School Drinking Water Program
All children need access to healthy water. Michigan children spend a significant portion of their day in school or child care facilities and quality drinking water is critical to a child’s overall health, development and performance.
Many schools and child care facilities receive water from a community water system and that supplier is required to meet federal and state drinking water quality; however, lead can still leach into a school’s drinking water from plumbing materials and fixtures within the school building and move through the school’s water distribution system. And, because of the on again/off again water use patterns in a school, more opportunity exists for water stagnation and lead to leach into the water. The only way to determine if there is lead in the water is to test it.
While sampling for lead or other possible drinking water contaminants is not currently required for schools served by a community water system, EGLE is has taken the initiative to provide guidance and tools regarding communication, plumbing assessments, sampling plans and collection, interpretation of results, risk reduction actions, and water moving programs for school personnel.
For School Administrators and Managers
Flushing Guidance Memo to Schools During Executive Order 2020-35
Guidance on Flushing Your School Plumbing System Before Resuming Class: information concerning the risks of water stagnation and where to find more information to help maintain the quality of drinking water within your facilities.
Free Drinking Water Lead Risk Assessment
We have a team of experts who will schedule a visit to your school building, at no charge, and help look for lead in the plumbing. We will also set up a water sampling plan and train school staff how to properly collect samples for lead analysis. This is available for a limited time to all public and registered nonpublic schools in Michigan. For more information, contact Holly Gohlke at 989-705-3422, or gohlkeh@michigan.
- Flushing guidance:
- 10 Basic Steps to School Water Testing: ten steps to investigate and develop a plan to ensure quality drinking water in your buildings. A printable guide: 10 Basic Steps to School Water Testing (PDF).
- We are currently working on revising our Michigan sampling guidance, and until completed we recommend that schools refer to the U.S. EPA's 3Ts for Reducing Lead in Drinking Water in Schools and Child Care Facilities
- You may find this 3Ts checklist handy: Establishing a Lead Testing Program (PDF)
- How to Identify Lead Free Certification Marks for Drinking Water System & Plumbing Products (PDF)
- Stay tuned for future training opportunities!
- Introduction to the Michigan School Water Training Program webinar - July 25, 2018 [PowerPoint Handout]
- MI School Water Training Program: Know Your Plumbing System and How to Develop an Investigative Drinking Water Sampling Plan - 8/21/18 [PowerPoint Handout]
- MI School Water Training Program: Investigative Sampling for Lead and Copper - (recorded 8/28/18, 60 min) [PowerPoint Handout]
- MI School Water Training Program: Providing Quality Drinking Water - (recorded 9/19/2018, 60 min) [PowerPoint Handout]
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency:
- Drinking Water Training
- Lead in Drinking Water in Schools and Childcare Facilities
- 3Ts for Reducing Lead in Drinking Water in Schools and Child Care Facilities
- Drinking Water Requirements for States and Public Water Systems
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
Michigan Department of Health and Human Services: