Custodial workers get schools prepared for new year

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Many students start school soon and, as teachers get lessons ready, a group of workers are making sure the year starts on a clean slate.

Custodial workers.

They’re filling the empty halls, repairing and stacking desks and ensuring everything is ready to go for the year.

“We don’t get the summers off. We are here every day Monday through Friday,”

Summer break is the busiest time for school custodial staff, as Dominic Villella will tell you. He is the head custodian at Desert View Elementary in Los Lunas.

“We move the furniture off the carpet so we can steam clean and get the carpets clean,” Villella said.

Custodial workers sanitize, paint, clean and make sure everything is working properly.

“They’re working their a–es off,” retired custodian Ricardo Sena bluntly said.

Sena says custodial workers don’t always get the recognition they deserve. He knows, having worked as a custodial worker for ten years and now substituting at a school in Belen.

“Our students and teachers are our first priority. We work as a team and we get the job done,” they agreed.

Schools in Los Lunas started school August 1. Belen starts school Wednesday.