Shelby County school officials have decided to close Montevallo Elementary School starting today as a "precautionary measure" after trace amounts of mold were found throughout the building.
Superintended Randy Fuller issued a notice Monday afternoon to students, parents and staff announcing the school board's decision to close the school until at least January 2, 2013.
The notice says the Board of Education received a verbal report from ERG Environmental, Inc., saying that "recent room-to-room air quality testing results show trace amounts of stachybotrys mold spores in some of the air samples taken from the office area, fourth grade hallway, and one classroom."
The most recent air quality tests were in parts of the building that were previously untested during the school's previous two random air quality tests and follow-up tests.
The superintendent's note goes on to say that while ERG found the amounts to be "within acceptable levels," the school district has decided to close the school as a precautionary measure.
Fuller added that personal belongings including backpacks, books and lunch boxes are safe for students to take home, since environmental consultants say the trace amounts are within the acceptable levels.
The MES building will be closed during the holidays for ongoing cleaning efforts at the school. Fuller says the school will not reopen "until an independent State Department of Education approved agency conducts additional air quality testing."
Fuller says the school's reopen date will be published on the school district website, on the school marquee and through the local media.
Several parents have expressed their concern about the levels of mold found at the school. In September, five classes were relocated to portables for a mold cleanup after an air quality report revealed traces of mold in a classroom.
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