CMS custodian concerned about safety during pandemic

CMS custodian concerned about safety during pandemic

CHARLOTTE — The next wave of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools students, who are returning to classrooms, will be in two weeks.

It will be a challenge, especially for staff members, such as custodians, whose job is to keep everything clean.

[WSOC SPECIAL SECTION: RETURN TO LEARNING]

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“There’s always work to be done as a custodian,” Brandon Chuck Brown said.

The custodian said their responsibility to keep schools clean is more important than ever in a pandemic.

“We, as custodians, have so much on our plate,” said Brown, a custodian at Cochrane Collegiate Academy.

Some students will be returning to the building in November.

“We get boxes every week,” Brown said. “We get something new every week concerning COVID-19 cleaning. We work the outside, inside. From what I’m told, we’ll be cleaning desks, wherever the teachers and students are touching. We’re responsible for cleaning.”

He said he loves his job, but he is worried about his and his family’s health.

“I do think it’s too soon, and I do think that custodians need to come to the table,” Brown said. “We need to talk and open up a little more about our concerns, because with the way that people are dying. I’ve had friends that died from COVID, so that’s a concern.”

CMS board members said at a recent board meeting how much personal protective equipment and cleaning supplies they have on hand, which includes 1.3 million pairs of gloves and 35,000 alcohol wipes.

Brown said he wants to ensure everyone’s safety is a priority.

“Well, in the era of COVID, we need as much supplies as we can get,” Brown said. “Whatever you can think of, we need, because this is a very sensitive thing, and we want to make sure that the custodial staff are safe as the teachers, students, APs, principals.”

Brown said he would like to see custodians have uniforms to wear as another layer of protection.

CMS welcoming back some students with disabilities for in-person learning