Every month, our colleague Ken Roy shares important information about safety in the science classrooms and laboratories. His columns appear in Science Scope and The Science Teacher. These are “must-reads” for science teachers, and NSTA members can access articles in both of these online, regardless of which journal you receive in print. The information can and should be shared with administrators and discussed at faculty meetings.
Usually his column in each journal is different, but I noticed in the April/May editions OSHA’s Newest Lab Resource was discussed in both columns: Science Scope’s Scope on Safety and The Science Teacher’s Safer Science.
Ken describes this latest resource, the publication Laboratory Safety Guidance, which can be read online or downloaded as a PDF at no cost. According to Ken this document is “intended to help science teachers and their supervisors maintain safer, healthier laboratories and ensure that applicable health, safety, and environmental regulations are followed.” The booklet summarizes applicable OSHA standards for laboratory workers and focuses on chemical hazards, biological hazards, and safety hazards. OSHA’s Laboratories site also has links to fact sheets and other information.
Publications such as NSTA’s Exploring Safely (elementary), Inquiring Safely (middle school), and Investigating Safely (high school) also have a wealth of practical, relevant information and should be in your school or personal library–read about them at the NSTA Press site. NSTA also has position papers related to student lab work and safety and a Safety in the Science Classroom Portal. And if you search for “safety” and your grade level in NSTA’s SciLinks, you can access even more resources and information. Let’s be careful out there!