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Take Stock of Your Indoor Air Quality in Schools Management Program

Assessing Your Program Success

A critical component of developing a successful indoor air quality (IAQ) management plan is identifying your program's current strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. By assessing your program, you will be able to recognize your greatest assets, identify areas for improvement, and plan and execute a long-term strategy for success. To take stock of your school's IAQ management activities, use the step-by-step directions below.

"Using the worksheets helped us realize the assets and valuable components already in place at our district and how best to leverage them to achieve IAQ success.— Francine Locke, Environmental Manager, The School District of Philadelphia

  1. Get the right people together.Gather an inclusive group consisting of members of your IAQ management team, facilities and maintenance staff, administrators or others who have been involved in creating a healthy learning environment.
  2. Set your intention.As a group, reflect on your program's ultimate objective,which will help ground the group in your program's overall vision and goals.
  3. Refer to the Framework: Seven Key Drivers and Six Technical Solutions.
    Hand out copies of the Framework Overview, which is comprised of proven approaches and strategies designed to promote and advance environmental health in schools. Refer to the Framework throughout the exercise.
  4. Brainstorm as a team.
    Highlight your program's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.
    • Strengths:Attributes of a school district that are helpful for achieving set objectives.
    • Weaknesses:Attributes of a school district that are harmful to achieving set objectives.
    • Opportunities:External conditions that are helpful to achieving set objectives.
    • Threats:External conditions which could do damage to set objectives.
  5. Map out your program's next steps.
    After you complete both exercises, determine your program's next steps and future action plans. Consider the following questions when developing a list of short-term and long-term action items: What are our weaknesses, and what specific actions can we take to address them? How can we leverage our strengths and opportunities to enhance our future plans? What is the timeline for completing each of the specific tasks? Are there individuals within the school community who could serve as resources for completing these action items? View successful strategies and plans implemented by faculty school districts to propel their IAQ programs to excellence:
  6. Mobilize your community to take action.
    A powerful way to gain administrative and community buy-in for your action plans is to host a pacing event — no matter how small or large. After determining your next steps, bring in members of the school community and educate them on the role they can plan in creating a healthy school environment. Pacing events can help promote action and participation while building momentum for future plans.