Back To School Hand Hygiene

Going back to school means being exposed to various germs and illnesses. Proper hand hygiene is crucial to reduce the spread of infections and maintain a healthy learning environment. Here are some essential hand hygiene practices to follow:

1. Frequent Handwashing: Encourage students and teachers to wash their hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. This should be done after using the restroom, before eating, after coughing or sneezing, and whenever hands are visibly dirty.

2. Hand Sanitizing: Provide hand sanitizing stations throughout the school premises, especially in high-traffic areas like entrances, cafeterias, and classrooms. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers with at least 60% alcohol content can be used when soap and water are not readily available.

3. Cover Coughs and Sneezes: Remind everyone to cover their mouths and noses with a tissue or their elbow when they cough or sneeze. This practice helps prevent the spread of respiratory droplets that can contain germs.

4. Avoid Touching Face: Encourage students and staff to avoid touching their face, especially their eyes, nose, and mouth, as these are common entry points for germs.

5. Maintain Clean Surfaces: Ensure that frequently touched surfaces like doorknobs, desks, and shared equipment (computers, tablets, etc.) are regularly cleaned and disinfected.

6. Personal Hygiene: Encourage good personal hygiene practices, such as keeping nails short and clean, and washing hands after using shared items like art supplies or sports equipment.

7. Stay Home When Sick: Students and staff should stay home if they are feeling unwell, especially if they have symptoms like fever, cough, or sore throat. This helps prevent the spread of illnesses within the school community.

8. Promote Awareness: Educate students, teachers, and parents about the importance of hand hygiene and its role in preventing the spread of infections. Use posters, announcements, and other visual aids to reinforce these practices.

9. Role Model Behavior: Teachers and school staff should lead by example and practice good hand hygiene themselves, reinforcing the importance of these habits to the students.

10. Encourage Regular Hand Checks: Teachers can remind students to check their hands regularly for dirt or contamination and guide them to wash or sanitize their hands as needed.

Implementing these hand hygiene practices will contribute to a healthier school environment and reduce the risk of illness transmission among students, teachers, and staff.




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World Health Organization (WHO). Guide to Local Production: WHO-recommended Handrub Formulations. Available at:

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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Facility. Available at:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). When to Stay Home. Available at:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Hand Hygiene Education. Available at: