Montevallo Elementary reopens with ‘no air quality problems’

MES students make their way into the building as school resumes on the morning of Jan. 3. (Reporter Photo/Jon Goering)

By CHRISTINE BOATWRIGHT / Staff Writer

MONTEVALLO – Montevallo Elementary School felt “like the first day of school” to Assistant Principal Haley Franks when the school reopened Jan. 3 after being closed for cleaning and the holiday break since Dec. 12.

The school opening also welcomed Dr. Allison Campbell as the new principal.

“The students are very excited and happy to be back,” Campbell said. “I’m happy with what’s happened over the break.”

According to a release from Shelby County Schools, the school system replaced ceiling tiles and water fountains, renovated bathrooms and replaced carpet with tile floors in several areas throughout the school. The fifth-grade wing, where mold originally was located, was retiled, and the bathrooms were renovated completely.

Campbell said renovation projects will continue throughout the summer months, but “during a week and a half, they accomplished a great deal.”

Dr. Lynn Cook, assistant superintendent of instruction for Shelby County Schools, compiled a notebook of reports from ERG Environmental, the company originally responsible for air-quality testing in the school, and Environmental Materials Consultants Inc., a company hired to give a “second opinion” in the testing.

Montevallo Elementary’s new principal, Dr. Allison Campbell, helps a student get off to class on the morning of the school’s reopening Jan. 3. (Reporter Photo/Jon Goering)

According to Cook, Environmental Materials Consultants Inc., like ERG Environmental, reported the school has “no air quality problems” in regards to mold, and no Stachybotrys, or black mold, spores were located in the samples.

The reports are available to parents in Campbell’s office, and were given to MES teachers.

Campbell met with PTO members Jan. 2 and walked through the facility, and Campbell said she felt “like they were very happy” with the school clean-up results.

Montevallo Mayor Hollie Cost, who is the mother of an MES student, did a walk-through with Campbell and said the school looked “100 percent cleaner.”

“It looks like (the Shelby County Board of Education) responded to all of the concerns I was aware of,” Cost said. “This looks like a new place.”