Air Quality Resources for Schools

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The Council have produced an air quality toolkit which can provide schools with a series of interesting scientific activities to present to pupils, which are expected to promote understanding of the causes and impacts of air pollution, as well as tools to identify areas of poor air quality around a school.

Air Quality Officers attending Cliff Lane Primary School

It is expected that the use of this air quality toolkit will:

  • provide tools to identify areas of poor air quality around their school
  • promote pupil understanding of the causes and impacts of air pollution
  • give ideas for engaging staff, pupils and parents/carers in improving air quality
  • help to reduce children’s exposure to air pollutants, within the school and through their travel.

 

The Air Aware Schools Toolkit has been adapted from:

  • a similar initiative previously developed by the London Sustainability Exchange for schools around London area, and supported by Transport for London, the Mayor of London and Cleaner air for London.
  • Oxford City Council’s Schools Tackling Oxford’s Air Pollution (STOP) toolkit. 
  • educational packages provided by Deliver Change Ltd.

It is expected that the citizen science activities presented in this toolkit will help raise awareness and assist in reducing children’s exposure to air pollutants, within the school and through their travel within Ipswich.

Our Air Quality Officers are happy to visit schools and give lessons on air quality as well as providing advice on how to use the Air Aware Schools Toolkit. Please get in touch if you would like an event at your school and/or require further advice on how to use the toolkit: environmental.health@ipswich.gov.uk

The Council have also produced a short video which can be played within schools aimed at raising awareness of air quality. It can be accessed on YouTube

Other resources:

Suffolk Idling Action Campaign

Ipswich Borough Council have previously teamed up with Road Safety Officers from Suffolk County Council to run a series of anti-idling events at schools across the Borough as part of the Suffolk Idling Action Campaign.  

Anti-idling events are behaviour change campaigns which help reduce localised air pollution caused by motorists who leave their engines running when parked. Local authorities, councillors and volunteers work to educate both motorists and pedestrians. Our approach is to invite drivers to join our campaign and switch off their engines when parked. When approached in a friendly way, the majority of drivers switch off when asked, and many pledge to give up the idling habit for good.

Please get in touch if you would like an event at your school: environmental.health@ipswich.gov.uk

For more information on the Suffolk Idling Action Campaign.

Clean Air for Schools Framework

Developed by the University of Manchester, Charities Global Action Plan and the Philips Foundation have launched the Clean Air for Schools Framework, a free online tool that gives schools and local authorities a bespoke blueprint of actions for tackling air pollution in and around the school premises.

The Framework, which includes a database of 50 actions, is particularly important for schools in air pollution hotspots across the UK and Republic of Ireland and will enable them to:

  1. Reduce air pollution from their own operations, including the school run.
  2. Educate the next generation to help them and their families make cleaner air choices.
  3. Become a local leader on air pollution, working with local partners to improve air quality in the local area.

The Framework is based on new analysis conducted by Queen Mary University which found that if outdoor air pollution is halved, there could be up to a 50% reduction in the number of children with poor lung function across the UK and Ireland.

A bespoke Clean Air Action Plan is created in three simple steps:

  1. Answer a few questions about your school. This will help tailor the actions to best suit your school’s situation.
  2. Next, choose from the recommended actions. A selection of actions will be produced based on their relevance, potential impact, cost and effort to implement. It suggested that up to six actions are chosen for your plan to start with.
  3. Over to you! You will be presented with a Clean Air Action plan that links advice, resources and case studies to help you implement your chosen actions. When you have completed your first set of actions, return to the framework and add some more to your action plan to continue on your path to become a clean air school.

Access the Clean Air for Schools Framework.