1 Department of Civil Engineering, Technical University of Denmark2 Section for Indoor Environment, Department of Civil Engineering, Technical University of Denmark
This paper is an overall summary of research by the authors on how classroom conditions affect the performance of schoolwork by children, motivated by the fact that the thermal and air quality conditions in school classrooms are now almost universally worse than the relevant standards and building codes stipulate that they should be. This is sometimes because financial resources for the maintenance and upgrade of school buildings are inadequate, but it is also because schools are increasingly allowing classroom temperatures to drift above the recommended range of 20–22 °C in warm weather and allowing outdoor air supply rates to remain so low that carbon dioxide (CO2) levels during school hours exceed 1000 ppm for long periods, in order to conserve energy. The research that is summarized in this paper shows that the indoor environmental consequences of either of these investment-free but ill-advised energy conservation measures can reduce children's performance of schoolwork by as much as 30%, so a more sophisticated approach to maintaining good classroom indoor environmental quality (IEQ) is required.
Building and Environment, 2013, Vol 59, p. 581-589