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Tips for School Restroom Cleanliness

Welcome students back to user-friendly and well-stocked restrooms

public restroom, school restroom cleanliness

Clean Thoughts from the July/August 2021 issue of CMM

As we head into the 2021-2022 school year, we see priority shift back to in-person instruction. Thanks to vaccines and new guidance issued in July by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), schools now have the official greenlight to welcome students back with proper coronavirus safeguards in place.

According to a survey GP PRO conducted this past spring, 67% of parents said that confidence in a school’s cleaning processes is important to their comfort level in sending kids back to school. 

“Since many parents likely have not been inside their child’s school for more than a year, it’s important for schools to communicate their cleaning practices and protocols with parents and caregivers,” said Julie Howard, vice president and general manager of GP PRO’s towel, skin care, and air care categories.

Howard and others offered tips for reopening restrooms with confidence in our July/August issue.  They shared the following advice for school facilities. 

“Keeping hands clean is key to school cleanliness,” said Sylvain Martin, senior product manager, Cascades PRO. 

Experts agree that providing students with educational materials about hand hygiene will help reinforce everyone’s role in stopping the spread of germs at school. Many restroom care suppliers have produced packages for schools that include posters and videos as well as interactive apps, hygiene brochures, teaching materials, and activities to help make handwashing fun for young students.

A user-friendly restroom contributes to better hygiene, too. “Schools need to think about restroom hygiene as a wraparound experience, where ease of use ultimately makes cleaning easier in the long run,” said Rachel Olsavicky, segment manager – Commercial, Essity Professional Hygiene. “For little ones, it’s critically important that hand hygiene products are within reach and easy to use.” 

With students on the move and generally pressed for time when using the restroom, it’s also important to stay well-stocked with soap, toilet paper, and paper towels, said John Engel, marketing director, Cintas. “Many schools increase their employee restroom checks to ensure restrooms are in top shape and they are installing extra garbage cans so it’s easier for students to discard used paper towels,” he said.

What do your school cleaning protocols look like for 2021-2022? For more ideas, click here.

Posted On August 16, 2021

Amy W. Richardson

Managing Editor, Cleaning & Maintenance Management

Amy W. Richardson is managing editor of Cleaning & Maintenance Management. She has more than 15 years of experience editing and writing for trade and consumer publications, community newspapers, nonprofit associations, and websites. Richardson holds a Bachelor of Arts in communication studies with an emphasis in journalism from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB).

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