Southgate Community Schools Enlists Germ-Zapping Robot to Battle Coronavirus

·5 min read

SOUTHGATE, Mich., May 05, 2022--(BUSINESS WIRE)--As the world looks for effective ways to prevent the spread of germs, Southgate Community School District is taking extra steps to ensure that its Fordline Elementary School campus is properly disinfected. It’s the first school in Michigan to utilize Xenex Disinfection Services’ powerful germ-zapping technologies to quickly destroy germs throughout the building.

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Fordline Elementary School is the first school in Michigan to utilize Xenex’s powerful germ-zapping technologies to quickly destroy viruses and bacteria throughout the building. (Photo: Business Wire)

Southgate Community Schools recently partnered with Forefront to provide comprehensive custodial services for the district’s eight schools. One of the key reasons for the partnership was Forefront’s specialized experience in serving the hospital and senior living markets with environmental services and infection prevention services. Forefront proudly serves over 40 hospitals and senior living communities in 14 states.

Forefront began providing custodial services for Southgate Community Schools in March 2022. When Forefront learned that Southgate’s Fordline Elementary School was experiencing a rising number of COVID-19 cases among students and staff members, it brought in Xenex’s powerful UV technologies that are proven to quickly destroy severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that causes COVID-19, on surfaces.

Xenex, the world leader in UV room disinfection for healthcare facilities, is known for its LightStrike™ Germ-Zapping Robots™, which have been deployed by hundreds of healthcare facilities worldwide. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, LightStrike robots are now used in airports, schools, hotels, sports arenas, police stations and correctional facilities, convention centers, and more to quickly disinfect large rooms and areas. Backed by 45+ peer-reviewed studies validating their efficacy, the robots are proven to quickly kill common germs like norovirus, influenza and MRSA, as well as deadly superbugs like Candida auris, which recently forced a specialty hospital in Detroit to stop accepting patients.

To disinfect the entire school quickly, the Forefront team used a LightStrike Germ-Zapping Robot to disinfect large spaces within the school, including classrooms, the gymnasium, cafeteria and restrooms. In addition, they used five Deactivate™ devices, a high-powered, handheld disinfection tool designed to quickly destroy germs in compact areas, in the school’s smaller areas like offices and special needs areas.

"Southgate Community Schools invested in Forefront, an environmental services company with an established industry background in healthcare infection prevention. During our most recent uptick in COVID cases, Forefront brought in equipment for disinfection that was otherwise unavailable to us. It gives us a tremendous reassurance and confidence to know that we have a sanitation tool of this caliber available to us. It also gives us a sense of pride that our district is the first in Michigan to use this in support of the health and safety of our students and staff," said Sharon Irvine, Superintendent of Southgate Community Schools.

"We want to do everything possible to ensure that we’re providing our customers with the cleanest environment possible. Using the LightStrike robot and Deactivate devices at Southgate Community Schools’ Fordline Elementary campus enabled us to quickly destroy germs that we can’t see, but that could potentially be transmitted to a person," said Forefront CEO & Co-Founder, Dan Bowen. "There are a lot of UV technologies on the market, but we chose the Xenex robot because it’s proven to work quickly and backed by more than 45 peer-reviewed studies validating its efficacy. The devices work fast, are easy to use, don’t leave behind a residue like most chemical disinfectants or sprayers, and won’t damage materials or equipment like UV devices using low intensity mercury bulbs."

LightStrike Germ-Zapping Robots quickly destroy viruses and bacteria and are used to deactivate pathogens on surfaces that are missed during the room cleaning process. The robots emit high intensity bursts of broad spectrum ultraviolet (UV) light proven to deactivate greater than 99.99% of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that causes COVID-19, in 2 minutes at 1 meter. Different pathogens are susceptible to UV light at different wavelengths. With bursts of broad spectrum UV light (200-315nm) generated by a pulsed xenon lamp, LightStrike robots quickly deactivate viruses and bacteria where they are most vulnerable.

Deactivate utilizes high-powered LEDs to create ultraviolet (UV) light that deactivates pathogens. Deactivate is proven to destroy SARS-CoV-2 in 30 seconds at 1 meter, and MRSA (Methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus) in 1 minute at 1 meter. Deactivate does not require warm-up or cool-down time and does not leave behind any chemical residue. Within minutes, the area is immediately available for use.

About Forefront

Forefront is a boutique culinary and support services company serving discerning, mission-driven organizations in healthcare, senior living, education and government. Its Education Division, Forefront Campus Services, provides custodial and facility management services to colleges, universities, K-12 and private schools. Forefront maintains healthy, safe, resilient environments that elevate creativity, experiences and growth for better learning. For more information, visit

About Xenex Disinfection Services

Xenex is a world leader in UV technology-based disinfection strategies and solutions. Frost & Sullivan named Xenex the 2020 Global Company of the Year for its patented technology and being at the vanguard of the fight against SARS-CoV-2. Xenex's mission is to save lives and reduce suffering by destroying the deadly microorganisms that can cause infections. Xenex is backed by well-known investors that include EW Healthcare Partners, Piper Sandler, Malin Corporation, Battery Ventures, Targeted Technology Fund II, Tectonic Ventures and RK Ventures. For more information, visit

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Melinda Hart
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