We are one of seven sites selected by the US EPA to study the relationships between environmental factors in K-12 Educational facilities and the safety, health and academic performance of children, and the effectiveness of teachers and staff. As part of its Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program, the EPA has awarded grants to seven universities under the 2013 “Healthy Schools: Environmental Factors, Children’s Health and Performance, and Sustainable Building Practices” Request for Application (RFA).
Accumulating evidence indicates that the quality of indoor school environments may affect the health and productivity of children as well as their adult teachers and school staff. The intended impact of this research is to inform community decisions regarding K-12 school building design, construction and operation practices in order to foster safe and healthy school environments and maximize student achievement and teacher and staff effectiveness. A key component of each grant is community engagement. Each grant recipient will engage communities in different ways, but all share the common goals of:
researching issues of significance to a school/school district and/or community;
engaging community members;
enhancing community capacity to engage in the research and scientific process; and
disseminating research findings.