Asbestos in Schools News for January 21st, 2009

In BEAVER SPRINGS, PA, the school board has approved an asbestos removal plan necessary in order to continue with the Midd-West High School construction project. The district began to accept bids on December 23, 2008, for the asbestos removal. After the acceptance of the bids, the board allows itself 120 days in which to make its decision.
During the meeting to approve the asbestos removal, the board also passed PlanConD and PlanConE for the design and accounting development aspects of the high school construction project. The total funding allotted for the project is $43.8 million. A contract for a roof replacement at West Beaver Elementary was budgeted at $448,179 to Weatherproofing Technologies Inc. The Perry-West Perry Elementary School was also recognized for its being named a National Title I Distinguished School in Pennsylvania. Of the 1800 Title I schools in the state, only 70 received the distinguished recognition.

In LIBBY, MT, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) conducted two days of air quality testing of the five schools for asbestos contamination at the beginning of December 2008. The schools included in the testing included: Libby Middle School, Plummer School, Libby High School, Central School, and Asa Wood Elementary. Ten locations at each site were monitored over two days. Monitors tested the air in four areas of the halls, four classrooms, and two from commons areas such as cafeterias or libraries. In order to determine the amount of asbestos to which the children at the schools were being exposed, the monitors were placed at the height of the students at the schools. The EPA did not define the testing as activity-based sampling since the monitors were fixed. A decision on future activity-based sampling will be based upon the results of the December 2008 monitoring. Results of the testing were scheduled to be available three to five weeks after the testing. The EPA hopes to conduct the testing on an annual basis in order to develop a data record of air quality.