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Health and Productivity

Schools are complicated structures, and high performance design covers a broad and diverse range of disciplines and choices. Schools are unique buildings house one-fifth of California's population: almost six million children and more than 200,000 teachers and support staff every day. There are few settings besides a school classroom in which twenty to thirty people occupy such a small space or work on such a wide a range of activities. Occupant density is approximately four times as great as a typical office building. Schools also include many "special use" areas such as laboratories, art studios, industrial shops, duplication facilities, and gymnasiums.

Students in classrooms that are quiet, well lit, and properly ventilated with healthy air will learn faster because they are more comfortable, can see and hear better, and are less distracted. Suboptimal lighting, deficient acoustics, and poor indoor air quality are barriers to education. High performance schools remove these barriers, allowing teachers and students to work under the best possible conditions.

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