Superintendent to hold meeting Wednesday
By Shaun Moriarty
Citizen Chronicle Writer
WARREN — While elementary students will kick off a new school year as scheduled, secondary students will get at least two more days of summer due to mold at Quaboag Regional Middle/High School.
On Saturday evening, Quaboag Regional School District Superintendent Brett Kustigian announced the closure of the middle/high school on social media and via phone messages to parents and guardians. Middle and high school students had been scheduled to start the new school year on Tuesday, but now will not start until at least Thursday, Kustigian said. Elementary school students will begin their academic years on Tuesday as originally scheduled as the mold problem has only been found at the middle/high school.
“We recently discovered some mold at the middle/high school and we need additional time to do more testing to ensure a safe learning environment for all,” Kustigian said. “Please know that [Quaboag Regional Middle/High School] will be closed for students and staff on Tuesday (9/4) and Wednesday (9/5). Both elementary schools are not affected and they will start school as scheduled on Tuesday, September 4.”
In an effort to ease possible parental concerns, Kustigian also announced he would hold “an information forum on the mold mitigation process for all parents and community members” on Wednesday at 7 p.m. at West Brookfield Elementary School. The superintendent noted that indoor air quality expert Edward P. Nowak, president and founder of JEES Environmental Services of Charlton, will be on hand to answer questions. According to JEES Environmental Services’ website, Nowak “has over 20 years on the job experience helping homeowners, property management companies, restoration companies, realtors, and insurance companies test and create a remediation plan for moisture problems in residential and commercial buildings.”
Kustigian said he will announce at Wednesday evening’s meeting “an exact timeline” of when the middle/high school will reopen for all students.
“Thank you for your patience, cooperation and understanding. Please know that the administration is working feverishly to remedy this issue,” the superintendent added. “We have experts in place and the mold remediation process has started, but we need additional time.”
In his social media posting, Kustigian added links to state and federal websites outlining mold remediation and prevention in public school settings.