GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. (WGHP) — “Slightly elevated” levels of mold forced Guilford County Schools to close the media center at Southern Elementary School less than two weeks after Alamance-Burlington School System cleared schools in its district following a weekslong battle with mold.

Last week, Southern Elementary School Principal Johnathan Moore sent a message to parents reporting mold in the school’s media center.


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“Guilford County Schools’ Maintenance Department hired an independent contractor to investigate, and a slightly elevated level of mold was found in the media center,” Moore said. “To remedy the situation, the media center will be closed next week for the contractor to clean in accordance with recommended protocols.”

The school plans to remove and replace all books from the media center, which will take a few months. Students will still be able to work with a media specialist and have access to the school’s eBook library and public library system.

Alamance-Burlington School System’s battle with mold ended up impacting dozens of schools in Alamance County and forced the district to delay the start of the school year so that schools could be deep-cleaned.

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By the end of August, ABSS had discovered mold in “nearly 30 schools.” Out of those, toxigenic mold was identified in 16 schools. The type of toxigenic mold found is called “Chaetomium” which inspectors say is from “invasive water damage over time.”

Alamance County students returned to classrooms on Monday, days before mold was detected in parts of the ABSS Central Services building on Wednesday, forcing the administration to temporarily relocate staff to other parts of the building or to schools that have recently been deep-cleaned.

In early September, FOX8 reached out to several Piedmont Triad school districts, including Guilford County Schools, with questions about mold. GCS did not respond with answers.