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Parents Keep Kids Home from Staten Island School

Monday, January 10, 2011

Three-quarters of the students at a Staten Island school stayed home on Monday after toxic PCBs were found in two classrooms. The PCBs apparently came from flourescent lightbulbs.

The city's Department of Education says the attendance rate at PS 36 was just 24.9 percent on Monday.

Four people who identified themselves as parents of PS 36 students said on Facebok that they kept their children at home out of safety concerns. They made their comments on a Facebook page for the magazine Staten Island Parent.

The Education Department closed the two classrooms but kept the the school open. The DOE said there was no immediate health risk.

Staten Island Councilman Vincent Ignizio, and lawyers from New York Lawyers for the Public Interest are calling for full closure of the school. The federal EPA has suggested that school systems around the country replace their flourescent bulbs because they may contain toxic materials.

The Education Department also tested another Staten Island school, PS 53, on Saturday and is awaiting test results.

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