Pri 3 & 4 students in S'pore to clean toilets as part of module on social values of cleanliness

Do it right even when no one is watching.

Brenda Khoo | November 22, 2023, 03:58 PM



The annual Clean Public Toilets Campaign in Singapore was launched on Nov. 21.

Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Sustainability and the Environment Baey Yam Keng launched the Clean Public Toilets Campaign 2023 at One Punggol Hawker Centre.

The campaign is by the National Environment Agency (NEA), Public Hygiene Council (PHC), Restroom Association Singapore (RAS), and Singapore Kindness Movement (SKM).

One facet of it involves primary school students cleaning toilets.

Pilot toilet cleanliness module

According to NEA, the PHC will pilot a toilet cleanliness module as part of the Buddy Clean Workshop, a programme that aims to inculcate positive social values and norms on cleanliness amongst Primary 3 and 4 students.

Students will get to pick up practical skills and knowledge on how to keep public spaces, including public toilets, clean, NEA said.

However, details have not been firmed up, according to CNA, but the module will involve students cleaning school toilets, and will be introduced early 2024.

“From the PHC’s perspective, the actions are more than just theoretical," PHC chairman Andrew Khng told CNA.

He added that the PHC will be engaging schools and students before determining the extent of the practical portion.

The goal will be to roll the programme out to all primary schools as a regular module, it was reported.

Practise kind acts without reward

The PHC has been supporting the campaign since 2021.

The theme for this year’s Clean Public Toilets Campaign is, “Are you nice when no one’s around? Do it right for everyone”.

The theme, NEA said, appeals to the concept of social consciousness and encourages the socially desirable actions of "Clean, Flush, Dry, Bin" by public toilet users.

The campaign draws parallels to the practicing of acts of kindness without reward and recognition, and nudges individuals to be more aware of their actions behind the closed doors of the toilet cubicle, NEA added.

NEA added that it will reach out to more than 2,000 premises, including coffee shops, hawker centres, parks, petrol stations and sports facilities, to publicise campaign messages.

Enhancement of public toilet infrastructure

Over the years, NEA has also made efforts to enhance public health standards and to support the enhancement of public toilet infrastructure.

The Environmental Public Health Act 1987 was amended in 2020 to mandate baseline cleaning standards and place greater accountability on premises owners to meet those standards.

In 2020, NEA also introduced a toilet improvement programme for toilets in hawker centres and coffeeshops.

Features in new and renovated hawker centre toilets include sensor taps, ceiling or wall fans, centralised soap dispenser reservoir system, and Singapore Green Building Council-certified hand dryer.

Top photos via NEA