WRITTEN BY EDITOR;
I presented to the Board of Trustees on April 26th concerning their report on the testing of the water in District facilities for lead content. On May 6th, I again wrote to the Board asking when we might receive response to our presentations questions and concerns.
On May 9th I received the response below:
RESPONSE TO QUESTIONS AS PRESENTED TO THE BOARD OF EDUCATION
Ms. June Ross:
Thank you for presenting at the Regular Board meeting on Wednesday, April 26, 2017. Below you will find answers to your questions.
The chart on page three of staff’s presentation on April 12, 2017 indicates that there are seven schools built after 1990. The schools/buildings below the line represents schools built prior to 1990. These are the sites to be tested, as per Ministry of Education policy.
The district is currently examining its testing schedule for all schools or buildings and will take your suggestions under consideration. As you know, the first phase of testing is complete. As indicated by staff and mandated by the Ministry of Education, all schools must be tested over a period of three years.
According to Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality, the acceptable level of lead content is 0.010 mg/L. This information can be found on the Health Canada website. This national standard measure is the district’s goal for sufficient levels.
The full engineer’s report with specific readings have been posted on the district website.
To address lead content in the water lines, the district has had a long-standing practice to flush the lines for two minutes prior to consumption. This is for the benefit of students and staff. No measure of how much water is flushed has been determined.
The engineer’s recommendations for remediation for phase one will be complete in May 2017.
Once again, I invite you to visit the district website,
)it is on this page where you will find the full 200-page engineer’s report, as well as a timeline of district staff’s work on complying with the Ministry of Education’s policy for testing lead content in drinking water of school facilities.
On May 11th, 2017 I wrote again to the Board of Trustees as there were many of our questions not answered. This letter follows:
Good morning and thank you for sending some of the answers to me. We would like answers to all of our questions please.
I have been onto the website and have had a cursory look at both Parts of the report.
The areas I am missing response to are as follows which are based on my presentation to you:
1. PAGE 4- This section indicates that all samples were taken after midnight on Sundays to represent the worst case scenario. I do not agree that this is the worst case scenario.
There are two week closures during the year and two months during the summer. Are you going to retest at these times in the year?
2. It is recommended that you send the drinking water results to staff. Why are they not being sent to parents??
3. It is also said in this section that staff “should” instruct students and visitors about the drinking water procedures. Staff? Which staff are you tasking to do this?
4. Are the fixes only going to be applied in the facilities built before 1991?
Is there going to be an ongoing monitoring program and if deficiencies are still found, what corrective measures will be taken?
Do schools built after 1990 get a free pass, or will they be checked periodically?
5. In your response, you say “To address lead content in the water lines, the district has had a long-standing practice to flush the lines for two minutes prior to consumption. This is for the benefit of students and staff. No measure of how much water is flushed has been determined”. I am asking why? In addition the report indicated that water should be run until it is cold. This is in addition to the 2 minute run. How much water is actually lost? Do you truly believe that students are doing this process all the time?
6. We also need to know if the District is considering utilizing filters as suggested in my presentation versus “throwing water away”?? Again, the reading I have done indicates flushing is considered a temporary fix and not a permanent fix.
With thanks to your attention to this letter....
I have bcc’d the Core Group of VIWWC as well as one PAC group.
NOW...we wait again!