child-drinking-water-fountain
water testing

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) is committed to addressing lead in drinking water in our schools and child care facilities and overall reduction of childhood lead exposure across our state.  With the funding appropriated under section 1464(d) of the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA), amended by the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act (WIIN) section 2107, DHSS will assist in voluntary testing for lead contamination in drinking water at schools and child care facilities that are in low-income areas.  Priority will be given to elementary schools with at least 50% of the children receiving free and reduced lunches and Head Start child care programs (e.g. primarily care for children 6 years and under) and older facilities that are more likely to contain lead plumbing (e.g. facilities built before Missouri’s lead ban of 1988).

DHSS is utilizing EPA's 3Ts Guidance to implement the program.  This includes efforts to Communicate, throughout the implementation of the program, the results and important lead information to the public, parents, teachers, and larger community; (1) Train on the risks of lead in drinking water and testing for lead, as well as developing key partnerships to support the program; (2) Test using appropriate testing protocols and a certified laboratory; (3) Take Action, including the development of a plan for responding to results of testing conducted.  Guidance is available from DHSS on addressing potential elevated lead remediation.

It is DHSS’s goal to reduce lead exposure at these facilities by testing for lead, identifying potential lead sources, and taking action.  Using the priorities listed above, this testing effort includes the goals of:

  • Testing water samples from drinking fountains and faucets used for consumption by children 6 years or younger at schools and child care facilities.
  • Providing education about lead and the importance of testing to Missouri school districts and licensed child care facilities.

Resources that have previously been made available for testing for lead contamination in drinking water in schools and child care facilities will not be replaced by funds provided from this WIIN Grant:  Lead Testing in School and Child Care Program Drinking Water.  Grant funding will be used to supplement and enhance existing resources.