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School District: No cause found in rash outbreak

By ThisIsReno

Washoe school officials Friday evening said no cause was found for the mysterious skin rash afflicting students and teachers at Poulakidas Elementary School.

The school was closed yesterday after rash, hives and shortness of breath were experienced by those at the school.

School Principal Don Angotti said matter has been extensively investigated. Read his statement sent to parents today.

Dear Poulakidas families, 

This is Principal Don Angotti, with an important update on our school after several students and staff experienced skin rash symptoms on Wednesday afternoon.

Over the past 48 hours, an extensive effort has been undertaken by a diverse interagency team, including leadership from WCSD School Police and Facilities Management, Washoe County Health District, Reno Fire Department, and multiple environmental consultant experts, to determine the cause of Wednesday’s event.

With support from the Washoe County Health District, this team of experts has concluded that no irregular substances have been detected anywhere within our school building or outside of the building. This thorough examination of our school included an indoor air sampling, testing of cleaning products, and testing of our HVAC and plumbing systems, all of which returned normal results.

No pesticides have been used, and no unusual or new activity related to the building or grounds has occurred. Our school will continue to undergo sampling and testing into Saturday and an outside contractor has been hired to comprehensively disinfect the school on Sunday: all desks, walls, carpets and flooring will be steam cleaned.

All air filters have been replaced with new units and the HVAC system will be set to fully flush the building continuously throughout the weekend.

I understand the temporary inconvenience and stress this has caused over the last couple of days, but we are committed to ensuring the safety of our students and staff.

As you know, there are no classes scheduled in our District on Monday, February 7, but our staff will return to the building safely on that date for their Professional Learning Day.

Students are scheduled to return safely to regularly scheduled classes on Tuesday February 8.

I will continue to keep you updated if more information is confirmed, and we look forward to welcoming our students back to class on Tuesday.

Thank you so much for your patience and understanding.

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