Categories: General
      Date: Sep  1, 2013
     Title: Where We Learn Matters
Where our children learn and our teachers teach, matters. In Boston especially, where school-aged children have some of the highest asthma rates in the state, it is critical that school building infrastructure is safe and school environments are healthy places to be throughout the day. If students and teachers are healthy – not in hospitals and regularly in school – students will be more ready to learn.

Where our children learn and our teachers teach, matters. In Boston especially, where school-aged children have some of the highest asthma rates in the state, it is critical that school building infrastructure is safe and school environments are healthy places to be throughout the day. If students and teachers are healthy – not in hospitals and regularly in school – students will be more ready to learn.

The “State of our Schools” report, recently released by The Center for Green Schools at the US Green Building Council, highlights the unfortunate condition of schools across America. The report calls for billions of dollars to be invested to modernize our k-12 academic facilities to meet current health, safety and educational standards. With budget shortfalls in Boston, our school buildings are no exception. Fortunately though, all across the city, wonderful community partners are working hard to implement innovative initiatives to improve the health of our buildings and health of our staff and students.

One of those groups is the Healthy Schools Taskforce (HST), which was established in 2002 to address school environmental conditions that affect health and learning. The HST is open to the public and is made of members from BPS Facilities and Health & Wellness Departments, the Boston Public Health Commission, Custodial and Teacher Unions, and a community coalition - the Boston Healthy Homes and Schools Collaborative (BHHSC). Over the years, this group has initiated several environmental policies and procedures (Green Cleaning, Integrated Pest Management (IPM), Environmental Inspection/Audit program) that have had significant impacts on improving indoor air quality and school building conditions across Boston schools.