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Asthma is the main reason why children miss school. In fact, children in the U.S. miss about 13.8 million school days each year due to asthma.1 Missing school can affect many children's grades and well-being.

Controlling asthma triggers at home can help reduce asthma symptoms. But what about at school? If kids are exposed to triggers at school, managing asthma at home will be difficult.

April 9, 2024, is National Healthy Schools Day. The Healthy Schools Network uses this day to highlight how school environments affect the health and learning of school children. This year’s theme is “AIR JUST AIR.”

Children are the most affected by air pollution and poor indoor air quality. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) is a supporter of National Healthy Schools Day. We believe healthier schools can help children not only perform better in school but have a better quality of life.

Read more from AAFA on indoor air quality and its impact on school children with asthma.

How Can I Help My Child’s School Be Healthier?

Tell your child's teacher and school administrators about National Healthy Schools Day. Share these websites with your school for more information about healthy school environments and activities:

Help us support National Healthy Schools Day by spreading the word about how we need healthier schools for our children to learn in!

Learn more about National Healthy Schools Day and find a list of resources to improve our schools.

Stay in the loop - get news and advocacy updates straight to your inbox with our e-newsletters.


Updated April 2024

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2015). Asthma-related Missed School Days among Children aged 5-17 years. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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I think this is a great topic, and National Healthy School Days is a great way to educate children, parents, teachers, and the community on asthma and allergies. 

I think it would be worth noting the studies on second-hand dander and how it significantly affects children with asthma and allergies in schools (i.e. the study thst shows the more cat owners in classroom there are, the worse prognosis with kids with allergies and asthma). I think having individual lockers outside classrooms for coats and backpacks (which are reservoirs for animal dander) would help. Other things they mention in the links above would also help reduce dander inside, such as clearing clutter, having hard floors, not having classroom pets that have dander inside the classroom, and cleaning properly. 


We so need healthier schools. It has become trendy to bring dogs everywhere, including schools. The principal of Westbrook Middle School is bringing her dog to school. We complained that she was showing her bias and being selfish, and that she was discriminating against all the people in the school with allergies and asthma. She was featured on the news with her dog, saying that it roamed the halls. We are appalled, and we need laws to protect us from this kind of rampant discrimination against asthmatic and allergic people. The dogs do not need to be in the school. This is only one example. There are three other schools closely surrounding us and some just a little further but still within driving distance (and these are just those that we know of) in which a dog is brought in that is a teacher's or administrator's pet, and some that they claim they NEED a therapy dog. Nobody needs a therapy dog at school. Nobody needs a pet at school. Nobody really needs a dog, as there are other ways to manage. Society has been brainwashed by the media to WANT their dogs everywhere they go. People have become ferociously selfish regarding this. We NEED laws to protect us!!! The allergic and asthmatic students, teacher's, cafeteria personnel, administrators, custodial staff, and bus drivers all NEED to be able to function in schools and NOT have to give up their confidential medical information, only to be treated even worse, excluded from education/occupations, and told to just go elsewhere if you don't like it.

Shea, I am sorry you had to leave the allergist and find another. That should NEVER happen. All allergist's offices should be required by law to prohibit any animals, latex, fragrances, and food. They should be more sterile so that the allergist can test and diagnosed without confounding factors that may be present in the waiting room. For testing, the patient is already more at risk because they cannot utilize their medications prior to an appointment for 10 days. The patient is usually miserable by the time the appointment day arrives. It is simply unacceptable to have that get thrown away because someone brings a "service animal" to an appointment. The person with the animal needs to find an alternate method to get their needs met, so that they do not infringe upon the rights of the allergic and asthmatic individual to have medical care.

There needs to be emphasis on the use of durable medical equipment, the purchase of which should be tax-deductible, to help people who think they have a need for a service animal. We have plenty of technology in 2024. This is not 1990.

AAFA needs to push for these changes. People with allergies to animals are currently the most discriminated, most overlooked, and most isolated group in the country. We need protection. We need it NOW.


Ironmom316, that us not cool    I have seen dogs in my allergist office waitingvroom that are service dogs and I am like(to staff)--this is an allergist office waiting room and they wete like, well you can wait outside (to me). I went to a different allergist after that. If you cannot get a policy addressed correctly, switching out is always an option. I am super-allergic to dander and it developed into a serious chronic allergic disease after regularly being around dander that caused danage to my heart and I am still recovering. This is a goid thing that one school did to address the issue:

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