District 58 tests all of its school buildings for radon on a rotating basis. Radon is a colorless, odorless and radioactive gas produced naturally through the decay of uranium within the soil. Radon may enter a building through foundation cracks or openings in drains, sumps and water/gas supply pipes. Inhalation of significant amounts of radon gas over an extended period of time has been linked to lung cancer. District 58’s radon testing is conducted in accordance with the rules and regulations established by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency’s Division of Nuclear Safety. District 58 contracts with a professional radon measurement professional to properly test its schools for radon levels. Radon testing continues to be recommended by school code as a best practice, but it is not required.
When tests are conducted in a respective school, District 58 posts results here on its transparency page. When testing shows radon is above recommended limits, District 58 follows up with subsequent testing. If levels remain to be elevated, mitigation systems or other recommended remediations are deployed.
During the pandemic 2019-22, the District paused its radon testing program. Since the building bond referendum has passed (November 2022), one of the largest priorities is installing HVAC in all of the schools that don’t currently have it and ensuring adequate ventilation and fresh air to spaces in all of the schools. District 58 will work with an environmental consultant to review radon testing standards and needs as part of the pre-construction and post-construction process.
The chart here shows recent radon testing: