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Healthy School Environments

Routine Cleaning and Maintenance Overview

A photograph of a janatoiral cart
 
Why It's Important
  • School environments are healthier when they are kept clean and well maintained.
  • Unsanitary conditions attract insects and vermin, and irritants and allergens found in dust and dirt can have a negative impact on student health and performance in schools.
  • Indoor air pollutants and allergens related to poor cleaning practices contribute to increased respiratory and asthma symptoms among children and adults.
  • Regular and thorough cleaning and building maintenance can prevent pest problems, minimize irritants and allergens and create healthier learning and working environments for children and staff
What You Can Do
  • A good operations and maintenance plan includes procedures for cleaning all parts of the school facility and maintaining the entire building infrastructure: the foundation, exterior and interior walls, windows and doors, and roofing.
  • Refer to and follow your state's relevant environmental health policies and emergency management protocols when conducting cleaning and maintenance activities.
  • The Practice Effective Cleaning and Maintenance component of EPA's model school environmental health program provides information to help schools create and maintain clean productive learning environments.
A figure depcting the cover of a text which features a yellow caution 'School Xing' sign.

Helps schools and school districts start or improve a chemical management program to reduce chemical hazards and prevent future chemical mismanagement issues.

Find More From...

EPA and Federal Partners

National Organizations

  • School Facilities Management: Resource List Exit EPA Disclaimer by the National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities offers an annotated list of links, books and journal articles on the operations and management of school buildings and campus facilities.
  • School Cleaning and Maintenance Practices: Resource List Exit EPA Disclaimer by the National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities offers an annotated list of links, books and journal articles on custodial standards and procedures, equipment, safety and product directories for the cleaning and maintenance of schools and colleges.
  • The Sustainable Sites Initiative™ (SITES™) Exit EPA Disclaimeris an interdisciplinary effort to create voluntary national guidelines and performance benchmarks for sustainable land design, construction and maintenance practices. SITES™ is led by the American Society of Landscape Architects, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at The University of Texas at Austin and the United States Botanic Garden.

Regional, State and Local Resources

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