EPA Adds New Interactive Data Tracking Tool
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) “3Ts,” Training, Testing, and Taking Action, aims to assist school and childcare facilities in reducing lead levels in drinking water with guidance and resources.
The 3Ts section on “Recordkeeping,” (Module 7), now includes Sampling Data eTrackers for schools and for childcare facilities.
· 3Ts Sampling Data eTracker for Child Care Facilities and Small Schools
· 3Ts Sampling Data eTracker for Schools is currently available as an xlsx spreadsheet here (EPA is currently updating the website)
The eTrackers provide a systematized way to record school information, tap water sample identifiers, test results and follow-up actions. The interactive feature permits electronic submission. Testing programs using WIIN Act grants must submit reportable information to the state.
The 2019 report, “Early Adopters: State Approaches to Testing School Drinking Water for Lead in the United States,” found that school drinking water lead testing results are not uniformly collected, and, in many states, are not made easily available for analysis. The report made two recommendations:
· Specified, standardized practices for tap water sampling for lead testing of school [and childcare] tap water together with financial and technical assistance for both testing and remediation could support more states in adopting programs and recommended practices to limit lead exposure in school drinking water.
· Up-to-date electronic data management guidance bolstered by improved federal financial and technical support, could standardize practices for data collection, database development and reporting to improve timely identification of elevated lead levels in school tap water and limit lead exposure from school water outlets.
Use of EPA’s eTracker data management system will guide specific and standardized practices for data collection. If the trackers are used in a widespread and consistent way, and submitted electronically, they will be able to build a national database on lead in school and childcare drinking water. In turn, this will enable policies and programs for lead exposure to be evidence-based and deployed where most needed.
Earlier NDWA news post on WIIN Act funds can be read here.
Current WIIN Act funds allotment information may be found here.