Healthy learning environments provide Oregonians of all ages a safe place to thrive and grow. The Oregon Health Authority’s Public Health Division works to protect and promote the health of all Oregonians where we live, work, play and learn.
We’re continuing to work with state agencies, partner organizations and school districts across the state to reduce children’s exposure to harmful contaminants in schools and child care facilities. In the coming year, a number of milestones will be accomplished to support this important work.
Healthy school facilities webinar
On August 24, 2016, state education and health officials presented a live stream webinar on the new rules for lead and radon testing in Oregon schools. The webinar covered how these steps help Oregon students and families, what state agencies are doing to ensure schools are healthy places, and what to expect during the coming school year. The presentation aims to support school administrators, principals, staff and families.
Watch a recording of the webinar live stream
New rules for schools
On August 17, 2016, the State Board of Education adopted new rules related to school environmental health. The rules require school districts and public charter schools to develop a Healthy and Safe Schools Plan and to report findings of environmental testing to the public, if testing is conducted.
Plan to address lead in school drinking water
In April 2016, Governor Brown directed the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) and the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) to review existing programs and create a plan to address the problem of lead in school water.
For health care providers
Lead-based paint resources
The most common lead hazards in schools and child care are lead-based paint, lead dust and contaminated soil. Renovation, repair and maintenance of older schools, if not performed correctly, can create hazardous lead dust and debris by disturbing lead-based paint. School and child care administrators can take steps to ensure children’s safety and well-being.
Radon testing requirements for schools
Under ORS 332.166-167, school districts must submit a radon testing plan for schools to OHA by September 1, 2016. Testing must be done before January 1, 2021.