Just under a year ago, the OLFA Elsdonk primary school in Edegem was in the spotlight due to the first infection with the British variant of the coronavirus. With the peaking omikron variant, the school and the Municipality of Edegem are now taking drastic measures to reopen the school safely after a three-week holiday. Air purifiers have been installed in all 18 classes that reduce aerosols by a factor of 10 and thus help prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The air in the classrooms is changed 5 times per hour.

The air quality in the classrooms will be monitored in real time. The Belgian Airscan installs meters that map the number of aerosols, the CO2 level, the temperature and the humidity. A-PECS is involved as an academic partner and will subject the measurements to a more in-depth study into air purification in schools. Researchers will also correlate the air quality and measurements in the Edegem school with illness figures and absences. In addition, the campaign will provide valuable insights into indoor air quality in general in classrooms; it has been known for years that children inhale many harmful substances such as VOCs and particulate matter. With this project, A-PECS wants to draw attention to this and contribute to (technological) solutions.

The launch of the campaign was extensively reported in the media, Linus De Roo was the A-PECS spokesperson: