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EPA Symposium Aims for Clean Air in Nation’s Schools

Release Date: 01/14/2010
Contact Information: Dave Ryan 202-564-7827 202-564-4355

WASHINGTON - School districts leading the way to prevent and solve indoor air quality problems in schools will be honored at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) 10th Indoor Air Quality Tools for Schools National Symposium in Wash., D.C., Jan. 14-16. EPA created the Tools for Schools program a decade ago to address a range of indoor air quality and related problems in school buildings, including respiratory problems, headaches and nausea, and an alarming rise in asthma and allergies among schoolchildren.

The three-day symposium will feature interactive sessions -- led by expert speakers and faculty from award-winning school districts -- on radon, mold, high-performing schools, integrated pest management, green cleaning products and practices, and asthma management.

“It is critical that our children have safe, healthy classrooms and an environment that helps them prepare for the future,” said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson. “We’re proud to recognize the achievements of school districts working to protect our students from dangerous pollution in the places where they come to learn.”

This year’s award winners are: Keller Independent School District, Keller, Texas; Kenosha Unified School District #1, Kenosha, Wis.; North Penn School District, Lansdale, Pa.; Westport Public Schools, Westport, Conn.; Wayzata Public Schools, Plymouth, Minn.; Ocean Township School District, Oakhurst, N.J.; Omaha Public Schools, Omaha, Neb.; Spokane Public Schools, Spokane, Wash.; Jack Levine,
Director of Finance and Administration, Amity Regional School District No. 5 , Woodbridge, Conn.; and Michael Sheehan, Director of Facilities, Operations and Safety, Baldwin Union Free School District, Baldwin, N.Y.

The program is a comprehensive resource to help schools maintain a healthy environment in school buildings by identifying, correcting, and preventing indoor air quality (IAQ) problems.

A study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that about half of the nation’s schools now have IAQ management programs in place, up from about one-fourth of schools in 2002. The CDC study also found that 85 percent of schools with IAQ management programs relied on EPA’s Tools for Schools program to guide their actions.

More information on the symposium:

More information on EPA’s IAQ Tools for Schools