Radon Testing in Stillwater Area Public Schools

May 08, 2018

Stillwater Area Public Schools takes safety very seriously and works diligently to ensure we provide safe and healthy learning environments for all of our students.

A recent news story on KARE-11 TV discussed radon testing in homes and schools. Radon is a colorless, odorless gas that naturally comes from soil and has been linked to some cancer deaths when found at elevated levels. 

While radon testing is not required for schools in Minnesota, our school district has tested our schools for radon and we have mitigated any issues when they arise.

We contracted with an environmental consultant to formally test all of our buildings for radon in 2006-2007 and to perform follow up testing in 2008 on buildings that had elevated radon levels. As a result of the original and follow-up testing, radon mitigation systems were installed at Marine Elementary in the fall of 2008 and Lake Elmo in the spring of 2009. Follow-up testing done in partnership with the MN Department of Health in 2010 and 2011 confirmed the elevated levels were lowered below the Environmental Protection Agency guidelines of 4 pCi/L (picocuries per liter of air).

During the 2012-2013 school year our operations staff tested Andersen, Lake Elmo and Marine Elementary using continuous radon monitoring devices provided by MN Department of Health. The tests were taken to monitor the district’s installed radon mitigation systems. At that time, none of those facilities had elevated levels of radon.

Formal radon testing in all of our buildings is scheduled to take place in the 2018-2019 school year during the MN Department of Health recommended timeframe of November 1-March 31. The testing will be conducted by Field Environmental Consulting, using the MN Department of Health Radon in Schools Model Plan.

Homeowners are also encouraged to monitor for radon levels. For more information: http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/eh/indoorair/radon/radontestresults.html