Dear Parents and Guardians,
You may be aware of the elevated lead level that was detected in the schools in Kitimat as well as the low pH of Pemberton’s water that is reacting with plumbing fittings and fixtures to produce elevated levels of lead in the drinking water.
School District No. 48 (Sea to Sky) took immediate action in our Pemberton area schools to ensure that safe drinking water was provided to students and staff in the schools. We also undertook water testing in all the schools in the District to determine if there were any concerns with the drinking water quality.
A short time later, Vancouver Coastal Health’s School Health Officer sent a memo recommending “that all School Districts in the Coastal Rural region (Sunshine Coast, Powell River, Sea to Sky, Bella Bella and Bella Coola) commence daily flushing of all water lines in all of the schools.” We have taken this action and have used the same processes we implemented in Pemberton and brought them to all schools in the District.
The water testing confirmed that the lead level in the drinking water post-flush is well below the maximum acceptable concentration levels determined by Canadian Drinking Water Standards.
The School District will be installing filtered water bottle filling stations in all schools and will be decommissioning the water fountains that are currently in use. Students will be able to use the filling stations to refill their water bottles more easily than they have in the past with the water fountains.
We are confident that the new water stations will allow us to continue to provide a healthy learning environment for all students and staff.