‘Practical Steps for the Deployment of Good Ventilation Practices in Schools’ (Version 3)
Taking Public Health advice and guidance from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) and the Return to Work Safely Protocol developed by the Health & Safety Authority, the Department of Education is finally putting procedures and support mechanisms in place to look after our future by protecting our children and their teachers.
Room air cleaner selection is dependent on the particular setting and it is not possible to give a “one size fits all” solution or a simple rule that everyone can follow.
The Air Infiltration and Ventilation Centre notes that measures to reduce risk of exposure that causes COVID-19 from spreading indoors generally fall into three categories:
- source control,
- ventilation control and
Air cleaners can assist in removal control and provide an additional measure of precaution where poor ventilation exists. They should not be used to fully replace ventilation and should be used in conjunction with and to support other methods of ventilation that are available.
NOTE: Some air cleaning units use ionising processes. Therefore, care should be taken to AVOID any devices that produce ozone or other chemicals as these may be a respiratory irritant. Ultraviolet radiation (UVC) technology uses ultra violet lamps and has been typically utilised in areas such as healthcare settings to sterilise operating theatre type spaces.
Step One: Implementation of practical measures.
Step Two: To support schools further to identify rooms which may have inadequate ventilation and to optimise comfort levels through a better understanding of the degree of window opening
required in rooms, the Department will arrange for the provision to schools of a number of
portable CO2 monitors, which will give an immediate representation of the quality of the air in the space and will instigate an appropriate action.
Step Three: Where the practical measures for the deployment of good ventilation practices have been undertaken, and poor ventilation continues to exist in a particular room/area, air cleaners may be considered as an additional measure in conjunction with other methods of ventilation that are available. There is no one solution that fits all scenarios, each application requires bespoke analysis and selection of the appropriate unit(s) matched to the specific room size and volume.
Schools that identify inadequate ventilation in a room can utilise their minor work grant (for minor improvements) or apply for emergency works grant assistance to address ventilation enhancements on a permanent basis. If, following consultation with a supplier a school feels that its individual space may require specific technical specialist advice then the assistance of a Chartered Engineer or Registered Architect should be sought.
The summer holiday period is the optimum period to address any intrusive works to teaching spaces.
We provide both Ventilation Strategy Assessment and School Grant Application Services. For more information, please see the links below.
We will shortly be launching AerNua, what be believe to be The Future of Clean Air, providing a one-stop solution for all your clean air needs.
Clean Air…It’s what we do!