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FAQs Regarding School Start Delay

District Wide

August 22, 2018 | Community

What caused the issue in the buildings? 

As with other school districts experiencing the same issue across the state, record amounts of rain and extensive humidity in mid-August created significant levels of moisture in our buildings that resulted in mold-related issues. The district is working diligently to remediate this issue.

How is it being handled?

To ensure building conditions are healthy and safe for students and staff, the district has hired third-party companies, ServPro and Mellon Restoration, to provide an added layer of cleaning to schools where these conditions exist. In addition to these specialized cleaning services, the district also is working with another third-party company (Compliance Management International, Inc.) to test the air quality in all buildings to verify our students and staff have a safe return to the new year.

Are all buildings affected?

While there was no mold visibly present at Lycoming Valley Intermediate School, Williamsport Area Middle School or the District Service Center, air quality testing has confirmed these buildings continue to be safe for occupancy.  Other school buildings where mold was visibly present and/or detected continue to be monitored, cleaned and tested. 

What did the district proactively do this summer?

Our district buildings remained opened and were appropriately air conditioned and ventilated throughout the summer, as maintenance and custodial crews worked to prepare them for a new year. However, the extreme, unprecedented weather pattern we experienced late this season caused these unique conditions to occur. 

How was the issue first identified?

In mid-August, visible mold was discovered through routine cleaning by district staff at two buildings, which led the district to examine all buildings.

How will I know when the buildings are deemed safe for students and staff to return?

A statement will be released on the district’s website, social media pages and all-call system.  The district also plans to provide the documentation certifying that all areas within the buildings are safe for occupancy. 

Does the delay to the start of school affect every school in the district?

Yes, this delay affects all buildings.

How does this delay affect the school calendar?

This delay has impacted the 2018-2019 academic calendar.  The first day of school for all district students is Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018. A revised school calendar is now available here.

Will this change the original date of graduation or the last day of school?

No.  Graduation is still scheduled for Thursday, June 6, 2019.

How does this delay affect open houses?

All open houses have been delayed one week.  A revised open house schedule for each building can be found here.

My child is entering kindergarten.  How will this affect his/her start time?

Principals have issued a letter today (Aug. 22) with an updated schedule to those families whose children are entering kindergarten. A staggered start schedule for kindergarten students is still planned for the week of Sept. 4.

Why are some activities still taking place at some schools (i.e. WAHS, WAMS)?

There are areas of our buildings that remain clean, clear and available to use.  Activities, such as orientations, athletics, music practices and trainings, are taking place in those areas.

How are you ensuring that your buildings are safe work environments for district staff?

Custodial and maintenance staff has been provided with protective equipment to safely assist in the cleaning process.  Office personnel and other employees are only working in areas that have been cleaned and show no indication of mold.
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