Mar 29, 2012 11:12 PM by Shawn Kline

School custodians floored by move to night shift

The Lafayette School Board approved putting school custodians on the night shift; a move Superintendent Pat Cooper calls a more efficient use of resources but custodians say otherwise.

Cooper says when voters rejected a bond proposal, they criticized Lafayette Schools for not being able to take care of what it has right now, so Cooper and the board are moving many custodians to work overnight starting Monday.
The sudden move isn't sitting well with those forced to pick up the night shift.

"Many of us are concerned about our custodians having to work late at night in neighborhoods that aren't always the safest," Judy McReney said.

Teachers, custodians, bus drivers, they're all in it together. That's the message middle school teacher Judy McReney is trying to get across.

"We are being belittled, we feel like we're under attack at all levels," McReney said.

Some custodians hold more than one job. Others have families, and a night shift would drastically change their way of life.

"We're changing the system," Dr. Cooper said. "When we change the system, people will be upset because their life revolves around the system we use."

Superintendent Cooper heard some of the concerns but he's still pushing forward with the plan. He tells KATC it's the most efficient use of resources and will create a better learning atmosphere.

"It's what every other business in the world does," Dr. Cooper said. "You can't be cleaning when there's 2,000 children in the building, you can't do it."

Cooper says there will be some custodians during the day but schools will have an entire crew to do the "deep cleaning" at night beginning next week.



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