ALBERTON, P.E.I. - A broken down water pump prompted an early dismissal of students from Alberton Elementary School on Friday.
Principal Shanna Perry said she only learned of a water problem once buses were out picking up students. The actual cause of the water problem still hadn’t been determined when the buses arrived and the drivers were put on standby in case the water problem could not be quickly repaired.
Perry said the extent of the problem was known about 20 minutes after the school day commenced.
“We realized we were going to be most of the day, if everything went well, without water, so the decision was made between myself and the Public Schools Branch that it was in the best interest to send the children home,” Perry explained.
The process of alerting parents that their children would be returning home early was initiated, in accordance with the school’s early dismissal policy.
“We had to make sure parents were informed,” she said.
Classes were subsequently dismissed at 10 a.m., about three hours ahead of other schools across the Island that got let out early because of worsening road and weather conditions.
Perry said technicians were at the Alberton school Friday afternoon installing a new water pump.
The new pump is expected to be up and running over the weekend and will be available to be used for washing and flushing, but not for drinking, by Monday.
Perry said clear test results will be needed before the water is declared safe for consumption.
She said there will be water provided for drinking. Three water coolers were delivered to the school on Friday.