Dear Oakland Mills Middle School community,
Providing a safe and healthy learning environment is our top priority at Oakland Mills Middle School. Beginning in September 2018, Howard County Public School System (HCPSS) began testing all schools for the presence of lead in school drinking water. The lead testing of drinking water outlets complies with a recent state regulation requiring testing in all Maryland schools, and complements the school system’s Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ) program that proactively maintains proper indoor environments.
While science has not established a safe level of lead exposure, the EPA recommends water outlets be taken out of service if the lead level exceeds 20 parts per billion (ppb). During a recent water sample collection on September 29, 2018 at our school, five sinks had a level of lead which exceeds the minimum threshold of 20 ppb.
When a water outlet exceeds this level, the outlet is closed immediately, and remedial actions are planned. Appropriate remedial actions can include evaluating the cause, and replacing the necessary fixture or plumbing. Students and staff will see the water outlet shut down while this work is completed. Please note that the outlet(s) impacted is/are a sink faucet and not a water fountain. As always, we encourage students and staff to use water fountains, not faucets, for drinking water.
For more details, please find the attached notice and map of areas affected. Test results can also be found on the HCPSS website, and a link to results will be added to our school website. I will send a follow up notification via email after all remedial actions are complete.
For more information, contact Christopher Madden, Certified Industrial Hygienist/IEQ Manager, in the HCPSS Office of the Environment. As always, please also do not hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns.