Water shut off in Prince George's Co. classrooms for lead contamination

Today, after our reporting, school officials at the Glenridge Elementary school finally revealed the scale of the situation in a note home to parents.

LANDOVER HILLS, MD (WUSA9) - Taps in at least 45 classrooms at the Glenridge Elementary School have tested for elevated levels of lead and water fountains have been turned off as a precaution, according to an announcement to parents issued by Prince George's County Public Schools Tuesday.

The information was released a day after WUSA9 first looked into parent questions about why their children were being given bottled water, and eight days after officials said they shut down the taps. They did not explain the delay in notifying parents.

PREVIOUS: Lead contamination forces water shut off at a Prince George's Co. elementary school

Since taps were turned off, school officials have provided children and staff with bottled water. The school system is in the process of installing water coolers to provide unlimited drinking water. 

There is no timeline for plumbing renovations that would eliminate the elevated levels of lead that are typically linked to aging pipes.

School officials say the levels of lead over the EPA recommended action level of 15 micrograms per deciliter were discovered as part of a "multi-phase testing and remediation program" that has been ongoing since 2004.

School officials say 30% of the fixtures tested in more than 200 buildings were positive for elevated lead levels.

Childhood lead illness prevention advocates say parents should ask pediatricians for a routine blood lead level test, since that is the only way to know if children have been harmed.

Glenridge Elementary School letter by Erin Thacker on Scribd


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