Moore Middle School’s custodial staff got a special surprise on Friday morning.

Church members from Pollard United Methodist Church in Tyler were on hand to reward the staff with a gift card, homemade good and a “thank you” card, as the East Texas church spent all week giving gifts and showing appreciation to custodial staff for all 31 Tyler ISD campuses.

Fredda Davis, part of the custodial staff at Moore Middle School, has been working for Tyler ISD for over a decade and was grateful to be acknowledged.

“It’s wonderful at this time of year, because it’s just nice that they thought about us and God bless them and their family,” she said. “I’ve been here for 20 years at the same school, new and old school. Just blessed to have a good team and a lot of praying people.”

Collin Taylor, pastor at Pollard United Methodist, said the idea was brought from the director of student ministries a couple months ago.

“She shared an idea that her family often does for her childhood school district. They would always try to look for or find a part of the population that’s overlooked or underappreciated, they would help out crossing guards or sometimes janitors too. She asked, ‘can we do something like that here for our church?’ I thought it was a great idea,” Taylor said.

Shortly after the idea transpired, Taylor approached the Tyler ISD Board of Trustees which approved rewarding all custodial staff with a gift card.

“We got the congregation engaged and raised $7,000 to give all the custodial staff of Tyler ISD a $25 gift card from Brookshire’s, a homemade good from either our kids ministry or sometimes our congregation made some stuff and we also had our kids from preschool make homemade cards for all the janitors,” he said.

Taylor said he is honored to show gratitude toward the staff because they have been an asset to keep the students and staff healthy throughout the pandemic.

“It’s been really nice, every time when we talk to some of the custodians they seem very surprised and genuinely touched. I was just telling them that cleanliness at the school has always been important but particularly during the pandemic, cleanliness has not only been important but also attained to being healthy and not catching disease,” he said. “What they’ve done has always been important but for the past two years it’s been exceptionally important. We wanted them to know that and know we appreciate them.”

Aubrey Ballard, principal of Moore Middle School, said the campus is blessed to have a caring and dedicated staff. He also thanked Pollard for showing appreciation to the custodial team.

“As they support our staff and let them know their work is appreciated, that trickles down to an impact on all of our students. We’re very thankful for them. They didn’t have to do it, they did it from the goodness of their heart and we really appreciate that goodwill,” he said.

 
 

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Photographer and Video Editor but I also cover community outreach, events and features. Stephen F. Austin State University Alumna. Houstonian reporting in East Texas since January of 2021. Story ideas? email me at aconejo@tylerpaper.com