Protesters say Volusia County schools too dirty

Employees march into school board meeting

DeLAND, Fla. – More than 100 employees from Volusia County marched to Tuesday's school board meeting and protested for more respect, better pay and the biggest ongoing issue, clean classrooms.

Employees gathered to march into Tuesday's school board meeting hoping that the board will do something about the cleanliness of their schools.

"My school is filthy," said Janice Parounagian.

Parounagian teaches 9th grade reading at DeLand High School and said it's a daily struggle for a custodian to properly clean and replenish supplies.

"Students don't have paper towels, toilet paper, soap in their bathrooms," she said.

The Volusia Teachers Organization said it even has pictures to prove it.

"This happens on a regular basis. So, is that good for kids when they come to school and the schools aren't clean or they're roach infested or they're running out of cleanliness supplies," said Andrew Spar, president of the organization.

Spar said it started when the district decided to save $6 million a year and outsource custodial jobs to Aramark Services.

However, Aramark released this statement:

"As a partner with Volusia schools for more than 25 years, we take great pride in making sure that all schools are clean and comfortable learning environments. The current district inspection average is 89.7 which is well within the range required by the contract. We have added additional staff to create a substitute pool that allows us to better manage the frequent custodial absences and turnover that can impact daily cleanliness. "

Still, some school employees who voiced their concerns at the school board meeting believe the classroom cleanliness is just not up to their standards.

"I would like to see my school be clean. I'd like to see it go back to the way it used to be," said Parounagian.

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