The new Healthy School Environments Assessment Tool (HealthySEAT), from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), is a software utility that can be customized and used by district-level staff to conduct voluntary environmental self-assessments of their school facilities. According to the EPA, the guidance included in the free HealthySEAT software can improve the health of students and staff by ensuring that all potential environmental and safety hazards in schools are being properly managed. Examples of school environmental hazards tracked by the tool include chemical releases, pesticide exposures, flaking lead paint, mold, other indoor air quality problems, and damaged asbestos-containing building materials. The EPA says its new tool can be used to track and manage information on environmental conditions school by school. EPA also has included critical elements of its regulatory and voluntary programs for schools, as well as web links to more detailed information. Districts can download HealthySEAT at no cost from the EPA web site.
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