Education Construction Solutions
Creating Cleaner, Safer Educational Spaces after COVID-19
While the world rushes for life to resemble a time before this global pandemic swept the earth, there are many changes, both significant and small, worth holding on to long term. Prioritizing clean and safe educational spaces should be at the top of our COVID-19 lessons-learned list.
President Biden expressed a goal to open the majority of K-8 schools within the first 100 days of his Administration. 1Schools are among the many in our nation to qualify for aid approved by the Senate as part of the President’s American Rescue Plan. If signed into law, the plan will provide $130 billion in state and local relief aid for K-12 schools. Upgrades and repairs for reducing COVID transmission, including ventilation, are on the list of critical budgeted uses for the proposed school aid.
In addition to COVID-19 preventative measures, many school facilities need repair. According to a U.S. Department of Education study, nearly one-third of permanent public school building systems are in fair or poor condition. 2While the stimulus dollars will not solve all the concerns of aging school buildings and the needs vary dramatically by facility, these funds can catalyze needed upgrades.
While intended to add comfort to your buildings, failing systems may be harming your students and staff. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, health and comfort are among the factors that directly contribute to productivity and learning. 3Unsafe, unclean air leads to respiratory illness, sore throats, asthma attacks, tiredness, headaches and other discomforts that can lower performance in schools. Reasons to invest in school building systems include:
HEPA filters can remove dust and contaminates to refresh indoor air.
Whether your school is new, recently updated, or in need of repair, it is vital to understand your building's current state before developing solutions. In addition to the systems that heat, cool, power and provide water to your facility, there are several space upgrades that schools can do to improve social distancing. Start by checking for underutilized space that can be repurposed. Improvements can be accomplished by installing temporary solutions. If the space was underutilized pre-COVID, maybe it is time to consider a permanent upgrade.
If you would like more information on an Indoor Air Quality Assessment or Facility Assessment, contact us. We will help you understand and prioritize your building needs. At C.D. Smith, we believe all students should go to a school where buildings are safe, clean and send a message that education is valued.
1. "President Biden Announces American Rescue Plan." The White House, The United States Government, 29 Jan. 2021, www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/legislation/2021/01/20/president-biden-announces-american-rescue-plan/.
2. U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Fast Response Survey System (FRSS), "Condition of Public School Facilities: 2012-13," FRSS 105, 2013.
3. "Take Action to Improve Indoor Air Quality in Schools." EPA, Environmental Protection Agency, 13 Aug. 2020, www.epa.gov/iaq-schools/take-action-improve-indoor-air-quality-schools.
K-12 schools and higher education campuses are more than physical buildings. They are complex environments that inspire learning. That's why we're building clean, safe, state-of-the-art educational facilities to support diverse learning experiences for students and educators. Explore our K-12 or higher education construction project experience using this link to the YOUR INDUSTRY: EDUCATION CONSTRUCTION pages.
About C.D. Smith
C.D. Smith Construction is an industry leader in safely providing the highest quality commercial construction services. Utilizing an integrated approach and self-performing trade services combined with technical expertise, our team serves as a solutions provider throughout all phases of a project, from planning through construction. With veteran leadership and dedication to our employees and clients, we proudly place our name on projects of all sizes across the United States.
USA TODAY | Mar. 9, 2021
WASHINGTON - The House is poised to pass President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief plan with $1,400 checks, billions for vaccines, and money to reopen schools. (Keep reading using the above link.)
CBS NEWS | Mar. 9, 2021
WASHINGTON - The House is poised to take up the $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package passed by the Senate, teeing up the aid measure for President Biden's signature in the coming days. (Keep reading using the above link.)