Wyoming Valley West School District Addresses Mold Issue

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KINGSTON -- The Wyoming Valley west School District on Thursday released more details about a mold problem that forced 1,200 students out of a middle school last month.

It appears part of the problem was caused by a ventilation system not working properly.

Wyoming Valley West Middle School students have been attending class at the high school in Plymouth since earlier this month.

The district closed the middle school in Kingston to inspect it.

In a two-page report, the district's contractor who's working on the mold problem has a few recommendations before students can return back to the middle school.

The school district released what it's calling a fact sheet after mold was found inside the middle school last month. The district's contractor, Cocciardi and Associates, released the sheet. It outlines three changes that need to be made to the middle school.

Cocciardi and the district plan to address questions at an informational meeting next week.

Newswatch 16 talked about the recommendations with Fred Klein of Olde Tyme Cleaning in Wilkes-Barre, who also does mold removal.

The first recommendation: fix the building's ventilation system.

"If you're going to have mold, you have moisture," said Klein. "You have to eliminate the problem, which is the moisture problem."

The other recommendations call for removing the rest of the mold and then, the entire middle school should receive something called a high-efficiency cleaning.

"It needs a deep scrubbing, and make sure you get everything out," Klein added.

School district officials last month said depending on how bad the mold situation at the middle school was, the building could be closed for good. They now plan to reopen the building.

Parents hope that happens soon.

"The kids love the half day, obviously, the parents don't because it interrupts their work schedule but it's good. Everything's going to be back to normal," said parent Kelly Marchlenski.

"You have a mold problem, you want to be concerned with it, but you don't want to panic. Find the problem, fix the problem, get rid of the mold," added Klein.

There's no timetable on when the middle school would reopen, but the district expects to release more information at the Wyoming Valley West High School Tuesday at 6 p.m.


  • keith hinkel

    No school building was provided ventilation method[s]. They are closed almost always, doors shut, no air movement–mold loves this. Same reason I ever go to movie theaters–always closed and rank smelling. All rooms in a building need air circulation–stops mold fast.

  • lelani

    I just want to know why our contractor isn’t completing the work and is subbing it out to another contractor? Exactly what are we paying the district’s contractor, Cocciardi and Associates to do? Ignore the obvious? I want to know what their contact is for and what work they’ve actually done. All the mold/environmental contactors I know also do the work…but not this one. Very curious.

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