Chemical spill forces 2 Edina schools to shut downby Tom Weber, Minnesota Public Radio
Edina, Minn. — Students at two schools in Edina were sent home this morning after what's being considered a minor chemical leak.
Officials said there was a backup in a tank that neutralizes chemicals that are poured out in chemistry labs. That caused a spill in a classroom and part of a hallway at Edina High.
Superintendent Ric Dressen says officials have since determined the leak was non-toxic.
Fire officials said some fluid spilled onto a custodian but he was not injured. Dressen said a strong odor forced cancellation of class at the high school.
"There was a definite odor; I was in the building briefly, it wasn't pleasant," Dressen said.
Valley View Middle School was also evacuated about 90 minutes after the high school as a precaution. The two schools are adjacent but each building has a separate ventilation system.
"Everything was done precautionary; the response time was wonderful," Dressen added. "We will step back and assess what we could have done different to be more timely and get information out. But from a safety standpoint, I really feel we did respond and had great cooperation."
A homecoming pep fest was canceled but the high school's homecoming parade and football game are still on for later today. Faculty and staff also were being allowed back into the schools between one and three Friday afternoon to collect personal items.
Saturday's homecoming dance is being moved to the Edina Community Center.
School is expected to be back in session on Monday.