Science Safety

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Chapter 1

Actions Towards Science Safety

This chapter describes actions at the classroom, school, and divisional levels which can serve as starting points for the implementation of effective science safety procedures. These procedures may be integrated into overall safety practices which include Industrial Education, Arts Education, custodial, and other areas in a school.

Safety procedures should include actions to

  • establish and maintain
    • a division/district science safety committee
    • a designated science safety officer within each school
    • a set of school science safety procedures
  • conduct an inventory of chemicals and perform a safety audit for each school science classroom/laboratory on a regular basis (see the checklists found in Appendix D).
  • set up and maintain a labeling/dating system, including the provision of a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for every hazardous material
  • identify and remove unnecessary/hazardous materials at regular intervals
  • initiate procedures to obtain necessary safety equipment, materials, and protective clothing as required
  • establish and maintain a safe science environment by ensuring
    • regular inspections of facilities
    • regular hazard assessment
    • standardized ordering procedures
    • standardized disposal procedures
    • standardized labeling
    • regular teacher in-service
  • establish and maintain a plan for on-going professional development for new staff members joining a school's science department

An expanded discussion of each of these points can be found in the appropriate chapters of the manual.