Sewage Scent Plagues School

By: Jessica Dealy Email
By: Jessica Dealy Email

Imagine trying to study or teach while smelling a stench so strong you actually become sick to your stomach. For the students and staff at Choctaw County Elementary School, that nauseating scenario is their reality.

"I have real bad headaches and I have been back and forth to the doctors ever since we've been in this building, because of the smells," said school counselor, Nona Anderson.

The school is only six years old and has been dealing with several problems related to possible poor construction. The smell was first noticed during the 2010 spring semester. When students returned from summer break, the odor had become nearly unbearable.

"Some days we have had to dismiss our students and let them go outside because the smell was so bad," said principal A. Wayne Longmire. "I've had students check out and complain of stomach aches, nausea, and so forth."

The school has taken the advice of several experts to solve the odor problem. Over the past few months, hallway floors have been torn up, drains have been flushed, sewer holes have been sealed, and exhaust fans have been installed, but the smell remains.

"We are concerned for the safety of our students and our staff," said assistant superintendent A. Wayne Longmire. "We want the parents to feel their children can come here and breathe quality air."

The issues the school has with faulty construction could not be discussed because the district is still in litigation with the company that built it. For now, there has been a sewage trap installed that is drained daily to keep the odor at bay.

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by cathy Location: Butler on Oct 20, 2010 at 08:51 PM
    I think an important question about the air quality could be answered by the use of portable hydrogen sulfide gas monitors. Often we can spend a lot of time and money trying to fix things, but that not not mean the problem is fixed. Let's be sure this problem is corrected by obtaining these monitors and testing the air. Thanks.
  • by Anonymous on Oct 20, 2010 at 07:16 PM
    I think something needs to be done about this a i know several people that go there that are sick! I have heard by people that work for the company that built the school that the rebars were not all put down in the cement so i bet that is some of the problem with the floors!
  • by Donald Thomas Location: Newton on Oct 20, 2010 at 06:10 PM
    I can help and my service is free. This is the type work I do.

    Contact me at
  • by Anonymous on Oct 20, 2010 at 05:22 PM
    Where are the exhaust fans that have supposedly been installed at CCES. Thank you for coming to our school maybe you can help us get someone in to test the air so that all concerned will know what is going on there. Also an afternoon visit would give a better idea of what we are talking about.
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