Janitor inspires students with dry erase masterpieces

Students are proud to show off the head custodian’s artwork

NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – Call them “magic” markers. Jayson Enjady uses them, along with brushes and erasers, to capture the imagination of the kids at North Star Elementary School.

“The reaction coming into the cafeteria will always be ‘Whoa!’” said principal Stephanie Fascitelli about the white board art. “Their eyes light up.”

Enjady is not only “artist in residence” at North Star – he’s the head custodian. He works on the cafeteria white board art on his own time, chipping away over two or three days. “It just takes me to another place, somewhere where your imagination can just spread out, and just become who you are,” Enjady said.

The kids know him as Mr. Jayson. “I told him, ‘Could I have something with, like, Legos?’ So that’s what he drew,” said fifth grade student Ethan Kocherhans. “It was awesome and really nice of him to draw it.”

Enjady doesn’t stop with great artwork, he gets the students directly involved. Every two weeks, he draws the names of two students, a boy and a girl, who get to decide what he draws next.

“He draws tickets and one of them was me,” said third grade student Reese Kerschen, whose name was drawn this week. “I just felt so good and my friends were so happy for me.”

“They give me the idea on a Friday, then I brainstorm all weekend on it, and then I just come up with something like this,” Enjady said, pointing to the current drawing of Peyton Manning.

On Friday, Kerschen decided to stick with the football theme. She asked him to draw Tom Brady, once Manning is erased, that is. Students are proud to show off the head custodian’s artwork.

“My son is into art, so we noticed he was getting really excited about someone at school doing art on the wall,” said parent Tania Hilber. “We really didn’t know what was going on.”

That was until she saw the art. Tania Hilber says “Mr. Jayson” has inspired her son to fall in love with art.

“My son has started sketchbooks, all kinds of different sketchbooks; he’s put together drawings,” Hilber said.

For Enjady, that’s the whole point. “They have opportunities in life to see what their dreams can really be,” he said. Enjady’s artwork isn’t always erased, his drawing of a wolf has become the school’s new logo.

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