CBE Schools | Air Quality Alerts

Sep. 04, 2023

​​​​​The Environment Canada air quality health index (AQHI) for Tuesday, Sept. 5 is expected to be 7 or "high risk." If the AQHI remains at 7 or above, schools are being asked to:
  • consider postponing or cancelling outside activities during lunch and recess, including fire drills;
  • limit the level of exertion if outside activities proceed;
  • reschedule mandated fire drills until air quality improves to 6 (moderate) or lower; and
  • work closely with their facility operator if air quality conditions in the school appear to deteriorate. Facility operators are in the best position to monitor and manage school ventilation systems, and ahve access to central resources should any issues be identified. 

The following measures are being put into place Tuesday morning to support the health and safety of students and staff:

  • All heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems that are centrally automated will be adjusted to minimize fresh air exchange until the air quality advisory is lifted;
  • For schools with HVAC systems that are not centrally controlled, facility operators will manually adjust the system to minimize fresh air exchange. Please note that CBE facility operators are qualified 5th Class Power Engineers and are well trained in the operation of the school building systems; and
  • We are monitoring CEMA and provincial authorities for any direction and guidance on the air quality situation and will notify schools if the situation requires additional measures.

​We know these conditions impact every family differently. If you make the decision that your child will not be attending classes, please ensure you contact your school's attendance line to report the absence.

This page will be updated as the situation evolves.

​​​The provincial government uses the Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) to share the air quality with Albertans in each community. Alberta Health Services recommends reducing th​e levels of outdoor physical activity to decrease the inhalation of airborne pollutants as individuals may experience temporary irritation of eyes and throat and possibly shortness of breath.​​

​​Air Quality Guidelines for Outdoor Activities

Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) is defined and measured by Environment Canada. Below are the recommended restrictions for outdoor activities related to air quality:


CBE Response


Low heath risk

Continue as normal


Moderate health risk

Consider restricting levels of activities. Reduce the intensity and duration of any strenuous activities. Provide resting periods. Consider indoor recess for students with health issues that maybe impacted by air quality.


High health risk

Reduce or reschedule strenuous activities outdoors. Consider indoor recess and lunch supervision for all students.

Above 10

Very high health risk

Avoid strenuous activities outdoors. Consider indoor recess and lunch supervision for all students.

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