Healthy Cleaning & Asthma-Safer Schools: A How-To Guide

Sponsoring Program: 

Helping Schools Reduce Asthma Risk, Save Money

Healthy Cleaning & Asthma-Safer Schools: A How-To Guide is a new set of guidelines that helps school districts go green and save money by transitioning to asthma-safer cleaning products and practices. A companion video introduces the Guide and features a school custodian whose asthma got worse while on the job. Also, custodians and administrators from across California describe the successes they've achieved using the methods recommended.

Studies confirm that asthma in schools is a serious health problem. Approximately five million Californians - one in eight people - have been diagnosed with asthma, and 20% of Californians spend part of their day in a school. Everyone in schools - custodians, staff, and students - can be exposed when harmful cleaning and disinfecting products are used. Newer cleaning products and technologies allow school districts to save money and have clean and healthy schools with fewer risks to health and the environment.

The Guide also explains in simple, manageable steps how school administrators, facility managers, and other school stakeholders can switch to asthma-safer cleaning. Ready-to-use tools and forms will help districts progress through each step. A sample newsletter article and press release are included to help districts publicize safer cleaning successes throughout the school community. And the Guide includes a list of green cleaning, asthma and disinfection resources.

The Cleaning for Asthma-Safe Schools (CLASS) project developed the guide and the video. CLASS helps California schools adopt safer cleaning practices to protect worker and student health. CLASS is housed in the California Department of Public Health's Work-Related Asthma Prevention Program.

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