School Drinking Water Program

All children need access to healthy water. Michigan children spend a significant portion of their day in school or child care facilities and quality drinking water is critical to a child’s overall health, development and performance.

Many schools and child care facilities receive water from a community water system and that supplier is required to meet federal and state drinking water quality; however, lead can still leach into a school’s drinking water from plumbing materials and fixtures within the school building and move through the school’s water distribution system. And, because of the on again/off again water use patterns in a school, more opportunity exists for water stagnation and lead to leach into the water. The only way to determine if there is lead in the water is to test it.

While sampling for lead or other possible drinking water contaminants is not currently required for schools served by a community water system, EGLE is has taken the initiative to provide guidance and tools regarding communication, plumbing assessments, sampling plans and collection, interpretation of results, risk reduction actions, and water moving programs for school personnel.

For Parents

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) School Drinking Water Quality: Parent Information 

For School Administrators and Managers

Important News

Flushing Guidance Memo to Schools During Executive Order 2020-35 

Guidance on Flushing Your School Plumbing System Before Resuming Class: information concerning the risks of water stagnation and where to find more information to help maintain the quality of drinking water within your facilities.

Lead Testing in Schools and Child Care Facility Program

The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) received a federal grant for testing school and child care facility water for lead. The goal of this program is to reduce childhood lead exposure in schools and child care facilities.

The funding provides free of charge to the facility:
  • An assessment of the building plumbing
  • Sampling and testing of all drinking water and food preparation taps
  • Guidance and help with reducing the risk of lead in the water
  • Follow-up sampling and testing as needed
This is a voluntary, nonregulatory program. EGLE will assist in finding funds
or cost-effective actions to reduce the risk of lead in the facility.

The grant period is from July 2020 through September 2023

You do not have to apply for this grant. EGLE will send out an invitation to all eligible facilities. Eligibility is based on lead risk along with other factors. EGLE has sent the first round of invitations and will continue to send out invitations every quarter until the end of the grant.

If you are interested in the program and did not get an invitation, please contact EGLE for eligibility determination.

Contact Ms. Holly Gohlke, Environmental Quality Specialist, Lead and Copper Unit, Community Water Supply Section, Drinking Water and Environmental Health Division, at 517-220-1904 or GohlkeH@Michigan.gov for more information.

Guidance Documents

Training

  • Stay tuned for future training opportunities!

Videos

Webinars

Other Resources:

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

Michigan Department of Health and Human Services: