(WPHL) — Two Philadelphia School District Schools are closed in the wake of a recent asbestos finding.
District officials say asbestos was found in Frankford High School and Mitchell Elementary School after a recent inspection.
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Frankford High School was closed for the full day on Monday, April 10th, and switched to virtual learning on Tuesday, April 11th, and Wednesday, April 12th with the plan to go back in person on Thursday, April 13th.
Later on, the School District of Philadelphia released a statement saying that Frankford High School and Mitchel Elementary School will be closed indefinitely due to an environmental hazard.
“As the students remain virtual, the District will work in partnership with Frankford and Mitchell’s school leadership team, teachers, parents, and community to try to identify viably and supported alternative space for students and staff.”
Mitchell Elementary School which was built in 1916, and Frankford High School which was built in 1910, are some of the oldest buildings in the school district.
As most older buildings in the district were made from plaster, various inspections throughout the years labeled the schools as “no asbestos detected” since the 1990s.
In the wake of recent inspections, “new sampling conducted by inspectors shows that certain plaster walls and ceilings do, in fact, contain asbestos.”, said the district.
At this time the District says is not clear why the historic school records contradict recent sampling results, but that they are committed to continuing inspecting the schools and making environmental conditions safer.