By Emily Khaykin
Between Feldman-Horn and Seaver lies Mudd Library where Head Librarian Shannon Acedo is found. Having worked as a librarian at Marlborough School for the previous 18 years, Acedo has been working at Harvard-Westlake for two years last June.
There are three librarians in the library, including one clerk.
“Ms. Madison is the âgo-toâ person for any make-up tests students have to take,” throughout the year, Acedo mentions.
Madison also helps students take tests with extended time.
The end of the year is the busiest time of the year for the librarians. Acedo and her fellow librarians frequently come to the rescue of desperate sophomores and juniors, oblivious as to how to cite sources in MLA format for bibliographies required for history term papers.
As for finding sources in the library, “the electronic resources are the biggest things I suggest people to try,” she said, referencing the unlimited access students have from the library home page, from the New York Times, spanning as far back as 1851, to colonial newspapers from the civil war, to a large variety of magazines.
The library also holds an afterschool study hall and is a “great place for athletes to come and study before practice or a game,” Acedo said. There is always a teacher there to help students with their homework.
In addition, due to studentsâ intense schedules, the library has six iPods and eight MP3 players available for check-out with about ten book downloads, from each gradeâs English curriculum in case students do not have time to read the book on their own.
The library is also home to the Technology center, where Technology Center director Chris Gragg spends most of his time. Gragg has worked at Harvard-Westlake for 11 years.
“Iâm always here in the morning, but I teach seventh and eighth period calculus and statistics for the seniors,” he said, “I teach computer programming in Java, web design, and game programming summer programs.”
Gragg coordinates the use of the Technology Center for the language and English classes. He is the best person to go to for troubleshooting with the new versions of Microsoft Word or Excel. “I showed many students how to convert their footnotes to endnotes in one step,” Gragg said.
It is hard, Gragg admits, to go from being the “top man on the totem pole to the bottom;” referring to how the incoming sophomores are used to being the oldest students at the Middle School; however, he reassures the incoming sophomores that “you are among friends.”
In the Attendance Office on the second floor of Seaver there is a sign posted on the wall with a few studentsâ failed excuses for being late to school. At the top of the list is the most common excuse, and all-time favorite of Attendance Coordinator Gabriel Preciado, simply stating, “my alarm clock malfunctioned.”
Day-to-day, “I keep the time schedules, arrange for assemblies and generate attendance slips for classes,” Preciado said.
He also handles the task of handing out late slips to tardy students, going through the attendance sheets for each teacher to mark students absent, “handling phone calls from parents, and answering e-mails from parents, deans, and teachers” for sick students.
Preciado also prints out the list of students who were absent or tardy and posts the attendance list in Chalmers. If a student is “accidently” marked absent, that student has to go resolve his or her absence within three days of the marked absence. Otherwise, that absence is unresolved and Preciado assumes his other day job: detention coordinator.
Students often visit Preciado to get a gate pass if they have to go off campus during the day.
There are security guards on campus 24 hours a day, seven days a week and all of the guards are armed. James Crawford is the Head of Security at the Upper School, and said that “my staff and I have one main job: creating a safe, worry-free work and academic environment for students and staff.”
There are a total of six full time officers and approximately 30 part-time officers are retired or off-duty Los Angeles police officers. Crawford was a Los Angeles Police Officer for 25 years before he came to work at Harvard School in 1981.
Crawford and his team are especially helpful on the first day of school giving directions to lost students and dealing with student parking.
For the juniors and seniors who drive to and from school, students have to make sure to sign out with Mark Geiger, the main gate guard.
Down on the track, the security guards also help students with their transportation to sports and other events.
Sanders Jackson is also a common presence around campus. He has been working as a security guard at Harvard-Westlake for the past 15 years. Before his position at Harvard-Westlake, Jackson was a security guard at Ralphâs grocery store in East Los Angeles.
At the beginning of the year, he arranges parking spots for all students who drive to school. He tends to stick around near the North gate, guiding new sophomores and their bewildered parents through the parking lot, “helping them to get in and out” safely.
During the year, Jackson assists with coordinating transportation for the sports teams, mostly for the basketball and football teams.
In all, Jackson is the go to person regarding questions about parking spots at the beginning of the year.
“I always try to stack friends together if they ask,” Jackson adds.