WOHS’ Indoor Air Quality: What They’re Doing

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WOHS’ Indoor Air Quality: What They’re Doing

Anna Favetta, Editor-in-Chief

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After The Pioneer and TAPinto West Orange published an article on West Orange High School’s (WOHS) Indoor Air Quality (IAQ), it was brought to the West Orange Board of Education’s (WOBOE) attention that the IAQ does not meet New Jersey’s standards.

The Public Employees Occupational Safety and Health (PEOSH) program which the New Jersey Administrative code adheres to, sets the standards for acceptable IAQ in public employee buildings, including public schools. Under the PEOSH IAQ standard, Carbon Dioxide (CO2) levels should not exceed 1,000 ppm.

In the original survey performed by the WOHS Fight for Green club, 6 rooms were tested for CO2 including the Library Media Center and the Library Media Center Lab. Of those 6 rooms, all 6 had CO2 levels exceeding 1,000 ppm.

According to the IAQ Evaluation Report, posted on the WOBOE District News Page, “AHERA Consultants Inc. was retained by the West Orange Public School District to conduct Indoor air quality (sic) readings for Carbon Dioxide in specific areas of West Orange High School.”

According to the IAQ evaluation report, presented at the May 7 BOE meeting, AHERA consultants tested 93 rooms. Of those 93 rooms, 53 of them did not meet PEOSH IAQ standards.

When presenting the findings at the meeting, the West Orange School District’s Director of Buildings and Grounds, Bob Csigi, mentioned the district’s plan to fix all rooms with non-functioning HVAC and Univent systems to ensure compliance in the future. The WOBOE also proposed checking more rooms not just at WOHS but across the district for IAQ.

Csigi mentioned rooms cannot be accurately tested during the warmer months because the boilers are not on. The boilers have a negative impact on IAQ in addition to overcrowding and poor ventilation.

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