Tattnall County school district administrators announced yesterday that parents’ concerns about asbestos in the Collins Elementary School near Savannah are unfounded and that the children attending classes there are perfectly safe.
According to a story aired on WTOC – TV, officials said that any concerns over asbestos hazards in the school, caused by a renovation project, have been cleared. Questions arose about the safety of the children in Collins’ summer school program when contractors began to tear up an old ceiling to run new telephone and internet wiring. The ceiling of the 50-year-old building contains asbestos, which is typical in older schools, but the material is normally contained by a drop down ceiling, the television report notes.
Two parents later contacted the TV station to report their concerns that asbestos particles had made their way into the classrooms where their children were studying during summer school.
School administration released a statement which explained that the summer school classes were taught in another building, but they requested an air quality test anyway in order to appease concerned parents.
Principal Dr. Jeannie Burkhalter said yesterday that results showed the smallest traces of asbestos in some samples and none in others. “The legal limit is 70 structures of asbestos per unit (of air),” she said. “We had one particle per unit. In fact, they told us the air inside was better than the air outside.”
Burkhalter stated that renovation work, which ceased during the testing, had resumed and should be finished in two to three weeks.