Jamie Harres, Youth Development Specialist at Cascade Middle School, was named Classified Employee of the Year by the Puget Sound Educational Service District (PSESD).
Harres was nominated after being named Auburn School District’s Classified Employee of the Year and was chosen by the PSESD from a pool of nominees in Pierce and King counties. Classified employees are district employees whose work does not require a teaching certificate.
As a youth development specialist, Harres works closely with students. Her duties include supervising students, leading a student leadership group, organizing an after-school homework club, anime club, and social justice club, visiting at-home and the role of on-campus wellness expert, according to the Auburn School District.
Harres acts as a liaison between students, parents and teachers and provides students with a safe space to learn or decompress. Building relationships with students is Harres’ favorite part of his job.
“Those relationships are what keep me going,” Harres said. “I enjoy being a person who has a quiet impact on others just by being there to listen to them or helping them with tools to help them through a difficult time.”
In December, Harres will finish his bachelor’s degree and intends to continue his career in education, according to the Auburn School District.
Since being named PSESD Employee of the Year, Harres may be considered for a Washington State Educator Award presented by the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction in the fall.
This is the second year in a row that an Auburn School District employee has been named PSESD Employee of the Year. Last year, Janis Campbell-Aikens, director of child nutrition for the Auburn School District, won the award.