One of our most country’s most valuable assets is our children and others that occupy our schools and universities on a daily basis. Educational facilities present unique air quality problems because:
- Schools have a higher human density then other building increasing the transfer possibilities of colds, the flu, or other maladies
- High activity areas such as gymnasiums, locker rooms, or even recess areas where the production of bio effluents and skin shedding particles is increased because of the activity
- Cafeterias with a high volume food production, high traffic and even high metabolic activity that can result in poor indoor air quality
- Transient areas such as hallways where periods of high student movement create spikes in the number or airborne particles during the traffic of class changing
- Physical education areas and locker rooms where the primary contaminants are bioeffluents, commonly recognized as body odor.
- Outdoor air contaminants associated with urban environments; more than 80% of our schools are in areas of high population density susceptible to the increased pollution common in these areas. Two urban related contaminants that have high levels of effect on school building occupants’ health include vehicle exhaust and ozone.
The penalties associated with not addressing these items includes:
- Increased student absentee rates. Most schools receive subsidies from governmental parent authorities in the form of aid per pupil for each pupil attending on any particular day. Student absenteeism affects the learning quotient of the student as well as the financial we’ll-being of the school
- Absenteeism of teaches and support staff. Teachers are replaced by substitutes, an additional financial burden on the school as well as a detriment to curriculum-based student learning.
When the proper air filters are applied in central system HVAC units or even through the wall ventilation units’ filters can significantly reduce the aforementioned problems. With an additional investment amounting to pennies per day, the financial reward in reduced absenteeism, students and faculty, becomes readily apparent. Camfil offers solutions to these problems with filters that are designed to address the particular problem head on; MERV 13 particulate filters for common student areas, HEPA filters and adsorbers for laboratory areas and particulate/carbon combinations to address areas of high activity to remove bioeffluents. These filters are commonly applied in the central HVAC system ensuring improved air quality for students, faculty and other school personnel.