A chipper adult is the last person most teenagers want to deal with first thing in the morning.
But at 8:45 a.m. on a Tuesday, it’s hard for even the most bleary-eyed students walking through the front doors of C.W. Jefferys Collegiate to resist principal Monday Gala’s apparent excitement that yet another school day is about to begin.
Dapper in a grey linen suit, pink shirt and bright blue tie, he’s already put in an hour of paperwork so he can turn his attention to what he loves best — face time with the kids streaming in the front doors.
Gala stands by a table laden with oranges, bananas and apples, neatly stacked cartons of milk and a giant pan of freshly baked banana bread. He chats with Imelda from the cafeteria as she dishes out the food. He trades jokes with the guidance teacher dashing to her office. The school’s breakfast program serves 425 of the school’s 730 students and is offered casually on the way in, without singling anyone out or requiring a trip to the cafeteria.