Lemoore schools to test for lead in water
Lemoore schools to test for lead in water.
LEMOORE — In January, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson announced public schools can receive free testing for lead in drinking water under a new state program.
The State Water Resources Control Board, in cooperation with the California Department of Education, recently required all community water systems to test school drinking water upon request by school officials if the public school is served by the community water system.
“Students need fresh water, nutritious meals, and appropriate physical activity to be ready to learn in class.” At the Lemoore City Council’s last regular meeting on April 18, Public Works Director Nathan Olson said Lemoore Union Elementary School District and the Lemoore Union High School District have already asked the department to test for lead in their schools’ water systems.
Julie Fagundes, chief business official for Lemoore Union Elementary School District, said the district decided to jump on this free opportunity and requested the testing in February, shortly after the state department of education’s announcement.
Fagundes said public works staff have already met with the district’s maintenance and operations director and will be collecting water samples from five locations at each of the district’s school sites from water fountains and water from the kitchen areas.
Lemoore Union High School District Superintendent Debbie Muro said the district decided to contact the public works department about three weeks ago after hearing what the California Department of Education was offering and to just be proactive in the process.
The public works department would have to test between eight to 12 faucets, sinks and water fountains as part of their sample collections.
Lead problems are infrequent in California, which has newer water infrastructure and less corrosive water than other parts of the nation, according to the state department of education.
Ben Stidman, maintenance, operations and transportation director at Hanford Joint Union High School District said all the district’s school sites use city water for all potable water use.