Students surprise Sheepshead Bay security guard

Fred Eilam stands with a student outside Sheepshead Bay High School on June 26.
Chandler Kidd

These students celebrated more than just graduation!

Kids at a Sheepshead Bay charter school threw a surprise party for a beloved security guard on June 26, the last day of school.

Fred Eilam has guarded students at Advanced Math and Science III for 25 years, but he says that — in all that time — nothing’s shocked him quite like Wednesday’s surprise bash.

“I’ve never went through an experience like that,” Eilam beamed after the party. “It was something different!”

Students at the math and science school, located in the Professional Pathways High School campus on Avenue X, wanted to celebrate their cherished security guard, who’s known for his catch phrase “maintain, stay focused,” and who they say always goes above and beyond to ensure the students feel good and stay motivated.

“Junior year was really hard because I had a lot of AP classes and it really stressed me out. Every time I walked into school he would try to bring my self-confidence up, even if I felt like I was down at the moment he would help me get back up,” said senior Stayna Alexandre.

So the kids turned to Unsung Heroes — a nonprofit organization that honors service workers in the education industry — to organize a surprise party for Eilam in the school’s gym, where they lured the guard with false tales of a fight between students.

But once in the gym, Eilam’s concern was washed away by a shower of confetti, as students placed flower necklaces over his head they’d hand-crafted ahead of the party.

Unsung Heroes also produced a brief documentary about Eilam, where students spokes about his influence and unrelenting positivity.

“Fred is that one guy who’s always in a good mood,” said one student featured in the doc. “Even if he is in a bad mood, you’ll never think he’s mad, sad, or anything negative. It’s always just something happy about him.”

Reach reporter Chandler Kidd at ckidd@schenpsmedia.com or by calling (718) 260–2525. Follow her at twitter.com/ChanAnnKidd.
Fred Eilam has been a school security gaurd at Sheepshead Bay High School for 25 years.
Chandler Kidd

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