Parents upset they weren’t notified of water main breaks affecting St. Charles schools

ST. CHARLES, Mo. – “You just sent an email home to parents yesterday warning parents not to send sick kids to schools and today they can’t wash their hands,” mom Missy Hevert said.

Hevert said two things went through her mind when she received a text Friday morning from her daughter, telling her that she couldn’t use the restroom at St. Charles West High School because there was no water.

“My first thought was my poor daughter has to go to the bathroom, should I just tell her to go home and go to the bathroom,” Hevert said. “But my second thought was: why aren’t parents knowing about this?”

The water supply to four St. Charles schools had to be shut off due to a water main break on Droste Road, less than a mile from St. Charles West.

Superintendent Jeff Marion said there were actually two water breaks with the first happening close to 8 a.m. Friday morning, but it didn’t last long.

“Around a half hour maybe,” Marion said. “Certainly not even an hour, so it was back on before we had to do much.”

The superintendent said he chose not to inform parents until hours later, when it surprisingly happened again. This time – there wasn’t a definite time of repairs.

Hevert said she believes that wasn’t the right call.

“I believe there was an immediate need to notify the parents,” Hevert said. “More of a proactive approach and thank goodness my daughter has a cellphone and she’s old enough to use it. But there’s small children in elementary schools that didn’t have that.”

Marion said students were still allowed to use the restrooms and administrators provided everyone with bottled water.

The superintendent said he stands by his decision.

“There’s no perfect solution to an emergency and it takes you time,” Marion said. “I tell you one thing I’ve learned: yes, you want to get information as quickly as you can to parents, but you need to make sure it is accurate and complete.”