Wednesday, January 23, 2013

A statement by The Honorable Ellen F. Robertson Regarding the safety of Richmond Public Schools Norrell Elementary School


Richmond City Council – Richmond City Hall - 900 E. Broad Street, Suite 200 - Richmond, VA 23219 -



Wednesday, 23 January 2013

A statement by

The Honorable Ellen F. Robertson

Councilwoman, Gateway 6th Voter District

Regarding the safety of Richmond Public Schools Norrell Elementary School

(Richmond, Virginia U.S.A.) -- "Norrell Elementary School is safe. We base our trust that it is safe on extensive testing, studies, reports and results documented by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, the Virginia Department of Health, the Richmond Department of Public Utilities, the Richmond Department of Public Works, and an independent environmental consultant (France Environmental).

We asked that Norrell Elementary School be tested and it was, thoroughly. It passed all the tests for safety and there are no environmental hazards at the school, none whatsoever. We have reams of documented proof from nearly every respected environmental agency that Norrell is safe.

Throughout this process, our parents and children have come to the table, asked questions, and have received factual information regarding the safety of the school in order to help guide their decisions regarding its use. There are, however, some out there who are neither parents nor that have children attending the school who are expressing concern. I invite those individuals to come to the table, become informed, review the reports, and get the facts.

Since the children attending Norrell Elementary School are members of our families living the Northside 6th District, I will be holding a special meeting for any concerned citizens in order for them to be informed on the facts as they take up their special charge of advising our children in the Gateway 6th District. We want our community dialogue to be open and honest and for our parents and children to have factual information and not be told what is not true.

If the community determines it wants to make decisions based on perception and false fears, rather than factual information, then we shall say so. If we desire closing schools where testing has been done, then let's do that. But please, let's not make claims that are unfounded or make decisions that are not based on facts.

By all information sources, Norrell Elementary School is safe.

CONTACT For more information, please contact The Honorable Ellen F. Robertson, Councilwoman, Richmond City Council, Gateway 6th Voter District, at 804.646.7964 (office) or;

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