The National Education Union and the British Lung Foundation have issued joint guidance to schools on ‘practical steps’ to tackle air pollution.
The guidance suggests that schools should draw up action plans to protect pupils’ health. This includes installing air pollution monitors to show when toxic air is worst and what measures could be the most effective to tackle the problem.
Available online, the guidance also suggests that air pollution should be linked to the National Curriculum in Science, PHSE (personal, social, health and economic) or Citizenship, English and Geography.
Other suggestions include reminding parents that children in buggies are at greater risk, due to their proximity to vehicle exhaust pipes and introducing travel plans car sharing, and safe walking routes away from main roads.
Dr Penny Woods, Chief Executive of the British Lung Foundation, said: “Our own research found that only a third of local authorities are monitoring pollution levels outside schools. This isn’t good enough. Toxic air is poisoning our children. This guidance will address the lack of information and data available to teachers and parents.”
Kevin Courtney, Joint General Secretary of the National Education Union, said: “Air pollution is a growing area of concern for members of the National Education Union. Schools cannot solve this problem alone but we are delighted to publish guidance which will help schools take practical steps to protect children.”