Nov 4, 2002
Holston View Elementary Closed Due To Black Mold
by Meredyth Fox
Bristol, Tennessee City Schools Director Steve Dixon announced Monday that Holston
View Elementary will be closed for the remainder of the week due to the discovery
of black mold in the building.
The announcement comes after school officials learned that a test on ceiling
tiles, which were being routinely replaced, tested positive for the mold. School
officials have been randomly selecting suspicious ceiling tiles from buildings
where individuals had expressed concern. Dixon said the school system is still
in the process of testing additional buildings. The results from those tests
are not yet available.
The school system is conducting air quality tests to determine if the black
mold is airborne. Those results are due back mid-week. In the meantime, school
officials plan to fog Holston View Wednesday, a process that eliminates mold
Students, parents and Holston View faculty were notified of the closure at the
end of the school day Monday. In a letter to parents, Dixon said "we want
to assure you that school will not reopen until we are certain that the air
quality is safe. Our first priority is the health and safety of your children
and our staff."
Dixon says he expects the school to reopen Monday, however an alternate plan
is being drawn up in case the mold situation is worse than first thought. Details
of that plan are not yet available.
Dixon says concerns about the presence of mold in Bristol schools arose after
the discovery of black mold at Sullivan County's Sullivan East High School.
East was closed in early October and mold removal there is expected to last
through this week. Students have been attending class at the Bristol Motor Speedway.
Dixon says he does not believe the situation at Holston View is as serious as
that at East. Bad insulation, a leaky roof and ceiling pipes are to blame for
the mold at East. Dixon says it's likely a leaky roof created the problem at
Holston View, but that it isn't believe the mold is in the school's ventilation
Black mold, also known as Stachybotrys chartarum, can cause respiratory reactions
in certain individuals who have sensitivity to mold. However, most individuals
are not affected by exposure.
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