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The Los Angeles Unified School District on April 22 unveiled the nation’s largest school-based air monitoring network at Hesby Oaks Leadership Charter earlier as part of Superintendent Alberto M. Carvalho’s 100-Day Plan.
As part of the Know Your Air Network, district officials installed sensors at 200 school locations across the LAUSD’s 710 square-mile footprint, providing students, parents, teachers and the community with important real-time data about their local air quality.
“To ensure that our students reach their full potential, we must also ensure the safety of our schools,” Carvalho said. “The launch of the Know Your Air Network provides us with an important tool to monitor air quality throughout the district, allowing us to proactively ensure student safety.”
Calibrated for accuracy, the air sensors take a measurement of fine particulate matter in the air every six minutes. Measurable elements detectable by the network include smog, exhaust, industrial emissions, smoke and dust. Sensors are deployed across the district, allowing each school to have a sensor installed within a 1.6-mile radius.
“I’m proud to see this implementation of a resolution I sponsored in 2019 to reduce air pollution and find a way to monitor air quality in all our school communities,”said LAUSD Board Vice President Nick Melvoin, who represents Hesby Oaks Leadership Charter. “While the world has changed in unthinkable ways since I first proposed this initiative, our commitment to providing the safest possible learning environment for our kids has remained steadfast. We will continue to prioritize the safe, in-person learning of our students, with the help of tools like the Know Your Air network.”
“Many of our Los Angeles Unified communities are environmentally impacted after suffering decades of underinvestment,” Board President Kelly Gonez said. “We must work to address the environmental injustices our students face, whether it’s air quality, lack of green space or extreme heat. The Know Your Air Network is part of a larger strategy Los Angeles Unified is taking to make our schools greener and more resilient for our students and families.”
Data from the Know Your Air Network will be used during critical events, such as wildfires, allowing the district to proactively respond to ensure the safety of students. Members of the public may also view real-time data from the network on LAUSD’s website at achieve.lausd.net/knowyourairnetwork or through the AirVisual mobile app.
Relying on a unique public-private partnership, the district partnered with Clarity Movement Co. to provide the sensors, software and networking infrastructure as the foundation for the Know Your Air Network.
“Our core founding grew out of California public schools,” Clarity Movement Co. CEO David Lu said. “We’re humbled and honored to bring years of innovation and development on air quality monitoring back to benefit California schools.”
The Coalition for Clean Air provided experts and funding partners, such as Wells Fargo and the Zolla Family Foundation, to design and operate the project’s pilot program.
“Parents and the public need accurate, local air quality data available in real time,” coalition president and CEO Dr. Joseph K. Lyou said. “The creation of this network required a true coalition of public and private parties coming together.”
The district’s partnership with the Coalition for Clean Air is complemented by a recent board action to explore opportunities to mitigate the harmful effects of air pollution on school communities.
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