Preventing Asthma through Safer Cleaning in Schools
All children deserve to learn in a safe environment, and that's why the CLASS project partners with custodial workers and educators to ensure that the cleaning products used in schools don't make students, teachers or staff sick.
50 California schools & districts trained by the CLASS project to help reduce exposures to hazardous ingredients in cleaning chemicals
4.7K teachers, custodians, and staff members trained as part of CLASS
164K+ students who study and learn in safer schools, thanks to CLASS
Chronic Disease Prevention, Healthy Communities, Women, Youth & Children
Asthma, School-based Efforts
Health Education & Promotion
Robert Harrison, MD, MPH
All children deserve to learn in a safe environment, but some chemicals found in common cleaning products have been associated with triggering asthma attacks, or even increasing the risk of developing the disease. And in California, 1.2 million children—nearly 14%—have already been diagnosed with asthma, according to 2017 data from the California Department of Public Health. Custodial workers also have high rates of work-related asthma, so it’s critical that schools use safer cleaning products—for the health of their students, teachers and staff.
Led by the California Occupational Health Surveillance and Evaluation Program (OHSEP), the Cleaning for Asthma-Safe Schools (CLASS) project has worked in over 50 California schools and school districts to train school custodial staff to significantly reduce exposures to hazardous ingredients. The project offers free resources and videos, including a how-to guide on switching to asthma-safer cleaning.
Now, these schools and districts are following the project’s guidelines and are transitioning to using asthma-safe cleaning methods and products. This has helped to potentially reduced exposure to over 4,700 teachers, custodians, and staff members, and over 164,000 students working and studying in the affected schools.
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