News Brief: Bolles Supports Staff

While students and faculty were on campus, the support staff at Bolles was responsible for many important tasks at San Jose, such as managing the canteen/cafeteria and maintaining the gardens. But now that most of the Bolles community has transitioned to distance learning, what happened to the support staff?

 

Bolles has resolved this issue in multiple ways. Aramark, FLIK, and IT departments have different strategies.

 

Employees of Aramark, who provide groundskeeping, maintenance, and custodial duties to the school, are still working on campus. Jeff Role, Bolles’s Chief Financial Officer, wrote in an email, “We are getting caught up on our deferred maintenance projects, deep cleaning all facilities and beautifying the grounds.”

 

Meanwhile, FLIK staff members have faced a greater impact due to a lack of students and faculty to feed. However, hospitals and other essential businesses that work with FLIK’s parent company are in need of more hands, thus many employees are working hard to ensure that “those who want to continue working can” by placing them at these facilities.

 

In addition, “We have retained our food service director and head chef at the San Jose campus to continue working in the kitchens on various projects which are hard to get to during regular operations,” said Role. “Our intent is to get all our outstanding food service staff back as soon as we can continue regular operations.”

 

In an updated email, Role further clarified the extent of the remaining FLIK staff’s involvement. “They are so amazing that they volunteered to help on any project the school needs while we are closed no matter what. Again, we are so fortunate to have such dedicated and amazing people working with us.”

Our intent is to get all our outstanding food service staff back as soon as we can continue regular operations.”

Finally, the finance and HR department as well as the IT department have started working virtually, which Role says “allows them to operate just as if they were in the office.” They still meet daily to ensure a smooth transition into distance learning for everyone at Bolles.

 

According to Paul Sollee, Chief Technology Officer, while Mr. Sollee and Mr. Shubert continue to come into the office coordinating IT needs that require a physical presence, the other members of the IT team are working from their homes utilizing the newly created Bookings calendar that allows teachers and students to set remote help appointments.

 

Sollee wrote in an email, “They are constantly monitoring the SchoolDude ticketing systems as well as the [email protected] email address.” The IT team employs the Quick Assist remote access software built into Windows 10 and can access devices remotely.

 

With his characteristic wry humor, Sollee said, “Technology has obviously been at the forefront of making remote learning possible and has certainly taken its lumps.”

 

But after a problematic start with the overloaded Schoology platform, an upgrade to the Premium level of our Conferences app, Big Blue Button, has solved many issues. Sollee stated that after early problems, “the website’s performance has been much better with trouble requests down to a bare minimum.”

 

Even with the sudden changes that distance learning entails, Role reminds everyone that all of the staff is working endlessly to help the Bolles community through this tough time. “The most important thing is everyone stay safe and healthy.”