Lead found in Manchester day school water last year - WFSB 3 Connecticut


Lead found in Manchester day school water last year

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Lead was found in the water at Birch Mountain Day School in August last year. (WFSB) Lead was found in the water at Birch Mountain Day School in August last year. (WFSB)

The state is dealing with lead concerns in a Manchester day school, but school officials said the young children they care for are safe.

The lead tests came back positive last year, and the tests done this year are clean, but parents said they never knew about this until recently.

One mother told Eyewitness News that she pulled her daughter out of the Birch Mountain Day School in August, as state records show unsafe lead levels were found in the water.

Director of the school, Jenifer Minicucci, said she has been running the school for 21 years and never had a problem until that test came back positive.

“It's devastating. For me to think that the parents think I put their child in jeopardy or danger,” she said.

Almost immediately, she said maintenance was done on the filtration system, and another company came out to do another test, which came back clean.

She did another test a few weeks ago, and it too passed.

However, in the state’s eyes, the school is still in non-compliance, because the Department of Public Health requires tests to be done six months after the first failed test.

The one done in September doesn’t count, but the one in March does. It will take one more in July before this label is off the school for good.

“Today, I feel like July can't come fast enough,” Minicucci said.

In the meantime, letters with copies of the passing tests were sent home with each child, but parents said they are wondering why they didn’t find out in August when this all happened.

Minicucci said the notice was posted on the walls at the school and that’s enough in the eyes of the state, but she admits she should have done more.

“When I did ask the state of Connecticut ‘should I put a notice in each cubby and do I need to supply water to the children,’ the answer was no. Posting was fine. In hindsight, obviously it should have gone in everyone's cubby,” Minicucci said.

She said she is confident the water at the school remains lead-free but she is fielding many questions and has seen enrollment drop.

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