How to Disinfect Schools

January 22, 2021 Leave a Comment

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It has always been essential to keep schools, colleges, universities, and daycares consistently clean, sanitized and disinfected. COVID-19 has put a special emphasis on the importance of disinfecting the classroom. It has presented schools with unprecedented challenges to keep their students and staff safe.

There has never been a time when parents, teachers, students, and other school faculty members have faced a bigger challenge than what we are currently facing. After a long time spent with virtual learning, schools are starting to reopen and there cannot be enough emphasis placed on finding better ways to keep everyone safe.

How To Disinfect Schools With Safe Solutions
There are plenty of disinfectants on the market. While many of them are on the "EPA List N: Disinfectants for COVID-19" and are approved for use against the virus, there's no indication that these products are safe concerning human health. Many of the products on List N contain quaternary ammonium compounds, or quats, which can be dangerous, particularly to young children.

The EPA states in its "Green Cleaning, Sanitizing, and Disinfecting: A Curriculum for Early Care and Education" guide that "Children are more sensitive to the health effects of toxic chemicals." The guide goes on to state that:

Researchers estimate that 5% of childhood cancer and 30% of childhood asthma are related to chemical exposures. Many of these exposures are occurring in schools where janitorial staff use dangerous chemical-based products for cleaning and disinfecting. The accelerated pace at which these toxic chemicals are now being used is causing unprecedented levels of exposure with unknown consequences to human health.

This holds especially true for young children. One study from the University of Bergen in Norway (20 years, 6,000+ people) showed that regular use of spray cleaners and disinfectants are as harmful to the lungs as smoking a pack of cigarettes a day for 20 years. These are alarming statistics!

The challenge, then, is how do we disinfect schools without harming the very people we want to keep safe? Most of the products used in schools and other facilities across the country carry an explicit warning from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) stating that these products should not be used around children. However, many professional janitorial supplies used in schools contain extra-strength formulas that contain toxic chemicals.

The CDC, World Health Organization (WHO), and American Lung Association are all on the same page about these products. They agree that cleaners and disinfectants are complicit in congenital disabilities and may also contribute to ADHD, autism, asthma, allergies, respiratory disease, and even cancer. The National Institute of Health says, "Children are uniquely at risk for experiencing health outcomes related to environmental exposures due to a combination of behavioral and physiological characteristics." Further studies by these health agencies have indicated that teachers and custodians are more likely to develop issues associated with chemical cleaners than people in other industries, often many years after exposure has occurred.

COVID-19 Has Presented Schools With The Challenge of Keeping Students and Staff Safe
GenEon has been in the business of providing safe cleaners and non-toxic sanitizers and disinfectants for years. We've also developed advanced systems for applying our products safely and effectively. GenEon's cleaners, degreaser, sanitizers, and disinfectants are made using nothing more than water, electricity, and natural minerals, resulting in a solution that is sustainable, safe for people and pets, and not harmful to the environment. Our solutions have 80-200 times the sanitizing power of chlorine bleach without the dangers associated with chemical-based products.

The CDC, in its guide to Cleaning and Disinfecting Classrooms, stresses the importance of knowing the difference between cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting.

The guide recommends that shared surfaces that are frequently touched should be disinfected regularly, not just cleaned. This includes desks, countertops, doorknobs, computer keyboards, hands-on learning items, faucet handles, phones, and toys. Also, routine cleaning and sanitizing of all areas of the building should be done regularly. The CDC emphasizes making a routine of cleaning. They also emphasized disinfecting properly and using products safely.

The CDC Stresses the Importance of Knowing the Difference Between Cleaning, Sanitizing and Disinfecting
Dwell time is crucial to disinfecting. Most chemical disinfectants require that a surface be kept wet for 10 minutes for it to work actively. Products made with electrochemical activation (GenEon products) will kill most bacteria in seconds, including nasty ones like E.coli, MRSA, and norovirus. Our products do not leave a chemical residue and don't emit fumes or VOCs. There are also no harmful artificial fragrances in our products.

GenEon's cleaners, sanitizers, and disinfectants are made using a technology known as on-site generation. This is especially helpful to schools and other facilities that are often on a tight budget. It can be used by the school's existing custodial staff. The products are generated on-site using our Instaflow system. Since the products are made as needed, there is less waste. That also eliminates the need to store harmful disinfecting products on the premises. We get a lot of Testimonials from the staff at schools using GenEon's products telling us how effective they are.

Some of the schools currently using GenEon's products in California include:
  • Fresno Independent School District
  • Fresno State College
  • Kings Canyon United School District
  • Harvey Mudd College
  • Elk Grove
  • Natomas Unified School District
Our Mist is an advanced and effective way to apply our safe cleaners and non-toxic sanitizers and disinfectants to all of the surfaces in schools, where it's important to help reduce the spread of germs and bacteria. The MIST is ideal for use in the classroom, cafeterias, gymnasiums, bathrooms, offices, and on the playground. It also allows you to apply our disinfectant to wide-open areas and the hard-to-reach areas that are often forgotten about or overlooked, even by janitorial staff. This allows for the maximum application of disinfectants to all of the vulnerable areas in a school.

We are in challenging times! The pandemic has shown us the importance of sanitizing and disinfecting, but as we mentioned earlier, we must do it effectively without harming those that we're trying to protect. GenEon allows schools to offer their students, parents, and faculty members peace of mind to ensure a cleaner, safer environment for everybody. That's something we could not be more proud of when it comes to what we do.

To learn more about how you can get GenEon into your school, fill out the form here on our website. We look forward to helping you provide a better environment in your school.

Categories: Education
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