Teachers and administrators at Plantation Park Elementary do a lot of name calling when they talk about secretary Stephanie McGuffee. It is all good, though.
The much beloved secretary is nicknamed the boo-boo fixer, Carnival Queen, Wonder Woman and the Energizer Bunny in the flesh, because she keeps going and going and never stops working.
Assistant Principal Andrew Coleman says McGuffee “is the glue that keeps the administrative team on our toes,” and Instructional Coach Vanessa Powers calls her “a jack of all trades and master of every single one of them!”
McGuffee was humbled by the many accolades voiced at a recent surprise assembly at Plantation Park. Usually, nothing gets by her, but this time the entire school body pulled a fast one when she was honored as Bossier Schools’ Gold Star employee for January.
McGuffee choked back tears after receiving thunderous applause from the students and faculty at PPE as well as hugs and roses from family members who were in on the surprise.
“This was very special to me,” McGuffee told students and colleagues. “I love this place. I love each and every one of you. Y’all mean the world to me.”
Garnering a staggering 36 Gold Star nominations, it was easy to see why she was chosen. Not only did teachers recommend McGuffee for the coveted Gold Star award, but her administrators and even past principal wrote nominations on her behalf as well.
Former PPE Principal Carolyn Moody, who hired McGuffee nearly 13 years ago, wrote “Mrs. McGuffee takes care of every child with love and compassion. If a child is not feeling well and we can’t get the parent on the phone, it’s OKAY because she will hold those babies in her arms as she continues to do her clerical work. She takes care of her teachers and it’s not unusual to see her helping a teacher decorate their classroom. And she is the chairperson of the Plantation Park Carnival, or rather the Queen of the Carnival.” Moody added, “Like Grambling State University’s march band, she is often imitated but never duplicated!”
Principal Tonya Hilburn echoed those sentiments.
“We refer to Mrs. McGuffee as our secre-pal, which means she is a combination of the secretary and principal,” explained Hilburn. “No title could encompass all she does for PPE. She is the greeter, the Band-aid giver, the copy machine fixer, the schedule maker, the sub securer, the bulletin board beast and the chocolate candy chick. She takes care of ALL and we couldn’t do it without her. As the principal, I can call on her day and night and she is there! She’s my right hand man and makes PPE a great place to be!”
Reflecting on the day’s events, McGuffee called the honor “Pretty awesome,” adding “I can’t say enough about my administrators. I mean even back from when Mrs. Moody hired me to now, I’ve just been very blessed.”
“There’s not a day I don’t want to come to work,” McGuffee said. There’s really not. I enjoy it. I couldn’t see myself working at another school.”
Bossier Schools congratulates Stephanie McGuffee, who now has another title to add to her lengthy list — a Gold Star!
Editor’s Note: Know a Bossier Parish Schools employee who deserves a Gold Star? Nominate them by going to http://bit.ly/2cZB4XX or www.bossierschools.org and clicking on the Gold Star icon. The deadline to nominate someone for the next Gold Star award is Friday, February 3.