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Thread: Should students perform janitorial duties?

  1. #1

    Default Should students perform janitorial duties?

    As a kid I had to help clean up around our elementary school. I've long thought that that was a great learning experience, so this article caught my eye (see below)

    Your thoughts:


    Without Janitors, Students Are In Charge Of Keeping School Shipshape : NPR Ed : NPR

    http://www.npr.org/sections/ed/2015/...hool-shipshape


    Kids get down to classroom clean-ups | The Japan Times

    http://www.japantimes.co.jp/life/200.../#.WIlHo4FfOEc

  2. #2

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    Its always been a good idea to have kids having some responsibilities in schools but todays parents are too protectionist of their progeny and too interfering. The recoil would be bad and with the net effect being a lot of parents (not kids) refusing to get on board and making a ton of noise about it. Which would end up in a two tier system where some students and parents were going along with the plan and some weren't it.

    These things work if there is total buy in.

    The key is positive peer pressure, a concept which also seems forgotten in this day and age. For instance this part of the article is an example;

    Eden Cox, a 10th-grader, says that recently she had to confront a classmate after he left a mess behind. "I got on to him and said, 'Can you please throw your trash away so I don't have to,' " Cox recalls.
    "After all, it's our school," she says, with an emphasis on "our."

    The related concept is that doing work at school helping to maintain it offers pride of ownership and thus becomes "our" school instead of just a place we go to.


    Schools don't even have to go all in on this kind of thing. They could merely have things like trash picking days like we had at our school. With more trash picking days occurring if people were not learning to clean the school and the surrounding area.

    But ultimately we need more buy in from parents to allow the schools to re-establish things that work well.

    On the other hand we will never go no janitor here and I don't know that we should. That should be handled by custodial staff for a number of reasons.
    "if god exists and he allowed that to happen, then its better that he doesn't exist"

  3. #3
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    I agree. Janitorial duties weren't an option in the small town elementary school I went to. Maybe it was the country upbringing / atmosphere, but this was not a foreign concept. Now, I know the mere suggestion would cause an uproar.
    Since calm logic doesn't work, I guess it is time to employ sarcasm. ...and before you call me an a-hole...remember, I am a Dick.

  4. #4

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    Something like this would encourage children to have more outward respect for cleaning staff and for picking up after themselves. If you have ever been to Japan (where children experience this sort of thing), you have probably been taken aback at how outwardly polite everyone is and how clean the public spaces are, despite being crowded shoulder-to-shoulder with people.

  5. #5

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    Absolutely. It's easy to choose Japan as a shining example, but cleanliness is so ingrained in their culture.

    It's almost too perfect: you have a class of 30 and every class rotates cleaning duties whether it be the homeroom, classroom, cafeteria, gym or washrooms. And since you have an army of students doing it, it shouldn't take longer than 15 minutes a day if that.

    And also because you're cleaning up, you're less inclined to make a mess in the first place - or there is a social pressure to not make the mess for others to clean. It's no longer a magical janitor that comes afterwards and dusts everything to perfection.

    It is also an optimistic approach that the kids hold onto such principles into society. It's always amazing how there are almost no public garbage cans in Japan but the garbage you see strewn about is far and few.
    I come back to Edmonton and there's a garbage can every 20 paces on Jasper but there's garbage everywhere.

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