State law encourages districts to utilize environmentally-safe chemicals and to reduce chemical exposure in schools.
2017 Tennessee Code Annotated 49-2-121. Inspection and evaluation program for indoor air quality in schools.
(a) Each LEA is encouraged to conduct an inspection and evaluation program, such as the environmental protection agency's indoor air quality tools for schools program, for its facilities. Such program may include, but shall not be limited to, the following measures:
- (1) Ensuring that an adequate amount of outdoor air is being supplied;
- (2) Testing for radon;
- (3) Separating students and staff from construction and renovation areas;
- (4) Reducing use of products, such as adhesives, floor-care products and pesticides that require ventilation during use; and
- (5) Maintaining relative humidity to an appropriate level during hot and humid summers.
(b) School districts and schools shall encourage:
- (1) The scheduling of maintenance, cleaning, and repair projects and other works that trigger indoor air pollutants, environmental safety and other pollution concerns in schools at times when students and teachers will not be impacted through chemicals, fumes, exhaust fumes from cars and school buses, room fresheners, aerosol sprays and other chemicals and health damaging elements and particulate matter;
- (2) The application of products in a manner that conforms to regulations and safety recommendations; and
- (3) The protection of children from the exposure of health harming substances and chemicals at school.
Rules of the Tennessee Department of Agriculture 0080-09-02-05 CERTIFICATION CATEGORIES
(7) Industrial, Institutional, Structural and Health Related Pest Control (C07).
(a) Description. This category includes commercial applicators who use or supervise the use of general or restricted use pesticides in, on, or around food-handling establishments, human dwellings, schools, hospitals, industrial establishments, warehouses, grain elevators, and any other similar institutions, facilities, structures or adjacent areas, public or private. Schools refer to child-serving facilities, for children through 12th grade, public or private. Children are physiologically more vulnerable to pesticides. Children can spend long hours at school and therefore have an increased risk of pesticide exposure if pesticides have been applied in a manner incompatible with integrated pest management (IPM). This category also includes pesticide application for the protection of stored, processed, or manufactured products, and the control of birds, imported fire ants, or rodents.
(b) Standard of competency. Applicators must demonstrate a practical knowledge of: a wide variety of pests and their life cycles; types of formulations appropriate for their pest control; methods of application to avoid contamination of food, damage or contamination of habitat, and exposure of people and pets; specific factors that may lead to a hazardous condition, including continuous exposure; and environmental conditions related to the activity of this category. In addition, applicators should be knowledgeable about the components in an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program in child-serving facilities. Integrated Pest Management is a process for achieving long-term, environmentally sound, pest suppression by using a variety of technologies and management practices including preventing pest populations using sanitation, exclusion and habitat modification and applying pesticides in the least hazardous manner only when needed to correct verified problems to manage targeted pests effectively and economically.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-50-1201. Legislative findings and declaration.
The general assembly finds and declares that art supplies that contain toxic substances pose a serious and significant danger to the health and safety of school children. The general assembly also finds that school children are not sufficiently protected by present health laws in that materials that may threaten adverse health effects are not so labeled and, therefore, children are not properly warned as to the dangers inherent in the use of those materials.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-50-1202. Part definitions.
As used in this part, unless the content otherwise requires:
- (1) “Art supplies” means any raw or processed material or manufactured product marketed or being represented by the manufacturer or repackager as being suitable for use in the demonstration or the creation of any work of visual or graphic art of any medium. These media may include, but shall not be limited to, paintings, drawings, prints, sculpture, ceramics, enamels, jewelry, stained glass, plastic sculpture, photographs and leather and textile goods; and
- (2) “Toxic substance” means any substance that has the capacity to produce personal injury or illness to humans through ingestion, inhalation or absorption through any body surface.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-50-1203. Certification of art supplies as nontoxic — Examination.
(a) For each academic year, art supplies purchased by any school or school district for use by students in kindergarten (K) and grades one through six (1-6) shall be certified nontoxic by the Arts and Creative Materials Institute (ACMI) and shall bear the approved product (AP) or certified product (CP) seal certifying that the product is safe and contains no materials in sufficient quantities to be toxic or injurious to children.
(b) At the request of the commissioner of education, the commissioner of agriculture shall examine any art supply purchased by an LEA for unsafe levels of lead.
Tennessee Code Annotated 49-50-1204. Lists of art supplies certified nontoxic.
(a) The commissioner of education shall make access to the list of art supplies that are certified nontoxic by the Arts and Creative Materials Institute (ACMI) available to all school districts in this state and shall make the list available to preschools, childcare centers and other businesses and organizations that involve children in the use of art supplies.
(b) The commissioner of education shall inform school districts of the requirements of this part and shall encourage school districts to dispose of art supplies that do not bear the approved product (AP) or certified product (CP) seal certifying that the product is safe and contains no materials in sufficient quantities to be toxic or injurious to children.
(c) The commissioner of education shall post on the website of the department appropriate resources for identifying whether a product is certified nontoxic by the Arts and Creative Materials Institute (ACMI) and other information concerning the safety of art supplies as deemed appropriate by the commissioner.