Three SD 27 schools to receive water upgrades

The Ministry of Education has announced funding for three schools in the district to have work done to improve water quality

Mountview Elementary School normally has most of its drinking fountains off limits, but on Monday the Ministry of Education announced it is one of three schools in the district slated for upgrades to improve drinking water quality. Photo submitted

Three schools in School District 27 will receive upgrades to ensure students have access to healthy drinking water.

On Monday the Ministry of Education announced that Lake City Secondary School Columneetza Campus, Mountview Elementary School and Naghtaneqed Elementary/Junior Secondary School in Nemiah Valley will all have work completed at the end of March 2018 to reduce lead levels.

“Kids should be able to get a drink of clean, healthy water from water fountains at school. Now students at these schools will be able to do that,” said Rob Fleming, Minister of Education. “My goal is to have every student in B.C. attend a healthy and safe school, and this is another step toward achieving that goal. We know we have more work to do, and that is why we are accelerating capital investments throughout B.C.”

Mountview principal Craig Munroe said presently the school only has two fountains that are operational in the school because they have filters on them.

“Because of the oldness of the building, there is some lead in the water and what happens is when you test the water in the morning, the lead count is just above the recommended acceptable level,” Munroe said. “As the water flushes through during the day it comes back within safe amounts.”

To ensure the students have healthy water, there is always drinking water brought in to the school, which is placed next to the drinking fountains that are covered in a black plastic bag because they are off limits, Munroe noted.

Other schools in the province receiving the upgrade projects are the Children’s Development Centre in Saanich, École des Sept-sommets in Rossland and École Sundance Elementary in Victoria.

The total cost of the projects is $750,000.

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