Health officials have said that mold is the culprit behind symptoms of illness manifested students at the Roseau Primary School and other nearby schools in the Bath Estate area.
Officials met with parents of the Roseau Primary School on Monday morning and revealed that four buildings in the area were taken over by mold, which is a type of fungus.
A parent, who was at the meeting, told DNO that the officials said the children became sick because of exposure to the fungus.
The officials told the parents the schools have been “hosed down” and trees around the area were cut down by prisoners as part of efforts to combat the mold.
Despite this, the parent told DNO that a child fainted while the meeting was in progress and had to be rushed to hospital with breathing problems.
The parent said that despite the measures taken, the officials explained that mold remains a problem “and it was literally leaking from the roof” of the Roseau Primary School.
Molds are microscopic organisms that can be found in shady, damp areas, or places where leaves or other vegetation is decomposing. When molds are disturbed, they release tiny cells called spores into the surrounding air, according to the US Environmental Health Agency.
Molds produce irritating substances that may act as allergens (allergy-causing substances) in sensitive individuals. Furthermore, some molds produce toxic substances. Molds may not cause health effects or they may lead to symptoms in people who are sensitive to molds.
Schools in the area were closed last week because of the problem but students were asked to return on Monday morning.
The problem was first blamed on asbestos but this was ruled out by officials.
More on this story later.