Schools can contain a variety of safety and health hazards, from hazardous chemicals in high school science laboratories to workplace violence, slips and falls, bloodborne pathogens, and more. The specific hazards in a particular school environment will depend on the type of school. An elementary school will pose different hazards than a university, for example.

In addition to hazards that affect teaching staff, it is important to consider food service workers, janitorial staff, security personnel, and school nurses, just to name a few. Schools may also have contractors that come on-site to repair or perform maintenance to HVAC, electrical, or other systems, and these workers must be protected from on-site hazards and required to work safely.

Safety and health requirements for public schools vary by state, as federal OSHA does not have jurisdiction over the public sector. Refer to this chart of public-sector safety and health requirements by state to determine which safety and health rules apply in your location. Private schools are regulated in the same way as other private sector workplaces. This chart will help private school employers determine what requirements apply in each state.

  • Compliance Requirements
  • Training
  • Time Savers
  • Best Practices
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Emergency Preparedness Emergency exit routes  National
Emergency Preparedness Emergency Preparedness (PDF)  National
Violence in the Workplace Employee Security Survey  National
Ergonomics Ergonomics: Using a computer  National
Exit Routes Exit Route Design (Word)  National
Exit Routes Exit Routes - Supervisors (PPT)  National
Exit Routes Exit Routes and Evacuations (PDF)  National
Security - General Facility Security Assessment Form  National
Fire Extinguishers Fire Extinguishers Safe Use and Handling (INT)  National
First Aid First Aid (PDF)  National
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Housekeeping Good Housekeeping & General Maintenance Practices (PDF)  National
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