On Monday, Oct. 19, a group of Glenknoll Elementary School teachers went to the home of Joann Pitochelli to award her with the PYLUSD challenge coin on behalf of the school. Mrs. Pitochelli, or “Mrs. P” to the students, has worked and volunteered at Glenknoll for over 20 years, since her own grandchildren went to school there.
Every day, she helped students get to their classes, supervised their recesses and lunch periods, helped in their classrooms, and made sure they all made it safely to their parents after school. She knows every student by name, and is every Glenknoll student’s “honorary grandmother.”
This past August, Mrs. P called to say that she had to retire from her position as playground/noon supervisor. She was recently diagnosed with cancer, and will need to undergo extensive treatments. She said she is going to fight the cancer, and the biggest thing she will miss in the meantime will be spending time with all the students and staff.
She has been sorely missed since the very first day of school, and the staff voted unanimously to award her with the “You Are the Advantage” medal.
At the ceremony at her home, she was shown a video wishing her to “Get Well Soon,” and received congratulations on receipt of the medal. She was given one of our Glenknoll “Super Hero Capes” hand-made by the Glenknoll PTA, as well as cards and posters made by students. She was extremely touched and visibly moved by the presentation, and vowed to visit Glenknoll as soon as her health allowed.