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Introduction
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Appendices  
Subject Index  
Glossary  
References
Related Links
About the Authors
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5-02: Standards for food service equipment, practices
6-02: Communicating safety policies
6-05: Classroom safety: equipment, facilities, student conduct
6-13: Indoor/outdoor allergens, irritants, air quality
6-16: Hand washing
7-05: Violence prevention strategies
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American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air-Conditioning Engineers
ASTM International (formerly known as American Society for Testing and Materials)
Provides consensus standards and related technical information in order to promote public health and safety as well as contribute to the reliability of materials, products, systems and services. This includes anything from art materials and sports equipment to construction supplies and playground equipment/surfaces.
Environmental Protection Agency
National Institute of Standards and Technology
National Resource Center for Safe Schools
National Safety Council
Includes pages on ergonomic safety.
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
Safe USA
Resources for safety on playgrounds and in sports, and for violence prevention.
The Catalyst
A site developed for secondary school teachers as a resource for finding relevant information for teaching chemistry. Includes safety measures to be taken in biology, chemistry, and physics classes.
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8-01 - Staff safety and injury prevention
 

Provide working conditions that promote health and safety and that reduce the likelihood of unintentional and intentional physical injuries. Develop and clearly communicate plans for steps to be taken when injuries and threat of injuries occur.

   
Rationale
 

Adoption of safety policies at school is essential to prevent injuries. Staff knowledge of safety policies is essential for compliance. When staff understand the essential components of preventing injuries in the school environment, they will model safe behaviors.

   
Commentary
 

Schools have a responsibility to minimize staff exposure to environmental hazards (e.g., communicable diseases, toxins, allergens), to physical dangers (e.g., violence, traffic hazards on campus), and injuries that can be incurred from supervising sports, science experiments, art, and industrial art classes, food preparation, and off-campus school activities. Teach staff about violence prevention strategies (Guideline 7-05). Educate staff about proper ergonomic precautions, such as proper desk set-ups for school secretaries or proper lifting techniques for staff who assist with the lifting and transferring of students with special needs. Teach proper handling of needles and syringes for those providing health services, and universal precautions for anyone who may have contact with human tissue and fluids. Provide staff with adequate safety equipment (e.g., laboratory goggles and other safety gear, communication devices, Hoya lifts) and educate them on how to use the equipment properly. Inform all staff of safety and involve them in the development and revision of these policies. Inspections by the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) may be considered in order to verify compliance with meeting safety standards for staff. As staff also serve as role models for students, staff safety practices (e.g., use of safety belts) can ultimately benefit more people.

Be certain that staff know how to reach immediate help and how to report the injury when an employment-related injury occurs. Provide financial and medical support for injured staff members. Many school districts achieve this by providing Workmen's Compensation programs - programs that are often required by state law.

   
REFERENCES
 

American Chemical Society, Committee on Chemical Safety. Safety in Academic Chemistry Laboratories. Washington, DC: American Chemical Society; 1995.

American Public Health Association. Creating healthier school facilities. Am J Public Health. 2001;91:494-495.

Bernacki EJ, Guidera JA, Schaefer JA, Lavin RA, Tsai SP. An ergonomics program designed to reduce the incidence of upper extremity work related musculoskeletal disorders. J Occup Environ Med. 1999 Dec;41(12):1032-41.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. School health guidelines to prevent unintentional injuries and violence. MMWR Recomm Rep. 2001;50(RR-22):1-73.

Friedland LR. Universal precautions and safety devices which reduce the risk of occupational exposure to blood-borne pathogens: a review for emergency health care workers. Pediatr Emerg Care. 1991;7:356-362.

Institute of Medicine, Committee on the Assessment of Asthma and Indoor Air. Clearing the Air: Asthma and Indoor Air Exposures. Washington DC; National Academy Press; 2000.

Knight S, Junkins EP Jr, Lightfoot AC, Cazier CF, Olson LM. Injuries sustained in shop class. Pediatrics. 2000;106:10-13.

Laflamme L, Eilert-Petersson E. School-injury patterns: a tool for safety planning at the school and community levels. Accid Anal Prev. 1998; 30:277-283.

McCann M. Art Safety Procedures: A Health and Safety Manual for Art Schools and Art Departments. New York: Center for Safety in the Arts; 1992.

National Science Teachers Association. Safety in the Elementary Science Classroom. Arlington, Va.: National Science Teachers Association; 1997.

National Science Teachers Association. Guidelines for Responsible Use of Animals in the Classroom. Arlington VA: National Science Teachers Association; 1991. Available at: http://www.nsta.org/position#list.

Posner M. Preventing School Injuries: A Comprehensive Guide for School Administrators, Teachers, and Staff. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press; 2000.

Smedje G, Norback D. Irritants and allergens at school in relation to furnishings and cleaning. Indoor Air. 2001;11:127-133.

US Environmental Protection Agency. IAQ Tools for School Kits. Washington, DC: US Environmental Protection Agency; 2000. Available at: http://www.epa.gov/iaq/schools/pubs.html.

 
          
 
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