Creating Asthma Friendly Environments

School Board Implementation Tips

Management of Asthma — School Board Implementation Tips

In accordance with Ryan’s Law – Ensuring Asthma Friendly Schools – 2015, school boards must establish and maintain a policy for students diagnosed with asthma. The following implementation tips outline activities to create asthma friendly schools appropriate at the board level. 

Establish a process to identify students with asthma.

Add a question about asthma and asthma medication to all registration forms. 

Easy access to asthma medication for students with asthma.

Develop an asthma policy or ensure existing policies are supportive of students with asthma and allow them easy access to asthma medication. Ensuring students with asthma can access their reliever asthma medication (usually a blue inhaler) allows them to manage their asthma symptoms in a timely manner. Typically, most students age seven years or older are capable of deciding when medication is required and have the skills to administer the medication properly. 

For students who are unable to carry their own inhaler, the medication should be available within easy reach in your setting. It should not be located in the main office or a centrally locked storage unit.

A process for handling worsening asthma.

Advocate and provide support for the development of a process for handling worsening asthma and asthma attacks within your schools.

A mechanism to identify and reduce common asthma triggers within the schools.

Advocate and provide support to identify and reduce common asthma triggers in your schools.

Support for students with asthma to participate in physical activity and play.

Advocate and support students with asthma to participate in all activities, including physical activities and outdoor play.

Opportunities for asthma education (i.e., school staff, parents/guardians, students and volunteers).

Advocate and provide support for all members of the school community to participate in asthma education initiatives and asthma awareness activities.

Collaborate with others (i.e., health care providers, public health, parents/guardians and community partners) to create asthma friendly settings.

Board delegates should meet with administrators and health care professionals to discuss policy changes, current practices and updates on asthma information annually.