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Union Leader to Update Teachers Friday Night

Sept. 16, 2005 – A union leader said Thursday he will meet with teachers from a St. Croix junior high school where health and safety issues led to protests and the subsequent closure of the school.
Tyrone Molyneaux, president of the American Federation of Teachers Local
1826, said the meeting will be held at the St. Croix Education Complex Friday evening, at the end of an emergency meeting being called by the Woodson PTA.
"The intention is to meet with the members after the PTA meeting so we can discuss shared information that was discussed earlier (sic) with the superintendent and the school administration of the John H. Woodson Junior High School," Molyneaux said.
Classes were called off Tuesday after education officials determined that mold infestation posed a potential health threat. Teachers and students have complained of illnesses and allergies they believe are caused by exposure to the mold. A contractor, Environmental Concepts Inc., has been called into the school to conduct air quality tests.
Without going into detail, Molyneaux said he wants to update Woodson teachers on the progress of those tests, to hear their concerns about the situation, and to discuss possible alternatives for teaching students in other venues until the situation improves. To obtain the most complete information on the threat of mold to worker's health, the union leader said he is consulting with the health information unit, which the American Federation of Teachers runs as part of its international structure.
"We're going to work with them to give them good information and good resources in terms of how to assist not only our members but the department, and educate ourselves in resolving these mold problems in our schools,"
Molyneaux said.

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