Comp­trol­ler rec­og­nizes North Point for su­pe­rior fa­cil­ity main­te­nance

Sil­ver Ham­mer Award pre­sented to build­ing ser­vices Thurs­day

Maryland Independent - - Front Page - By JAMIE ANFENSON-COMEAU jan­fen­son-comeau@somd­news.com

Mary­land Comp­trol­ler Peter Fran­chot (D) said North Point High School’s build­ing ser­vices is a shin­ing ex­am­ple to other schools in the state Thurs­day morn­ing as he pre­sented the school with the 2016 Sil­ver Ham­mer Award.

“This is a beau­ti­ful school, and it is a feather in the cap of the state of Mary­land,” Fran­chot said.

Fran­chot cre­ated the Sil­ver Ham­mer Awards in 2016 to rec­og­nize schools that demon­strate fis­cal pru­dence through su­pe­rior school fa­cil­ity main­te­nance.

“We have state in­spec­tors, they go around, pick out a se­lec­tion of schools each year, they go in and ap­ply 37 dif­fer­ent en­gi­neer­ing cri­te­ria, there’s noth­ing sub­jec­tive about th­ese in­spec­tion re­ports,” Fran­chot said. “The fact that this school re­ceived an

al­most un­prece­dented score of 96 per­cent in the state in­spec­tion — I can­not make that up. There are coun­ties across the state that would give their right arms to get above 90 per­cent for just one of their schools.”

Fran­chot said that tak­ing good care of the school will help ex­tend the life of the build­ing and de­fer the need to build a new school in the fu­ture.

“You save the state of Mary­land hun­dreds of mil­lions of dol­lars by the work that you do on a daily ba­sis,” he said.

This year, the award was pre­sented to one school in each of Mary­land’s 24 school dis­tricts, ac­cord­ing to the comp­trol­ler’s of­fice.

Fran­chot pre­sented the award to school staff dur­ing a brief cer­e­mony at­tended by school sys­tem of­fi­cials and county elected of­fi­cials.

Fran­chot com­mended lo­cal lead­ers for the level of co­op­er­a­tion be­tween the school sys­tem and county gov­ern­ment.

“I love Charles County be­cause it is func­tion­ing, it is co­op­er­a­tive,” Fran­chot said. “When a county func­tions well, it’s no­tice­able, and when it doesn’t func­tion well — and, un­for­tu­nately, there are a few coun­ties around the state that are like that — it doesn’t look so good.”

Charles County Pub­lic Schools Su­per­in­ten­dent

Kim­berly Hill said that fa­cil­i­ties main­te­nance is an im­por­tant part of ed­u­ca­tion.

“Teach­ing and learn­ing can­not take place with­out an en­vi­ron­ment that is clean and wel­com­ing and invit­ing,” Hill said.

Alice Makele, North Point’s build­ing ser­vices man­ager, ac­cepted the award on be­half of all the school’s build­ing sup­port per­son­nel.

“I don’t know what to say, but thanks, I re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate this award,” Makele said. “On be­half of my co- work­ers, thank you so much.”

The work the build­ing ser­vices depart­ment has done at North Point has not gone un­no­ticed by its stu­dents, ei­ther. Se­nior Elge Stevens worked with school ad­min­is­tra­tors to make this week “Build­ing Ser­vices Week” and has cre­ated an “Un­sung Heroes” T- shirt for all of the school’s build­ing ser­vices per­son­nel.

“I just want to ap­pre­ci­ate you all, be­cause you all are the true un­sung heroes of our school,” Stevens told sup­port ser­vices staff. “I just wanted to show that the kids of the high school do ap­pre­ci­ate you all.”

STAFF PHOTO BY JAMIE ANFENSON- COMEAU

Mary­land Comp­trol­ler Peter Fran­chot presents North Point High School build­ing ser­vices man­ager Alice Makele with the Sil­ver Ham­mer Award, along­side North Point Prin­ci­pal Michael Simms and Charles County Pub­lic Schools Su­per­in­ten­dent Kim­berly Hill.

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