MONTREAL, MAY 14, 2012– The English Montreal School Board has announced that the building which houses John F. Kennedy High School and John F. Kennedy Business Centre (JFKBC) in St. Michel will be closed for the remainder of the year following the discovery of asbestos in the facility. This is a precautionary measure to allow additional air quality testing to be conducted in the building. Contingency plans are in place to ensure that the students are accommodated at another high school/ business centre in order to complete their studies this school year.
Approximately three weeks ago, asbestos was found in two ventilation rooms in the facility. Following the EMSB’s asbestos protocol, a firm which deals with the analysis and removal of this material was called in and it was removed. Air quality testing following the removal of asbestos was done and the treated rooms were deemed safe. Further precautionary tests were then performed in other parts of the building and asbestos was found. In order to be prudent, it was decided to close the building on May 10, 11 and 14 to give the experts an opportunity to conduct air quality testing.
The methodology employed was unable to determine if asbestos was present in the air. Further analysis will be done. In order not to disrupt the academic year any further for students, the EMSB has informed parents of a plan to move the high school students to Rosemount High School for the duration of classes and exams,while JFKBC adult students will be directed to different centres.
The EMSB has received approval from Santé Publique to permit students and staff back into the JFK facility to retrieve whatever material they require. John F. Kennedy High School students and staff will relocate to Rosemount High School by this Thursday. Similarly, students and staff of the John F. Kennedy Business Centre will be relocated to various centres this week.
“It has been our intention all along to take every precaution necessary,’ said Ms. Mancini. “Students have already missed three days of classes and we want to limit the disruption for them. Our staff have been working diligently at developing contingency plans.”