Health guidance for heat illness distributed to schools

22-Sep-2015

The Departments of Education and Health work together on guidelines for schools and parents on heat.

​​​​HONOLULU - The Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) and the Department of Health (DOH) are issuing detailed guidance to parents, schools and health aides in an effort to prevent heat illness as the state continues to face record high temperatures.

Letters will be sent home to parents providing recommendations to help students prepare for hot days. Schools will also receive guidance to identify heat illness-related symptoms and action steps should a student or staff member become ill.

Public health experts from the Department of Health were instrumental in helping to develop a more expansive guidance for all stakeholders.

“It was important to collaborate with public health professionals to offer sound advice to schools on how to better deal with the extreme heat teachers and students have been experiencing in classrooms,” stated Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi.

“The Department of Health is happy to have been able to provide expertise and assistance on developing this important guidance for teachers and students,” Dr. Pressler said. “We believe working together to better inform parents and school personnel will help prevent heat illness cases.”

In addition to parent letters, posters that identify symptoms and treatments will be posted in every classroom, health room and school office. The poster is also available here on the HIDOE website.

Since August, HIDOE has been working on emergency measures to help cool schools experiencing high temperatures due to the unusually hot weather. These measures include the installation of portable air conditioners and electrical fans. Last week, HIDOE announced a partnership with Hawaii 3R’s to raise funds towards cooling schools. That effort is ongoing. 

About the Hawaii State Department of Education
The Hawaii State Department of Education is the ninth-largest U.S. school district and the only statewide educational system in the country.  It is comprised of 256 schools and 34 charter schools, and serves more than 180,000 students.  King Kamehameha III established Hawaii’s public school system in 1840. To learn more, visit HawaiiPublicSchools.org.

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Resources:

School Heat-Related Guidelines

Departments of Health & Education heat information for parents

Contact Information

Donalyn Dela Cruz

Phone: (808) 586-3232

Email: donalyn_dela_cruz@notes.k12.hi.us

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