Second Round of Testing at San Ysidro School Show No Bacteria in Water

No bacteria found in La Mirada Elementary school drinking fountains after plumbing fix

Results from a second test of the drinking fountains at a San Ysidro elementary school indicated there was no bacteria in the water after the fountains and some plumbing was replaced.

But original tests of La Mirada Elementary school water showed heightened levels of lead, copper, and bacteria.

Students at La Mirada and two other schools in the district are still drinking bottled water at a cost of $1000 per day.

The San Ysidro School District voluntarily spent $13,000 to replace its drinking fountain fixtures and some plumbing at La Mirada Elementary school.

Following the replacements, a second round of tests showed a significant improvement in the water quality. There were no traces of bacteria but lead and copper levels have not yet been calculated.

Parents in the district argued clean drinking water is as much a priority as curriculum and quality teachers.

"They come here for education but they also have to eat and drink,” parent Carlos Pacheco said.

One board member said in a meeting Thursday night, fountain fixtures were just the tip of the iceberg.

The lead and copper may be coming from pipes that service the schools.

"It’s a little concerning to the district and me as the superintendent that there could be potential challenges with the piping underneath the building,” Superintendent Dr.Julio Fonseca said.

Fonseca said there is no budget for replacing those pipes in this district or most others.

San Ysidro unanimously adopted a resolution that commits the district to solving its water problems.

Knowing the solution may require a larger perspective and pool of money, the district reached out to assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez-Fletcher.

Lorena Gonzalez-Fletcher sent a representative to speak at the board meeting.

"Lead exposure has real consequences and it’s unacceptable that children and teachers could be poisoned by drinking from the water fountains at school," spokesperson Francine Maigue said.

The results for the second test for lead and copper are expected to be back from the lab within a week or two, Fonseca said.

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