Editorial: Washings hands first sign of defense; school sinks inadequate against Coronavirus


Luc Alvarez

Some schools in the DuPage County have closed due to coronavirus.

Kate Riley and Luc Alvarez

Over the course of a month, coronavirus has managed to top headlines worldwide, and in doing so has created a mass hysteria surrounding the virus. Stores quickly sold out of hand sanitizer and prices of medical face masks soared on Amazon from $1.50 to a whopping $7 per piece.

District 99 Superintendent Dr. Hank Theile quickly sent out an informational email to assuage many families’ fears over the virus, complete with an informative meme reminding us to “Keep calm and wash your hands.”

However, if you happen to be one of the responsible people who wash their hands regularly, this doesn’t mean that our current bathrooms are equipped to properly handle every vital measure to staying germ free. After an informal inventory of student washrooms, only 30.2% of bathrooms had hot water, whereas 69.8% of bathrooms have cold or lukewarm water.

Throughout these bathrooms there are four broken dryers, two broken sinks and one broken soap dispenser. Some of these sinks require you push down handles for water or for you to pull open doors after washing your hands which spreads more germs. Washing your hands is the first line of defense against viral infections like corona or influenza, yet our bathrooms may be deterring students from taking that vital step.

It’s important to keep DGS students and staff informed in more ways than just an email. Implementing posters in bathrooms regarding correct hand washing procedures and its importance can increase the percentage of the population who regularly washes their hands. It’s also beneficial to be able to count on bathrooms in proper working order complete with hot water at school. Providing hand sanitizer with accurate alcohol percentages in each bathroom would be another helpful safety measure.

While coverage of coronavirus is going nowhere, something that we can say goodbye to is our societies less than average hygienic habits. DGS needs a space properly supplied with hot water and working appliances. Also, please just wash your hands.