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Officials find lead in 2 more DeKalb schools above federal limits


Investigators testing water at DeKalb County Schools buildings found two more with elevated lead levels, officials said Tuesday.

One testing source at the International Student Center, 3318 Midway Road in Decatur, and Barack Obama Elementary School, 797 Fayetteville Road SE in Atlanta, tested positive for lead above the Environmental Protection Agency’s action level of 15 parts per billion. Officials tested 38 water sources at the International Student Center and 29 at Obama Elementary School.

Officials tested 48 water sources at Briar Lake and McClendon elementary schools, finding no lead above the EPA’s action level.

School officials have reported so far that 423 water sources in 16 schools have been tested, with 22 of them testing above the EPA action level.

Elementary schools are among the first tested, given priority because of those students’ ages. The district’s 106 buildings built before 1986 are at high risk, as lead was legally used during construction. Lead levels depend on several factors, including the water temperature as well as how long it sits in pipes.

According to the press release, both the International Student Center and Obama Elementary School buildings were built in 1958. Obama Elementary is moving to its permanent location in the next few months.

The district’s lead testing website includes test results and remediation efforts for all affected water sources.

Atlanta Environmental Management is collecting samples for testing.

No Georgia law requires testing water for lead in schools or day care centers.

Recently, Atlanta Public Schools found elevated lead levels in some of its buildings, too.

You can find test scores, graduation rates and other critical information about your school at the new Ultimate Atlanta School guide.


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