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Focus On...

School Buildings and
Building Management


Monitoring building facilities and safety, and working closely with the custodians to ensure cleanliness, are responsibilities shouldered by most principals. The articles below from Education World's archive share stories and practical tips that will help you get a handle on these tasks as you "think green."

'Paperless' Packets Save Money, the Environment
School board packets in the Tolleson (Arizona) Union High School District used to take days and reams of paper to prepare. Now all the information is presented and archived online, not only saving the district time and money, but also helping the environment.


Find more articles of interest in the following Education World resources:

Building School Community & Climate

Health and Wellness

See our complete archive of Focus On articles. More than three dozen hot topics of interest to principals.

Crafting Thorough Cleaning Plans
Few educators may link school cleanliness with student performance, but cleaner buildings can mean higher attendance and more learning. Included: Tips for developing a comprehensive cleaning program that creates a healthier environment for all.

Improving School Environments Through Green Cleaning
As research mounts about the link between indoor air quality and health, and as more children enter school with respiratory problems, schools, districts, and even whole states are switching to more environmentally-friendly cleaning agents.

Green Schools Save the Environment, Money
Green schools, which are built to rely more on natural resources or have extensive recycling and conservation programs, may sound expensive or a lot of work, but actually they save districts money in the long run, some experts say.

The School-Building Dilemma: Is Leasing the Answer?
Some states and organizations are taking a new approach to opening schools. Can leasing buildings or enlisting private entities cut costs or at least speed up construction? Included: Descriptions of some public-private partnerships.

Badge, Please? Schools Turn to ID's to Enhance Security
While many school districts have policies requiring visitors to sign in and wear a badge while in a school, some schools are choosing to issue photo identification badges to all staff as well. Included: A description of several schools' identification badge procedures.

School-Wide Mail Delivery System Teaches Kids Letter-Writing, Responsibility
In this instant message, e-mail age, many children haven't experienced the excitement of getting a hand-written letter. One popular program, though, allows students to write letters and work in an in-school post office and mail delivery system. Tips included.

A Community Pitches In to Repair Its Schools
A lack of maintenance and funding had taken a toll on Baltimore's schools. A summertime call to the community for help, though, yielded donations and thousands of volunteers who completed hundreds of thousands of dollars of work. Included: A description of a citywide volunteer effort.

Detroit School Repair Program: A Model for Others
A marathon ten-week summertime effort resulted in some major improvements to Detroit's public schools. But the effort could not have succeeded without the cooperation and involvement of the city's business community.

Living With the Permanence of Portables
Using portable classrooms to relieve school overcrowding is a solution heralded -- and hated. But it's all a matter of attitude, some teachers say.

Copyright 2008 Education World

Last updated 06/26/2008