(WGHP) — 21 schools have reportedly been affected by mold out of a total of 37 in the Alamance-Burlington School District.
The start of school is already delayed a week until Sept. 5, but parents are wondering if their kids will be able to go to class even then.
“We want to put our students in schools, and that is the goal right now, and that’s where we are. We are going to try our best to do that,” ABSS spokesperson Les Atkins said.
Removing mold is an intensive process, and it takes a lot of manpower and time.
“We are exploring all options, but we really won’t know the full scope of what we’re dealing with until the inspections are completed, and that’s where we are now,” Atkins said.
Williams High School was among those inspected Monday, and Vice-Chair of the Alamance County Commission Steve Carter tagged along to see the problem.
“A lot of mold in a lot of places we just finished doing work on,” Carter said.
He’s referencing the 2018 bond that paid for the Williams cafeteria renovations and brand new auditorium.
He says it’s frustrating to see mold in at least six rooms at the school now “on walls, on some furniture,” Carter said.
Williams High School, Broadview Middle School and Cummings High School are the most heavily affected by mold.
“Fixing these issues, it’s going to take resources that we don’t have as a school district,” Atkins said.
With $1.2 million already invested into cleaning Andrews High School and Newlin Elementary School, the dollar figure for more repairs is expected to be high.
“You’re probably looking at a request for proposal, for a firm to come in and do something like this,” Carter said.
Now the district is working on ways to educate students as soon as possible.
“This is going to be a disruption. We’ve gotta figure out when we are going to start up school and how we are going to start it up,” Carter said.
The district has space for 400 students at its newest high school, South Alamance, but it’s not enough.
“Nobody likes to hear the words ‘remote learning,’ but if you can’t use your campuses in some places, we might have to look at starting that up,” Carter said.
The meeting on Monday is at 3 p.m. followed by a school board meeting later that night.
Parents are notified by phone, text and email directly by the school system of changes.