Sticky floors, uncovered sneezes, gum under the desk. Sometimes it’s hard to believe that a school can ever be really “clean.” Unlike a residence or business, there are many more humans shuffling through the hallways of a school that can leave behind dirty, germ-infested environments.
So, what can you do to ensure a clean and safe place for both students and staff?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend hand hygiene and routine cleaning as part of school system operations. And amidst the COVID-19 surge, administrators are more mindful than ever about the need for consistent, safe, and effective deep cleaning in their schools.
It isn’t simply the spaces that have physical contact with students that regularly need to be assessed for cleanliness. Airborne germs, bacteria, and grime can land on any surface and set up shop. However, thorough cleaning and disinfecting can remove these pests from every area.
Disinfecting is not a stand-alone practice but rather something that should follow robust cleaning and you need to address frequently touched surfaces regularly. Watch your disinfecting products for chemicals that attack viruses, not bacteria. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends specific disinfectants for Coronavirus, most of which cite hydrogen peroxide, citric acid, lactic acid, or caprylic acid as primary active ingredients. These chemicals are effective but far less hazardous for both the environment and human health.
There are many safer alternatives to industrial chemicals. As a rule, green cleaning is environmentally responsible and still effective in eliminating the appearance and presence of unwanted germs. It is also possible to employ hard-hitting disinfectants that fall into the green category. This makes them safer to touch and inhale while adding additional protection from aggressive bacteria.
Daily and weekly cleaning efforts each have their benefits. Deep cleaning schools before students’ arrival can eliminate any missed bacteria from the previous day. More intense methods can also freshen up the spaces’ overall air quality.
Staff should take special care throughout the day when food or liquids contact a surface and between uses of shared areas or objects. One final pass at the end of the day can eliminate grime build-up in high-traffic areas, particularly on floors where most bacteria love to settle.
Weekly deep cleaning and disinfecting will help maintain your facilities’ equipment and air quality over time. Remember to compare products for low toxicity levels and save the heavy-duty cleaning for the end of the week. This allows the deeper cleaning solutions to work their magic without interruption during the weekend.
Horizontal spaces like desks, tables, and countertops are getting their fair share of cleaning and disinfecting these days. Even keyboards and computer accessories (printer, mouse) have been given more attention since the pandemic began. But what about those areas that are likely to collect germs but tend to be forgotten? Door handles, light switches, sink knobs, and hand dryer handles collect germs at a much higher rate than their horizontal counterparts. It’s crucial to disinfect these more often.
Remember, cleaning your school is not like cleaning your home. When you just simply vacuum high-traffic areas, it can leave significant grime and bacteria on the edges of the room. That’s why commercial quality carpet cleaning has become an essential measure in combating the COVID-19 pandemic. And it’s a practice that will continue to benefit the appearance and safety of your school.
If you want an advanced comprehensive cleaning solution that can save you time and money, then electrostatic sprayers are the way to go.
Electrostatic sprayers distribute disinfectants by dispersing them through an electronically charged tip. Each droplet becomes positively charged and then seeks out surfaces in our negatively charged world. The attraction is so strong that the charged particles will even reverse direction and move upwards against gravity to coat hard-to-reach surfaces to kill COVID-19 and other infectious diseases.
Many facilities, particularly health care, have already been relying on electrostatic cleaning to fight pathogens. It is now clear that electrostatic cleaning can benefit all facilities including schools by providing a thorough clean on a variety of surfaces. Electrostatic spraying also requires reduced amounts of chemicals because it’s more efficient than conventional methods so it’s more cost-effective.
Regardless of the current prevalence of illness in your school, prioritizing consistent, safe, and effective deep cleaning and disinfecting methods will provide a healthier environment that students and faculty need to succeed.
If you’re looking to support your current janitorial team or would like a vendor to provide commercial cleaning services to your school, please get in touch with us today by phone 609-714-0426.