What’s worse is the solution they are using contains dangerous chemicals and PFISD has known about this for months.
A few days ago, you may have seen the story on KVUE regarding the moldy wipes in Pflugerville ISD. As I have learned this week, the moldy wipes (gross) are bad, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. The entire big picture is much worse. And it isn’t just about the wipes growing mold, it’s about the chemicals that administrators were having janitorial staff pour into these wipes.
PFISD knowingly made cleaning wipes with an off-label cleaning solution that contained pesticides, by taking a bucket of dried wipes and pouring chemicals into it. The dry wipes bucket is a product called Spilfyter Sanitizing Wipe Kit and it’s sold on Amazon for $33.94 WITHOUT chemicals. Then, they added two chemicals made by Spartan Chemical. Those two chemicals were Spartan Clean on the Go 4 Multi Surface Cleaning and Spartan Shineline Multi Surface Cleaner.
Inside sources have reported to us that these two chemicals were combined and added to the dry wipes by custodial staff. However, neither chemical is safe to be around children and neither chemical kills COVID.
It all started with a school board meeting.
On September 17, 2020, the Executive Director of Facilities & Support Services, David Vesling spoke at the regular school board meeting. Vesling is in charge of buying cleaning supplies for PFISD and this was the day he pitched the chemicals to the board. He pitched the chemicals as being both safe and having the ability to kill coronavirus.
Note that Vesling was directly asked: “So, the wipes that teachers use in their classrooms are safe for them to use. Do they have to wear gloves? Are they safe to like I saw Sherri pulling that out and cleaning.”
To which he responded, “That question has been asked. They do not. We’re not saying they can’t wear gloves. It’s up to them. Everybody has different sensitivity. So the answer is no. It’s safe for students. It’s safe for teachers.”
He also said that this product kills COVID.
Unfortunately for the children and teachers who go to school in Pflugerville, none of this is true.
Just by reading the documents from Sparta Chemical, it is easy to learn that both of these chemicals can cause skin burns and blindness. As well, neither product kills COVID. More so, neither product has been marketed to kill COVID or any other germ.
Yet, these wipes were still distributed to every Pflugerville campus. They didn’t come with training or instructions to keep out of the reach of children. A safety report admitted to Texas American Federation of Teachers on October 1, even cites that these wipes are not and can not kill coronavirus.
But Pflugerville should know better.
Why should they know better?
Because in February this year, a kindergartener received chemical burns from the school’s cleaning solution at Rowe Lane Elementary School. Here are the PFISD staff members who were in the email and aware of these chemical burns caused by cleaning solution:
- Hillary Waggoner – Principal of Rowe Lane Elementary
- Rose Rolater – Assistant Principal of Rowe Lane Elementary
- Denise Kablaitis – Executive Director of Health, Safety, Crisis, and Emergency Management
- Pamela Palmer – Health Services Coordinator
We have ZERO indication that Kablaitis raised concerns about the ineffective, toxic, skin burning, eye blinding wipes. In fact, we have proof of the opposite. Alarms were raised to her, and she dismissed them.
Besides it being her job to know, should Kablaitis have known how to research these toxic wipes? One would think her credentials say so.
How can we trust Pflugerville ISD to tell the truth and do what is safe for both the children and the teachers?
They already knew that these cleaning products could cause serious chemical burns.
What about the cleaning solution killing COVID?
You can go to Spartan Chemical’s website and learn that neither product is advertised to kill coronavirus or anything else. While there are dozens of products on Spartan Chemical’s website that claims to kill COVID and other germs, the two purchased by the school do not kill either.
And the mold?
As it turns out, PFISD knew about the mold way back on September 2nd.
Here is a timeline of the cleaning solution scandal:
- September 2 – PFISD knew about the moldy wipes.
- September 14 – The first day of school.
- September 17 – David Vesling asked for more money to replace the moldy wipes.
- September 22 – Teachers began receiving alcohol wipes.
- September 23 – Moldy wipes still in the classrooms.
Yet, in that September 17 board meeting, Vesling claimed that the moldy wipes had all been thrown out.
Pflugerville Superintendent Doug Killian.
Doug Killian has failed the most important job ever given to him. That’s keeping students and staff safe. Every administrator mentioned in the article knew about the dangers and ineffectiveness of these cleaning solutions. That means that Doug Killian also knew, or at least he should have known.
Now some Pflugerville parents are calling for the resignation or firing of Doug Killian and all of the administrators who knew about these toxic and ineffective chemicals. A group of both parents and teachers in PFISD have started a Twitter account and to expose that PFISD is using these chemicals which can cause chemical burns and have no effect against COVID. This group is wanting to remain anonymous out of fear of retaliation.
They are urging all PFISD parents and teachers to reach out to the board of trustees and also express their concerns.
As of right now, PFISD does not have an adequate way to sanitize their schools and keep them free of COVID. That’s dangerous for students, teachers, and their families at home.