Tidbits of Information From Pennye, our LCS “Main Office” Receptionist

– Interview with Pennye McCormick

Pennye, how long have you been at LCS?

   “I started my 17th year in June. My family moved to Lakeland in 1998, so I was an LCS parent for 5 years before I started working here.”

Were you the “Main Office” receptionist the whole time you’ve been at LCS? 

        “Yes.  I was hired as the first receptionist at LCS.  Before me, several administrative assistants answered the phone and helped guests in addition to all of their other duties.  I initially had some Admissions Office duties because the Main Office was where Rachel Roth is now [the current Admissions Office].

When you started at LCS, what was the phone system like?

Large old-school switchboard style phone
Pennye’s old “switchboard” style phone

       “My first phone was more like a switchboard.  The base of it looked very similar to my current phone, but it had two “banks” attached to it.  It took up a huge amount of space on my desk, but I still miss it almost every day.  Jo Anne Aldridge had a system just like mine.  She was my back-up for a long time.  If I was on a call, the second call would go to her. Now we have the phone tree answering system.”

Is there anything about the phones that you think would be helpful to LCS families?

“Several years ago (August 2016), we switched to an internet phone system. If someone (your child, your child’s teacher, the school nurse) calls you from LCS, 863-333-0471 will appear on Caller ID.  SO, it would be great if all parents would save this number in their phones as “LCS” so they will know immediately that the call is from someone at LCS.  The “333” number often confuses people because we aren’t used to seeing it as a Lakeland number, and it is common for parents to save it thinking it is an employee’s cell number.  (For longtime LCS people who are thinking, “I’ve been dialing 863-688-2771 with no problem” … you are right!  Somehow, we were able to keep that number for incoming calls!  How great is that!?!) Another important number is the LCS Athletic Office:  863-688-1825. If you have an athlete in your family and need to talk to Diane Klages often, you can completely bypass the receptionist and go straight to Diane if you dial this number.”

You mentioned a “Phone Tree System,” can you tell me more about what that is?

        “If the receptionist is on a phone call when you try to reach the school, the answering machine picks up after four rings. You can even leave a voicemail for one of these people after hours.”

Directions will tell you to:

Press      1             for Student Services for all attendance matters (to reach Stephanie Hicks)

Press      2             for Admissions (Mary Fairchild)

Press      3             for the School Nurse (Abigail Stabler, Tiffany Remmer)

Press      4             for the Business Office  (Carmen Frost)

Press      5             for the Elementary Office (Marsha Hannum)

Press      6             for the Middle School Office on the third floor (Lisa Jones)

Press      7             for the Secondary Office (Tina Nagy)

Press      8             for the Athletic Office (Diane Klages)

Press      9             for the receptionist’s voicemail and she will forward your message as needed. (Pennye McCormick)       

Thank you, Pennye. Our LCS families appreciate all the helpful advice, and your sweet service managing our phones for the past 17 years!