Students at a Dallas ISD middle school were forced from their classrooms Friday after mold was found in their building.
Three classrooms and the principal’s office at Sarah Zumwalt Middle School tested positive for mold.
The areas were cordoned off as a precaution. Principal Troy Tyson said he first noticed the mold inside the private bathroom in his office.
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“It was the smell and the wall was sweating from the humidity in the room,” Tyson said. “I smelled the stench. I reported it to custodians and they, in turn, carried it up the ladder so we could get it tested.”
The district has hired a third party to conduct additional testing. By next week, officials hope to know what type of mold is in the school, the threat it poses to students and from where it's coming.
The district’s executive director of maintenance and facilities, Willie Burroughs, believes recent rains may be the cause.
“There may be moisture, water infiltration, things like that. We've been taking data over the course of the last couple weeks,” said Burroughs. ”We want to make sure we identify the source.”
Students were given letters to take home, but some parents did not know there was a problem until late Friday afternoon.
“I heard about it on the news,” said Michael Cole. “My question is 'what is [Dallas ISD] going to do about it, and how soon is it going to get done?' I think all the kids are still at risk if it’s still something in there. They should have shut down the school.”
Tyson met with parents after school Friday to reassure them that their children were not in danger.
An additional nurse has been assigned to the school and students and teachers are being asked to report any health issues.
Classes will continue as scheduled.
“We're safe. We're having school on a daily basis. Expectation is to have a uniform on Monday morning because school is going to go on,” Tyson said.