Custodial staff adjusts to pandemic life

Custodial staff adjusts to pandemic life

Elly Green, Reporter

As students and staff reflect on their lives over a year ago, before the pandemic, NHS custodians reflect on how their daily lives and jobs have changed completely in just a short twelve months. While students and staff enjoyed extended breaks, the custodial staff members were hard at work making sure everything would run smoothly after the students returned in early fall. In addition to learning about new chemicals and how they work, custodial staff worked over-time at the school during the extensive summer break to perform work needed for the upcoming school year.

Custodian Rob Wharton said that custodial staff’s daily routine has been altered due to the pandemic. One specific example of this would be constantly wiping down surfaces touched repeatedly by students. Along with this, the custodial staff were specially trained to learn how to deal with the virus, what cleaners and chemicals are effective and how to safely use those cleaners for the benefit of the school and students.

“The custodians job is to make the school as clean and safe as possible,” Wharton said.

Over the long summer break, custodial staff did regular summer work such as stripping and waxing floors. Along with this, custodians performed a few odd or abnormal jobs to provide a new environment for students to come back to come fall. 

We did a lot of extra work such as painting and putting new flooring in different areas,” Wharton said. 

Administration has shown their appreciation for the custodial staff day in and day out by thanking them on a regular basis according to Principal Caleb Smith. 

“We celebrate them every day and make a big deal about Custodial Appreciation Month in October too,” Smith said. 

Smith explains that custodians are a huge asset to every school, especially Newton High School during the pandemic. They make sure everything is running smoothly behind the scenes for the benefit of students and staff.

“Custodians do so many different things to support our staff and students outside of just cleaning. They wear many hats and serve our Railer family well,” Smith said. “We could not be successful without them.”

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