Large Scale Disinfection of Schools and Learning Institutions

High school students at school, wearing N95 Face masks. Sitting in a classroom.

Ensuring the safety of students and staff in every learning institution requires effective cleaning and disinfection of the countless spaces – from classrooms and gymnasiums to bathrooms and sleeping cubicles. Routine cleaning and disinfection of all these areas can help kill germs and other deadly pathogens, reducing the chances of infections.

Pre-COVID, most schools were not very consistent with their cleaning and disinfection protocols. What COVID did was expedite the adoption of smart disinfection solutions that guarantee optimal results with little effort and less time. The Halo Disinfection System® is one of those solutions that serve all the school disinfection needs with eco-friendly, high-efficacy, and cost-effective results.

Halo Disinfection System® for Large-Scale School Disinfection

The Halo Disinfection System® is a proprietary, hospital-grade, whole-room disinfection solution suitable for large spaces such as school gymnasiums, athletic training rooms, locker rooms, classrooms, sleeping cubicles, playing fields, etc. This system consists of:

  • HaloMist™: A broad-spectrum disinfectant that’s proven to achieve a six-log kill rate. This formulation is non-corrosive and is designed to handle any disinfection, including mold control and remediation challenges.
  • HaloFogger®: This is the central unit used to deliver the disinfectant through dry mist fogging technology. The HaloFogger® dispenses a turbulent aerosol that ensures uniform delivery throughout large and complex spaces to achieve complete coverage.

Large Scale Cleaning and Disinfection Practices

Schools and learning institutions are some of the areas where thorough cleaning and disinfection play a critical role. In most schools, students often come in close contact with one another, and the rampant sharing of supplies and resources means that germs and pathogens can quickly spread from one student or area to another.

Within such spaces, pathogens such as flu and the novel Coronavirus can spread through airborne particles, skin contact, and bodily fluids. For schools looking to implement the best cleaning and disinfection practices, below are a couple of things to consider:

1. The Efficacy of the Disinfecting Unit

Most whole-room disinfecting solutions are either semi-automated or fully automated. They also have varied working mechanisms; for example, UV disinfecting units use sensors and UV rays to kill germs. On the other hand, high-pressure liquid disinfecting units use high-efficacy formulation to kill germs and other pathogens.

An example of the high-pressure liquid disinfecting unit is the Halo Disinfection System®. The Halo Disinfection System® uses EPA-registered HaloMist™ Disinfection Solution as part of a dry fogging technique. HaloMist™ is a unique, ready-to-use product that provides multiple killing mechanisms against all fungi, bacteria, and viruses. No mixing is required, and it is safe for use around electronics.

As far as efficacy is concerned, liquid disinfectants provide uniform delivery and work even in crevices and hidden corners beyond the reach of UV rays. When using disinfectants, it’s advisable to check the labeling of the disinfectant to make sure it’s effective against all pathogens, including antibiotic-resistant bacteria and other disinfectant-resistant micro-organisms.

2. School Disinfection Protocols

While investing in a high-efficiency whole-room disinfecting unit is a significant step to eliminating microbial pathogens in schools and learning institutions, it’s not the silver bullet. Maximizing these units to achieve the desired results requires a well-thought-out strategy backed with solid disinfection measures.

As part of the school disinfection guidelines:

  • Everyone should regularly disinfect their personal items, such as phones, laptops, mouse, etc.
  • The facilities/operation personnel should identify all the areas that need thorough cleaning and disinfection then plan disinfection procedures on a consistent basis. These should include high-touch areas such as light switches, door handles, handrails, etc.
  • The school should encourage students to regularly practice good public health measures, such as hand washing – as a way to minimize the spread of pathogens.

Without clear guidelines, it’s easy to lose track of when and how often cleaning and disinfection should be done. The disinfecting unit then becomes just another “nice-to-have” asset lying around with no particular benefit to the institution.

3. Education and Awareness

Last but not least is the need to educate everyone within the school on the importance of regular cleaning and disinfection. Awareness campaigns where staff and students learn how to minimize infection and pathogen transmission can be quite effective in the long run. Proper communication and collaboration are also necessary to ensure everyone has the same shared goal of reducing microbial activities and curbing infections.

Closing Comments

Large-scale disinfection is now on top of the priority lists for learning institutions as they look for the best ways to keep their students and staff safe, not only from the novel Coronavirus but also from the other deadly bacteria and viruses.

Disinfecting large spaces can be challenging. Similarly, the majority of the solutions in the market are either too expensive, involve a lot of labor or do not cover larger spaces.

Creating a cleaning and disinfection plan for the entire school is paramount. However, maximizing such a plan to achieve optimal results narrows down to three things: understanding the efficiency of the disinfecting system, having some solid cleaning and disinfection protocols, and educating and encouraging everyone in the school to adopt good public health measures and abide by the disinfection guidelines.