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Being asked to clean (coronavirus)

Discussion in 'Pay and conditions' started by xtra, Mar 8, 2020.

  1. xtra

    xtra New commenter

    Last week our maintenance staff were conducting assessments to mitigate against the coronavirus. The IT rooms were identified as hotspots.
    In a conversation with them, I was told that the cleaning staff aren't obligated to clean the computers and equipment, and asked if I would be willing to come into work earlier each day to clean each of the 30 computers in my classroom and the surrounding areas - gloves and cleaning solution would be required.

    What are your thoughts on this?
  2. bonxie

    bonxie Lead commenter

    It's unlikely to be part of your job description either. To give each of the computers and their surrounding areas a proper clean is going to take a fair bit of time each day. If you do decide to do the cleaning, I hope you are either paid for your extra time or are told you no longer have to do something else to make up for the lost time.
  3. colacao17

    colacao17 Senior commenter

    Union. Immediately.
    Morninglover likes this.
  4. diddydave

    diddydave Established commenter

    Tell them that it would be cheaper for them to add it to the cleaning staff's job description than it would be to yours.
    I'd suggest it would qualify for a TLR allowance as:
    1) It's a significant responsibility not required of all classroom teachers (30 minutes added to a day that of 6 hours would be more than 8%)
    2) Focused on teaching and learning - well if they are off school because of some disease there's a lot less learning going on and if you are off there's less teaching.
    3) It has an impact of education progress across the curriculum outside of your own subject area - again as it is aimed at improving attendance

    And remind them that as the 'school' has now identified it as a 'risk' they HAVE to put in place mitigation of that risk.
    Morninglover and Rott Weiler like this.
  5. border_walker

    border_walker Lead commenter

    As keyboard are likely to be more infected than a toilet seat, I would question why this hasn't been done before.
  6. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    Two possible answers:

    (a) 'No thank you'
    (b) Incredulous laugh + 'you must be joking' + 'why don't SLT do it if the cleaners won't'

    They should pay the cleaners extra to do it.

    LoL Made me smile, but I think it would fall down on the requirement that TLRs should be for something requiring a teacher's professional skill and judgement :)
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2020
    diddydave, Morninglover and strawbs like this.
  7. shevington

    shevington Occasional commenter

    Union .

    I am sure the cleaning staff would happy to do if they are paid extra.

    Too many people on here would do the cleaning without question. They would also buy their own cleaning materials.
    che48 likes this.
  8. colacao17

    colacao17 Senior commenter

    If the cleaning takes long enough for you to have to go in early, ie longer than a quick wipe, how on earth is it going to be done between classes? And if it doesn't get done between classes is it really worth doing at all?
    bonxie likes this.
  9. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    Union seems unnecessary at this time. AIUI the request was only from maintenance staff and they only asked, they didn't attempt to direct OP to do the cleaning.

    OP only needs to involve union if SLT start instructing or pressuring OP to do it.

    I'd be more concerned if the cleaning didn't happen at all now it's been identified as high risk in a formal risk assessment. That might be worth getting the union involved in if SLT takes no action. School's duty of care etc.
    DYNAMO67 likes this.
  10. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    If it came to being instructed by SMT to do this, then you run into the issue of what can be asked of you. A teacher under STPCD is protected against this sort of thing, but I am not convinced that other teachers can't be told to, unreasonable though this seems.

    However, here, it strikes me that this is cleaning staff being stroppy. I think you need to have a word with SMT - it is their responsibility to make sure the cleaning is done.
  11. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    I don't think, from post 1, that the cleaners have been asked. More likely (just my guess!) cleaning is contracted out so there will be a detailed cleaning specification with cleaning contractor, and it doesn't include the computers. Any change would need contract renegotiation....
    harsh-but-fair likes this.
  12. Morninglover

    Morninglover Star commenter

    If the OP agrees, and someone in the school contracts Coronavirus, I wonder who will get blamed!
  13. Corvuscorax

    Corvuscorax Star commenter

    ask what other jobs are going to be taken off your plate to give you time to do this properly.
  14. shevington

    shevington Occasional commenter

    Let the senior staff who do not teach ,do the cleaning. What is more important Health and Safety or wandering around with a click board. I wonder whether these people will be doing less book check ups !!! Clearly they will be wearing gloves !!!
    Morgelyn likes this.
  15. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    You may well be right. However, it seems to have been the maintenance staff who are asking the OP to do the cleaning. I think this is wrong. The report should go to SMT, who then are responsible for taking action. To me, the appropriate action would be to pay the cleaning company to clean the computers.

    Perhaps the OP could clarify. Are SMT aware of the situation and expecting you to do the cleaning?
    strawbs likes this.
  16. Skeoch

    Skeoch Star commenter

    I would suspect that the IT team would want a say in the cleaning process. Visions of large amounts of sanitiser squirted into keyboards by enthusiastic cleaners, making the keyboards fail......
    DaisysLot likes this.
  17. DaisysLot

    DaisysLot Senior commenter

    So.... Just clean.

    This post now seems ridiculous somehow, and while I understand the origins of sentiment and the call to arms of unions, ultimately, it's always been our role to provide a safe environment for learners.

    Plenty of teachers have long armed themselves with anti-bacterial wipes a plenty for their desks and own sense of hygiene and pride.
  18. Morninglover

    Morninglover Star commenter

    Surely since the schools have been closed to most pupils, the OP can - if they are in school - clean the computers during school time? And only if suitable cleaning products are supplied. (I haven't seen wipes in shops for a long time).

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