Westchester School District 92½

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Finance & Operations » Water Quality Test - August 23, 2017

Water Quality Test - August 23, 2017

Dear District 92½ Parents and Staff Members,

 

The purpose of this letter is to inform you that on Wednesday, August 23, the District received preliminary results of water quality testing which is being performed in all of our schools in accordance with the Lead in Drinking Water Testing Bill.  To protect public health, the Lead in Drinking Water Testing Bill (LDWTB) requires that all public schools constructed prior to January 1, 2000, test lead levels in water from every outlet that is being used, or could potentially be used, for drinking or cooking.

 

To provide you with some background, the “on-again, off-again” nature of water use at most schools can raise lead levels in school drinking water. Water that remains in pipes overnight, over a weekend, or over vacation periods stays in contact with lead pipes or lead solder and, as a result, could contain higher levels of lead. Lead most frequently gets into drinking water by leaching from plumbing materials and fixtures as water moves through a school’s distribution system. Even though the drinking water we receive from our water supplier meets federal and state standards for lead and copper, our facility may have elevated lead levels due to plumbing materials and water use patterns.  

 

Two samples were collected from each water source.  The samples were collected on a “first draw” basis. “First draw” is achieved by allowing the water system to rest for at least eight hours prior to sampling in order to collect any existing debris or settlement within the sample.  The intent of this sampling is to replicate “worst case scenario” conditions.  A second sample from each water source was collected as a “follow up” sample basis.   “Follow‐up” sampling is achieved by allowing the water system to run for 30 seconds after the first draw sampling.   The intent of this sampling is to determine if lead contamination may be in the water lines connected to the water sources and not just at the fixture.    

 

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA)  action level for lead in drinking water is 15.0 parts per billion (ppb) for potable water sources.  Results from the tests are as follows:

 

Westchester Primary School                     Westchester Middle School

70 water samples collected                                      72 water samples collected

6 results greater than 15 ppb                                    1 result greater than 15 ppb

22 results greater than 5 ppb                                    7 results greater than 5 ppb

 

Westchester Intermediate School

64 water samples collected

0 results greater than 15 ppb

1 result greater than 5 ppb


You will find additional information and the results of the lead testing done at all three of our buildings attached.    The District has immediately shut off water to the affected sources that are above 15 ppb and will be taking remedial steps pending another water quality test. As a follow-up, additional water tests will be conducted to ensure the remediation was successful before placing any of the sinks and drinking fountains back in service for students and staff members.
 

Please be assured that we will continue to take the necessary steps to ensure the wellbeing of our staff and students and that the quality of drinking water throughout our District meets regulations. We will keep you informed as we continue to receive the results of the ongoing water testing at all of our schools. Please email me at psalemi@sd925.org or call me at 708-450-2700 should you have any questions or concerns.

 

Sincerely,


Philip Salemi

Superintendent of Schools

Westchester School District 92½