Mold issues go beyond St. James Elementary School, Horry County parents say

Updated: Mar. 18, 2019 at 11:22 PM EDT
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HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – A woman representing parents at Carolina Forest High School spoke at the Horry County School Board meeting Monday night and said mold has been a problem at the school since last year.

Colleen Mills said she sent pictures of problem areas to Horry County School Board Chairman Ken Richardson last week and she reached out to school board members last year about the issue.

“I also noticed mold that looked like it had been covered up with white paint when I was in the main office area on Tuesday,” Mills said.


[ Over 20 areas of St. James Elementary cleaned to rid school of mold ]

[ Parents still concerned over mold at St. James Elementary, inspector talks mold removal ]

[ Email to St. James Elementary School parents claims no black mold found ]

[ More mold found at St. James Elementary; students moved from two classrooms ]

Donnie Patterson made the trip from Spartanburg to speak at the school board meeting.

“Air sampling depends on mold spores and fragments being airborne at the time of testing and by removing every avenue by which they could become airborne we are putting this testing at a distinct disadvantage,” said Patterson.

His focus during the three minutes he was allotted to speak was the kind of testing conducted by the company called in by the school district and how it’s not accurate.

"The testing that's been done hasn't told us anything and the fact of the matter is you get passing results but you have sick kids and teachers. I mean, that alone should be proof that something's not right,” he said.

Patterson said he got sick himself, was misdiagnosed, but fought for the right diagnosis.

“I was blogging about it on social media and everyone who reached out to me and said ‘I’m going through the same thing,’ was a public school teacher, so that’s how I got into this,” he said.

In Horry County, Patterson said the correct testing needs to be done.

“We need to cut off the sources of moisture in the schools. There needs to be a remediation program that they need to follow up with and keep up with,” Patterson said, “I know there’s going to be a problem with money, but I mean.”

Patterson said he may return to Horry County in the future.

“You can’t put a price on well being. And that’s just one of those things that I don’t understand. I don’t understand how you can put a budget before that. I know there’s money and there’s issues but that’s something you find a way to do,” said Patterson.

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