Full Menu

Plant Operations (Custodial Services)

Plant Operations is responsible for managing the daily cleaning operations of?4.7 million square feet of building space, in addition to the outside grounds. Plant Operations is also responsible for the acquisition and coordination of various goods and services to maintain school facilities, as well as managing operational expenditures and working closely with Maintenance to coordinate Major Maintenance/Minor Construction capital projects and the Design and Construction Department on building specifications and post-renovation clean-up.
Specific areas include:

  • writing specifications for cleaning supplies and equipment,
  • providing uniforms, shoes, boots and other safety equipment for custodial staff,
  • managing the recycling program for all 鶹 Public Schools sites,
  • managing the mowing contract for 鶹 Public Schools,
  • reviewing Design and Construction plan drawings,
  • purchasing indoor and outdoor custodial equipment for all locations,
  • inspecting buildings for cleanliness,
  • consulting with building supervisors on a wide range of issues,
  • providing pest control services,
  • interviewing and assisting in the hiring of custodial staff,
  • training current and new custodial staff,
  • assist with clean-up for post-construction/renovation and mechanical emergencies.


Each 鶹 Public School facility receives a building inspection and report by a Quality Control Specialist 5 times per school year. Plant Operations inspects over 13,000 areas (classrooms, kitchens, auditoriums, aquatic centers, gymnasiums, offices, restrooms, outdoor grounds, etc.) each year. Each building is sent a detailed report with a average score for the building. The purpose of the report is to provide an unbiased view of the school regarding:? cleanliness, safety, sanitation as well as make recommendations for continuous improvement. The minimum acceptable score for a building is 85%. Reports are reviewed by Plant Operations management, the building principal and custodial building supervisor to identify additional follow-up actions required to correct deficiencies. Each Quality Control Specialist is available to discuss his or her findings and observations with building administrators, custodial building supervisors and custodial staff.? Tracking results over a couple of months can provide the basis for recommending training or other corrective action. Quality Control Specialists are available to provide specialized training upon request of the Principal, custodial building supervisor or line custodian. Plant Operations management is available to meet with principals and custodial building supervisors to discuss building and custodial concerns.

Let’s Strive for 85!

Lawn Service

鶹 Public Schools has a joint contract with 鶹 County Government to mow the schools fields and around areas of buildings that constitute several acres of grass. Weather permitting, mowing of fields is conducted on a 7-calendar day cycle beginning April 1 and through November 1. Hills and embankments behind the schools are cut on a 30 calendar day cycle.

If it rains during a 7-day cycle the contractor will attempt to cut the grass the following day or when the rain ceases.

Locker Repair

A work order should be submitted to the Maintenance Department to request locker repair for existing hall lockers. Priority will be given to hall lockers because every student must have access to a safe and secure locker for coats and book bags. Usually lockers are repaired during the summer and winter breaks. Lockers must be emptied by the student before the contractor will work on a locker. Locker replacement should be submitted via the?Minor Construction/Major Maintenance (MC/MM)?process.



Currently training for building supervisors and selected line custodians is provided by Plant Operations in the following areas:

  • International Executive Housekeeping Association training program Classes meet at the Syphax Academic Center on Mondays and Wednesday commencing in October and ending in June. Students study a broad range of subjects, including: interpersonal relations, chemical control systems, budgeting, computers, work planning, labor laws, supervision, etc. Contact Plant Operations at (703) 228-7732 in order to enroll.
  • The Plant Operations Department holds two day-long staff development seminars per year for Custodial Building Supervisors, Quality Control Specialists and Assistant Custodial Building Supervisors. One session is held during the summer and the other during Spring Break. The? programs help supervisors enhance their skills, learn new skills and current on upcoming developments in products, procedures or other pertinent information.
  • Training for line custodial staff occurs in three ways: 1) The Quality Control Specialists provide orientation to new staff. 2) New custodians receive basic instruction in cleaning procedures as they commence work with 鶹 Public Schools. 3) All line custodians attend a seminar in the summer.
  • Blood-borne pathogen training, OSHA, Right-to-Know information are provided each summer.

Hiring Procedures

Any potential candidate seeking employment as a custodian with 鶹 Public Schools must follow the following procedure:

  • All custodial staff must complete an application.? Go to the school board website, look under Employment >careers@APS and then follow the instruction to set up your personal identification number.? You may then add jobs that interest you. Application hints:? Fill in all blanks and job history completely, attach a recent resume, double check your application for accuracy and completeness.? Failure to provide all required information is considered the basis for disqualification of the application. and submit it to the Human Resources Department via the web.? Human Resources will not process an application without a resum.
  • Applications will be evaluated by Human Resources, and if considered qualified, sent to schools for consideration for an interview.
  • Applications will be selected on the basis of neatness, completeness and qualifications.
  • The hiring location will contact applicants regarding interview dates and times.
  • Supervisory position will include an interview with the school principal, the Director of Plant Operations and/or Assistant Manager of Plant Operations.

Custodial Allocation Formula

Plant Operations staffing is based on the following factors: actual building square footage, relocatable square footage and community use. The formula is integrated into the Planning Factors for staffing. When an 鶹 Public Schools building is renovated or relocatables are added or removed, or has additional community use beyond the current allocation, the building Administrator should contact Plant Operations with the appropriate changes and any documentation to support the request. The information will be downloaded into the Plant Operations database and a recommendation made based on the results.

Pest Control

Pest Control Service

鶹 Public Schools follows an Integrated Pest Management philosophy regarding pest control.? IPM focuses on targeting building and grounds pest in the most effective and least toxic methods possible.? Such a process focuses on using prevention methods (sealing holes and gaps, exterior bait stations, removing food? and water sources), establishing thresholds, monitoring types and life stage of pests to gather information on problems.? IPM is endorsed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and every state-level department of agriculture in the county.

Building staff, students, community members, the pest control vendor are required to participate in the pest control program and everyone has a role to play in the process.

Pest control services are provided by a licensed and appropriately certified pest control vendor to each location on a monthly scheduled basis.? The vendor is required to inspect the following spaces each month:? kitchens (work and family studies, culinary, Culinary Arts, main office), custodial closets, staff lounges, restrooms, main office, exterior grounds.? They are also required to inspect the following spaces:? all spaces indicated on the pest sighting log, every work order submitted to the vendor, any rooms indicated by the custodial staff, and any emails sent from Plant Operations. Additional service may be scheduled based on building needs and concerns.

Each location receives a pest control schedule which should be posted prominently and placed in the pest control logbook.? A report from the pest controller is provided to each school following inspection.? The report includes data such as start and ending time, areas inspected, observations of conditions, recommendations to correct maintenance or cleaning concerns.

Each location is provided a log book to enter observed pest behavior, which is foundational to the Pest Control Program.? The log book is available to everyone to enter reports of sightings or evidence of activity.

Questions or concerns should be directed to Plant Operations at 703-228-7732.

For more about the Pest Control Program, please review the PowerPoint slide presentation below.

Click image to load PDF


Both 鶹 County Government and the Commonwealth of Virginia have stated goals regarding the diversion from the trash waste stream to the recycling stream. 鶹 County Government passed a zero-waste goal.? Recycling is part of Goal 4 of the APS School Boards Strategic Plan, Provide Optimal Learning Environments.? All APS employees, students and building users are required to participate in the recycling program.

Trash Collection:? ?Collection at APS sites occurs Monday through Friday with the exception of school holidays. Frequency of collection is based on size of building and collection needs. Service on APS holidays occurs the next day.

Recycling 鶹 Public Schools collects a wide range of mixed paper products, cardboard, metal, plastic. Single-stream dumpsters are picked up on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. 90-gallon toters are picked up on Thursdays.? For a complete list of acceptable products, please see the .? Items not recyclable include: shredded paper, glass, tanks under pressure.

  • YouTube video links about sorting processes, recycling policy and music

Beyond recycling in the classrooms and lunchrooms, various departments recycle materials:

  • The computer hardware received each year is packaged primarily in cardboard.? Information Services places the cardboard in a dumpster provided by Plant Operations which is is hauled away for recycling.
  • Broken high-metal content furniture is placed in a 30 cubic yard dumpster for metal recycling.
  • As locks and keys were changed the old metal hardware was recycled.
  • Plant Operations;
    • Outdoor equipment (mowers, snowblowers, weedwhackers, etc.) no longer feasible to repair is placed in a metal recycling dumpster.
    • Dead batteries in custodial equipment are picked up by a vendor and recycled.
  • Cardboard from various deliveries to schools is placed in a 20 cubic yard cardboard dumpster for recycling.
  • Design and Construction is required to recycle for its permits from the county as well as its LEED ratings:
    • places recyclable materials in dumpsters on construction site to collect materials as part of the demolition process.
    • Building materials are ground for uses elsewhere.
    • Large quantities of carpeting can be sent to the makers in Dalton, Georgia in order to be made into new carpeting.
    • Uses recyclable or recycled content in the building materials.

Disposal of Hazardous Material 鶹 Public Schools is classified as a small generator of chemical waste.The State of Virginia grants each elementary, middle and high school an EPA number. The EPA certificates are kept on file in the Department of Plant Operations. APS provides disposal of hazardous material for middle school and high school science labs. The school is responsible for generating a list of chemical waste to be disposed.

Shades and Blinds

To replace existing damaged or missing roller shades or venetian blinds, place a work order with the Maintenance Department. After the work order has been placed, Plant Operations will send a vendor to the school to evaluate conditions of the existing window coverings. If repairs can be made, a recommendation will be placed with the vendor to repair the damaged window coverings.If window coverings cannot be repaired, Plant Operations with authorize replacement for new roller shades or venetion blinds. Roller shades or venetian blinds purchase will be granted based upon security, environmental conditions and availability of funds.