Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools is investing in new technology to improve indoor air quality in some buildings before classrooms reopen in the coming weeks.
The district says it's been looking at ways to create healthier buildings for the past few years, and now it's especially important during the pandemic.
Eleven schools are older and lack what's called energy recovery ventilation or ERV. Most of these are Title I schools, which serve large numbers of economically-disadvantaged students.
These sites will soon get new technology known as bipolar ionization. The process purifies air as it moves through the ventilation system. Darrell Walker is Assistant Superintendent for Operations with Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools.
"What we are trying to do is eliminate as much absenteeism with students that impacts their performance whether it's cold season or flu season or in this situation — COVID," he says.
The project will cost around $500,000 and will come from county funding.
Walker says the district is trying to identify additional revenue streams to install bipolar ionization systems in all school buildings. They also hope to put it on buses down the road.
The list of eleven schools that will receive the bipolar ionization purification system are: Cook, Southwest, North Hills, Kimberly Park, Griffith, Hall-Woodward, Cash, Petree, Bolton, Mineral Springs, and Sedge Garden.
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