IAQ Tools for Schools
EPA strives to equip school districts from across the country on how to carry out effective school IAQ management programs, consistent with Indoor Air Quality Tools for Schools guidance. By planning and organizing both national and regional events and trainings, EPA has joined experts and school representatives together to make a difference.
Click on the tabs to access the available tools and presentations from previous IAQ Tools for Schools National Symposia, EPA Regional events and trainings, and the School Health and Indoor Environments Leadership Development Summit (SHIELDS).
- Action Planning
- 2011 Symposium
- Previous Symposium
- EPA Regional
Design and Action Planning Guide (PDF)
(16 pp., 485 K, about PDF)
Use exercises in this workbook to assess your current assets and determine the actions you need to take to implement or improve your school IAQ management program.
- Action Plan (PDF)
(1 page, 225 K)
Use this one-page document to declare your intentions for improving school IAQ and create your plan for taking action.
- Events Primer (PDF)
(2 pp., 129 K)
This document explains what a pacing event is and how to create a meaningful meeting or event to garner commitments to improve school IAQ management.
- 2011 Symposium Agenda (PDF) (6 pp., 576 K)
Pre-Conference Session-Healthy Schools 101: Getting Started with the IAQ Tools for Schools Program
This hands-on, introductory session for participants new to IAQ management and the IAQ Tools for Schools Program will provide a foundation to build upon throughout the Symposium. Participants will learn how to use the IAQ Tools for Schools Action Kit as the basis for developing a comprehensive IAQ management program for their schools. Award-winning faculty school district speakers will detail the concrete steps they took to get their sustainable IAQ programs up and running.
The IAQ Tools for Schools Approach: Providing a Framework for Success
Thousands of school districts have put in place effective IAQ management programs, consistent with IAQ Tools for Schools guidance. This session explores what is known about effective school IAQ management — how and why it works — and how different school districts develop, enhance and sustain healthy learning environments in schools. Speakers will describe the components of the Framework for Effective School IAQ Management. In addition, faculty programs will describe how they used these proven strategies to build and sustain their award-winning programs.
Using IAQ as a Teaching and Learning Tool in Your District
Students can often play a key role in IAQ management at school and can even help IAQ management issues become institutionalized within a school district. This session will describe educational resources available for integrating IAQ issues into classroom lesson plans and highlight various activities for student participation.
Radon Management in Schools
Radon is one of the most hazardous indoor air pollutants. Thousands of classrooms nationwide have elevated radon levels. Schools can take simple steps to test for radon and reduce risks to occupants if high levels are found. Presenters will showcase effective radon-in-schools projects and discuss successful strategies for addressing this serious environmental health risk.
Asthma Management in Schools
Over 5 million school-age children – that's 3 students in an average classroom of 30 – have asthma. Asthma is a leading cause of absenteeism, accounting for millions of missed school days each year. Asthma-friendly schools are those that create safe and supportive learning environments for students with asthma and have policies and procedures that allow students to successfully manage their asthma. Learn how your district can help students with asthma stay healthy and be ready to learn by using NAEPP, EPA and CDC resources to develop an asthma management plan. Faculty school districts will present some of their successes and small groups will brainstorm solutions for challenges faced by participants.
Overcoming Obstacles: Funding Your IAQ Management Program
There is no magic pill or one winning way to successfully fund an IAQ management program within a school district. There are a variety of cost-saving programs that can divert funds for IAQ management. Presenters will showcase how they have utilized the IAQ Tools for Schools Program and creatively used other sources of revenue to fund IAQ management in their districts.
Applying the Framework: Implementing Technical Solutions
This session will describe the technical elements that comprise an effective IAQ management program in school districts. Learn about the key elements that are critical to any successful program and the wealth of technical resources that are available to assist you in putting in place the components for success.
Fresh Air: Optimal HVAC Management for Improved Health
This practical discussion of school heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems will highlight the importance of proper design, commissioning, maintenance, and operations of school equipment. Speakers will review the latest innovative tools and technologies available for school facility managers and operations and maintenance staff. This session will highlight the importance of proper ventilation as a key component in providing healthy learning environments.
Mold and Moisture: Double Trouble for Schools
Controlling moisture and mold in school buildings is essential to creating healthy school environments for students and staff, saving significant financial costs, and garnering community trust. Participants will learn the basics about mold, myths about mold, when mold testing is necessary and when it’s not, and practical solutions for mold prevention and management. Bring your questions for this interactive and informative session.
Pest Prevention: Integrated Pest Management in Schools
The use of harmful pesticides in school facilities can have dangerous consequences for staff and students. This session will teach the fundamentals of integrated pest management (IPM) practices. Speakers will review the latest tools and tips for schools using IPM, share cost-saving results, and provide least-toxic methods for pest management in the school environment.
Smart Materials Selection: Improving the Indoor Environment
Choosing the appropriate products and materials is critical in designing and furnishing high performance schools. Usually the most effective ways to improve IAQ is to choose materials that emit no or low levels of pollutants or irritants. This session will provide attendees with effective strategies for choosing green materials and services that contribute to healthy IAQ in schools.
Aggressive Source Control: Eliminating Contaminants at the Source
One of the most effective ways to improve IAQ is to eliminate individual sources of pollution or to reduce their emissions. From elementary school maintenance closets to high school chemistry labs, schools use a variety of chemicals. When they are mismanaged, these chemicals can put students and school personnel at risk of exposures. Learn how you can develop a successful chemical management and inventory plan to ensure that all schools are free from unnecessary hazards.
Finding Solutions: The Virtual Walkthrough
This interactive session will describe how to conduct a facility walkthrough to identify solutions to common IAQ problems. Using examples from the challenge school districts, presenters will describe how to use the IAQ Tools for Schools checklists as a basis for conducting a walkthrough investigation.
The Role of Risk Communication in IAQ Programs (2006)
Effective communication with the school community, parents, stakeholders, and the media can be critical to school IAQ program success. This session will provide participants with the knowledge and tools they need to manage effective risk communications with various audiences. Learn how these concepts can help your school deliver clear and effective messages.
Speaker: Shelly Rosenbluem, U.S. EPA Region 9
Translating Knowledge into Action: Sustainable Schools for Students and Staff (2008)
Sustainable schools are more than just high performance buildings. As this session will highlight, sustainable schools also means fusing experiential learning/curriculum with ways to improve day-to-day cost-effectiveness of your school through cutting-edge school design.
Facilitator: Tracy Enger, Indoor Environments Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Speaker: Ray Bordwell, Principal, Perkins Eastman
- 15 Minutes, 5 Laws of Sustainable Schools (PDF) (8 pp., 609 K)
Furnishing High Performance Schools (2008)
Choosing the appropriate materials is critical for designing and furnishing high performance schools. Making the right choices early will ensure that your high performance school has a healthy indoor environment. This session will provide attendees with effective strategies for choosing building materials, furnishings, and mechanical equipment that contribute to healthy IAQ in schools.
Speakers: Tom Bates, BLRB Architecture and Tom Ellis, Tandus
- Tom Bates and Tom Ellis (PDF, 63 pp., 9.9 M)
- Tom Ellis - Floorcovering solutions that enhance spaces for learning, working, healing and living (PDF) (17 pp., 737 K)
Media Strategies and Publicizing IAQ TfS Successes (2003)
Speaker: Ginger Cruz, MELE Associates, Washington D.C.
- (PDF, 8 pp., 133 K)
- Healthy School Environments Across Texas
Held April 23-24, 2012, this training event was jointly organized by Council of Educational Facility Planners International (CEFPI), EPA Region 6 and EPA Headquarters. Read more about this event.
- Maine Healthy Indoor Air for Schools
Held on March 12, 2013, this training was jointly organized by the Maine Indoor Air Quality Council, EPA Region 1 and EPA Headquarters. Read more about this event.
- Healthy School Environments Across the South
Held on February 23, 2012, this training event was jointly organized by Council of Educational Facility Planners International (CEFPI), EPA Region 4 and EPA Headquarters. Read more about this event.
- Healthy Schools: Effectively Implementing an IEQ Management Program
Held on May 12, 2011, this training was jointly organized by Council of Educational Facility Planners International (CEFPI), EPA Region 6 and EPA Headquarters. Read more about this event.