Report shows extensive lead contamination in Philadelphia public schools

Schools should safe places where kids go to learn, grow and play. But how can they be, when much of the drinking water is contaminated with lead?

Schools should safe places where kids go to learn, grow and play. But how can they be, when much of the drinking water is contaminated with lead?

That's the reality for students in 98% of the Philadelphia public schools that were tested for lead contamination, according to "Lead in the Water," a study from PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center. The city of Philadelphia allows lead in waters at or below 10 parts per billion (ppb). The highest lead sample found in this study showed a whopping 8,768 ppb of lead.

"Our study shows the pervasive threat of lead in drinking water Philadelphia kids face when they enter our school buildings," said PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center Executive Director David Masur. "It's time for district officials to address this threat once and for all.”

PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center is calling on district officials to replace old water fountains with lead filtering hydration stations.

Read the report.

Photo: A PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center report found lead contamination in 98% of tested Philadelphia public schools. Credit: Chiara Coetzee via Flickr, CC0