They’re making a sweet connection

Approximately 5,000 cookies, sweet breads, chocolate treats and other goodies awaited staff at Camas High School the Monday before winter break. It was courtesy of families who are part of a staff appreciation group started by parent Elizabeth Emmet in 2009.

It seems as if most people run in about 10 different directions during the holidays. With gifts to buy, family in town and meals to prepare, other things often get put aside.But a group of 80 dedicated families spent a weekend baking a plethora of holiday treats for staff at Camas High School, which were served after school on Monday, Dec. 16.

From cookies to banana bread to chocolate covered treats, the tables at the counseling center overflowed with goodness. Approximately 85 percent of staff members at the high school attended, according to Principal Steve Marshall’s estimate.

“The adults were very excited and very appreciative of the parents’ thoughtfulness,” he said. “I overheard teachers say things like, ‘This is the best day of the year.’ ‘I have never seen anything like this!’ and ‘I am grading papers tonight so this might be my dinner.’ This is an event centered around giving, which is why it fits so perfectly with the holidays.”

Parent Elizabeth Emmet started the staff appreciation group in 2009.

“It has grown over the years and now, new this year, we are trying to have an event every month,” she said. “So far we have had a staff breakfast in October, November was ‘Pie Day’ with families donating 50 pies and then the Bake Shoppe (this month).”

Marshall described the event as a point of contact between staff and parents.

“It is centered around treats, so it is lighthearted in delivery,” he said. “But the purpose is very intentional: These families are making cookies to show their appreciation for all of our staff members, each of whom, in some way, goes above and beyond their job description to serve our students. As a result, the turnout is strong and the mood is friendly and positive. The parents feel good about reaching out to our staff and our staff members walk away feeling like their hard work is acknowledged.”