The Grounds Shop of the Chesapeake Public School Division (Virginia) Department of School Plants was evaluated in 1995-96. The goals of the grounds maintenance program are to provide safe and attractive grounds for students, parents, and staff of the school district. The evaluation examined the extent to which these goals are being met by using ratings by 36 principals. Whether the program could be restructured to improve efficiency and effectiveness and whether there is a role for a private provider of lawn services were also explored. Over 60% of the principals rated the overall grounds maintenance activities of the Grounds Shop as above average, but the final appearance of the lawns was not always excellent. Groundskeepers attributed this to not having enough time for the final touches. Better communication between principals and groundskeeping staff would improve the program. It is concluded that the current in-house staff offers generally efficient and cost-effective service when compared with the estimated costs of an outside lawn service.
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