Major Boost To Strengthen School Cleaning Services

20 December 2023

The Allan Labor Government is strengthening the delivery of cleaning services in government schools, with an improved operating model and enhanced employment conditions for hardworking cleaners from 2025.

Minister for Education Ben Carroll today announced a range of improvements to school cleaning services that will strengthen and enhance workplace conditions for Victorian school cleaners as well as delivering stronger processes and quality of the cleaning model used in metropolitan government schools.

From 2025, cleaners across Victoria will see a boost to their wages and greater job security – with cleaners to receive a 5 per cent pay rise above the Cleaning Services Award, and extended contracts of 52 weeks guaranteed for one quarter of cleaning staff.

The new model will build upon the existing School Cleaning Consultative Committee to provide simplified methods for cleaners to give Department feedback through new dedicated portals, as well as providing online channels for cleaners to have a say on what affects them.

Under the new model, cleaning service providers will be appointed to 10 metropolitan areas, up from 8 in the current model, balancing the number of the schools serviced in each area.

To ensure all schools receive quality cleaning services, all cleaning staff will receive standardised induction and training, while regular and ongoing third-party quality assurance audits will complement existing performance monitoring to make sure Victorian schools are safe and clean.

New funding will also give schools greater flexibility to purchase additional cleaning services when required, such as before and after school events, and a simplified Cleaning Services Plan will make it easier for cleaners and schools to understand their cleaning plan.

In July 2018, the Government introduced significant reforms to ensure all government schools receive consistent, high-quality cleaning services and cleaners receive their lawful wages and entitlements. The reforms introduced an area-based cleaning model that now covers more than 900 school campuses.

The new cleaning model starting from 2025 will also strengthen cleaning services in regional Victoria, with government schools to receive extra funding for more flexible local cleaning, and cleaners to benefit from the same pay and employment improvements as their colleagues in metropolitan government schools.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Education Ben Carroll

“The feedback from schools and cleaners on the current cleaning model has been loud and clear – and today, we’re responding to improve cleaning for schools, and boost wages and conditions for cleaning staff.”

“In 2018, we introduced the School Cleaning Reform to ensure all cleaners are paid properly for the vital work they do in schools. Now, we’re setting higher standards that will strengthen our school cleaning model, improve service quality and give cleaners more job security.”

Reviewed 20 December 2023

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