WHAT WE DO.
The Operations Department in a school consists of Custodial and Maintenance staff members that contribute important tasks for the learning environment. Every one of these staff members should know how their jobs impact student learning no matter what their title.
Custodial and Maintenance employees are “Guardians of the School.” The workloads of the Operations Department grow as new technology and equipment becomes available. These everyday changes require new skills, increased duties and responsibilities. This requires training and professional development to keep the department updated. A lack of meaningful, multi-tiered professional development programs are a real health and safety issue for the public school custodian and maintenance worker and the entire school community.
School custodians do more than mop floors and take out garbage, and the following quote from the Madison Metropolitan School District sums it up: “Although not often thought of as a key ingredient of a successful educational environment, the school custodian plays an essential role in maintaining the building, but also the health, attitude and pride of students.”
The Operations Departments job is not just cleaning buildings. They must provide the safest and healthiest environment possible for learning, be it through disinfecting classrooms to helping the 4th grade class prepare a garden bed for a unit in Botany. Some think a custodian’s job is easy, but they forget all the different jobs they do to prepare a building for education. Shoveling snow in the winter, raking leaves in the fall, watering plants in the spring, doing minor electrical and plumbing repairs, boiler operations and maintenance, roof repairs, painting, waxing, the list goes on and on and that is on top of the daily cleaning.
They must also be versed in computer use. They control room temperatures, do work orders and schedule events on line Some hold State certification in Pesticide application, Asbestos abatement , CDL License and more. Their job is to make sure Teachers concentrate on teaching, food service workers concentrate on feeding children and office personnel on caring for children and parents.