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Schools are full of activity, between the students, teachers, staff, and parents. The constant flow of people can create a unique challenge: maintaining a clean and sanitary environment. A clean school isn’t just about aesthetics; it can play a crucial role in everyone’s health, student’s academic performance, and even attendance rates. Here, we’ll explore five key tips for keeping schools clean and discuss how Kimberly-Clark is encouraging students of all ages to become part of the solution.

The Importance of Cleanliness in Schools

There’s no doubt that germs and bacteria tend to thrive in busy environments like school buildings. After all, school environments are places where there are supplies being passed around, surfaces being touched, and countless face-to-face interactions being made, which all contribute to germs finding their way into every nook and cranny.

With all the hustle and bustle within school buildings, it can be difficult to always maintain cleanliness. Despite the difficulty, it is important to keep up with regular cleaning and disinfecting high traffic areas because of the benefits it can have on students and their learning.

Studies have shown links between clean classrooms and reduced absenteeism due to lack of illness. In other words, cleaner classrooms tend to keep the amount of student absences lower, which means students are  in school more throughout the year. A clean environment can also help minimize the spread of contagious diseases, allowing students to focus on learning. Additionally, a clean and more organized learning environment can help improve concentration and focus, leading to better academic performance. Being sick or absent due to illness can also increase stress and anxiety in students, which might hinder their ability to focus in school.

5 Tips for Keeping Schools Sparkling Clean

With how easy it can be to catch a cold or a virus from being in a school building, Kimberly-Clark has made it their mission to help develop a culture of cleanliness within schools. Here are some tips the company is proposing schools put into action, and which Kimberly-Clark products can help with these tasks:

  1. Target High-Touch Surfaces: Desks, doorknobs, light switches, and computer keyboards can be breeding grounds for germs. Implementing a regular cleaning schedule that prioritizes disinfecting these high-touch surfaces throughout the day can be a great way to combat this. For a good quality cleaning cloth that doesn’t leave residue behind, try the Kimberly-Clark Professional General Clean X60 Multi-Task Cleaning Cloth. Not only can these cloths be used more than once, but they can be used on many surfaces and germ-centric areas around the classroom. Pair them with your favorite disinfectant cleaner and get wiping!
  2. Embrace the Power of Handwashing: Proper handwashing can be one of the simplest and most effective ways to prevent the spread of germs, especially around schools. With readily available handwashing stations in classrooms and restrooms, schools can become equipped to properly wash away the germs. Consider promoting fun handwashing campaigns that encourage proper techniques, especially for younger children. If your school building or district needs some new handwashing items or a restroom restock, Kimberly-Clark Professional provides many different options when it comes to these types of products. Check out their extensive list of hand soaps and hand soap dispensers, along with paper towels and paper towel dispensers. Here are some of W.B. Mason’s favorites that are compatible with one another:

Hand Soap/Hand Soap Dispensers:

Paper Towels/Paper Towel Dispensers:

    1. Harness the Power of Preventative Measures: Placing entrance mats at doorways to trap dirt and debris before it gets tracked onto floors can be a good preventative measure. Encourage students to wipe off their shoes before entering the classroom to minimize dirt and germs being tracked into hallways and classrooms. Encourage students to use Kleenex Tissues when sneezing or blowing their nose, and Kleenex Hand Sanitizers afterwards to prevent germs from spreading. Here are some of our favorites for the classroom:

    2. Promote a Culture of Cleanliness: Beyond custodial staff, everyone can play a role and contribute to maintaining a clean school. Encourage students to wipe down their desks at the end of the day, throw away their own trash, and clean up spills or pick up litter they encounter. Teachers can lead by example by keeping their own spaces tidy and emphasizing the importance of cleanliness during some lessons. To bring a little fun into cleaning, make a competition out of it! Give all students a set time and a WypAll® General Clean L10 Light Cleaning Towel to see who can bring back the dirtiest wipe. For young students, offer rewards like stickers or pencils for the winner.
    3. Dispenser Inspections All Year: Part of what ensures a clean and safe building during the school year is what the custodial and facilities staff do during the summer months. It can be a good idea to have custodial staff test and evaluate all the school’s soap, paper towel, hand sanitizer, and toilet paper dispensers to ensure they are all working properly prior to the start of the school year. That way, if there are any that aren’t working properly, you can get ahead and order replacements, along with a bulk supply of soap, hand sanitizer, toilet paper and paper towels.

Encouraging Student Participation: From Awareness to Action

Building a clean school environment goes beyond assigning cleaning tasks and relying on the custodial staff to finish the job. Here are some ways Kimberly-Clark is fostering student participation and instilling a sense of ownership within their campaigns:

    • Age-Appropriate Hygiene Education: By tailoring hygiene lessons to different age groups, schools can get the topic of cleanliness into students’ brains, so it becomes something they think about more often.
        • For younger students, utilizing interactive games and songs to teach proper handwashing techniques can be a great idea.
        • For older students, discussing the science behind germs and the importance of a clean learning environment can get them thinking more about germs and how easy it is to catch a virus at school.

    • Student-Led Cleanliness Initiatives: Empower student councils or classroom representatives to organize school-wide cleaning campaigns. This can instill a sense of ownership and responsibility in students and could possibly get them thinking about their future and where else they can make a difference.
    • Recognition and Rewards: Acknowledging and rewarding students who consistently demonstrate good hygiene practices or participate actively in school cleaning initiatives can help encourage others to follow suit.

A Clean School – A Healthy Learning Environment

Kimberly-Clark believes that maintaining a clean and sanitary school environment is an ongoing effort. By implementing these helpful hygiene tips and encouraging student participation, schools can create a healthier and more productive environment for everyone, no matter the season. Remember, a clean school can help foster better student health, improve academic performance, and a more positive learning experience for all. Shop all Kimberly-Clark products from W.B. Mason and discover how your school building can cultivate a culture of cleanliness.


CCS Facility Services. The Impact of Clean Schools on Student Success and Teacher Retention. ( Accessed April 25, 2024.

Clean Schools, Happy Schools. Cultivating a culture of cleanliness within your institution. (Provided by Kimberly-Clark) Accessed April 25, 2024.

Economic Policy Institute. Student Absenteeism: Who misses school and how missing school matters to performance. ( Accessed April 25, 2024.

Kimberly-Clark Professional. Maximizing Your Break: A School Facilities Manager’s Summer Maintenance Checklist. ( Accessed April 30, 2024. Effects of classroom cleaning on student health: a longitudinal study. ( Accessed April 26, 2024.