GEver heard the saying, “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach?” Well, that goes for the entire student body and faculty at Elm Grove Middle School.
Sharon Rushing is known for making the best popcorn you will ever eat, runs the best concession stand around and rolls the Treat Trolley through the halls at EGMS; yet those are only a few of the reasons why the Eagles adore custodian ‘Ms. Sharon.’
It is the genuine love she shows each of them that makes this 17-year Bossier Schools employee stand out.
“When it’s a stressful week, I’ll go pop popcorn for the administrators and put a little bag on their desks,” Rushing revealed. She keeps the caffeine coming, too.
“I make sweet tea — and unsweet — everyday for the teachers and coffee. I gotta keep them happy. Whatever they need, whenever. If they need me on a Saturday, I’m here,” Rushing added.
Ms. Sharon has a soft spot in her students’ hearts as well — so much so, more than a dozen of them nominated her for Bossier Schools’ Gold Star employee award, because she goes above and beyond for them. Gathered at an assembly, they went wild when Rushing walked in and was surprised with the award.
“Ms. Sharon is always on her ‘A’ game,” wrote Zara Khan. “She always takes care of everyone in whatever they need. She comes in our classroom and always has a smile on her face. She deserves a Gold Star because she works very hard. She runs the best snack stand. She always says ‘hello’ to us and makes us feel great.”
Andreas Abner said, “She does lots of good stuff for the school’s concession (stand) and lets students help her out and she cooks for the basketball and football games chicken strips and (they) turn out very good and everybody loves it. Everybody loves and appreciates Ms. Sharon around and helping.”
Hearing what students wrote about her made Rushing chuckle, adding “They call it Ms. Sharon’s chicken shack,” referencing her concession stand.
Rushing loves Elm Grove Middle as much as those under its roof love her. She is “on her fourth principal” and started when the school was where Elm Grove Elementary currently is now, working alongside her mom, Ms. Sadie. Then, when the middle school moved to where it is now, Rushing went with her beloved Eagles.
“It’s fabulous,” Rushing said as she smiled. “This is the school I went to. I tell all the kids ‘I went to Elm Grove and y’all have the best teachers here.”
She certainly has their gratitude, too. For those with younger children attending Sun City Elementary next door, Rushing is like their mother hen. Because they arrive at Elm Grove with their moms much earlier than their school starts, Rushing walks them next door and has snacks ready for them each afternoon upon their return. Come Easter, Ms. Sharon makes each of them a basket and buys a toy for them at Christmas.
No doubt, she spoils everyone around her. Rushing smiled as she recalled the day the teachers and administration turned it around on her.
“They sent me to Disney four years ago for my birthday, she said. “I had never been on a plane. It was my first time to leave this area. Ashley Johnston planned everything out. She told me ‘Don’t worry about nothing!’ They even made me shirts. It was my first time (at Disney.). When I met Mickey, I started crying. I had so much fun.”
About that time, one of the administrator’s little girls peeked in and asked “Ms. Sharon, can I have some cookie cake?”
“Yeah baby, you can have some cookie cake,” Rushing answered. “That’s my baby. They love me.”