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June 9, 2008 12:10 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Brian Sansoni, 202-662-2517 or bsansoni@cleaninginstitute.org

In Middle School, Hand Hygiene Gets a Good "Rap"

  • SDA/CDC Hand Hygiene Education Program Honors Students at Somerset, New Jersey's Sampson G. Smith Intermediate School
  • "Healthy Schools, Healthy People: It's a SNAP" Seeks Reduced Absenteeism
  • Students Hand Hygiene Rap Video Available here

WASHINGTON, DC – June 9, 2008 – While some rap lyrics may be down and dirty, students at Sampson G. Smith Intermediate School kept them clean – as a way to teach their classmates about the benefits of good hand hygiene.

"Yo stop touching that dirty can,
Go to the sink and
Wash your hands,
If you want to go on a date,
Jump up and wash your hands
For goodness sake."

Students in Mrs. Kaz Wright's fifth grade class at the Somerset, New Jersey school have received national recognition for an original rap song and video they created – about the importance of handwashing with soap and water.

The Sampson G. Smith School students are recipients of the 2008 Top Classroom Award from the "Healthy Schools, Healthy People: It's a SNAP" program. Their video is available on SDA's website, at www.cleaning101.com/SNAP.

SNAP – the School Network for Absenteeism Prevention (www.itsasnap.org) – is a collaboration between The Soap and Detergent Association (SDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The six-year old program encourages middle schools to help develop programs that make hand hygiene a priority for students, teachers, school health personnel, administrators and parents.

Mrs. Wright's students' entertaining and educational video promotes personal hygiene through handwashing. It included original rap lyrics composed by students Kyle Sims and Samuel Abbey and a dance routine choreographed and performed by the whole class.

Yo why do need to wash our hands
it's good for you
But if you don't
You'll get the flu

"Teaching proper hand hygiene is a life-long lesson that can be fun," said Nancy Bock, SDA Vice President of Education. "Students recognized by the SNAP program are spreading the word that common sense hand hygiene practices enhance public health and can help reduce school absenteeism. This is more important now than ever, with annual challenges posed by MRSA outbreaks and cold and flu season."

The Sampson G. Smith School students are being honored for their work with a two-day, all expenses paid trip to Washington D.C., including a June 11 awards ceremony at the National Press Club.

Students Kyle Sims and Samuel Abbey are representing their class at the ceremony, along with their parents and their teacher, Mrs. Wright.

This trip is sponsored by The Soap and Detergent Association. Several SDA member companies contributed products and/or financial assistance for the SNAP National Award Program, including The Dial Corporation, A Henkel Company; GOJO Industries, Inc.; Reckitt Benckiser Inc.; Technical Concepts, LLC; and Water Journey, Ltd.

Interested educators can learn more and download specific information about SNAP by visiting the SNAP website, www.itsasnap.org, or sending an email to SNAP@cleaninginstitute.org.