If your child seems to be battling sickness through the year, it may not be simply the germs he or she exchanges with classmates. The problem may be the school itself.
Researchers in the New York State Health Department may have found a correlation between poor building maintenance in public schools and the number of sick students per year, especially those suffering with asthma.
With budget cuts continuing to plague districts around the country, often times, leaky roofs, walls, and boilers are the last on the boards agenda to be fixed. These leaks, mold, accumulation of dust, and poor air quality in schools may be the primary reason students are having difficulty staying healthy. Because there are no federal health standards for schools, these mold and dust issues go unnoticed or ignored and can pose severe health risks, especially to students with asthma. Currently, 1 in 10 children America has asthma. Even more reason to be concerned about the quality of our school buildings.
Some studies state that about one third of America’s schools have mold, dust, and or poor air quality problems. Some schools have even been closed, condemned and torn down.
Tell your kids to be on the look out for:
Mold: If brown or black patches can be seen on ceilings in classrooms this indicates roof leaks and probably mold problems. Also, musty smells are often the first indication of mold growth. Simply cleaning the mold will not get rid of the problem. Cleaning with bleach is especially toxic to asthma sufferers as mold releases spores when hit with bleach and these spores are even more lethal to inhale. Schools must hire professionals to get rid of the mold entirely.
Dust: Dust may seem harmful enough but large accumulations of dust are a breeding and feeding ground for microbes and dust mites, which students are often allergic to. Teachers and faculty must be vigilant in cleaning hard to reach areas.
Fumes: The invisible toxin are harmful exhaust fumes caused by the fleet of buses that sit awaiting to pick up or drop off students. Also, idling cars outside school entrances allow exhaust fumes to enter the school and this can be very dangerous to ingest.
Maybe its time we consider the health risks facing our children if these education budget cuts continue to disable schools.