The Quiet Heroes

Recognition to the Ones Who Keep You Virus-Free

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Giorgette Ruiz, Staff Writer

With the COVID-19 pandemic, the need to disinfect stuff has multiplied by millions. With our pocket hand sanitizers that we use after every class, and that god-awful substance the teachers spray on our desks, students and faculty have become their own custodians. 

However, you cannot overlook the people who play a bigger part in keeping the occupants of Medina Valley High School, as well as other schools across the district, safe. For that, you have your custodians to thank. Whether it is a simple spray and wipe or going into every classroom to take out the trash, custodians play a huge role in your everyday student and faculty lives. However no one knows the real dangers and sacrifice behind their daily jobs. 

Every year, over 46,000 janitors suffer work-related injuries requiring time away from work, according to a report by the National Safety Council. For instance, janitors often use harmful chemicals to clean and are at high risk of exposure to blood-borne pathogens, which cause several diseases in humans. If that is not enough, they spent an immeasurable amount of time on campus, during quarantine, emptying every classroom and wiping down every inch of the building, sacrificing their own time and well-being for the school. 

The reopening of the school came with new modifications and adjustments to ensure safety. The new cleaning regulations took the staff and students by surprise. They had to frantically adjust to the changes at hand, but for custodians like Linda Puckett, it simply was their second nature. 

“Teachers and students cleaning up after themselves makes it a bit easier for us, but sometimes we are unsure on how well it’s actually clean,” Puckett said. Puckett has worked for the school for three years and took part in the school-wide cleanup. “We have to take extra steps with the job, but I love my job. I take my responsibility very seriously.” 

        You walk across campus blatantly knowing you are in a safe and clean environment because of the endless hours the custodians worked over the break, disinfecting every classroom, making it the safest environment for anyone doing in-person schooling. Even during school, you see them walking around with their cart full of supplies cleaning every empty classroom after every use. They have done more for the school than you can possibly fathom. Pay them a kind thank you for all they’ve done, because at the end of the day they are the reason we are safe and able to be here on campus.