Preventing Chemical Stockpiles in Schools
Off the top of your head, can you name all the chemicals currently used or stored in your school? It’s easy to lose track of laboratory materials. A teacher may purchase a chemical for an experiment one year only to use a different experiment the following year. Instances like this, combined with ordering substances in bulk and high teacher turnover, can lead to stockpiles of old, outdated and potentially hazardous chemicals. The best way to prevent this from happening is to establish a chemical purchasing policy.
Developing a Purchasing PolicyDeveloping a purchasing policy will help your district monitor future chemical purchases. When developing a policy, start by asking a few questions.
- How does your school receive chemicals?
- Who is currently purchasing the chemicals?
- How much of each chemical is being purchased at a time?
- Does your district accept donated chemicals?
You can avoid the expenses associated with managing and disposing of large amounts of chemicals by only purchasing chemicals when you need them. EMC recommends maintaining less than a two-year supply of any chemical.