The Hook's Laura Hoffman recently did a follow-up story on the School Board's consideration of safer chemical management procedures. I think she covered it well. Since there was no direction from the School Board to change course, staff will continue to routinely disinfect restrooms and nurses stations (aka Option A) following the recommendations of the Safer Chemical Committee and the School Board's Health Advisory Committee.
We will also continue with the implementation of the Integrated Pest Management program (which has significantly reduced the use of pesticides). We will also continue to switch to "greener" cleaning products and grounds keeping approaches as recommended by staff. Staff will present updated information on the financial impacts of the new approach at our August 14, 2008 meeting.
7/21/2008 * The Hook [full story]
“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
That was the mantra of the Albemarle County school board July 10, as members voiced their support for continuing routine disinfection in schools with traditional synthetic chemicals. By backing disinfection, the school board countered a vote of the Board of Supervisors, who last month unanimously decided to switch to sanitizing– cleaning with greener products or simply soap and water– in all county buildings.
While following recommendations from both its health advisory panel and a joint school and local government committee, the school board’s position did not sit well with the Sierra Club, including Toxics Committee member Jackie Lombardo.
“We’re disappointed,” says Lombardo, whose group has pushed for a switch to non-toxic green cleaners. They’ve cited various studies that show that even very low exposure to pesticides– disinfectants are classified as pesticides– over time has been linked to learning disabilities, cancer, and asthma in children.