Superintendent Works 90 Hr Week Repainting School Over Summer Break To Save $150,000
Thanks to a new bond, Martin, Michigan public schools recently saw $18 million in new upgrades. At the last minute, they also got $150,000 worth of new paint for pennies on the dollar when the Superintendent balked at the price tag for this finishing touch, fearing it would come out of monies intended to serve students and staff.
A new coat of paint was expected to be the cherry on top of a major school overhaul, but this expectation threatened to make other budget priorities fall apart. So Dr. Harnish got creative.
It's not like this paint job needed to compete with the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. This kind of painting is relatively low skill, low enough that even a desk jockey and some high school students could surely do this. So, they did!
After pricing the work and finding the price tag too rich for his school's blood, Superintendent Dr. David Harnish gave himself a summer assignment: Doing much of the work himself. He logged 90 hours per week, plus hired local high school seniors for a fraction of the cost of professional painters.
"That would have taken away from our kids or the potential for us to take care of our staff," Dr. Harnish told FOX17.
Talk about leading by example!
Between his efforts and theirs, they were able to give the schools their first new paint job in 17 years. The job was completed by the time school started back up for fall 2018. The last time the buildings were painted was in 2001. Yes, that's before many of the students were even born.
He not only got his wish that the money would not be taken away from the kids, he got an opportunity to work alongside them and even put some money into their pockets for doing some of the work.
Dr. Harnish said in an interview with Fox 17 "It’s neat to be able to give some of these seniors an opportunity to do some of the summer work too." His dedication to his students and the school district was adored on Facebook. It even went small scale viral, seeing many views and attracting comments.
We hope his staff, students and the people of his district appreciate him as much as Facebook did. This kind of service, dedication and creativity is relatively rare. The world would work so much better if there was more of it in the world.
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