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Celebrating Education Support Professionals during American Education Week – Thursday, November 16, 2017

Joe PezzuloPhoto of students and staff


“Joe Pezzulo is the first individual to serve as a middle school hall monitor and we wonder how we survived without him,” muses principal Chris Reed. “His task is to supervise the hallways and student behaviors during class changes, assist students with their needs, and of course the best part... ‘Other duties as assigned.’”

“Mr. P,” as he is called, often responds to radio calls to temporarily cover for a teacher, escort a student, monitor all kinds of transitions, or help out in the cafeteria. “What makes it unique is that, when you include patrolling outdoors before the start of the school day and making a presence in the cafeteria, along with the hallways, I probably get to interact with as many of the students as anyone,” says Mr. P.

photo of staff and students“The most rewarding part of the job is the great number of students who high-five, handshake, fist-bump, hug, and just smile and say hello,” he continues. “And assisting those who entrust me with a problem or situation, looking to be pointed to the right person to help them. I have relationships with students that last even throughout their high school years. I often feel like I have hundreds of grandkids...and I love it!”

Mr. P’s colleagues note that students and staff alike are captivated by his engaging and positive attitude. And his focus on relationships adds significant value to the middle-level experience. “I would like to think some of my one-to-one hallway conversations have aided some students in their personal outlooks,” he says.

“Many of the teachers also allow me to share my personal experiences of 71 years, and some of those resonate with the students,” Mr. P continues. “Especially relating my experience of starting smoking at age 12 and having to kick a three-pack-a-day habit by the time I was 27...and what it was like growing up in the turmoil and changes of the late-50's and 60's.”

“My middle school days of over 55 years ago were quite different. I like that students can ask the difficult questions and we have excellent teachers who don't duck answering—where I might have been told ‘that's not your concern’ or ‘that's too complicated for you to understand.’”

In his nine years with the district—and 3+ as hall monitor, specifically—he has learned that there are often underlying reasons for certain behaviors, and “the great, great majority of young people are ‘OK.’”

Mr. Pezzulo graduated from St. Mary's Academy right here in Glens Falls in 1964. His favorite activity is sports officiating, and he is an umpire/referee for three sports, year-round.

“It's a pleasure to have Joe in the building and we hope he plans to stay around for many more years to come,” says Mr. Reed.