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SA³MPROTM Environmental Asthma Plan

SA3MPRO™ recommends that school personnel develop an Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) management program, consistent with EPA recommendations, in their school or district that includes asthma management strategies.

Using the Framework for Effective School IAQ Management can improve the school environment by reducing exposure to pesticides, promote pest control, and decrease exposures to asthma triggers including mold, dust mites, and diesel exhaust.

Using the School IAQ Assessment Mobile App can help to identify, solve, and prevent IAQ problems that may exacerbate asthma symptoms. Conducting a walkthrough of school buildings using the IAQ Tools for Schools Action Kit to determine whether asthma triggers exist is also recommended.

Components of a comprehensive school environment assessment & monitoring program can be found below, as well as resources for custodial staff.

Recommendations to Create a Healthy School Environment

• Assessment of environmental factors including lighting, ventilation, temperature, noise, and sanitation facilities.

• Assessment of environmental factors that may be harmful to health of a child with asthma, including tobacco smoke, cockroaches, mold, pollen, dust mites, animal dander, mice droppings, chalk dust, cleaning agents, scented and unscented personal care products, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), laboratory chemicals, unvented fumes, and vehicle exhaust.

• Reduce exposure to mites. Dust mites may be found in schools in carpeting, upholstered furniture, stuffed animals or toys, and pillows. Stuffed animals or toys, as well as pillows for taking naps, are used mostly in the primary grade.

• Clean up mold and control moisture by reducing indoor humidity, responding promptly when signs of moisture and/or mold are sighted, or when leaks or spills occur.

• Establish procedures to ensure the schools’ compliance with maintenance schedules of heating, ventilation, and plumbing systems.

• Establish procedures to minimize human exposure to the exhaust of school buses and other vehicles. School bus drivers should turn off diesel school bus engines as soon as they arrive at a loading or unloading area and not restart until ready to depart, and park at a sufficient distance from school buildings.

• Ensure that all school construction or renovation projects provide minimum exposure to indoor and outdoor allergens, irritants, hazardous chemicals, pollutants, and sunlight. Live animals with fur or feathers should not be kept inside classroom buildings with the exception of assistive animals such as seeing-eye dogs.

• Create a smoke-free environment. No student, staff member, or school visitor should be permitted to smoke, inhale, dip, or chew tobacco at any time on school grounds, including non-school hours. No use of electronic cigarettes should be allowed in and around any school properties or at any school event.

• The school/district office should be responsible for daily monitoring of Air Quality Index (AQI). School officials should make decisions about reducing students’ exposure to air pollution based on individual risk factors. Provide indoor alternatives for student physical activity on days with poor air quality.

• Integrated pest management (IPM) and control programs should be designed and implemented to prevent pest infestations and minimize human exposure to pesticides in all school buildings and on all school grounds.

Resources for Custodial Staff




EPA Managing Pests in Schools

Web-based educational material 

• Basic education about IPM
• Listing of pests of concern
• How to establish an IPM program
• Training and certification opportunities

Integrated Pest Management Webinars

Listing of Webinars on various topics

• EPA Center of Expertise for School IPM

How to Clean and Disinfect Schools

Online education, links, PDF files

• Specific for Flu
• Updated 2014
• English and Spanish

Protecting Students and Staff with Green Cleaning

Online education

• Defines Green Cleaning
• Recommended products, practices
• Benefits
• Build a Green Cleaning Program

Indoor Air Quality Tools for Schools Action Kit

Online education/Printable material/Listing of hard copy materials

• Reference guides
• Checklists
• Fact Sheets

Mold Remediation in Schools and Commercial Buildings

56 page online document, published September 2008

• Investigating, Evaluating and Remediation
• Checklist
• Introduction to molds, volatile organic compounds