Schools throughout the country are flying green, yellow, or red flags. This is the EM and I’m ES. Schools across the country are raising the colored flags to help teachers and parents track EPA’s daily Air Quality Index. These flags help students and teachers know what the air quality forecast is for the day, and help them track whether students’ asthma symptoms get worse when the air is polluted and whether they need to take extra steps to protect their health.
The school flag program has been launched as part of Air Quality Awareness Week, marked every May to remind Americans to check the AQI forecast in planning outdoor activities. A green or yellow flag at school means that teachers and coaches will have students go outside and get moving!
When the flag is red, it is still OK to play outside, but kids are encouraged to cut back on activities that involve lots of running. And instead teachers and coaches will also make indoor exercise space available for children who need it. For more information go to WUWF.org or AirNow.gov.