The goal of Aurora Public Schools (APS), Aurora, Colorado - with 63 sites and 42,111 students - is to see that “every child shapes a successful future.”
Michael Ward, Custodial Coordinator and Trainer, has spent more than two decades shaping successful cleaning.
Mike, an educator and author of Who Swings Your Mop, The Ultimate Procedural Handbook for School Custodians and The Ultimate Safety Handbook for School Custodians, strives to raise the professional status of custodians by:
- Building awareness of their importance to the health and safety of schools,
- Maximizing cleaning performance and productivity through tools and training, and
- Adopting innovation for healthy results.
Innovating for Improvement, Morale
In his quest to improve the indoor environment, Mike tested Kaivac no touch cleaning machines 20 years ago while Manager of Custodial Operations for Westerville City Schools in Ohio. He was so impressed he bought four machines.
He created a restroom specialist position to optimize focus, outcomes and efficiency - yielding a division of labor so restrooms received better cleaning while other staff concentrated on classrooms.
The initial response of the first restroom specialist to nighttime latrine duty was less than enthusiastic. Once experienced, though, when offered a new assignment, she balked:
“Please don’t take my Kaivac and restrooms away. I love this machine! I get nothing but compliments. My restrooms are the cleanest in the district and I want to keep them that way.”
Shaping Up Budgets, Chemical Use, Site Inspections
At introductory APS sites, applying the Kaivac specialist approach has decreased labor by 15%, chemical use by 10%, and raised site inspection scores 2%.
The Nose Knows
“There also have been no odor complaints in restrooms or locker rooms since we began using the Kaivac 1700s at two of our high schools,” Mike notes.
No touch cleaning was also the only method that removed the urine and related odor from brick and mortar in restrooms at APS elementary sites.
Shaping Up Floors
APS recently bought three Kaivac OmniFlex units to replace auto scrubbers on VCT/tile in the cafeteria, gymnasium and Art Room.
“OmniFlex machines are typically $4,000 less than the traditional auto scrubber and do a comparable job. They are also great for applying gym floor finish using a T-Bar method, dispensing floor stripper and using as a wet/dry vacuum,” he adds.
“Kaivac is an innovation leader. While many companies provide great equipment that helps custodians do their job more efficiently, Kaivac is continuously improving their equipment and designing state of the art tools.”
“We plan to grow the Kaivac program at all of our high schools and eventually our middle schools in the coming years.”
It’s all part of an integrated strategy to help students shape a successful future by shaping up the cleaning for the healthiest environment possible.
Allen Rathey is the principal of the Healthy Facilities Institute (HFI), director of the Indoor Wellness Council (IWC), and author of articles about best practices in cleaning and indoor environmental management.
*The Healthy Facilities Institute (HFI) and the Indoor Wellness Council (IWC) do not endorse products.