WHAT PARENTS AND OTHERS SHOULD LOOK FOR:
- Suspect that your school has indoor environmental problems when:
- The roof leaks
- The building is new or newly renovated and still smells like paint, varnish, or glue.
- The building is fully carpeted
- Your child goes to school healthy but comes home ill, cranky, or exhausted.
- Your child comes home with odd odors clinging to his/her clothing.
- Your child has health or learning problems ONLY in that building.
- Building maintenance and repairs costs are often cut at budget time.
- The building smells damp or musty, or has been flooded.
WHAT PARENTS AND OTHERS SHOULD ASK THEIR SCHOOLS:
- Is there a preventive maintenance plan?
- Do you prevent pests without the routine use of toxic chemicals?
- Do you promote good indoor air quality by preventing mold and dust, and by using nontoxic products?
- Are the plumbing and wiring adequate?
- Do you tell parents and employees in advance of hazards, such as pesticide use or renovations?
- Do you inspect and control lead, asbestos, and radon?
- Do you respond quickly to complaints?
- Are there wholesome foods for snacks and meals?
- Are the heating, lighting, ventilation, windows, doors, and buses energy efficient?
- Do you protect occupants during renovation and construction?
IF THE ANSWER TO ANY OF THESE QUESTIONS IS "YES":
Ask your school's principal to consider implementing the Indoor Air Quality Tools for Schools program created by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. An easy-to-use kit, including checklists, background information and a unique IAQ Problem Solving Kit is available here: http://www.epa.gov/iaq/schools/tools4s2.html.
Source: Healthy Schools Networks