Farmington school tackles possible mold problem

Two fifth-grade Bluffview Elementary teachers have reported symptoms possibly related to mold exposure

Joshua Kellogg
  • Teachers and students were moved to temporary classrooms as a precaution.

FARMINGTON — Reports of possible mold at Bluffview Elementary School have led district and school officials to take steps to ensure the health and safety of staff members and students.

Bluffview Elementary School Principal Luanne Davis points out what she suspects is possible mold on her carpet Wednesday at her school in Farmington.

The concerns of possible mold in two fifth-grade classrooms arose after the two teachers were told by doctors on Friday that they were suffering from symptoms possibly related to mold exposure, according to Ted Lasiewicz, the chief of operations for the Farmington Municipal School District.

The district has not received the results of the tests conducted on Tuesday to determine if there is mold present in the two classrooms. Lasiewicz said the test results are expected Thursday morning.

Bluffview Elementary Principal Luanne Davis said she first contacted Lasiewicz on Aug. 18 to inform him that fifth-grade teachers Sarah Kimbell and Janie Sorrelhorse were not feeling well and felt like they had possible mold-related illnesses. He directed Davis to send the teachers to a Reliance Medical Group office in Farmington for an examination.

The school used the district’s automated telephone system to inform parents about the possible mold on Friday morning. Davis said the front office received three calls from parents, but no one asked to speak to her regarding the possible mold.

“We felt like it was important to be transparent with families,” Davis said.

The teachers and students have been using temporary classrooms in different parts of the building since Monday, Davis said.

Bluffview Elementary School Principal Luanne Davis says the district is trying to be transparent with the parents of students as it deals with a suspected mold problem at the school.

During a tour of the two classrooms today, Davis said both rooms were cleaned thoroughly by the custodial staff during the weekend. Furniture in one classroom was taken outside and sterilized before being placed in a temporary classroom.

“We had to move the kids and teachers to keep them safe,” Davis said.

Bluffview Elementary was built in 1962, and the classrooms are located in an addition constructed in 1984, according to Lasiewicz.

The students will remain in the temporary classrooms until the results of the mold test are known.

Joshua Kellogg covers education for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4627.