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South Whidbey schools near fix on water

South Whidbey School District is getting closer to a new drinking water system in its buildings, school superintendent Fred McCarthy said.

New fixtures purchased for $27,000 are arriving, and a $34,000 contract has been signed with Harbor Plumbing of Oak Harbor to install them.

Meanwhile, parts for the new filtration system have been ordered and are beginning to arrive, McCarthy said, adding that “we’re about a month out” in reinstating drinking water.

“It’s been frustrating for everyone, but we’re going about it in a systematic way,” McCarthy said.

A water system update will be given to school board members at their meeting at 6:30 p.m. tonight at the intermediate school, 5380 S. Maxwelton Road, Langley.

At tonight's meeting, the board will also consider a seismic study for the Primary School campus, a nutrition grant proposal, and a review of the policy of unexcused absences for students participating in 4-H programs.

A reception for parents and students new to the district will precede the meeting at 5:30 p.m.

The three schools along Maxwelton Road have been making do with bottled water since 2004, when unacceptable traces of lead were discovered in the schools’ water system, along with iron and manganese that were coloring the water.

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