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When school was adjourned in March, the Provo City School District Facilities Department immediately started to replace all filtering systems.

Before school starts in August, they will have replaced all filters, in every school, again.

Facilities Director, Mark Wheeler, gave more insights into the safety and quality of the school filtration systems.

“In each school, there are supply and return air systems,” said Wheeler. “Outside air is pulled in and exchanged, daily, at each school.”

Wheeler continues, “The air flow travels through large air handlers, plenum space, ductwork, coil systems, etc. When air is exchanged, it does not trade air from one classroom to the next. When air is pulled back into the main routing system, it does not get routed to another classroom.”

As a general rule, there are strict design guidelines and building codes that require consistent air flow exchange. 

“We have quality air exchange mechanical systems in our K12 schools,” stated Wheeler.

When asked about ventilation and filtration safety, Wheeler stated, “There’s no data to confirm that a droplet can survive while traveling from a roof top mechanical unit to a filtration system, through a duct and still find its way to a desk or door knob.  No data from any study.”

In closing, Wheeler stated, “It is important to note that there is no substitute for regular surface cleaning, hand washing, hand sanitation, social distancing and face masks. Disinfecting critical touch points in each school will be more crucial than anything associated with the mechanical systems.”

Shauna Sprunger
  • Coordinator of Communications
  • Shauna Sprunger