CMS and water quality in schools

Water quality is important to the health and well-being of students and staff in our schools. Protecting the health and safety of students and staff is a top priority across Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. To that end, CMS has launched a proactive water quality program to ensure the well-being of all students and staff in school. Our goal is to test water quality in all schools and to take any action necessary to ensure high water quality. CMS believes that the water in our community's schools is safe based on independent, third party testing and analysis.

CMS has created a Water Quality web page to find out more about this topic at www.cms.k12.nc.us/cmsdepartments/construction/buildingservices/ES/Pages/Water-Testing-Program.aspx that includes further information and FAQ's.

Facts about water quality in our community's schools

The water supply going into schools is safe. CMS schools are supplied water from the City of Charlotte, which regularly achieves high rankings for health and quality.

CMS is conducting proactive tests of water in schools to protect students and staff. CMS launched a proactive water quality program not in response to any specific condition or issue, but to protect the health and safety of students and staff. Our goal is to test water quality in all schools and to take any action necessary to protect people's health.

Independent, third party experts are leading testing. The district has a full-time Environmental & Health department within the district that is working with outside experts to conduct tests and to act as needed based on these experts' direction. All testing will be made available for anyone in the community to review on the CMS website at www.cms.k12.nc.us/cmsdepartments/construction/buildingservices/ES/Pages/Water-Testing-Program.aspx.

CMS will notify families of testing and any serious concerns. Parents are notified prior to testing at schools. Parents will be notified should any conditions be found that experts advise may pose serious concerns related to the health or safety of students and staff. Where corrections have been made, they are related to specific fixtures based on the guidance of independent experts.

No water quality issues have been found that affect entire schools.  In schools tested, some repairs or replacements have been made to specific fixtures (faucets, spigots, water bubblers), many of them unused for long periods of time or in areas inaccessible to students. All repairs or replacements have been made based on the guidance of independent experts. No water quality issues have been identified that affect an entire school.

All CMS schools will be tested. Based on the recommendations of experts, elementary school testing was first because younger children are more vulnerable to the effects of poor water quality. Middle and high schools are being tested during this year, with a priority on schools built before 1989 because independent experts recommend that priority due to the age of buildings.

CMS exceeds requirements for water quality testing. North Carolina does not require the testing. Six states — Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York and Virginia — have required school districts to test for lead.

CMS will continue to update water quality test results as further testing is conducted and will continue to act to protect the safety and health of students and staff.

Questions

Anyone with questions about water quality testing results in CMS schools can email EHS@cms.k12.nc.us for more information.

Additional Resources

For more information concerning this important topic please visit the links provided below.