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While ACEF provides a cursory review of every article on the website, ACEF and the ACEF staff cannot guarantee the accuracy of the information contained in the articles. The ideas presented in the articles are not endorsed by ACEF, the Texas Center for Educational Facilities, Tarleton State University, or the US Department of Education. All articles are posted as presented in the original format.
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14 Severe Weather Survival Tips
Satterly, S. (2012). Retrieval Location

This article is a refresher of current best practices for tornado sheltering for schools, as well as an explanation of why they have become best practices. The process to change protocals so changes are made in a thoughtful and logical manner are described.

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30 Strategies to Education Reform
Nair, P. (2003).

The 30 strategies for education reform discussed in this guidebook, taken together, represent a new, alternative, education model. The guidebook is written to close some big gaps in education -- the gap between research and action, between stated goals and policy, and between perception and reality.

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A biosecurity checklist for school foodservice programs: Developing a biosecurity management plan
United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service (2003). (FNS-364)

The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), has prepared A Biosecurity Checklist for School Foodservice Programs: Developing a Biosecurity Management Plan. This booklet presents a wide array of guidelines and suggestions on how to: 1) form a school foodservice biosecurity management team; 2) use the checklist to prioritize measures to strengthen biosecurity inside and outside the primary foodservice area; and 3) create a school foodservice biosecurity management plan.

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A Case Study on Facility Design: The Impact of New High School Facilities in Virginia on Student Achievement and Staff Attitudes and Behaviors
Bishop, M. E. (2009).

This case study involved the examination of three new high schools that opened in the Commonwealth of Virginia between 2006 and 2007. Principal interviews and focus group interviews were conducted between April and June 2008. Document analysis of architectural information was conducted by the researcher for each site location; that analysis yielded shared characteristics of the sites such as floor plans, common professional work areas, use of safety features, and the use of natural lighting throughout instructional and professional spaces. The study determined that the perceptions of the principals and the staff of these new buildings were shared and sufficiently common for identification. The data collected from both groups of participants indicated the existence of three shared themes particular to this case study: improved student behaviors, improved staff and student morale, and a lack of belief that the new buildings had more positively impacted student achievement than had the old buildings. Additionally, data collected from participants in this study seemed to represent acknowledgement of a relationship between sustainable design elements and student achievement as well as student and staff behaviors. All respondents in both interview groups agreed that the amount of natural light incorporated into the design of the building had a positive impact on both student and staff behaviors, indicating that it may have positively impacted student achievement. At all three locations, participants expressed a shared belief that natural light had affected their overall performance, their individual moods, and, in some cases, their ability to maintain their levels of performance as the year progressed. Other factors mentioned by all participants as having had a positive impact included the following: open space in classrooms and hallways, the high ceilings and sense of openness in all the buildings, and enhanced safety and security features present in the buildings. All of the data collected from the participants in this research study led to the conclusion of the researcher that design elements such as natural lighting and climate controlled HVAC systems, as well as wide, open hallways and shared student spaces, do positively impact student behaviors and student and staff attitudes and behaviors.

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A guide to school vulnerability assessments
U.S. Department of Education, Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools (2008). (ED-04-CO-0091)

This guide is intended to be a companion piece to Practical Information on Crisis Planning: A Guide for Schools and Communities, originally published by the U.S. Department of Education in 2003 as a guide for schools and districts to prepare for a variety of crises. This new guide, published by the U.S. Department of Education in 2008, emphasizes a valuable part of emergency management planning-ongoing vulnerability assessment-and is intended to assist schools with the implementation of an effective vulnerability assessment process, to include choosing an appropriate vulnerability assessment tool. This guide is not intended to be prescriptive or to give step-by-step instructions for conducting assessments, rather it is intended to describe the key elements to be considered when selecting an assessment tool appropriate for school environments and provide guidance for conducting an assessment that will inform school emergency management activities.

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A High Performance School Case Study: Northern Guilford Middle School
Koh, B., & Nicklas, M. (2007).

This case study will introduce detailed information of each green strategy, for Northern Guilford Middle School, and how comprehensive strategies are well integrated into the project to stay within the budget.

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A Problem Based Learning Project Analyzing State Assessment Instruments Used for School Facilities
Barnes, R. A., Chandler, J. W., & Thomsen, B. (2011).

This doctoral team project describes the findings from a problem-based learning project of school facility assessment standards. The project team reviewed literature related to facility standards in Missouri, facility standards in other states, and legislation related to facility standards. The team studied the relationship between school facilities and achievement. The focus was narrowed to the policy problem of Missouri lacking definitive facility standards. By studying the relationship between facilities and achievement, safety and liability, adequacy standards, obstacles to adequate facilities, state funding, and maintenance criteria, the team was able to have a baseline as it began to compare Missouri to other states. At the beginning, the research of other states policies relating to school facility assessments and the information studied provided a direction to make recommendations concerning Missouri and its lack of a policy for facility standards. The team answered three guiding questions which dealt with Missouri's need for a facility assessment tool and identified four recommendations. These recommendations were the State of Missouri should: (1) develop and mandate standards for school facilities, (2) develop and adopt an assessment standards tool, (3) develop an accountability system for assessing facilities and lastly, and (4) develop and mandate a financial system to help schools fund facility deficiency improvements.

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A study into the effects of light on children of elementary school age - A case of daylight robbery
Hathaway, W. E., Hargreaves, J.A., Thompson, G.W., & Novitsky, D. (1992).

Based on a review of the literature and a pilot study conducted from 1981 to 1985, a study was carried out that examined physical development and school performance effects of different lighting systems on elementary students. Students’ dental health, growth and development, attendance, and academic achievement were examined under four different types of lighting: (a) full spectrum fluorescent lamps, (b) full spectrum fluorescent lamps with ultraviolet light enhancements, (c) cool white fluorescent lamps, and (d) high pressure sodium vapor lamps. Data on 327 students, in Grade 4 at the end of the 1986-87 school year, were collected at the start and at the conclusion of the study, which spanned two years. The results indicated that over the two year period, students under full spectrum fluorescent lamps with ultraviolet supplements developed fewer dental cavities and had better attendance, achievement, and growth and development than students under other lights. Students under the high pressure sodium vapor lamps had the slowest rates of growth and development as well as the poorest attendance and achievement. On the basis of the findings of this study it was concluded that lights have important non-visual effects on students who are exposed to them on a regular basis in classrooms.

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A Validation of the Effective Learning Environments Assessment
Dorris, D. (2011).

The purpose of this research was to investigate the validity of the Effective Learning Environments Assessment (ELEA), an educational facilities assessment instrument designed to assess educators’ perceptions of educational facility condition. In order to examine the validity of the ELEA, practicing K-12 school administrators from Texas public school districts were selected to participate. Correlational pattern analysis and Multitrait-Multimethod Matrix (MTMM) methodology was used to analyze associations between the ELEA using the DAS, the criteria. Results of the MTMM were consistent with theoretical expectations, and therefore, provided evidence of satisfactory convergent and discriminant scale validity of the ELEA.

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Achievement by Design
Black, S. (2007).

Buildings and classrooms play a role in how students learn, but while amenities are nice, don't let the frills overshadow your district's instructional goals.

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