Lee County Schools are observing spring break this week, and it seems like a good time to recognize a member of the organization whose work ethic never goes without question. The Welcome To Sanford Teacher of the Week honor this week goes to the school district’s 2018-19 Outstanding Bus Driver of the Year Kattie Goins.
Ms. Goins’ hard work and dedication make her a treasured part of the West Lee Middle School family. After her daily safety checks, Ms. Goins is on the road picking up students beginning at 5:30 each weekday. Her travels take her along many miles of county roads for just over 90 minutes each day. Some individuals might be tempted to take a breather after picking up dozens of children and keeping a watchful eye on their safety. Instead, Ms. Goins heads right to the school cafeteria to help the staff there finish up their daily breakfast service. Then it’s time to move to lunch preparation and service, before getting back on the roads to return children to their homes at the end of the school day. From the time she leaves for work in the morning, until the end of her work day, Ms. Goins dedicates over 12 hours to serving the children and families of West Lee Middle.
The affection that Ms. Goins has for her students and her school are extremely obvious. She comments, “I try to be good to the kids – I’ve not written anybody up this year. I have four boys of my own, and eight grandchildren. I want my children to be treated well, so I try to do the same. I really do love this school and I love the kids – I try to give them treats, and for some of them who don’t have much at home, I try to make sure they get a candy bar or a snack on Fridays.”
Naturally, the feeling is mutual. West Lee Middle School Principal Jamie Cox says “Ms. Goins truly cares about our students, and it shows in her kind, thoughtful and caring attitude. She gets on the bus extremely early and gets back to school after 5 p.m. each day, and she never has a complaint. We all love Ms. Kattie and are so glad she is a part of our Pride family.”