CLEAPSS Supporting practical science and technology
CLEAPSS Technicians
CLEAPSS Supporting technicians

Technicians play a vital role in supporting the teaching of exciting, effective science safely. CLEAPSS provides guidance on all aspects of being a technician and resources such as stock lists, templates for laboratory checklists, requisition sheets, labels and much more to help technicians in their jobs. CLEAPSS actively works with other organisations to raise the status of technicians in schools.

We also post details of technician networks and job vacancies.

If you need help or advice or would like to share a technician tip please get in touch by email or phone.

Working with glass

Latest news from CLEAPSS..
Lab Checks - Have you done yours?
The start of term is an ideal time to do some basic checks in your labs. Aside from the more basic checks like are the sinks clear, and do the taps work. There are more important checks to be made...

All benches / worktops / bollards which have gas taps should not allow any movement (in any direction). CLEAPSS has repeatedly found loose worktops, benches and bollards which can wobble and move considerable amounts. This can damage the supply gas pipe, which in turn could lead to a gas leak. 

Watch this video for an example of the issue. 

If you do discover any movement, then the gas in that lab should be turned off and the gas should not be used until repairs have been made to stop the movement. After these repairs the gas system should be checked by a Gas Safe engineer. (This is often called a tightness test)

If you do discover a gas leak in a lab then turn off the gas supply within the lab, then follow the school procedure(s) to evacuate the building and call 0800 111 999 (if you have LPG then call the supplier number, FLOGAS 03457 200100 or CALOR GAS 03457 444999). 
Remember do not use any flames, or operate any switches on or off, and do not use your mobile phone until you are outside.
New edition of CLEAPSS Guide to Radioactive Sources in Schools L93
We have issued a new edition (November 2019) of L93, 'Managing Ionising Radiations and Radioactive Substances in Schools and Colleges'.  

There is an accompanying short note, GL114, that explains the main changes in this new edition, and what schools need to do. 

The reason for these changes comes mainly from a revision of our risk assessments, in particular the evidence we have regarding repeated failures of home-made protactinium generators. We have also provided more detail on the annual checking and leak-testing of sealed sources.
Findel Product Recall Notice - B8A42390 Ball and Ring
We have recently been made aware of a quality issue concerning the Findel Ball and Ring set B8A42390.

The quality issue was brought to their attention because of a recent complaint received where the ball was heated as directed and subsequently the ball detached from the handle, therefore potentially posing a risk of damage or injury. 

For full details of the recall please read this recall letter.
CLEAPSS membership renewals
This year CLEAPSS is moving to an electronic renewal system for its associate members*. 

During the next two weeks we will be sending out e-mails with the title ‘CLEAPSS Renewal’ so keep an eye out for these and follow the instructions carefully. 

This should be straight forward, however to allow time for this new process on its first run through we have made sure that your current password will remain valid until the end of November. 

If you don’t receive an e-mail there is no need to panic as you are probably not an ‘associate member’. 

*Note this will include individual schools and colleges who subscribe directly to us, suppliers, not for profit organisations and individual members. Schools and colleges that get their membership via a Local Authority, a Multi Academy Trust or other brokering organisation will not be affected. 
Are you a new technician?
Welcome to the CLEAPSS science website. You can find specific resources by adding a key word to the search box. Chemicals can be searched by formula as well as by name.

Our guide for the induction and training of new technicians can be found here.
You can find our guide for model risk assessments for laboratory technician activities here

For further advice you can email the Helpline via the tab on the website or if more urgent call on 01895 251496.

Technicians Resources
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Members only resource Click to download Document.
Provides an overview and full index of all Laboratory Handbook sections.

Members only resource Click to download Document.
This edition includes notes on blood and cheek cell sampling, inappropriate dumping of waste chemicals, and the role and value of the CE mark on equipment.

Members only resource Click to download Document.
Risk assessment guidance for carbon disulfide.

Members only resource Click to download Document.
Risk assessment guidance for Salicylic acid, aspirin & similar esters

Members only resource Click to download Document.
A straightforward investigation using simple equipment which will allow students to confirm Boyle's law.

Members only resource Click to download Document.
This leaflet is intended to give brief details only of the major manufacturers and suppliers of electronic balances suitable for use in science within secondary schools and colleges.

Members only resource Click to download Document.
Briefly lists all CLEAPSS documents relevant to school microbiology.

Members only resource Click to download Document.
Outlines how to prepare for pouring, pouring and storing agar plates, and making slopes.

Members only resource Click to download Document.
Outlines the work that science technicians do, the tasks which they should not, ideally, be given, and provides a pointer to the number of technicians needed in a department and to management issues w.. more

Free resource Click to download Document.
Important health and safety information for using a range of human body fluids and tissues in practical work.

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