As a Head Custodian at a Middle School, I often have teachers approach me with comments and concerns about their classrooms as well as the school in general. I would like to share just such an encounter that happened in April of 2011.
I was walking down the hall at Dixon Middle School when Ms. Giblon, our band teacher, called my name from down the corridor. Ms. Giblon has had a lot of health problems and has been absent from school quite a bit this year. She has been experiencing unexplained migraine headaches and episodes where she “blacks out.” I stopped as she said she needed to talk to me.
To be honest, I expected to hear a concern or complaint about something that required my attention. To my pleasant surprise, she shared the accompanying story with me. I am truly inspired by her story and feel genuinely proud that the (OS1) cleaning program that I have been asked to oversee in Provo City School District is having such a profound impact on one of our teachers’ lives. Stories like these make all of the hard work worth it and are a true testament to the positive results of the (OS1) cleaning program.
Letter to Jeff Hawkins from a Teacher at Dixon Middle School
“I have been recently diagnosed with severe migraine headaches and my neurologist has been trying to help me discover and eliminate
things that may trigger them. She told me to try eliminating household cleaners with heavy chemical smells from my home as they may be one of the possible triggers. I have been cleaning with “natural” cleaners in my house for a few weeks now. I am also taking medication and trying to eliminate a few other things but I have not had a migraine or blackout incident since I switched cleaning routines. I have also had less allergy trouble.
I don’t know if the lack of exposure to heavy chemical cleaners at home and at school are the only reason I feel better but I have noticed that when I go into other schools and businesses and smell the chemicals from cleaners that I sometimes get the nauseous/lightheaded feeling I was getting before I was having my migraine/blackout incidents. I can’t stand to walk down the cleaner aisle at the store any more because it just gags me.
So anyway, I just want to thank you for being willing to pilot this new cleaning program at Dixon and for using safer cleaning products. I appreciate what an awesome job you do keeping our school clean and safe. It does make a difference!”
Dixon Middle School