Today is April 23. This was the AQI early this morning:
That is very unhealthy. There are dust storms 2-3 times per year where the AQI gets this bad. However, there are many days in Kuwait where the AQI is over 150, which is considered unhealthy by the World Health Organization. ASK is particularly poorly equipped to handle days with poor AQI, and in fact, has no policy in place.
The middle school and high school buildings at ASK do not have indoor hallways. As you exit your classroom, you are outside. In addition, many of the classroom doors are not well sealed, so on days with poor AQI, the pollution easily creeps inside. There are some teachers currently and previously at the school who were quite handy with tools – if you are lucky enough to have one of their former classrooms, you may find that they added extra seals to the edges of the door just to help with this.
For most though, if the air is bad outside, it is also bad inside. Students do not have an indoor cafeteria – they eat outside. On the few rainy days of the year, this proves to be an inconvenience and students find teacher’s classrooms or covered areas to eat while shielded from the rain. But on the numerous days where the air is unhealthy, students and faculty alike have no escape.
It would be an easy fix, really, to have doors fitted properly and seals added. And to initiate a policy that on days where the AQI is above a certain value, students must go straight from one class to another and teachers must make their classrooms available during break and lunch times so students have a respite. We hope that administration at ASK reads this article and takes the time to implement such policies.
For more information, you may wish to view the following article, Kuwait, the Second Most Toxic Country in the World.