In this series of news stories, we take you behind the scenes for a look at how USM staff are working diligently around the clock to keep campus clean and safe—both inside and outside—for students, faculty, and staff.
University School of Milwaukee’s grounds crew—consisting of Tim Schuh, Gary Kasper, and Ben Suran—are responsible for maintaining the school’s 120-acre campus, which includes multiple athletic fields, three separate playgrounds, countless flower beds, and hundreds of square feet of manicured landscaping.
Added to their list of daily to-dos since the start of the school year is spraying all of the playgrounds, athletic equipment, and goal posts with disinfectant. Each morning at about 7 a.m., one of the crew members straps on a specialty, gas-powered backpack mister and carefully sprays all of the Preschool and Lower School playground equipment, as well as the tricycles. The backpack weighs upwards of 60 pounds when completely filled, and requires refilling at least once each morning to cover all of the equipment. While one person sprays the equipment, another carries a hand-held sprayer to disinfect all main door handles to the building.
“We’re able to complete all of these steps in about an hour, using about six gallons per day of disinfectant,” said Schuh. “All of the products we use are ‘clean green,’ meaning they are effective around germs but still safe to use on surfaces being touched by children.”
For Schuh and the grounds crew, the added workload is worth it to see children back on campus. “It was really sad back in spring when the playgrounds and fields were closed and everything was taped off,” said Schuh. “We’re happy to see them getting used again.”