After air quality tests were conducted at Virginia High School in Bristol it was determined that mold was growing in a non-instructional area of the school.
According to Keith Perrigan, the Superintendent of Bristol Public Schools, an air quality test was ordered at Virginia High after concerns about mildew were expressed.
A tape sample found that a section on the side of a coach’s desk that was pushed up next to an old filing cabinet came back positive for Aspergillum, a strain of mold that is known to cause health problems. The area has since been cleaned.
According to the William Buckles, the Director of Facilities and Logistics for the Bristol Virginia Public Schools, Aspergillum is a type of mold that is commonly found growing in homes and in buildings. He said that it is easy to clean.
Dr. Perrigan stated that the area where the mold was found was not an instructional part of the school. Additionally, he said that the tests that were conducted did not indicate the presence of Stachybotrys – Chartaum, or toxic black mold, the most feared mold of all.
The rest of the air quality tests came back with positive results. It was found that the indoor track and the old gym were free from any mold or other airborne allergens.
Indoor mold growth is a serious concern in any building, but particularly in schools, where large amounts of people are housed over extended periods of time. Prolonged exposure to mold is known to cause health complications. While people who have compromised immune systems, underlying respiratory problems, or who are allergic to mold are most at risk for developing problems, anyone can suffer as a result of mold exposure.
Symptoms of mold exposure include coughing, wheezing, congestion, runny nose, water eyes, skin irritations, fatigue, headaches, and fever. It can also cause memory loss, mood changes, infections, organ damage, and in the most severe cases, it can cause death.
Given the severe health impact that mold exposure can potentially cause, it is imperative that schools take all of the necessary precautions to have their facilities tested. Doing so will ensure that the safety, health, and well-being of the students, faculty, and staff are protected. If tests reveal that mold is present, taking immediate action and having it properly remediate is vital. The longer indoor mold growth goes untreated the worse the problem will become.
Mold Inspection & Testing Virginia Beach has years of experience performing mold assessments in public and private buildings and facilities throughout the state of Virginia. We urge the Bristol Virginia Public Schools to arrange for regular mold testing throughout all of their buildings and in all locations within those buildings. Doing so will help to ensure that students are learning in a safe environment, and that teachers and staff are working in a safe environment. To speak with an MI&T representative, call 757.541.2991.