ESD 112 Insurance Programs Safety Talks

A safe classroom offers a better learning environment

In a safe classroom, teachers are better able to provide an education and guidance, promote positive student behaviors and prevent negative behaviors and accidents. Teachers can’t remove every danger from their classrooms, but they can reduce risks and incidents.

Slips, trips, and falls are significant cause of injuries. Take the following precautions to avoid this common classroom danger:
  • Always maintain clear pathways to exits. Store student backpacks and articles of clothing away from where you walk.
  • Slow down. Many falls occur when a person walks too fast through the work area. Don't run.
  • Watch where you are going. Don't assume a walkway is clear. Watch for clutter on the floor and for unexpected changes in the floor level, such as a step up.
  • Clean up spills immediately.
  • Standing on chairs, tables, or desks to extend your reach is a dangerous practice. Always use a stepladder, never a chair or table.
  • Be sure to close filing cabinet drawers when not in use. Drawers left open are “shin bruisers.” Never open two drawers at the same time as that may cause the filing cabinet to tip over.
  • Route cords so they don’t cross walkways whenever possible.
  • Secure all cords with a cover.
  • Inspect carpets, rugs, and mats frequently to ensure that there are no rolls or curled edges that create a trip hazard.
Other safety tips for your classroom include:
  • Remove any items that aren’t necessary and take up too much space, such as extra bookshelves, bins, and desks.
  • Put materials away when not using them and stack materials carefully so they don’t fall over.
  • Extension cords are for temporary use only! Only one power strip should be used per electrical receptacle and must be plugged directly into the wall receptacle. “Daisy chaining” of power strips together, and/or the use of an extension cord between the wall receptacle and the power strip is not allowed.
  • Do not block electrical panels, fire pull stations or fire extinguishers.
  • Appliances need to be plugged directly into a wall outlet and not into an extension cord or power strip.
  • Turn on lights before entering a room.
  • If you are carrying something, make sure you can see over it or around it.
  • Store all boxes, papers, and supplies off the floor.
  • Do not bring chemicals, paints, or cleaners from home. Chemicals need to be stored properly and out of the reach of children, not under the classroom sink.
  • Do not use room deodorizers, air fresheners, plug-ins, or candles.
  • Remove items that cannot be properly and regularly cleaned, such as overstuffed furniture, pillows, and stuffed animals.
  • Learn where supply and return vents are in your classroom. Don’t block the room’s air supply or exit grills or turn off ventilators.
  • Improper lifting can result in a back or shoulder injury. Carry smaller loads. Get help with heavy or awkward loads.
  • Report unsafe conditions as soon as possible to your supervisor if you cannot correct the hazard yourself. Don’t ignore an unsafe condition that may injure someone.
Safe work practices will protect your district’s most valuable assets – YOU and YOUR STUDENTS!
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