Humans of JHS: The Officers

Anna Catlett, Staff Writer

Opening the door, answering the phone, handling behavior, attendance, and grades, checking students in and out, and so many other jobs are performed by Johnstons administrative assistant Melissa Officer. 

The friendly face that greets you once you walk into Johnston High School, Melissa Officer, has been working at Johnston for 12 years. As a kid, Melissa wanted to work with children and help people. Melissa’s favorite part of her job is speaking with students, and anybody who walks through the door. She also enjoys having the unique opportunity of working at the same district her daughter Zoe Officer ‘24 attends.

“I love interacting with students on a daily basis, I like learning their names and developing relationships…I love seeing my daughter everyday! I love seeing her friends and who she hangs out with. I also like interacting with her teachers, so I kind of get to know them personally too,”said Melissa Officer.

 Zoe is in her junior year at Johnston High School. Zoe plays tennis and is a part of the Students for Change club. When she’s not participating in those activities she spends her time reading, going outdoors, and hanging out with family and friends.

Like Zoe, Melissa also has many hobbies she enjoys outside of her time at the highschool. She likes reading crime books and watching crime dramas, playing pickleball, watching movies, and traveling with her family. Their family is very close, which is why Melissa really enjoys working close to her daughter. 

“I feel we have a strong relationship. I have learned a lot as a parent and hopefully as my 4th child she has benefitted from that. I am super proud of the person she is and excited to witness what she can accomplish. I have loved being able to be in the school building with her,” Melissa said.

Zoe also appreciates having her mom at JHS. Due to their close relationship it’s comforting for her to know there will always be somebody in the building she can rely on. 

“It’s really nice actually because I’m pretty close with my mom. Just the fact that I get to see her everyday and I feel like I have someone safe in the building that I can talk to, ” Zoe stated.

Working in close proximity to each other is not something out of the ordinary for them, Melissa had the opportunity to work at Zoe’s elementary, and middle school as well. 

“I stayed home with all four of my children so when she went to kindergarten at Lawson Elementary I got a job there. Then I was there for seven years then moved to JMS and was able to be with her for two years and then a position opened up at JHS that I thought I would enjoy so I made that change and have loved it. It may look as though I followed her but getting to be with her in school was just an added perk,” stated Melissa. 

Some high school students might not have enjoyed seeing their parents at school everyday, but Zoe feels lucky that she’s able to. 

“She is definitely a friend as well as a mom. Some people would hate having their mom around all the time but to us it’s normal and we definitely have a lot of fun together,” said Zoe.