Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Who is Keeping Track?

Of the Moisture, Mold, and Maintenance Issues at 
Jenny Lind Elementary?

Or is the better question: has anyone taken the responsibility to keep track of these issues as they have occurred over the course of several years? Furthermore, who is responsible for tracking the related health issues that may (or may not) stem from these reoccurring moisture, mold, and maintenance issues? There are some obvious agencies and institutions that come to mind:

*Public Health (Receives information through physician reporting)

*Environmental Health (No apparent jurisdiction)

*CAL-OSHA (Protects Employees only—not children)

*CUSD Maintenance and Operations

*CUSD Superintendent of Schools

*CUSD School Board

*Parents of Jenny Lind Elementary students

These are the agencies and institutions … but who “really” is keeping track of these serious issues that affect people (and most importantly children)? Unfortunately, there is not much parents can do if they are not informed or made aware of moisture, mold, and severe maintenance issues as they occur at an elementary school.

It really seems apparent that special care (monitoring) needs to be made a priority, especially when portables get past the recommended age (15 years) of use and occupancy. Please note that some of the portables on Jenny Lind Elementary are reaching their 24th year—having been built in Lathrop in 1988.

Who, then, is keeping track of the moisture, mold, and maintenance issues as they arise at JLE? How far back have these very same issues been dealt with? What classrooms are repeat offenders? What issues have been successfully resolved? How and when were they remediated? Was it a moisture or mold issue? Was anyone made aware of the issue? What type of notification did the parents receive when their child changed classrooms due to a moisture or mold issue? Have parents ever been notified when these types of environmental issues arise? If the parents are not made aware, who is ultimately protecting the welfare of students? We know that parents can only protect and advocate for their children if they are made aware of such issues.

There is a history of moisture, mold and poor indoor air quality issues at JLE—especially in regards to the aged portables. I believe there is also a history of health complications that have surfaced in connection with these reoccurring environmental issues. Unfortunately, it appears that no one is responsible for (you guessed it) … monitoring or keeping track of these occurrences.

If I’ve learned anything from this experience it is this: agencies can be made aware … but no one wants to be responsible. 

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