Here we are again at the start of a new school year – always an exciting new chapter for students and teachers, however for facility managers, it can be a stressful time.
During school term closures, it’s often the only time a school facility management team can schedule in vital works to maintain their school or university facilities.
So with students and teachers returning, and class sessions starting up again, it’s essential that school facilities are clean and in good condition beforehand, for everyone’s safety.
To help make sure your school building, university campus, college, or general educational facilities are ready for the upcoming year, here are some back-to-school cleaning tips for all you busy facility managers out there..
Make a List of Areas to Clean Ahead of Time
When preparing for the start of the school year, it can be helpful to make lists of areas that need to be cleaned, and we recommend you do this with your cleaning service provider.
The should include not only general areas like classrooms and hallways but also specific school cleaning tasks like carpet steam cleaning, washing the windows, stripping and sealing the hard floor areas, or machine scrubbing tiled or outdoor areas.
Pro Tip: Your school cleaning service should have already provided you with a detailed school cleaning checklist.
Start with a deep clean
Before students and staff return, it’s important to have your school cleaning service undertake a thorough deep clean. Things like getting the desks cleaned, the bathrooms looking fresh, common areas clean and tidy, carpets steam cleaned, and exterior and interior windows cleaned.
The tasks for this service should be discussed with your cleaning service provider so that they are clear on your requirements and can schedule in specialised cleaners to have this done in advance of your school re-opening.
These are the areas that include hallways, classrooms, reception areas, the library, gym, offices, kitchens, bathrooms and staff rooms.
Common areas should also receive extra cleaning during the back-to-school period. It’s been a while since teachers, students and parents have been on-site, so you’ll need to remove dust and build up in a lot of areas.
Remember, presentation on the first day of school is super important. The sense of arrival for everyone entering through the school gate, really does matter, so it’s vital that all parts of your school, university or college campus, are looking great.
Again this is an area your school cleaners specialise in, so work with them to ensure their cleaning specification is going to best suit the needs of your school..
Consider a Day Cleaning Schedule
In the past, you may have had your cleaning done either before or after school, but have you considered someone keeping the school environment cleaning during the day too?
During the first few weeks of school, it’s important to have regular cleaning times scheduled throughout the day so that any messes or spills can be taken care of quickly.
A day cleaner will help keep your school, university, or college campus looking its best, while also helping to prevent any potentially hazardous situations from arising due to clutter or debris on floors or other surfaces.
Plus, they are a big help with ensuring bins in the playground are emptied before they are overflowing.
Additionally, scheduling regular day cleaning will allow facility managers to prioritise their workload more effectively by allowing them to plan around when they will be available for cleaning duties.
Ensure Quality Cleaning Supplies
To ensure that your school facility is thoroughly clean and safe at all times, it’s essential that your cleaning company only use quality cleaning supplies and understand the dilution rates of all chemicals on site.
These include items such as antibacterial sprays and wipes and hospital grade disinfectant cleaners which can help keep germs at bay, reduce cross-contamination and keep the school environment clean for students and staff members.
Additionally, having quality cleaning supplies on hand will make cleaning much more effective, which will ensure the cleaning production rates are maintained.
Your school has sustainability goals, and it’s important that your cleaning company has sustainability options they can offer you, in order to reach your goals. Things like:
Using eco-friendly cleaning products.
We love and recommend Keeper Clean zero waste, and they’ve put an end to single use plastic in cleaning products.
Creating a plan to help you reduce waste.
Having water and electricity sustainable practices
According to the Clean Energy Council of Australia “School classrooms use an average of 3800 kWh of electricity per year”
Sustainability measures can help your school save money in the long run and also provide an environment that is healthier for students, teachers and staff members.
Be sure to communicate with your cleaning company what sustainability measures you would like them to put in place.
Ad hoc or periodical cleaning covers tasks such as:
- Deep cleaning
- Window cleaning
- Strip and seal of hard floor surfaces
- Carpet steam cleaning
- Floor polishing
All tasks that are necessary every few months if you’re a large school, or even once a year if you’re a smaller site.
These tasks require more time and specialised equipment than regular cleaning, and they are essential in order to keep your school facility looking its best.
Planning in Advance
At the beginning of each term, you should be discussing the tasks that you would like to book in for the next school term break with your cleaning company, so that they can lock in firm dates and ensure your needs – some examples of periodical cleaning tasks would be : deep carpet cleaning, tile and grout cleaning, window cleaning, hard floor waxing or polishing.
Before the start of the new school year we recommend you have any deep cleaning tasks scheduled in with your cleaning provider and ensure all necessary equipment is ready and available.
Pro Tip: If you have already completed the periodical cleaning tasks, be sure to book them in for the next school closure now.
Clean out any clutter
Clutter can quickly start to accumulate in classrooms and communal spaces, so take the time to sort through any items that are no longer needed or used. This could include old books, out-of-date supplies, and broken furniture.
Ensure Proper Maintenance Is Being Carried Out
Aside from regular cleaning and periodical tasks, there are other maintenance jobs that need to be carried out on a regular basis.
This includes tasks such as checking and servicing equipment, testing fire alarms, fixing broken fixtures or replacing lights.
These should all be scheduled in with the appropriate people at a date that is convenient for everyone. This will help ensure these jobs do not get overlooked during busy times of the year.
Following these back-to-school cleaning tips will help ensure that you’re maintaining your school or university, reducing any contaminants and dirt, while keeping the cleaning standards high, ensuring your school looks its best, while also keeping students and staff safe from germs or potential hazards caused by clutter or debris left behind from last year’s classes.
If you’re in the market for a new cleaning company for your school, university or educational facility, contact Cleancorp today on 1300 211 944 to discuss your needs in more detail, or click here to visit our website for more information.