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  • EditHero
  • Adventurer

    • 68

    • February 18, 2013, 08:40:27 pm
    • Seoul, South Korea
How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« on: September 07, 2015, 06:32:01 pm »
I'm in an after school program in a public school, and I'm wondering how clean do you other public or after school teachers keep your classrooms? (If you have your own room and aren't moving around).

I sweep twice a week, mop once a week, wipe down the boards and desks with orange cleaner (that I bought) one a week, everything is organized at the end of the day and the classroom always looks nice and up to my slightly-OCD standards. But the classroom/school is a bit old and the floors are scratched and scuffed, the wallpaper too. Didn't even try getting the floor marks off cuz mopping doesn't make a dent... and I always figured... I didn't do that... sooo...

But today principal walks in to co-t's room and says our two classrooms are so filthy if we don't get the walls and floor clean SOON she will call our director and have us thrown out of the school. I called the manager and notified (and for note, my manager used to be the teacher at this school until I replaced her about a month ago so she could, ya know, manage) and she was as baffled as I was.

Also earlier today in the admin office when I was signing in I was approached by the English speaking admin lady asking how is my new time here, how are the students, do I need anything at all, please let them know about anything any time. BECAUSE. The last teacher (my manager) was such a WONDERFUL teacher (she's annoyingly good) that the parents AND the students have SUCH high expectations for me... so please tell them if I need anything.

I have no good feelings about this.

Also though, what are your cleaning standards for your classrooms? After today I'm seriously curious.


  • tamjen
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1180

    • June 19, 2013, 08:08:14 am
Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #1 on: September 07, 2015, 06:38:27 pm »
The students and/or cleaning ladies take care of everything in the 3 public schools I work at. If I was told to sweep or mop I would refuse, flat out. I am not a janitor. If it's not in your contract it's not part of your job.
Hail Caesar


  • nomadicmadda
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1585

    • July 01, 2014, 06:49:40 am
    • Seoul, formerly Boseong
    more
Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2015, 09:49:04 pm »
At my old elementary school I was the only English teacher and I had my own building.  I was semi-responsible for keeping it clean, but I agree with tamjen--we are not janitors and it's not in our job description. 

There were attached bathrooms in my building that were pretty gross, and I think the cleaning lady was initially annoyed she had to clean them.  No way in hell am I cleaning toilets!!!  I would occasionally sweep my floor when it started to look dusty or after the kids did a project, but all the homeroom teachers had the kids cleaning their rooms and I had no one.  In the end no other admins or staff were really in my room too often, and my CT the second semester would leave absolutely disgusting stuff lying around: half-drunk cups of coffee that molded, her trash from her snacks all over my desk from when she borrowed my room on my travel days, even moldy food.  She left a corn on the cob chunk once that looked like a completely different plant when I came back.  Foul. Fortunately I didn't work with her for too long, but yeah after that I stopped feeling back about not sweeping floors on a daily basis...


Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2015, 10:20:05 pm »
I also teach an after school program.  To be honest it ebbs and flows for me.  The standard for me is to make sure the floor is relatively clean (swept), desks in rows, chairs pushed in etc.  At the end of the day I do it again.  I mop it maybe once per semester, unless something got spilled on it.  Lately the classroom helper has done much of it.

I should mention too, that the last class of the day (gr 6, 5 students) will occasionally help me.  some of them are always late - not due to commitments, just them exercising their new found independents (puberty stuff)  ANYWAY, the deal is, that they owe me the minutes they are late after class finishes - I get them to help me straighten it.  Also has seemed to get them to come on time too-which was the point (it's funny watching the 'letter of the law' behaviour too - seconds to spare -sprinting down the hallway to make it, hehehe)

anyway - your principal sounds like he was trippin.  reaction that much outta proportion must of had a reason that you don't know.  I wouldn't sweat it.  keep it clean - which is what you seem to be doing, and wait to see what happens.  My feeling is he was pissed that he will need to spend money on the classroom come next winter vacation, as it's in need of renovation - and you were at the wrong place at the wrong time.



  • ART55
  • Adventurer

    • 72

    • August 29, 2012, 01:11:00 pm
    • Pohang
Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #4 on: September 08, 2015, 06:54:16 am »
At my current boys' high school, I have my own classroom, and I'm proud that it is the cleanest classroom in the school, and everybody knows why. 

If my students come even 10 seconds late to class I make them clean.

I make them sweep, mop, wipe everywhere, and throwaway the garbage.  And I make them do it during work time so that all the students can see how much it sucks.  Each student late will have to clean for about 5 minutes, and I make them do it good and fast!!!!!  I am probably the only teacher at the school where the students make an effort not to be late and I almost never have tardiness.

When they leave, they have to push in their chairs and throw away their garbage, if a student doesn't, then they have to clean between classes.   


Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #5 on: September 08, 2015, 07:14:38 am »
My previous classroom was spotless. I cleaned, and I also made sure students took responsibility. However, I just moved schools and this is a nightmare. I mean, it has potential to be an awesome room, equipped with all of the goodies, but it will probably take over a month to get there. I found out yesterday that the floor is actually not gray, it is off white. Fun times... I usually do something different for students that are even a little late, but I think I will have to change it to helping me clean this room.


Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #6 on: September 08, 2015, 07:38:19 am »
At my main school, our old classroom was a disaster area from the beginning, as it was never used the prior year, so no one had checked on it to clean it. It took so much time to get it passable. But at least we had brooms.

Now, we've moved classrooms and they've only left a broken sweeper broom in the classroom and since we'd have to get the hallway-cleaning-ajummas to let us borrow a dustpan if they happen to be around, we end up sweeping with our shoes and old papers.

So, it's not that clean...


  • HyooMyron
  • Super Waygook

    • 493

    • October 14, 2013, 11:36:39 pm
    • Jinju, S. Korea
Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #7 on: September 08, 2015, 07:43:35 am »
If they do a good job of cleaning, I'll play music for them the next day while they clean. If they don't do a good job of cleaning, I don't play music the next day. This has resulted in a spotless classroom.


  • Yaya
  • Featured Contributor

    • 921

    • May 08, 2014, 01:25:18 pm
Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #8 on: September 08, 2015, 07:58:14 am »
I have a friend who was a TaLK scholar (afterschool classes at a public school) and the school made her clean EVERYDAY. I was even there once when they shouted at her about it not being clean enough. I thought it was really rude, and really isn't part of the job description.
I'm not saying we shouldn't tidy up our classrooms, but demanding that the classroom be spotless everyday was a bit ridiculous.


  • gagevt
  • Moderator - LVL 3

    • 1145

    • August 24, 2013, 01:55:38 pm
    • Gyeongbuk
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Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #9 on: September 08, 2015, 08:15:45 am »
In my first middle school, the 3rd grade students did all the cleaning. I mean ALL(with the very rare exception). This usually meant the bathrooms were just sprayed down with water everyday lol. For my classroom, I had some boys or girls from the class next door(my favorite class), which happened to also be an art focus class. These students would always do a good job of cleaning my room. It also gave me mor eopportunities to build raport and interact with them more.

Now in my elementary school, only something like once a week do students come to clean, and they don't do nearly as good of job. Mostly it's my coteacher and I sweeping up and straightening desks. My coteacher is on the messy side though, and his area of the room is usually pretty messy. Every now and again he will really clean up though. I try to keep my office area tidy, but it's rare that anyone sees it unless I'm letting some students raid my special stash of candy.
"The man who passes the sentence should swing the sword."


Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #10 on: September 08, 2015, 08:55:56 am »
In our teacher bathrooms there has been a pad stuck inside the stall trash bag for like the past two months because our janitor just empties the trash bags instead of changing them and she won't bother un-sticking it.  :rolleyes:



Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #11 on: September 08, 2015, 09:17:34 am »
In our teacher bathrooms there has been a pad stuck inside the stall trash bag for like the past two months because our janitor just empties the trash bags instead of changing them and she won't bother un-sticking it.  :rolleyes:



Is it your pad?


Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #12 on: September 08, 2015, 10:04:41 am »
If you are at public school you are pretty much unsackable.  You might not get renewed if you do a poor job, or if someone doesn't like you, but that's not the same.

Acknowledge the Principal's comments (he's on a power trip) then carry on as before.


  • Aristocrat
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1838

    • November 10, 2014, 01:04:27 pm
Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #13 on: September 08, 2015, 12:16:46 pm »
When I taught at middle school (1st year), all the teachers were expected to keep their respective classrooms clean. At the end of every day, I had to supervise 4 girls to clean the huge English classroom... It was an absolute nightmare. I've never dealt with a lazier and snottier group ever. I was lucky if they did things half-arsed.

The floors were wood and got dirty extremely quickly. At the end of the day, you'd see footprints everywhere so mopping daily was essential. The cleaning crew were useless, so I'd spend about 1hr everyday cleaning the classroom. If the class wasn't spotless by the start of the next day, the bitchy CTs would comment on it and squeal to the other teachers. I developed a reputation, but they quickly forget that my cleaning crew were 4 times worse than theirs, my classroom was 4 times bigger than their homeroom and i was expected to keep wooden floors and everything else clean with nothing but water, a mop, a tiny broom and a cloth.

So glad to be out of that crappy school.


  • donuts81
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1364

    • October 20, 2010, 10:23:37 am
    • Korea
Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #14 on: September 08, 2015, 12:54:42 pm »
I work at an after school as well and tatty wall paper and scuffed floors aren't really your domain.

Tell your manager to deal with it. They'll talk to the school and the two of them will come to an agreement. Maybe put up a poster in the meantime.

I had a similar problem which resulted in the school and my company splitting the cost to repaint my room. Nothing was done about the floors but that problem went away when people realized they would have to pay to get it professionally cleaned.


"You can't hurt me now, Mr Lee. I've lost all feeling"


Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #15 on: September 08, 2015, 01:08:01 pm »
Let me tell you what really happened. Your classroom is probably fine.

Your principal is not fine though, and that's the crux of the problem. Your principal is probably a monoglot who has never been abroad (other than the perfunctory tour group experience) and he might have a real chip on his shoulder in relation to English teachers. You bring a set of ideals that threatens his stature in the confuscian hierarchy.

So just give the old dog a fake smile and nod and keep doing what you're doing. Soon with the help of god (a mere expression, i'm a non believer) he'll either retire or die. Your students and coworkers will be a lot better without him.

Now there's an answer. You're welcome.


Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #16 on: September 08, 2015, 02:47:44 pm »
My principal comes in every week and drops a deuce on my CO-T for our class. Only thing we could change is if we painted it... Which happened - (caretaker painted it). The floors are perma-scuffed and need replacing if there is to be a miraculous about-turn to the look of the room.

Kids are messy AF. Need to get those little punks to pick up the packets from the sweets I give them, I mean DUDES and DUDETTES there are TWO freaking bins in the room.


  • EditHero
  • Adventurer

    • 68

    • February 18, 2013, 08:40:27 pm
    • Seoul, South Korea
Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #17 on: September 08, 2015, 04:58:10 pm »
I do know that the principal is FREAKY old school. Like if you see her, stop in your tracks and bow kinda old school.

At my last school (with the same after school company) my classroom was in way worse condition, as in, my classroom used to be the hallway, and the stuck up some thin walls and a half broken door and called it a day. And they never said anything about the classroom.

My company's solution was that they are going to send me and co t some kind of industrial strength korean cleaner intended for bathroom floors usually and they've told me to scrub when it gets here........ not my job... I've been at this school for four weeks.... not my messy floors.... but not a lot I can do at this point.


  • Schellib39
  • Expert Waygook

    • 773

    • March 10, 2011, 03:08:04 pm
    • South Korea
Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #18 on: September 09, 2015, 10:21:16 am »
I'm lucky enough to have my own English classroom to teach in and I'm the only one that uses it. I have all of my classes in assigned seats, with their names written on a seating chart. At the beginning of class I tell my students to check their desks for writing and trash on the inside. If they find either of the two, I simply look to see who was sitting there last and that student gets to come and spend their lunch time cleaning the English classroom (cleaning desks, mopping/sweeping, taking out the trash, cleaning the boards etc...). If the student did not check their desk and tell me that there was trash in it, then that is their fault for not checking.

In the beginning I had quite a few students coming to clean, but now I rarely get the students coming to clean and my classroom still stays clean. Though the football team has recently used my class in the morning and left it a disaster after one class with spit on the ground, trash in desks and writing on the desks...I now have the entire football team at my disposal to do a good deep cleaning of the whole classroom.

The students assigned to clean my class after school have the easiest job in the world, literally come in and give the room a glance over and they are on their way.

Of course at the end of the day I will go through and straighten desks or clean any minor things that are inevitable when having 100+ students in a classroom throughout the day. But for the most part, my classroom is always very clean.


Re: How clean is your classroom? And a nervous feeling situation...
« Reply #19 on: September 17, 2015, 02:49:23 pm »
I'm terribly messy (leftover handouts, papers, folders etc) most of the time, but my school doesn't care as long as it's really clean for open classes. The students sweep and mop. I lcean the white boards. That's about it. If the 1st years cause lots of trouble and tear up a whole bunch of paper and such I make them stay and clean.