Ventilation improvements at OCSB schools – 2022-2023 School Year

Working to Enhance Air Quality

Our Planning and Facilities Team were busy this summer monitoring, installing and/or implementing improvements in our ventilation and filtration systems to optimize air quality in our schools. We did this work to ensure that all our schools have high-functioning ventilation systems. Enhanced ventilation is one strategy in our continued efforts to prevent and reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our schools while improving indoor air quality.

Your child’s safety and well-being remain a top priority at the Ottawa Catholic School Board, and we want to keep you updated on the improvements we’re making to ensure your child will be safe for in-person learning this fall.

Unique Improvements at Every School

As every school facility is unique, the improvements vary from school to school. Through federal and provincial governments funding, OCSB schools are receiving improvements to adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

Ministry Funding for Ventilation and How the OCSB has Put it to Work

Our existing ventilation systems received significant upgrades, including additional inspections, maintenance, controls upgrades, and frequent filter replacements. In addition to these enhancements, the OCSB has deployed over 2,200 HEPA filter units throughout our school board. The school HEPA filter units help air movement and disinfection practices in kindergarten classrooms, health isolation rooms, staff lunchrooms, and classrooms with medically fragile students.

2020-2021 and 2021-2022 School Years

Ventilation Funding: $15.4M

Ventilation projects completed:

  • 116 Ventilation projects completed
  • 100% of OCSB schools receiving an investment

2022-2023 School Year

Ventilation Funding: $8.8M

Ventilation projects in progress or planned:

  • 10 ventilation projects in progress or planned
  • 43 schools to receive an investment

Our ventilation strategy

  • All our schools have assessed mechanical ventilation systems to ensure adequate air changes per hour
  • Enhanced maintenance, testing, and commissioning of ventilation equipment at all OCSB schools
  • Capital investments to replace ageing rooftop mechanical equipment
  • Installation of 233 unit ventilators in portable classrooms to provide fresh air ventilation and air conditioning
  • Installation of ceiling circulation fans in classrooms that incorporate UV-C light technology

Examples of school-specific improvements:

  • Ventilation upgrades to central HVAC equipment 
  • HEPA air filter machines in rooms requiring additional ventilation rates and where distancing cannot be maintained, such as kindergarten rooms, special education rooms, isolation rooms, and staff lunchrooms, 
  • UV-C ceiling fans in classrooms without central HVAC
  • Wall-mounted unit ventilators in portables, including A/C upgrade
  • Touchless water bottle filling stations and washroom fixtures are being added at selected sites
  • Enhanced maintenance of HVAC equipment with additional filter changes and optimization of fresh air intake during occupied periods

See the improvements at your child’s school

Find your child’s school using the search box below to see what upgrades are taking place at your school

*Download the full document we sent to the ministry

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