mechanics and secretaries.

Ohio County Schools Superintendent Kimberly Miller said the school system could not operate without the extraordinary efforts of the nearly 300 service personnel members. She said Ohio County students and parents truly appreciate the dedication of the school system’s service employees. Miller thanked the support staff members for their commitment each and every day.

“They’re exceptional employees,” Miller said. “Their dedication is a source of pride for Ohio County Schools, and they work to ensure the best for the children in all of our schools. What they contribute to the education of our students is so important, and they do it all. The students learn in clean and comfortable classrooms, bus drivers keep them safe to and from school, and they make sure the children are properly fed and nourished.”

“Our teachers and administrators are well aware of the importance of the service staff,” she added. “We want them to know how much they mean to our schools and students. I’m proud of them.”

Rick Hickman, who is the activities custodian at Wheeling Park High School, is the 2020-2021 Ohio County Schools Service Personnel Employee of the Year. Hickman was among 14 school system employees selected as the service personnel employee of the year from each school and the Ohio County Schools Operations Center. Each service personnel employee of the year winner was presented with a certificate and a gift certificate from the Wheeling Park High School Greenhouse. Wheeling Park High School Activities Director Dwaine Rodgers said Hickman performs his duties at an exemplary level.

“Mr. Hickman demonstrates an exceptional commitment to the school community,” Rodgers said. “He’s made an amazing impact at Wheeling Park High School. Rick is a dependable worker who is always willing to put in the extra effort and time to make sure everything is ready to go for our events.”

Rodgers said Hickman is an asset to Wheeling Park High School. He said Hickman is meticulous in performing the cleaning and maintenance tasks in the building, and he has established excellent working relationships Patriot staff members.

“He’s a tireless worker who handles responsibility well,” Rodgers said. “Rick is always cheerful and willing to assist with any task, and he is well liked by the staff and his peers.”

Photo: West Liberty Elementary School Cook Debbie Hempleman is shown with an Eagle student.

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