A Study into the Effects of Light on Children of Elementary School-Age--A Case of Daylight Robbery.

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This report describes a 2-year study of the effects of various lighting systems on elementary school students' dental health, attendance, growth and development, vision, and academic achievement. The four light types used were: (1) full spectrum fluorescent; (2) full spectrum fluorescent with ultraviolet light supplements; (3) cool white fluorescent; and (4) high pressure sodium vapor. Data on students were collected before and after the study. Results indicated that over a 2-year period, students who received ultraviolet light supplements had better attendance, greater gains in height and weight, and better academic performance than did students who did not receive the supplements. Students under the high pressure sodium vapor lighting had the slowest rates of growth in height and academic achievement and the lowest attendance. It was concluded that lighting systems have important nonvisual effects on students who are exposed to them over long periods of time. Implications for facility planning are considered and recommendations regarding lighting for classrooms are offered.
Hathaway, Warren E.; And Others
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