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City of Mound Water Notice
UPDATE April 8, 2021 — Westonka Public Schools worked with Musser Environmental to independently test manganese levels in water at each of our school buildings. All of the school samples came in well below the Minnesota Department of Health health advisory guideline. Westonka Schools’ drinking fountains/bottle refill stations are safe to use.
March 19, 2021 — Westonka Public Schools received notice on March 18, 2021, from the City of Mound that recent routine testing of the city’s drinking water supply indicated elevated levels of manganese greater than the Minnesota Department of Health recommended health advisory guideline levels.
Manganese is a naturally occurring element found in rocks and soil and is usually present in Minnesota ground and surface water. Our bodies need some manganese to stay healthy but too much can be harmful. Elevated levels of manganese can pose a health risk to sensitive populations. Learn more about manganese by visiting the MDH website: Manganese in Drinking Water
The City of Mound has two wells that are tested for manganese, and both tested above the MDH health advisory guideline of 300 parts per billion (ppb). Manganese concentration in the City of Mound source water ranges from 470 ppb to 750 ppb.
What You Should Know About Westonka Schools’ Water
- The City of Mound supplies water to two Westonka school buildings: Shirley Hills Primary School and Grandview Middle School. Westonka’s other buildings are served by Minnetrista and are not impacted.
- Westonka Public Schools is working with Musser Environmental to independently test our school water supply for elevated levels of manganese. Results will take approximately one week. We will communicate these results after Spring Break.
- MDH lists the use of water softeners as a mitigation measure against manganese. Westonka’s buildings have water softeners.
- All drinking fountains/bottle refill stations in the district are filtered. The filters indicate that they work in reducing/removing minerals. We are in the process of testing to ensure this is the result. In the meantime, students are welcome to bring their own water bottles from home.
- Custodians at Shirley Hills and Grandview will be posting signs in bathrooms and classrooms to remind students/staff that sinks are for hand washing only.
- We will be using filtered water in the Shirley Hills and Grandview kitchens for meal preparation while we await test results.
- MDH guidance outlines that washing your hands or bathing in water with elevated levels of manganese is not harmful to your health.
If you have health concerns about your or your child’s exposure to manganese in drinking water, please contact your primary care physician.