Friday, September 25, 2009

Toxic Water

I was putting Windows updates on the computer this morning when a news item scrolled across the screen..."School Drinking Water Contains Toxins." "Well," I thought, "how 'bout that. I was wondering what I was going to write about today."

The article says that thousands of schools have water supplies that contain unsafe levels of lead, pesticides, and dozens of other toxins including copper, arsenic, and disinfectants. These have been found in all 50 states, in public and private schools, and in small towns and inner cities.

While the problem seems to be worse in schools that have their own wells, it also exists in schools that get water from local utilities because of the school's own plumbing. Lead from lead-soldered pipes can flake off and in this case, the level of toxins can vary from drinking fountain to drinking fountain.

When I was teaching, I remember having to run the water for about five minutes early in the morning before it would run clear. It looked like coffee before we had even made coffee. On Monday morning, it took until about 10 am before clear water resulted from a flush of the toilet. The water from the drinking fountains always looked pure, but who really knew for sure.

I would recommend that parents request water samples to be tested in their children's schools. Many schools do not have money in their budgets for fixing such problems, so it may be up to the parents to make sure their children have fresh, pure, bottled water that can be carried to school.

Article "AP IMPACT: Drinking Water at Thousands of Schools Contains Unsafe Lead, Other Toxins" by Garance Burke, Associated Press from

No comments:

Post a Comment