A new mobile app can help schools become safer, healthier places for students and school staff. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) launched the “one-stop shop” mobile application to make it easy for schools to start or carry out indoor air quality (IAQ) programs.
The EPA School IAQ Assessment Mobile App provides schools and school districts with an efficient technology that addresses indoor environmental health issues such as ventilation, cleaning and maintenance, environmental asthma triggers, radon and integrated pest management. Schools that want to develop, sustain or improve their indoor air manageent programs can use this tool to identify and prioritize improvements. The app complements existing programs and can become the central tracking mechanism schools and districts use to organize building assessments and prioritize air quality improvements, according to the EPA.
“Kids learn best in a healthy school environment. Now there’s an app for that. This app puts a powerful tool in the hands of people at the state, district and school level to protect children’s health” said Janet McCabe, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation. “This mobile app is our latest effort to provide updated, user-friendly guidance to help schools identify, resolve and prevent indoor air quality problems, using low- and no-cost measures.”
Today, half of the schools in the United States have adopted IAQ management programs, the majority of which are based on EPA’s IAQ Tools for Schools guidance. EPA developed the mobile app to help these schools more efficiently carry out their IAQ management programs and to help the remaining nearly 60,000 schools to conduct regular assessments to ensure their schools are safe and productive places for learning.
How It Works
- Download the app: Visit the EPA School IAQ Assessment Mobile App webpage and download the app on your Apple or Android smart device. Access the How to Get Started section to review the set-up options, intent and capabilities of the app.
- Assess the building: Conduct a walkthrough of your school buildings using a set of easy-to-follow checklists — all you need is an Internet connection. Then, submit completed checklists via email to a designated IAQ coordinator for review and follow-up action. You can also attach photos and detailed notes about the assessed area.
- Mark the checklists: The completed checklists will identify air quality concerns and validate good IAQ practices already in place. Checklists are provided with recommended action steps generated by the app to address IAQ problems.
- Learn more: The mobile app includes other resources from the IAQ Tools for Schools Action Kit, such as information on radon and asthma management in schools. The EPA’s newest guidance – Energy Savings Plus Health: Indoor Air Quality Guidelines for School Building Upgrades — integrates IAQ protections into school energy retrofits and other building projects. For more school environmental resources, go to www.epa.gov/schools.
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