With more than 15,000 volunteers assisting Spokane Public Schools, choosing the year’s Outstanding Volunteers is no easy task. Truly, every volunteer is outstanding in the sense that they give so freely of their valuable time to help struggling readers, to assist busy teachers and to make our schools better and richer places for students to learn.
However, many volunteers go above and beyond, and so are singled out as Outstanding Volunteers. Thank you to sponsor Luigi’s for making this program possible, and congratulations to the honorees from the 2018-19 school year:
Elizabeth Noel, Shadle Park High School: Joyful and kind, Elizabeth contributed hundreds of hours this year to organizing and planning the purchase of, and distributing, 130 concert uniforms for band and orchestra students. In addition, she individually hemmed and adjusted almost every uniform on her own, using her sewing equipment at home.
Betty Dumas, Finch Elementary School: Four times a week, every week, Betty travels across town to work with students who need extra attention and practice. She takes time to visit with teachers and to pull the best curriculum for each student. Betty also spends extra time helping students learn to have a positive attitude and a growth mindset.
Jim Flaigle, Roosevelt Elementary School: A reliable volunteer with the English Club for new English language learners, Jim excels at showing students he cares. He helps keep kids on task, but still finds ways to have fun with them. Adaptable and helpful, Jim will eagerly work with any student who needs help.
Joan Biddison, Moran Prairie Elementary School: “Grandma Joan,” as she is known, has volunteered at Moran Prairie for 12 years. She’s at school every day for three to four hours, helping any way she can. Joan’s range of life experiences gives her a knowledge and understanding of almost all situations. She helps students believe they can be successful.
Gilbert Mendoza, NEWTECH Skill Center: With an optimism that’s contagious, Gilbert helps students get prepared and excited about their future. He volunteers every day and has a true heart for helping kids -- and a particular knack for helping them focus. Gilbert works as though he’s getting paid.