The Montessori Community School takes air quality very seriously.
While our recent concerns are related to the spread of airborne infectious diseases such as Coronavirus, we have always considered air quality to be an important issue. The school has recently taken a number of actions based on industry suggestions, science and feedback from our Health & Safety Committee. Our hope is to continue this dialogue since we know that indoor air quality will continue to be a major point even when some of the immediate concerns subside. We would like to invite more parents to become involved and assist with this effort and work towards some of our goals.
Helping Salt Lake City with Better Outdoor Air Quality
Montessori Community School has a rigid policy about outdoor air quality as it pertains to a student's outside time. Our staff uses the Utah Air IOS and Android app in order to get the closest and accurate outdoor air quality index. Based on this, if the AQI ever rises to the moderate level we start restricting outdoor activities. Our policy is summarized in the Parent Handbook here. The school installed a large array of photovoltaic solar panels in 2013 to offset our carbon footprint and in 2019 two electric vehicle (EV) chargers were installed on the south-west side of our building. We also have a Purple Air outdoor sensor which reports current outdoor conditions. With current concerns about the transmission of airborne illness being at the forefront of many people's minds, we are engaged in continued conversation about indoor air quality.
Taking Steps Towards Ensuring Better Indoor Air Quality
Based on the feedback we received from medical experts, our Health & Safety Committee and HVAC engineers we have upgraded all of our existing indoor air circulating units with MERV13 filters; the best filtration possible for our current system to filter out airborne illness. We are working towards getting some specific readings in each area of the school to determine what additional steps can be taken to ensure the best indoor air quality and to eliminate airborne illness. Based on our research, we are determined to obtain Purple Air indoor sensors to help us have a continued gauge on our indoor air quality. We also have a separate policy that the staff follow in the summer to ensure the best air flow possible in each of the classrooms.