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News: Back to School with Asthma

News: Back to School with Asthma

How asthma-friendly is your school? Accounting for more than 10 million lost school days every year, asthma is one of the main illness-related reasons that students miss school. The air children breathe in school is critical to their success in the classroom and their overall health.  It’s not too soon to begin preparing for the upcoming school year, especially if your child has asthma.

Along with scheduling an asthma checkup with the doctor and updating your child’s asthma action plan, check in with your child’s school about policies that can help children easier. Ask about:

  • Rules about school bus and carpool idling
  • Air quality monitoring and actions taken on days with bad air quality
  • Tobacco free school campuses
  • Animals in the classroom
  • Exposure to paint, cleaning products and disposal of hazardous materials

Many resources are available. Georgia’s Cobb County School District was recently designated by the Georgia Department of Public Health as the state’s first Asthma-Friendly School District.  The American Lung Association in Georgia established an Asthma-Friendly School Recognition Criteria to reward schools with exceptional asthma management programs. Winning schools receive monetary awards. For information about this year’s awards contact Ateya.HarbinWilson@lungse.org.

For a back-to-school checklist go to http://www.lung.org/assets/documents/asthma/back-to-school-with-asthma-checklist-2014.pdf. As a parent or caretaker, learn how you can work with your community to support healthy air at school, keeping students with asthma healthy and ready to learn.