DEKALB COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) – Parents continue to raise concerns about mold at Valley Head School. There’s a meeting tonight, in fact.
The school’s principal, parents, teachers and the DeKalb County Board of Education and town officials will meet at the school at 5:30 p.m. to discuss the issues.
Parents plan to express their concerns and see what the school system is doing to fix the problem.
The school board said it has actually been trying to get rid of the mold for months, but so far, they’ve not been able to entirely eradicate it.
Sources close to Valley Head School say they’ve been dealing with the mold issues for several months. Superintendent Hugh Taylor says he first learned about the mold issues in November.
“Mr. Monroe, the principal there at the school wrote us a letter letting us know they had spotted mold,” said Taylor.
School staff members says they spotted mold throughout the school.
“Within four or five days we sent our maintenance crew out to treat the mold, and watching the response to that later in December we realized it came back,” said Taylor.
Taylor says test results on the mold show it is not harmful. However, WHNT News 19 talked with some parents who say they’re not convinced.
“I want to know is it safe to eat in there? Is it safe to breathe in there? Can my child and my niece sit in that desk where there is mold, lead paint and everything that has been disturbed? Tell me she’s safe,” said Sarah Cox.
Cox says they’ve gone months without results. However, she says Superintendent Taylor’s plan to address the issues is a good start in fixing the situation.
“Make sure they’re safe. That’s all we want,” said Cox. “As of right now it does seem like he is complying.”
The school board started taking bids from companies to treat it and to replace the HV/AC units where it was found.
“The plan was for during spring break was to have them come in and clean everything up,” said Taylor.
Friday, repair work was being done when plaster knocked off one of the walls. Taylor says concerned parents called him saying the work wasn’t safe with the mold in the area.
Taylor says he had the kids in that room moved to a different area of the school. He also says the mold was only found in closets, behind pictures and behind desks pushed against the wall and not airborne, so the work was deemed safe.
But that work raised more concerns.
“We’ve sent sampling off for asbestos that might be in the plaster.”
With this latest concern, the board is re-formulating a plan to get rid of the mold based on the asbestos testing.
If those results come back positive, the entire building will have to be shut down. If the results are negative, the board says they will displace the kids for 30 days while the mold is treated and the HV/AC units are replaced. They’ll know a more concrete answer in the next few days.