November 23, 2016
Dear members of the Fort Plain community,
As you may be aware, on Sept 6, 2016, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a new law that requires public schools in New York State to test for lead in all water outlets currently or potentially used for drinking or cooking.
I write to inform you about the results of water testing completed at Harry Hoag Elementmy School. Results from water testing completed at Harry Hoag are posted on the district website at www.fortplain.org. Water samples have also been drawn at Fort Plain Junior-Senior High School. Results of these tests will be provided to parents, faculty and staff and will be posted on the district website once they m·e available.
Fulmont Laboratories collected “first draw” samples -meaning the water outlet had not been used for a minimum of eight hours -from 104 faucets and drinking fountains at the Harry Hoag School on September 27 and 29, 2016. Of those samples, 41 were found to contain lead levels that exceed the state’s action level of 15 parts per billion (ppb). We received the results on Wednesday, November 23 and the outlets that these samples were drawn from were immediately taken out of service or marked with signage indicating that the outlet was not to be used for drinking water.
The water outlets with the highest readings were from sinks in the art room, science rooms and from one restroom sink. These outlets are rarely, if ever, used by students or staff for drinking. All hallway drinking fountains were well below the state’s action level of 15 parts per billion (ppb). Five classroom drinking outlets in the Pre-K and Head Start Classrooms exceeded the state’s action level with results ranging from 17 to 50 ppb. Bottled water coolers have been placed in each of these locations for student use.
In the coming days we will initiate the recommended procedures for re-testing. Please be assured that all outlets that tested above the state’s level have been taken out of service, or marked with appropriate signage, until re-testing and remediation have been completed.
We take these findings vety seriously and will work with our architects and engineers to ensure that we provide safe, healthy drinking water for our students and staff. Visit our website, www.fortplain.org for information about the risks associated with lead, as well as complete test results. If you have any questions or concerns about these test results or the steps the district is taking to address this issue, please contact my office at 993-4000, # 1000.
Superintendent of Schools