As a result of recent federal legislation, each elementary, middle and secondary school in the nation is required to complete a stringent new inspection for asbestos and to develop a plan of management for all asbestos-containing building materials. Byron Public Schools are in full compliance with this law and are following the spirit as well as the letter of the law. As a matter of policy, Byron Public Schools shall continue to maintain a safe and healthful environment for our community’s youth and employees.
A concern has been raised that, with time, asbestos-containing materials could break down and allow particles to enter the air. Because heavy exposure to asbestos particles has been linked to some cancers, an earlier federal law was passed requiring school districts to identify areas in which materials containing friable asbestos were used. More recent legislation (AHERA) requires identification of ALL asbestos-containing materials and a plan to manage those materials.
In keeping with the new legislation, all buildings (including portables and support buildings) owned or leased by the school were inspected by EPA accredited inspectors and samples were analyzed by an independent laboratory. Based on the inspection, the school prepared and the state recently approved a comprehensive management plan for handling the asbestos located within its buildings safely and responsibly.
Federal law requires a periodic walkthrough (called “surveillance”) every six months of each area containing asbestos. Also, the law requires all buildings to be re-inspected three years after a management plan is in effect. This will be accomplished under contract. Short-term workers (outside contractors i.e. telephone repair workers, electricians and exterminators) must be provided information regarding the location of asbestos they may come into contact. All short-term workers shall contact the Superintendent for this information before commencing work.
Byron Public Schools has a list of the location(s), type(s) of asbestos-containing materials found in each school building and a description and timetable for their proper management. Asbestos does not present a hazard if it is properly maintained. In 1988, all ISD 531 school buildings were inspected by accredited personnel for asbestos-containing materials. Since then, the district has conducted surveillance checks every six months and re-inspected buildings every three years as required to ensure that asbestos is property maintained.
Except for floor tile, most of the asbestos in the district is limited to non-public areas such as mechanical rooms and above ceilings. ISD 531 has limited its asbestos removal to areas where renovation or maintenance activities are planned. Management plans are on file and available for review in each building that has asbestos-containing materials. Questions regarding this notice should be directed to the Facilities Maintenance Manager at 507-624-0346.