LBUSD 2020-2021 Recognizes Employees

Douglas Wallace, Staff Reporter

Los Banos Unified School District recognized employees who will be retiring at the end of the 2020-21 school year, as well as, employees who celebrated a milestone in their career with the District.

The employees honored were Courtney Crivelli, Claudia Curutchague, Brad Gargano, Lorri Kyles, Kasondra Young who have been part of this school district for 10 years. They were awarded a crystal apple.

Larry Borelli and Nathan Hanson were recognized for their 15 years of service and were awarded a pen set.

Mikell Benton, Dustin Caropreso, Lisa Dobbs, and Alexandra Pacheco received a crystal plaque for their 20 years of service.  For their 25 years of service, John Noia and Anissa Pricolo were awarded a clock.

For his 35 years of service to the Los Banos Unified School District, Tom Faria received a set of cuff links.

Mr. Faria has set an amazing milestone.  Mr. Faria said he manages his work schedule between all of his duties.  “I always kept a copy of my schedule (which was different every day) on my dashboard, so I would always know where I was supposed to be. I also memorized all my lesson materials, so I didn’t have to fumble for stuff at every site. When possible, I would keep all necessary materials for each school on the school site… forgetting something as a traveling teacher can be catastrophic… no materials, no lesson!”

When asked about any advise he would give to new teachers, he said, “I recommend that they use the elementary and secondary teachers they had when they were in school as models in their beginning couple of years, then adapt to their own style as their experience grows.”

This school year has been one of the most unique school years in recent memory when asked about how he would compare this year to when he first started working. He said, “Actually, not that much has changed, except for the speed of communication via the internet. My subject, music, is still studied and performed the same way. The writing of music has been made more efficient with computers, but music is still music. Also, students have more access to information at their fingertips now, but that tends to lessen the amount of depth each topic of study receives. For the last 20 years or so, standardized testing has resulted in limiting of curriculum flexibility for students at all levels; but I believe that trend is now going in the opposite direction.”

This year has been one of the hardest for teachers. Mr. Faria commented on his difficulties he faced this year, “You really cannot teach music through distance learning. Music is a group activity that needs the group all together for rehearsal and performance. You can get students to learn factoids, to learn to play a musical instrument, and write about music they listen to; but you cannot teach making music in an ensemble over the internet, that is something that must be experienced live.”

Finally when asked about what Mr. Faria would have done differently, he said, “I would have relaxed a bit, not have been so driven to get things done. Students learn through guidance, time, and repetition. It’s not something that can be rushed.”

We are extremely thankful for all of our staff this year for doing their job the best they could.   Thank you for all of your service to our school district.