City Services, Community, Sustainability

Voluntary Lead Testing in Schools

March 13, 2017

On January 17, 2017 the State announced a new initiative for K-12 schools to receive free testing for lead in drinking water. The City of Hayward regularly tests for lead in drinking water in compliance with the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s Lead and Copper Rule (LCR), which requires water agencies to test for lead at customer taps every three years. If lead concentrations exceed an Action Level of 15 parts per billion in more than 10 percent of customer taps sampled, the agency must take action to notify the public and reduce corrosion of lead within the distribution system.  An Action Level for lead is defined as the level of lead which, if exceeded, triggers treatment or other requirements that a water agency must follow to reduce the presence of lead in drinking water.  Since the LCR’s inception in 1991, the City of Hayward has always been below the Action Level threshold for lead.  The most recent round of lead sampling in Hayward was undertaken in 2016 and the overall results were also below the Action Level. 

Recent events in the United States have highlighted that lead in drinking water remains an on-going public health concern, particularly for children.  While clean drinking water is provided to schools, lead could still get into water at a school campus if there are corroded or old fixtures at the school. Protecting children from lead exposure is important for their development and lifelong good health.  Under this new initiative, water agencies are required to test school drinking water for lead upon request by the school’s officials.  The State’s new requirement ensures that schools have access to free lead sampling and testing.  Read more information about the State’s lead sampling for schools program here.

In February 2017, the City and Hayward Unified School District (HUSD) initiated discussions regarding sampling and testing for lead in drinking water at HUSD schools. HUSD has requested that all HUSD schools served by City water be tested for lead and has designated HUSD staff to work cooperatively with City staff to implement the requested lead sampling program. 

Please contact the following staff for more information or questions:
Robert Gerena, City of Hayward, at 510-881-7978 or
Bert Weiss, City of Hayward, at 510-881-7901 or
Andrew Lathrop, Hayward Unified School District, at 510-784-2600 ext. 76309 or