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Water testing at all Bethel schools was conducted in June by PBS Engineering + Environmental.

Water testing at all Bethel schools was conducted in June by PBS Engineering + Environmental.

Bethel School District has received the results from water testing at all of its schools and support facilities.

The testing was conducted in June in response to concerns raised around the country about the possibility of lead in school drinking water, but due to the high number of schools testing their water this summer results have been delayed much longer than expected.

841 possible drinking water sources were tested and 40 came back with elevated levels of lead. Water to all of those sites has been turned off and the fixtures removed or replaced. All the sources in question were retested to confirm that the lead source is in the fixture rather than the interior plumbing. They will be repaired and back on line as soon as the the district receives the results from the follow-up water sampling.

Bethel School District proactively conducted these tests to ensure the safety of its drinking water, well before the state asked schools to do so.

fiber-opticBethel School District lost internet access after a fiber optic line between Bethel and the University of Oregon was severed Friday.

EWEB crews worked for three days to restore our service. As of 3:05 pm Sunday we are back online.

Bethel staff training (BLIS classes) and school registration will go ahead as planned.

We apologize for the inconvenience this may have caused staff and community members.

waterResults for two Bethel schools have been received after the testing for lead in drinking water throughout Bethel School District. The testing was in response to concerns raised around the country about the possibility of lead in school drinking water.

Meadow View had no elevated levels of lead from any of the 119 water sources tested.

Of the 58 sources tested at Shasta Middle School, elevated lead levels have been indicated in three locations: a sink in Studio West, a sink room 37, and a “bubbler” (water fountain) in the cafeteria.

These three water sources will be retested to confirm that the lead source is in the fixture rather than the interior plumbing. In accordance with EPA guidelines, follow-up tests (again conducted by an independent professional environmental service, PBS Engineering + Environmental) will consist of water samples taken immediately after a five minute flush of the pipes which feed the sites in question.

The most likely source of lead in drinking water is from the fittings in old fixtures, which will be replaced immediately. To address the cause and ensure safe drinking water for students and staff, the District will:

  • Prevent immediate access to the water sources in question
  • Eliminate the source of the lead by replacing the fixtures
  • Notify families, students and staff of further results and any updates

The health and safety of our students and staff remain our #1 priority. Although there are currently no federal or state requirements that schools test their water, and although the state has not offered to provide financial assistance to school districts conducting the water tests, Bethel School District has proactively conducted these tests to determine the safety of its drinking water.

Click here for more information from the EPA about lead in drinking water.

Results from water tests at other Bethel schools and facilities will be shared as soon as the information becomes available.

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