Envision Program: Promoting Healthy School Environments

The Envision Program – Promoting Healthy School Environments was created by the Legislature in 2000 as part of the School Environmental Health Act (Act 125) to address indoor air quality issues by providing model environmental health management plans, policies and guidance to schools. Poor indoor air quality in schools has been linked to decreased student and teacher performance and increased absenteeism. Poor indoor air quality can also result in acute symptoms such as eye, nose and throat irritation, headache, nausea, and lethargy, and chronic conditions—such as asthma and allergies.

The School Environmental Health Act 125 was passed into law with goals to improve school indoor air quality, reduce hazardous exposures, and help schools earn the Envision Certificate of Achievement.

Act 125 is one of a kind in the nation, setting standards that:

  • Address the issues of air quality and other environmental factors that may affect health of children, staff, and teachers in our schools
  • Recognize the importance of sustaining a healthy school environment through adoption of a model environmental health management plan and policy

The Envision Program is accomplished as a joint effort by Vermont’s departments of Health and Buildings & General Services, and the Agency of Education, which work together to:

  • Create and maintain a clearinghouse of environmental health information on the Health Department’s website
  • Provide technical assistance to schools
  • Provide workshops on environmental health for school personnel
  • Develop a model environmental health plan and policy
  • Encourage and assist schools in developing programs that will enable them to address and prevent environmental health issues through voluntary participation.
Resources

Important resources to learn more about the Envision Program and how to address indoor air quality and environmental health in your school are included here:

Topic Description
Envision: About the Envision Program Learn more about the Envision Program
Envision: Model Environmental Health Policy Complete this form to state your intentions for participation in the Envision Program
Envision: Model Environmental Management Plan Follow this guide and/or framework for creating your school specific environmental health plan
Envision: Certificate of Achievement Form  Complete the online Certificate of Achievement application form
Envision: Purchasing Procedures An example of a Model Purchasing Procedure
Envision: Construction and Renovation Procedures

An example of a Model Construction/Renovation procedure

Envision: HVAC Procedures An example of a Model Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) Procedure

Envision: Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Procedures

An example of a Model Integrated Pest Management Procedure
Survey: Summary of the 2012–2013 Envision Participation Survey Summary of the 2012–2013 Envision Participation Survey
Survey: 2012–2013 Envision Participation Survey Report

2012–2013 Envision Participation Survey Report

Resources: Indoor Air Quality Design Tools for Schools EPA Indoor Air Quality Design Tools for Schools Website
Resources: Healthy Schools, Healthy Kids—Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

EPA Healthy Schools, Healthy Kids Website

Resources: Vermont Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Program Vermont State Buildings and General Services Environmentally Preferred Purchasing (EPP) Program Website
Contact Information

The Envision Program is based at the Health Department. Questions or inquiries about the program, model plan, or technical assistance on a school environmental health issue should be directed to:

Envision Program
108 Cherry Street
P.O. Box 70 – Drawer 70
Burlington, VT 05402-0070
Phone: 802-863-7220 or
800-439-8550 (toll-free in Vermont)
Fax: 802-863-7483

envision@vermont.gov

Regional Indoor Air Quality Contacts of the Environmental Protection Agency