MASSENA — Indoor environmental testing in a number of areas in the Massena Central School District’s buildings has found no significant issues, according to the chairman of the district’s Facilities Committee.
“Everything in that report was that we really don’t have sick buildings. That’s good news. We’ve taken care of everything,” Kevin Perretta said during Thursday’s board of education meeting.
The inspection looked for any issues regarding carbon dioxide, radon and mold, as well as water testing for lead. The testing was coordinated by the state Department of Labor, state Department of Health and Jefferson-Lewis Board of Cooperative Educational Services safety officers.
The Massena Federation of Teachers and Massena Confederated School Employees’ Association had requested environmental testing because of their concerns following the cancer-related deaths of two staff members in 2019.
“This was work that was done at the request of the unions, based on some health issues and perceptions within buildings,” Mr. Perretta said.
The inspection found minor air flow problems at J.W. Leary Junior High School, the only building with univents, where teachers have control to shut them off. They will lose that ability with the upcoming capital project.
The junior high cafeteria also has a defunct air handler, which is being replaced in the capital project. In addition, the main office has radiation heat and air handler that staff members sometimes turn off in the winter. That will also be addressed during the project.
At the high school, a visual inspection for mold found staining on the ceiling in the 400 wing. That has been remediated and will be replaced with a drop ceiling in the project.
There were no radon issues in any building.
Routine water inspections found some sinks elevated, with most of them in science, art and janitor closets. There have been signs indicating not to drink the water. There were no issues with drinking fountains.
Superintendent Patrick Brady said a copy of the final inspection report has been forwarded to the unions.
“Part of the report was a reply to the Department of Labor, which is where employees go when they have concerns about buildings,” he said.