Foul odor at RVA elementary school could force relocation

Published: Apr. 24, 2015 at 9:10 PM EDT|Updated: May. 5, 2015 at 4:14 AM EDT
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RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Richmond school leaders are launching a last ditch effort to tackle a foul odor at John B. Cary Elementary School. School administrators say the bad smell that has persisted for several months could force teachers and students to relocate.

"It stinks very bad," said Malachi Revels. "It smells like rotten eggs and fish. One student threw up."

The mysterious odor is plaguing John B. Cary Elementary.

"Of course," said parent Angela Masomera. "I'm concerned about health and safety…any old building in you know we have old buildings."

Our cameras were rolling as school leaders wrapped up a two hour long meeting insisting, after air quality testing, there is no risk to health and safety.

"Well it's a puzzling thing to think about," said grandmother Anna McClenney. "Where is the smell coming from then if there is no risk?"

School leaders spent 90,000 to conduct that 72 hour air quality test. They'll be bringing in fans to tackle what could possibly an air circulation issue.

"We're going to do what's right for our students and staff and it's ensure that they are safe," said assistant superintendent Tommy Kranz.

Some teachers and students are now complaining the odor is making them sick.

"We think we have looked at every single possibility that it could be," said Kranz. "If the air flow action doesn't work we are going to have to seriously consider a relocation of these students."

Teachers say the school issues extend beyond the foul odor.

"The gym floor is buckling so we don't have a gym or a library," said librarian Jennifer Sampogna. "Well we have a library, but it's being used by a kindergarten class…so we are doing what we can."

Kranz says they plan to conduct weekly air quality tests on Monday. There is also talk of bringing in trailers for students. Stay with NBC12 for updates.

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