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Edwina Ford Makes Her Final Exit With Gold Star In-Hand 
Posted 12/9/20

Edwina Ford holds a giant cookie cakeThe first day Edwina Ford walked through the doors at Plain Dealing High, she knew it was meant to be. 

Her career with Bossier Schools began as a teacher and clerical substitute in 1992 at Plain Dealing High; then, when a secretarial position came open six years later at Carrie Martin Elementary, Ford jumped at the opportunity to come on board full-time.   

“God opened the door and I walked through it and here I am 22 and a half years later,” said the long-time school secretary. “I’ve enjoyed every minute of it. I never wanted to live my life in vain and I’d like to think I’ve made a difference in somebody’s life in Plain Dealing.” 

The impact Ford has made is indelible indeed, extending from the children that have attended the elementary school and their families to her colleagues. 

“After all the changes that the elementary school has seen over the last 30 years, one thing has remained the same -- the school secretary, Edwina Ford,” wrote Kyle Davis, who taught previously at Carrie Martin. “You see, she is no ordinary secretary. Mrs. Ford is the keeper of all things. She is the backbone to the elementary school. She is the one you call when you can’t reach a parent, if you need help with the copier or a student. The students and parents both respect and adore her. After all these years, she is finally hanging up her phone and taking it to the house. I don’t know how they will make it without her!” 

Yes, Ford is retiring at the end of December after a nearly three-decade career, but not before her faculty put the wheels into motion to nominate her for Bossier Schools’ Gold Star employee award. Teachers lined the hallway to the elementary wing and applauded Ford as she was announced the winner.  

Rachel Gifford, who was instrumental in leading the effort to recognize Ford, beamed as she handed Ford a box of tissues to dab her tears of joy. 

“I am not sure I can even put into words the impact that Ms. Ford has had on the students, faculty and family members of Plain Dealing,” Gifford said. “For students, she is a caregiver when they don’t feel well or just need a smile to start their morning off right. We only have a school nurse two days a week. The other days, Ms. Ford takes on that role. Finding a parent or relative is a specialty of Ms. Ford. Her knowledge goes beyond OnCourse. Old phone numbers or disconnected lines do not stop her. Her connections within the community result in that sick child getting home a lot sooner the majority of the time.” 

Gifford said Ford has been a constant for parents, and that community and school connection will be a huge loss, not to mention the faculty is losing a dear friend. 

“She is more than just a colleague from work. She has laughed with us, cried with us, and prayed with us throughout the years,” Gifford explained. “When the schools in Plain Dealing combined and the elementary school was closed, Ms. Ford was given the option to move to another school, but she did not want to leave the students during their transition to the high school campus and we were blessed to have her move right along with us.”  

When Ford packs up her desk and answers her last phone call December 18, she will miss her students’ smiling faces, meeting new people and talking to parents. And she will especially miss her second family; her co-workers, who have become personal friends.  

“I just want to thank all of my supporters over the years,” Ford said. “I couldn’t have done my job effectively or efficiently without the help of every single person that I came in contact with while working in the school setting and in the community. I’ve worked with three principals and they were all awesome. My co-workers have all been fantastic. Making the decision to retire was hard, but I finally made the right choice.” 

Caring for her husband whose health is declining led Ford to her decision. Once home, she is hopeful he will improve to the point they can travel during their golden years.   

“I thank God for the grace and mercy that He showered me with all of my life; some good, some not so good, but I’m truly thankful for having been a member of the Bossier Parish Schools family for the last 29 years. I love you and I’ll miss you all.” 



Editor’s note: Know someone who works for Bossier Schools that is deserving of recognition for going above and beyond? Nominate them for the Gold Star award, proudly sponsored for the last nine years by Bossier Federal Credit Union. Just go to https://www.bossierschools.org/goldstarnews and tell us what sets them apart.