HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) – The family of a former student at St. James Elementary School has filed a lawsuit against Horry County Schools, alleging he became sick due to exposure to mold while at the school.
According to the lawsuit filed Nov. 30, the student, identified simply as “John Doe,” attended St. James Elementary during the 2017 to 2019 school years.
While attending St. James Elementary, the student continued to suffer from headaches, sore throats, mouth sores, fatigue, depression, mood dysregulation and general malaise, the lawsuit states.
Blood work reportedly revealed exposure to mold and mycotoxins, according to the suit.
“During John Doe’s enrollment at St. James Elementary School, it was discovered that several Horry County Schools including, but not limited to, St. James Elementary School had mold and toxic mold issues within the schools,” the lawsuit states.
The plaintiffs allege that the district knew about water damage, water leaks and mold issues for years within schools, “including, but not limited to, St. James Elementary School,” but refused or neglected to make necessary repairs and remove the mold.
In February 2019, work was done to rid St. James Elementary of mold. Weeks after that cleaning, an indoor air quality report revealed that mold still existed in one classroom. A report released March 14, 2019 stated that mold was no longer found in that room.
The lawsuit states John Doe was “forced to transfer to another school in order to avoid the toxic mold and contaminated conditions at St. James Elementary School.”
Both St. James Elementary and Horry County Schools were named as defendants in the lawsuit. The plaintiffs are asking for an unspecified amount of damages.
Horry County Schools spokesperson Lisa Bourcier said the district does not comment on pending litigation.
The full lawsuit can be read below: