Another Carpet and Rug Institute Seal of Approval Success Story
This week, a group of CRI staff is attending Connections, a large tradeshow for the multifaceted cleaning and restoration industry(for background on Connections, see the May 21, 2009 blog post). CRI President Werner Braun is scheduled as one of the featured speakers, and the meeting offers CRI a chance to listen to the carpet cleaning professionals and get their feedback on CRI’s Seal of Approval Program.
CRI started the Seal of Approval program as a way to continually raise the bar on quality and performance for cleaning products, equipment, and service, the idea being that setting high standards is a great way to have positive impact – in this case, on the entire carpet cleaning industry.
As I mentioned in an earlier post, the SOA program turns five this year. In light of that important milestone, and in salute to the cleaning professionals at Connections and elsewhere, I offer another Seal of Approval Success Story that shows that effective carpet cleaning and successful education go hand in hand.
Case # 2 Dalton Public Schools
The Dalton Public School system has always placed high value on providing a clean environment where children can learn at their best. Located as they are in the world’s carpet capital, the Dalton Schools reflect the influence of the local industry in their widespread use of carpet throughout the system’s educational facilities. In addition to carpet in school classrooms, carpet is used to reduce the ambient noise in hallways and add additional sound insulation in media centers and music rooms.
The Dalton Schools use carpet in some unique ways as well. For example, two elementary schools have carpeted gymnasiums. The tight, level-loop construction of the commercial carpet used safeguards the system’s smallest students, allowing them to participate in rough-and-tumble play while reducing the likelihood of injury.
At one time, all the carpets in the system’s schools were maintained by school personnel, but as the system grew, DPS facilities management found that outsourcing carpet maintenance was more efficient and cost-effective.
CRI met with school leaders to talk about the importance of using the proper cleaning products and equipment to improve carpet’s cleanliness and appearance, as well as preserve the school’s investment by extending the useful life of the system’s carpets. Shortly afterwards, the Dalton Public Schools signed a contract with a local CRI Seal of Approval Service Provider who specializes in large commercial and industrial installations.
The partnership has worked very well. DPS Maintenance Director Belinda Parrish developed the school system’s regular maintenance schedule, which includes professional cleaning twice a year, during winter and summer breaks. In between, classrooms are vacuumed every night and hallways and other high-traffic areas are vacuumed twice a day. DPS invested in new, SOA-approved vacuums to ensure that cleaning staff had the best tools available to do their jobs right. On site “spotting teams” respond to spills and stains immediately, using SOA-approved spot cleaning solutions. And, each school is equipped with an SOA-approved Predator spotting machine to handle larger problems between cleanings.
Ms. Parrish routinely emphasizes to school maintenance staff the importance of their role in improving the quality of education. “I tell my staff, ‘children may not always remember their teacher, but they always remember the custodian.’” She adds, “Clean, safe schools enhance teaching and learning. A clean environment is as important to a student’s success as a good breakfast.”
What’s Your Story?
Do you have a Seal of Approval success story? If so, James Beach and I would love to hear from you.
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