New Jersey elementary school remains closed because of mold. Here’s when they plan to open
It was the first day back to school in Old Bridge Thursday, but Walter Schirra Elementary School remained closed because of mold.
About 276 children did not begin their school year, and one parent said they weren't notified until Wednesday that school was canceled.
In a letter to parents from Superintendent Dave Cittadino, several inspections throughout August revealed no mold, however, in the last few days, that changed.
Between Aug. 28 and last week, a phenomenon occurred that increased the moisture level inside the school, which caused mold spores to bloom in a RH climate greater than 60%. There are several causes for it, most of which could happen in a very short time period.
Around 30 contractors were in the school to clean and remove the mold.
The school hopes for a return date of Monday to start school.
One parent said her kids were devastated by the delay and even if the remote option was allowed, it's not enough. She emphasized that kids need to be in the classroom and called the situation "sad and shameful."
That parent also said when she told her daughter that school would be closed, her daughter cried herself to sleep.
Meantime, Cittadino said he's doing everything possible to return to a safe learning environment. He also expressed his disappointment at the state for denying two requests for remote learning, saying if water had entered the front door, they would be remote but because it was just humidity, they were denied.
Delays because of mold are not unique to Old Bridge. The entire Middletown school district's opening was pushed back from Wednesday to Monday, Sept. 13.