School closure because of rat infestation and the general untidiness across some areas of our country indicate that we are not teaching and modeling values of cleanliness that we should esteem.

The persons best suited for keeping an area clean are those who use or occupy the area. This means that owners of businesses and lands adjoining roadways should be responsible for keeping them clean. Athletes would also keep playing fields clean and students would keep their school clean.

Children deserve to learn in a safe, clean and orderly environment. They have a right to a clean classroom and a school in good repair. At the same time also students should not be denied the learning opportunity and responsibility of keeping their school clean. Schools overrun by rats may be an indicator that much food is available for them. Keeping the school and its surroundings clean is the responsibility of everyone who occupy the school.

Refuse at school should be carefully handled by placing in appropriate specialized containers:

Waste foods collected in buckets and used to feed animals

Plastic bottles placed in a special bin for recycling

Paper and any other biodegradable materials collected and put in the school’s compost heap.

Keeping clean our homes, roadways, business places, schools, and our country generally, is our collective task. Everyone must do his or her part.

There would always be a role for the professional janitors but we can all benefit from practicing cleanliness.