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Soil at five OPS schools test positive for lead

Posted at 11:52 AM, Oct 27, 2023

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Omaha Public Schools announced on Thursday that recent tests revealed that five elementary schools in their district contain elevated levels of lead in the soil.

Those schools are Beals, Conestoga, Kennedy, Skinner, and Walnut Hill Elementary.

All five of those schools are located within the Omaha lead superfund site which is an area known to contain higher levels of lead contamination.

Staff has set up temporary fencing to block off areas that were tested for lead.

OPS and the Douglas County Health Center say thirteen campuses still need to be tested. Those tests are expected to continue into next year.

“At no time do we believe that any of our students were in danger with the lead,” said Charles Wakefield, OPS Chief Operations and talent officer. “All these areas do have some type of ground covering whether it be grass, shrubbery, mulch, etc. and that does limit the risk somewhat, but it doesn't eliminate the risk.”

OPS says they're working closely with the city of Omaha to complete all necessary remediation.

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