Sophisticated building systems in new schools provide advantages in air quality, environmental efficiency, and acoustics, and generally require a greater level of attention to operation and maintenance than the less advanced systems they replace.
Participation by school district personnel in the design, construction, and post-occupancy of new buildings, including in the design and implementation of training opportunities, as set forth in these recommendations, will help districts control and plan for added costs.
These recommendations are compiled from many sources: the experience of districts who have worked with the MSBA to build schools with successful, sophisticated building systems; mechanical, electrical, and plumbing engineers who design these schools; consultation with the Massachusetts Facilities Administrators Association (MFAA); government and industry standards; and, guidelines for the operation and maintenance of schools and other buildings. The recommendations are intended to furnish districts with the right questions to ask, and to provide districts with context about when in the life of a project to ask these questions; the MSBA does not purport to have the answers to the questions, which will be different for each school district. These standards also do not address the additional challenges posed by the outbreak of communicable diseases such as the COVID-19 pandemic.