The Albemarle County School Board recently adopted an update to Policy EBAC, Environmental Management, to discontinue the use of scented products (plug-in or spray air fresheners, reed diffusers, etc.) in ACPS facilities and buses. The policy was updated out of concern for our students, employees and visitors, as strong scents and fragrances can contribute to poor indoor air quality that can be unhealthy to building occupants. The use of air fresheners also can trigger asthma and migraines. On average, in a classroom of 30 children, about three are likely to have asthma. We appreciate your help with improving the indoor environment for our students and staff.
The update to Policy EBAC includes the following language:
ACPS is committed to protecting the indoor air quality of its campuses for the safety, health and comfort of students, staff and visitors. Strong scents and fragrances can contribute to poor indoor air quality that can be unhealthy to building occupants. The use of air fresheners can trigger asthma and migraines, and these products may contain chemicals that can cause adverse health effects, especially in children. Due to these concerns plus the reported adverse effects on people with scent sensitivity, the use of fragrance-emitting products (including, but not limited to, plug-in air fresheners, candles, essential oils, scent warmers, wax melters, diffusers, spray air fresheners, etc.) in classrooms, common areas and student restrooms is not allowed in ACPS buildings. ACPS requests that employees working with students or colleagues who are sensitive to fragrances refrain from using perfumes and colognes prior to work or during the workday. In the event that a staff member or student has severe allergies or sensitivities to scents, the individual should give prior notification to an administrator, to the extent that is practicable.